Welcome to Bali

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

About Bali

About Bali

Detailed Bali MapThe most up-to-date map of the Island of Bali on the Internet – regularly updated and "stolen" by many other web sites.The Bali Paradise ParadoxA recent history of Bali (by Keith Loveard, Asiaweek, Oct. 3rd, 1997) – however written before the 1997/1998 economic problems and political changes.Internet Access from BaliHow and from where temporary visitors to Bali can access the Internet during their stay.Bali Weather Report & 5-Day ForecastThis report is for the whole island of Bali: this means, even if you see rain showers announced these might only be in Ubud and in the mountains while Bali's coastal areas are dry and sunny.Currency Exchange RatesLatest currency exchange rates for the Indonesian Rupiah (IDR) from Yahoo.com with graphics to show the changes over the last two years.Bali Tours: What to See and Do in BaliDetailed and up-to-date information on Bali tours, excursions, museums and exhibitions in Bali, dance and drama performances, sports, adventure and nature trips, meditation and cooking classes, and many other activities for residents and visitors of all ages.Food & Restaurants in BaliA continually up-dated insider's guide to local and international cuisines available in Bali, and the most interesting restaurants in Kuta (incl. Legian, Seminyak, Basangkasa, and Kerobokan), Jimbaran, Nusa Dua, Sanur, and Ubud.Recipes for Traditional Balinese Food & DelicaciesIngredients and detailed instructions how to prepare over 70 traditional Balinese delicacies. Includes details on Indonesian food and spices, possible substitutes, etc. Start today preparing delicious Indonesian food to spoil your guests at home!Bali after DarkUp-to-date information on Bali's after dark activities for all sexes and the most popular pubs, bars, discotheques, and night clubs in Sanur, Nusa Dua, Kuta, Legian, and Seminyak.Private Boat & Yacht Charters from BaliCharter a state-of-the-art game fishing vessel, a stylish sailing ketch, or a traditional Buginese schooner with 3 to 18 cabins and expert crew to explore the Indonesian Spice Islands at your own pace."Bali Impian Estate" Villas for SaleTwo villas offered for sale. Investors benefit from the increase of the properties' value and a guaranteed return on their investment – without any ongoing costs, responsibilities and worries normally connected with foreign property ownership.Potential Hazards for Visitors to BaliContinually updated information on the social situation in Bali as well as maps, charts, and satellite images showing the areas affected by any haze or smoke, the cloud situation, and winds affecting the climate in Bali.The "BEST of BALI" Poll PageCast your own vote, and/or view the current results of what recent visitors to Bali regard as the best restaurants and hotels, how they rate their Bali vacation, and what they regard as the WORST nuisance for visitors to this island.Real-time Bali & Indonesia NewsRead the latest news about Bali and Indonesia, pulled in real-time from hundreds of reputable international news sources and information services.The "BALI travel FORUM"News & Views from the "Ultimate Island" – contributed by recent visitors and long-time residents. Since 1997 one of the busiest "Forums" on the Net!The "BALI travel FORUM Summary"A compilation of the more informative messages to to BALI travel FORUM since its beginning. A laudable and admirable work done by Filo!

