Klungkung and Its Craftsmen: The Influence of an Empire

Wedged between the more popular Gianyar and Karangasem regencies, Bali’s smallest regency has long been just a thoroughfare for travellers, many simply passing through without knowing the treasures to be found here. This is Klungkung, whose size and status today do not do this regency’s history justice. Klungkung was in fact the heart of Bali’s

Edward Speirs

Promoting Bali, The Right Way

Having shared his thoughts on preparing Bali for when travel re-opens again in his last article, “After Covid-19: What Next?“, Alistair Speirs shares another idea. With Bali empty right now, it gives the island an opportunity to reinvent itself when it welcomes visitors again. Now is the time to say, “Hey, who do we want

NB April 2020 - Temple Tales - Pura Gaduh (1 of 5)

Pura Gaduh Temple: Home of a Giant’s Head

Kept in one of the towers of Pura Gaduh in Blahbatuh is a statue of a giant, which legend says had parts chopped off as a peace offering to ease the tension between the temple’s priest and his congregation. Pura Gaduh, or known as Pura Kebo Iwa amongst the locals residing around the temple’s areas,

Kecak, Bali’s Fire Dance

Afternoons are always a good time to visit Uluwatu, the southern tip of the island. Not only to admire the lovely sunset from the top of the cliff but also to watch the famous Kecak Dance Performance, also known as the Bali Fire dance, which overlooks Uluwatu Temple. But what is the Kecak, and what’s

Pura Tanah Lot Temple: Where the Giant Snake Dwells

One of Bali’s most visited temples has a remarkable legend, where a powerful priest battles a giant serpent. The revered Pura Tanah Lot is one of Bali’s most visited temples. Year-on-year, Tanah Lot welcomes hordes of people, be it masses of Balinese Hindu pilgrims making their annual visit and prayers here, or the many tourists

Cultural Nights at the Ubud Palace

Puri Saren Ubud, popularly known as the Ubud Palace, is the witness of all changes that has been through by this artistic village, which is perhaps more suitably called a vibrant town now.  Situated at the heart of Ubud, the palace is the place for cultural connoisseurs. The beautiful compound that was built in the

The Javanese Mangku of The Natar Sari Temple

The faithful were now all gone, and all that remained was only scattered on the ground, the remains of the offerings: torn coconut leaves and trampled flowers; the air was moist and filled with the scent of burned-out incense mixed with the strong odor of the drying earth. It was all over now and, his

Panji Semirang and the Golden Doll

The Majapahit, between the years 1293 to circa 1500, was once a great empire in South East Asia. It’s centre was in East Java and in fact it was this empire where the idea of ‘Nusantara’, or a great archipelagic nation, was born. The reach of Majapahit stretched as far as Burma, all the way

Refusing to Become a Mangku Priest

Who are the priests in Bali? Most of you have probably seen pictures of high priests, the pedandas, or even seen them on the roads or in temples. They are easily recognisable because they tie their long hair into a knot on top of their heads or wear a tiara while reading mantras. Pedandas are

February 2019’s Temple Anniversary Calendar

Bali has been dubbed the ‘Island of the Gods’, but could just as easily be referred to as the ‘Island of a Thousand Temples’. These temples, being sacred sites for the Balinese Hindus as worshipping places, are also important features on the island’s calendar of events and festivities. Bali’s unique calendar system, known as pawukon,

Culture-Bali

The Curse from the ‘Niskala’ Unseen World

A story about Sekala and Niskala, the seen and unseen world or forces, that are believed to exist in Bali. Dr. Jean Couteau brings yet another one of his Balinese stories – sometimes myth, sometimes a mystery, but always meaningful: These are the objective facts: Gobler was tired. It was night, and he wanted to get home before

Satya Cipta – the Rise of a Unique Female Balinese Talent

A beautiful, naked woman with long flowing hair sits legs raised, feet positioned above her head. In her left hand she is holding a red lotus flower covering her groin. “Fragrance” an intimate, yet daring sketch by Balinese artist Satya Cipta ‘speaks’ of the feminine physical, and worldly splendour, and according to the artist, a

Bali Beauty – The Real Thing

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder they say, yet go to any traditional Balinese ceremony or head out of the city and beauty is all around you. Temple ceremony days are the best places to see beautiful girls. This is the time when everyone dresses up in their best. Makeup, jewellery, all the

Now Bali
SUBSCRIBE TO OUR MONTHLY NEWSLETTER TO GET THE LATEST UPDATES. SUBSCRIBE