Secret Bali


Prasasti Blanjong Pillar: Ancient Inscriptions in Sanur

Secret Bali | Dec 30, 2019

A small monument known as Prasasti Blanjong, was carved from a single solid stone pillar that measures around 70 inches and 32 inches in diameter. It is one of the oldest manmade artefacts in Bali that dates back to the 10th century, only found in 1932. It commemorates the victory of King Kesariwarmedewa of Bali’s […]

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Pan Am Monument in Bali : Commemorating a Tragedy

Secret Bali | Dec 30, 2019

Driving north from the main hub of Sanur to the quiet Padang Galak area, a memorial monument of a fatal Pan American flight accident nestled in quite a hidden spot behind abandoned buildings.  In 1974, a Pan American flight flying from from Hong Kong to Sydney with a scheduled transit in Bali, crashed in the […]

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Is This The End of The Ancestors’ Cult In Bali

Culture | Sep 14, 2019

The ancestors’ cult, for some reason, is deemed irrational. Is it for this reason that established religions are doing their best to eradicate it? Indonesia is a case in point, regarding both Islam and Balinese Hinduism. In Indonesian Islam, the main point of contention between the two principal Moslem organisations, Mohammadiah and Nadhadul Ulama, is […]

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The Bade Makers: Bali’s Coffin Craftsmen

Culture | Jul 10, 2019

Tucked away in a back street on the outskirts of Denpasar is a strange and wondrous sight. Every few days this wide, open shed is populated with beautifully wrought animals. Fine looking bulls are the main production although sometimes you might see a pig, a dog or even a lion.  They are bade, effigies used […]

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The Rejang Dance and its Great Hat Parade

Secret Bali | Jun 22, 2019

One of Bali’s most sacred and ancient dances is the beautiful stately Rejang. Traditionally the dance is performed by village virgins and is performed within the inner sanctums of the temple grounds, re-enacting one of Bali’s great legendary myths of Dewarta Nawasangha about heavenly nymphs and a god’s water supply. And one of the most […]

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Tenganan Turns it On

Culture | Jun 14, 2019

The residents of Bali’s most famous traditional Bali Aga village like to celebrate and every month of June, they really like to turn it on. During this month the village comes alive as the festival season revs up with dance, ceremony and a host of visual extravaganzas. The month’s celebrations peak, on the 24th and […]

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Boys will be Girls

Culture | Apr 01, 2019

It’s late at night at the Pura Dalem in Penestanan.  The Maestro, AA Gede Bagus Mandera Earawan  famous dancer, and choreographer extraordinaire, had invited us to come along and see his troupe of male legong dancers perform their intriguing version of Bali’s most iconic dance.  It was a rare treat both for us and for […]

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Kintamani’s Surprising Chinese Celebrations

Culture | Mar 03, 2019

Who would have thought that the annual Chinese New Year celebrations, so visible in places like Singapore, Penang and Kuala Lumpur would also include a very colourful festival in Kintamani. While the poster said the celebrations would last all day we arrived in time for the start of a very engaging procession that led from […]

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Bali’s Extraordinary Exotic Reality

Culture | Jan 31, 2019

Bali will always be an enigma. A juxtaposition between sekala and niskala, the seen and the unseen or the material world and the spiritual. The reason the Balinese are not always present, a little bit of head in the clouds, is because their mind ponders frequently on their next ceremony. Offerings, prayer, dance and dramas, […]

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Bali Beauty – The Real Thing

Culture | Jan 19, 2019

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 […]

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