Bali

The Island of Gods

Quick Info

Country:
Indonesia
Region:
Bali
Spoken language:
Indonesian, Balinese, English
Currency:
Indonesian Rupee
Documents:

Passport: necessary, with a residual validity of at least 6 months from the date of departure from Indonesia.

Entry Visa: Contact the Indonesian Embassy in your country

Power and Sockets:
230 V / 50 Hz - Plug Type C, F e G

TRADITIONAL CLOTHING

During the national holidays, religious ceremonies and important events the Balinese dress with their traditional clothes.

For the man it is the Baju Melayu which is composed in two pieces: a long-sleeved shirt with a raised collar and silk or cotton trousers, a black felt hat called Songkok and the sarong to wear around the waist.

The women instead wear the Baju Kurung composed of a long skirt and a blouse with long sleeves without collar. Often the fabric used is very colorful and decorated.

 

Barong Dance

BALINESE DANCES

During your holiday in Bali you can’t miss the chance to see a traditional Balinese dance show. You will remain speechless by the beauty of the costumes and the scenographies, the music and the skill of the dancers. The two main dances are the Barong and the Kecak, both tell stories that include fights, reunions, loves and friendships.

 

Barong

The Barong dance is perhaps the most popular in Indonesia and the most felt by the population. It tells the eternal struggle between Barong (God with the features of the dragon symbol of good) and Rangda (witch representing evil).

 

Kecak

The Kecak dance is the dance of the monkeys that is inspired by the poem of the Ramayana. During this dance the audience is also very involved through the rhythmic clapping of hands. It often ends with the dance of fire during which a dancer walks on the hot coals.

 

NAMES AND SURNAMES

A little known curiosity about the Balinese concerns their names. During your trip try asking the locals their names and you will notice that everyone has a name made of 3 words.

The first is the given name, chosen by the parents for the newborn, the second is the word “Ni” if it is a female and “I” if it is a male, the third word is the order of birth: Wayan for the firstborn, Made for the second son , Nyonman for the third and Ketut for the fourth. In the case of a fifth child (a fairly frequent situation because once the Balinese families had even 10 or 11 children), the round begins again.

 

KRETEK, SPICED SIGARETTES

In Indonesia spices are everywhere: you will see them in the markets, you will smell them in the streets and taste them in the food. But not only that! For those of you who already smoke you can also taste the famous Kretek cigarettes made with cloves. Kretek cigarettes were born in the nineteenth century when a certain Haji Jamhari, who suffered from chronic pain in his chest decided to do an experiment: he added to normal tobacco cigarettes some crumbled cloves. He said his sufferings eased immediately and the voice spread quickly. The Kretek began to be sold as a medicinal product in all pharmacies and in a short time the “white” cigarette smokers converted to this new product. The word Kretek is a onomatopoeic name that comes from the crackle that the cloves make when they burn. Latest medical research has shown that smoking Kretek exposes you to the same harmful effects on health as normal tobacco cigarettes.

 

 

COCKFIGHTS

The daily life of Bali revolves around religion and to this we can trace many activities that could seem quite bizarre to us: like for example cockfights. Even this sport, which in many countries has been banned for its cruelty and animal abuse, in Bali is an ancient Hindu tradition called Tajen. It is said that during the fight the evil spirits are expelled and therefore the suffering, and often even death, of the cocks is a sacrifice to the gods of evil.

 

BALINESE MASSAGE

The traditional Indonesian massage sinks its origins in Bali. It is a complete massage that soothes aches and pains starting from the feet up to the scalp. The Balinese technique alternates gentle movements with stronger and more intense pressures and an alternation of handheld pressures, acupressure, slipping and traction. All this allows to improve the blood, lymphatic and energetic circulation.

During your trip there it won’t difficult to find professional centre that carries out the traditional Balinese massage and often, despite the great professionalism of the masseuses and the structure in which they work, the prices are very advantageous.

 

CROSSING THE STREET

Walking around the Balinese cities can be very difficult if you are in an Asian country for the first time. In this continent in fact the rules of the road are very different from the Western ones. For motorists or motorcyclists it is not common use to stop to let pedestrians pass, even if they are on the pedestrian crossing. People walking just cross at any point and at any time even without looking left and right. The only golden rule that we advise you to apply is to always keep a constant speed, avoiding abrupt stops or sudden accelerations, so that it is easy for others to avoid you and allowing you to arrive at the opposite sidewalk safe and sound.

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