Home Culture and Etiquettes Gebuk Bantal and Makan Kerupuk, Traditional Games

Gebuk Bantal and Makan Kerupuk, Traditional Games

Indonesia has many of traditional games that has been played by kids even adults for hundreds of years. Until now, a few of these traditional games still exist and played today. For example “Gebuk Bantal” and “Makan Kerupuk”. Both games will be set up by event organizer so the players can compete with a prize to be won.

Gebuk bantal and makan kerupuk usually can be found in the event of Indonesian independence day or any national day. Usually this game is played by children in the age of 8-10 years old. But, still some adults that are wanting to participate those unique game, they will participate.

Gebuk bantal is played with two player sitting on one long slippery wood or bamboo. Below them a pool for whoever loses will fall. Both players holding “Bantal” or a soft pillow to hit on each other. The rule is to hit each other until one falls into the pool. The players can only hit the body and will be disqualified when the head is hit. The player needs to have a good balance and a strong defense to win this game.
Gebuk bantal game traditionally played in a shallow river using bamboo as a medium. The player uses traditional costume and uses a long white pillow as the weapon. The traditional event can be found in Kalimalang, East of Jakarta.

While “Makan Kerupuk” or eating Indonesian crackers is played by two or more players. The player is unlimited in this game. There will be one long rope tied to one tree to another with crackers hanging on this rope. Each player will stand next to each other with their hand tied on the back, they need to eat the cracker using only their mouth without anyone helping them. The player needs to be fast and precise in this game. The first who finishes their cracker wins.


The player who wins for every round in the competition of Gebuk Bantal or Makan Kerupuk will win prize in cash or usually a special gift from the event organizer. This thrilling game is really fun, even the spectators will be cheering very loudy during the game.

/// Written by Arizani Belia Rizki, Indonesia
Photographer: Arif Hidayah