indonesia travel magazine

West Java, Sunda, Traditional Dance

West Java, Sunda, Traditional Dance


The Sundanese are an ethnic group native to the western part of the Indonesian island of Java. They number approximately 31 million, and are the second most populous of all the nation’s ethncities. The Sundanese are predominantly Muslim. During the 2010 Census the government identified 1,128 ethnic backgrounds in the country, though total figures are not yet released for Sundanese. In their own language, Sundanese, the group is referred to as Urang Sunda, and Suku Sunda or Orang Sunda in the national language, Indonesian.

The Sundanese have traditionally been concentrated in the provinces of West Java, Banten and Jakarta, and the western part of Central Java. Sundanese migrants can also be found in Lampung and South Sumatra. The provinces of Central Java and East Java are home to the Javanese, Indonesia’s largest ethnic group.

Sundanese culture has a number of similarities with Javanese culture, however it differs by being more overtly Islamic, and has a less rigid system of social hierarchy.

The common identity that binds Sundanese together is their language and culture.

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