Friday, September 22, 2006


The Original Balinesse
DENPASAR (indo.com):
At one time the island of Bali was occupied by a unique ethnic group, the members of which, filed and blackened their teeth. They lived in small communities - family clans ruled by a council of elders who were also priests of their religion, which centered on the worship of powerful forces of nature, and especially those of their ancestors, with whom they continued to live as a great family of both the dead and the living.Occasionally, by means of sacrifice, they brought their ancestral spirits down to Earth to protect them. They buried their dead or simply abandoned them in the jungle to be carried away by the spirits, and it is possible that they ate parts of the bodies in order to absorb the magic power inherent in their ancient headmen. The descendants of these people call themselves Bali Aga, meaning original Balinese. They lived isolated and independent in the mountains where they found refuge from imperialistic invaders. Hidden in the hills of East Bali lies the village of Tenganan, where the most conservative of the Bali Aga preserve the old traditions with the greatest zeal.Tenganan is an isolated community, socially and economically separated from the rest of Bali. It is shut off from the world by a solid wall that surrounds the entire village. The wall is meant to keep outsiders away, and it is broken by means of four gates, facing north, south, east and west respectively. Within these walls lies a banyan tree surrounded by a low wall of uncut stones, providing the small enclosure for a very sacred temple.Unlike the rest of the villages in Bali, there is hardly any vegetation around the houses of Tenganan, which are all exactly alike. They are arranged in rows on each side of stone - paved avenues. In the central place is the council house where the elders meet. This council house is some seventy feet long, strongly built and apparently very old. Farther along are other buildings for public use. The dwellings in Tenganan are all exactly the same. A flight of steps leads to a small gate which opens into a court where the sleeping - quarters the kitchen, and a long house for storage are all located. There is also a small empty shrine where the spirits may rest when they visit their descendants. The people of Tenganan are tall and slender in a rather ghostly way with white skins and refined manners. The majority of the men still wear their hair long. They live in a communistic system in which individual ownership of property is not recognized.The village of Tenganan owns enormous tracts of fertile and well - cultivated lands that fill every need of the village and make it one of the richest in the island of Bali. Blood sacrificeTenganan is one of Bali's most ancient and most unique villages. It is located in the eastern part of Bali, 17 kilometers from Amlapura, the center city of Karangasem Regency, and approximately 65 kilometers drive to the east from Denpasar. Accessible by public transport, car and motorbike, the trip to Tenganan is exhilerating, traversing winding roads through the ranges. The uniqueness of Tenganan to this day provides a considerable draw card for tourists, foreign and domestic alike, who come to witness the ancient and original Balinese who continue to practice their unique culture to this day. One of the local customs that has been particularly popular among tourists is that of the ritual blood sacrifice; in which all the locals get involved in an annual ritual combat. Using thorny pandan leaves, each combatant hits their opponent with the aim of drawing blood. Locally known as "mekare kare", the ritual fight is held whenever there is a temple ceremony is Tenganan, which tends to fall in the fifth month of the Balinese calendar.This duel must be real fighting and of course one of two must injure and draw blood from the other. So all the participants must be well - prepared. They carry weapons including a shield made from woven rotan and a bundle of thorny pandan leaves, which are used to scratch the opponent's skin until bleeding. Before this ritual duel begins, participants drink rice wine or the local palm known as tuak. In this context, drinking is a symbol of brotherhood and sportsmanship. When the selonding music sounds everybody cheers and shouts and some even yell insults at their opponents in order to instill fear in them. Judged by a mediator, usually a prominent figure of the village, the fight usually lasts for between 5 up to 10 minutes fighting. He who is first scratched with the thorny pandan leaf is considered the loser, and the pair are thereupon broken up by the mediator.The duel is neither based upon nor spawns any ill will among participants. After the fighting the injured party is treated with traditional liquid medicines and the wounds will heal. While the fighters recover, other villagers prepare food, as an elaborate feast must follow the sacrifice of human blood. (Bali Echo)

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Bali Island

Bali, a tropical island in the Indonesian archipelago, is so picturesque and immaculate it could almost be a painted backdrop. It has rice paddies tripping down hillsides like giant steps, volcanoes soaring up through the clouds, dense tropical jungle, long sandy beaches, warm blue water, crashing surf and friendly people who don't just have a culture but actually live it. In Bali spirits come out to play in the moonlight, every night is a festival and even a funeral is an opportunity to have a good time.
Bali Island, the perfect holiday destination for all ages offers something for everyone. This tropical paradise has a unique blend of modern tourist facilities combined with wonderful shopping and a rich past and heritage. The Balinese people are proud of having preserved their unique Hindu culture against the advance of Islam, the dominant religion throughout Indonesia. This is still reflected in day to day life and can be seen in the numerous ceremonies, Balinese festivals and magnificent temples and palaces. Some of the best surfing beaches in the world can be found on the western side of the island whilst conversely the eastern side is a wonderful haven for families, with beautiful white sand beaches and gentle seas.
Bali Island is a shopper's paradise particularly for casual and tailored clothing, locally made jewellery, handicrafts, antiques and artifacts. Leather ware is one of the unexpected local bargains with everything from handbags through to tailor made leather jackets and coats, all at unbelievable prices. In fact, prices are so inexpensive, you're sure to need more room in your suitcase! Try bargaining at the street markets of Kuta, Sanur of Nusa Dua or fixed price
shopping at a Denpasar department store. Bali has it all.
For those that want to stay wet, Bali Island has world class
scuba diving, snorkelling and wonderful day trips out to Nusa Penida for beach sports and coral viewing.
When the sun sets, the choices are still hard to make - a quiet romantic moon lit dinner or watch the spectacular Balinese Fire Dance or Kecak Dance. For those that want to party, Bali Island has it all with bars, discos and
As a truly international destination attracting visitors from all over the world,
restaurants in Bali are extremely cosmopolitan yet inexpensive. Experience not only local delicacies like Nasi Goreng and Sate Campur but also Chinese, Malaysian, Japanese, Italian/European Greek, Moroccan and even Mexican cuisine. We must not forget Bali's wonderful seafood - local lobster at such prices that you will want to keep coming back for more.
For those more culturally inclined, Bali can offer the peace and tranquility of Ubud high in the hills; the spectacular Mother Temple at Besakih; the ancient capital of Bali, Singaraja and the floating palace at Ujung near the pretty
beach area of Candi Dasa. The Scenery is nothing less than spectacular. Jungle, picturesque hillside rice terraces and the awesome magnificence of Kintamani Volcano.
The more active, wanting a break from the idyllic beaches, can experience wonderful golf courses in the mountains at Bedugul and beachside at Nusa Dua, the thrill of white water rafting or kayaking down the beautiful Ayung River; mountain cycling amid scenery you will never forget and organized rice paddy and jungle treks to see the side of Bali most tourists never encounter.
Bali Island, a truly international destination, offers every standard of
accommodation ranging from charming yet modest bungalow style hotels in lush tropical gardens for the budget minded through to arguably amongst the most exclusive and sophisticated hotels in the world!

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