Bali : Island of Gods

Situated between Java and Lombok in Indonesia is the province island of Bali. Awarded as the world best island by the International Travel Magazine, Bali which became a part of the newly independent Republic of Indonesia in 1945 is the largest archipelagic country in the world. The name Bali dwipa was first mentioned in a Blanjong pillar inscription written by Sri Kesari Warmadewa in 914 AD. Life in this famed Island of the Gods is based on Tri Hita Karana which takes into consideration a spiritual relationship between human and God, and their environment.

Bali, due to its proximity to the sea, experiences a tropical monsoon climate. Situated near the equator, the island province witnesses fairly consistent temperatures throughout the year. The day temperatures vary between 20 to 33 degrees Celsius. The rainy season is usually int he months of October to March. During the monsoon, Bali experiences heavy showers resulting in high humidity. June to September is considered the driest season, with low humidity and travelers ought to opt for vacationing in Bali during these months preferably.

As far as connectivity to Bali is concerned, numerous direct flights are available from all the continents.

When planning a vacation to Bali, tourists should keep in mind that Bali is a very religious province. Every aspect of the Balinese life is influenced by religious beliefs. The primary deity worshipped in Bali is Sanghyang Widi Wasa, also known as the “all-in-one god”. This is so because the Balinese consider that all other Gods are manifestations of Sanghyang Widi Wasa.

Dotted with an estimated 20,000 temples, the temples are among the best-known attractions of Bali. In fact, it is mandatory for every village to have at least 3 temples. Bali is surrounded by kayangan jagat, or what are called the nine directional temples which have been designed to protect the island and its inhabitants from dark forces. Pura Luhur, Pura Tanah Lot, Pura Ulu Danu Bratan are some of the most picturesque and often frequented temples in Bali.

Balinese dance and music are also a major attraction for visitors to the island. Some of the must see local dances of Bali include Barong (lion dance) Calonarang, Kecak (monkey dance) and Legong Keraton. Bali is also counted among the top surfing destinations in the world due to the full force of southern ocean which it gets on its coast. The dry winter months are the most preferred for surf conditions.

Some other interesting tourist spots of Bali include:

Ubud: To experience the confluence of art, history, culture, modern and the ancient under one roof, Ubud is the place to visit.

Beaches in Bali: To party hard, Kuta Beach should top your itinreary whereas to spend some quality time Nusa Dua sheltered by coral reefs makes for the perfect spot.

Batuan: A major painting center noted for its artwork and style of painting which has emerged into a major Balinese artistic style, known as a Batuan painting. While in Batuan, enjoy the performance of the ancient Gambuh dance, performed every Full Moon day, for which the village is renowned.

Batubulan: This town is home to a number of stone carvers and also popular for its daily performances of the barong dance.

Batur: Well known for the active Mount Batur and the biggest lake in Bali.

As far as the food in Bali is concerned, some of the notable dishes of Bali cuisine include Babi guling, Bebek betutu , Urutan among others. Bali also produces its own liqueurs, spirits and wines such as Bali Moon, Hatten among others.

So, in the next long holidays you have, definitely plan a vacation to Bali.