The Tana Toraja boundary was determined by the Dutch East Indies government in 1909. In 1926, Tana Toraja was under the administration of Bugis state, Luwu. The regentschap (or regency) status was given on October 8, 1946, the last regency given by the Dutch. Since 1984, Tana Toraja has been named as the second tourist destination after Bali by the Ministry of Tourism, Indonesia. Since then, hundreds of thousands of foreign visitors have visited this regency. In addition, numerous Western anthropologists have come to Tana Toraja to study the indigenous culture and people of Toraja.
Tana Toraja is located on the Sulawesi island, 300 km north of Makassar, the provincial capital of South Sulawesi. Its geographical location is between latitude of 2°-3° South and longitude 119°-120° East (center: 3°S120°E / 3°S 120°E / -3; 120Coordinates: 3°S120°E / 3°S 120°E / -3; 120). The area of the new North Toraja Regency is 1,151.47 km², about 2.5% of the total area of South Sulawesi province. The topography of Tana Toraja is mountainous; its minimum elevation is 150 m, while the maximum is 3,083 above the sea level.