Indonesian bedtime stories in Indonesia are popular with folk tales inside in around the year of ’90s. Most children that grew up in that era will feel so familiar with Indonesian folk tales. Moreover, the stories come from different regions which makes them more popular from time to time.
Indonesian folk tales become popular in Indonesia because most of them are pictured some important places, regions, and even people. That makes parents get their easy way to tell the story to their children.
Speaking of Indonesian folk tales, here we have some of them that become so popular from time to time. Let’s check them out below!
1. Bawang Merah Bawang Putih
Bawang Merah Bawang Putih becomes one of the most famous Indonesian folk tales from time to time. It comes from Central Java which brings the deep moral messages inside the story. One of the pieces of pearl you can get from the story is always a good deed so that you will have the happiest life in the end.
Just like common Indonesian folk tales, Bawang Merah Bawang Putih pictures the hardest life from the protagonist of the Bawang Putih to struggle in her life over Bawang Merah and her stepmother. After her patience then she gets the happy ending at the end of the story.
2. Malin Kundang
Malin Kundang becomes one of the most popular Indonesian folk tales. It comes from West Sumatran folk tales, which bring the deepest moral of obeying parents. Most Indonesian believe the story as if they disobey their parents they will get unfortunately life forever.
Malin Kundang brings the story of the poor young man that becomes rich, but he is denying his poor mother. The worst part is he doesn’t want to admit that she is his birth mother and lie to his wife. His mother is sad and angry so that she cursed him into the stone.
3. Ande Ande Lumut and Kleting Kuning
Ande Ande Lumut and Kleting Kuning become one of the most popular Indonesian folk tales. It comes from East Java which the story is similar to the Cinderella story. Just like Indonesian common folk tales, it brings the harder life for the protagonist at the beginning of Kleting Kuning over her foster mom and fosters sisters.
The love story of Ande Ande Lumut and Kleting Kuning is so popular from the struggle of Kleting Kuning reach her love of the prince Ande Ande Lumut. By her kind and integrity, she defeats a monster of Yuyu Kangkang to reach her love. Later the prince marries her and they live happily ever after.
4. Keong Emas
Keong Emas becomes one of the most popular Indonesian folk tales from time to time. It brings the story of a golden snail adopted by a widow named Mbok Rondo. The golden snail of Keong Emas is always being helpful without the widow knowing it.
Keong Emas always do the home cores and cook the dishes for the widow. That makes the widow suspicious of who did them all. Later she found out that her gold snail is a princess of Dewi Sekartaji that magically cursed. The widow helps her to break the shell, and the princess’ curse is broken.
The princess was finally found by her husband after a while, and they lived happily ever after. They go to the kingdom and bring the widow with them.
5. Calon Arang
Calon Arang becomes one of the most popular Indonesian folk tales that mix with the myth. It comes from Bali, which pictures as the bad witch ever who is capable to destroy the village by black magic and her spell.
Calon Arang becomes a portrait of a fierce evil in Balinese folk tales. Her fierceness becomes one of the lessons learned to whoever read the story so that they have to avoid doing Calon Arang’s deeds.
Up until now the ritual to avoid Calon Arang’s spirit, most Balinese held some rituals in one of their most religious festivals in Bali. There is also some live drama theatre that performs Calon Arang’s story in some of Bali’s traditional festivals and celebrations.
6. Jaka Tarub
Jaka Tarub becomes one of the most popular Indonesian folk tales from time to time. The story is about a young man who steals the scarf of an angel named Nawang Wulan so that he could marry her. They live happily after marrying her but never tell her about the scarf.
One day Nawang Wulan found out about her scarf and Jaka Tarub’s lie. That makes her so angry and left him to go back to heaven again. Most Javanese commonly take the story to avoid lying to people no matter they love them.
Cindelaras becomes one of the most popular Indonesian folk tales that come from East Java. The story is about Cindelaras revealing his true identity as the son of the king. Cindelaras mother was trapped by the younger wife of his husband and made her exile to the forest.
One day, Cindelaras participated at the Sabung Ayam in the kingdom which used to become one of the most famous cultures in Indonesia, and he won over the king. Magically the Cindelaras’ chicken is capable to speak and tell the truth about Cindelaras identity. The king realized that he was manipulated by his young wife so he punished her.
8. Timun Mas
Timun Mas becomes one of the most popular Indonesian folk tales of the golden cucumber girl. It brings the story of the young girl that bravely struggles over the giant monster. If she is defeated by the monster, she will be eaten by him.
Timun Mas represent the Indonesian young women’s braveness to face everything that may happen in their life. This story is so popular from time to time in most of the Indonesian region.
So, there are some of the most popular Indonesian folk tales. Most Indonesian take the piece pearl of the story wisely that every good deed always wins over a bad deed. That becomes a true behavior that should be done in daily life.
Have you ever read about those folk tales stories? Which one of your favorite?