Balinese Culture Guide

The Core Foundation of Bali and the Balinese

The Balinese culture and Hinduism affects almost every aspect of life on the island. The unique mix between sacred Hindu-Dharma and sophisticated local customs has made Bali as special as it is today. Art masterpieces can easily be found in every corner of Bali. Bali's culture is still felt everywhere; from museums, to hotel lobbies, to sacred temples. The Balinese honor their ancestors and the spirit world, and perform religious rituals based on the ancient Balinese calendar. People wearing their ceremonial attires is a common sight.


The majestic musical performances and traditional dance shows have also become one of the must-do's in Bali - for very good reasons. In all the ceremonies held during special days in Bali, Gamelan (Bali's traditional music) and local dances will be one of the most important element in order to get connected with Gods, deities, and ancestors as a way to honor their role in the cosmos.

Explore Bali's Culture

Bali Museum Guide
Bali Museum Guide

Museums in Bali

Dive into the history, culture and art of Bali and Indonesia. What better place to do that than in one of the Bali's museums

Bali Museums Guide

Witness authentic Bali dances
Magical dance performances

Traditional Dance Shows

Balinese Gamelan music, extravagant costumes, and fine dancing will leave a lasting impact on you. Visiting one of the shows is definitely a must-do when in Bali.

Bali Traditional Dance Show

Sacred atmosphere of Bali temples
The best temples in Bali

Temples in Bali

Temples in Bali are the residence of deities, with over 20.000 present on the island. Normally there are at least three public temples within each village.

Temples in Bali

Traditional vilages in Bali
Authentic Bali villages

Traditional Villages

Since 2013, the Bali Government runs a program to promote traditional villages as an alternative for the already well-known tourism attractions.

Traditional Villages Bali

Aesthetic Bali arts
Bali Arts & Handicrafts

Arts and Handicrafts

Balinese art is inspired through the religion and is part of fulling the obligations toward the deities. Stone, wood, silver are the most common materials that are turned into masterpieces.

Art & Handicraft

Interesting Facts
Fascinating history of Bali

History & Balinese People

The historical background of Bali is very interesting since it is the last remaining Hindu Island in Indonesia.

History of Bali

Unique in this World
The Balinese Hinduism

Balinese Hinduism

Balinese Hinduism is practiced by more than 80% of the population. The rituals and customs are kept alive even during the rise of globalism and mass tourism.

Balinese Hinduism & Rituals

Beautiful and Meaningful
A meaningful design

Balinese Architecture

Palaces, Temples (pura) and traditional domestic houses are built on the principles of a sacred area.

Balinese Architecture


Ubud - still special

Art is all around in Ubud & Sukawati

In the early 1930s, quite a few foreigners visited Bali, especially Ubud. One of the contributing factors was the ability of Tjokorde Gede Agung Sukawati (King of Ubud at that time) to communicate in English and Dutch. His ability and also knowledge as a smart business man and negotiator, lead to the development of Ubud as a touristic destination, when he instructed several home stays/ hotels to be built for tourists to stay in Ubud.
The development of Ubud tourism is also inseparable from the role of Raja Sukawati, brother of the King of Ubud who invited the artist Walter Spies (a Russian-born German painter) to live and paint in Ubud. Through Walter Spies, Ubud has become a place to explore for foreign painters and artists. Spies's paintings are well received by art lovers from all over the world and have had a lasting impact on painting styles of today's local artists.

Therefore, it is not surprising that there are many museums and galleries in Ubud, such as the Rudana, Arma, Blanco and Puri Lukisan Museum. Many of Bali's traditional dance performances are found in all corners of Ubud. Dozens of sakaa (dance groups) are perform traditional dances such as Legong Dance, Barong Dance, and Kebyar Dance.

Sukawati

When the Majapahit kingdom, that ruled Southeast Asia, collapsed in the 15th century there was a large migration of Javanese royals to Bali, which eventually established the Gelgel kingdom in the Klungkung region. One day a prince from the Gelgel Klungkung kingdom was wandering into the Sukawati village area to build his own castle. As he was someone who had a good sense for art, many Balinese artists from various regions were sent to the Sukawati area to help him to build the palace. When the palace was completed, many of the artists chose to live in Sukawati and didn’t want to go back to their place. Therefore til this day the Sukawati area is still known as one of the best centers of arts and culture in Bali.

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Fun activities to do in Bali
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Bali e-book Guide
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A Glimpse of Balinese Culture

A Glimpse of Balinese Culture

Bali Documentary Video

Bali Documentary Video

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