Witness the grandeur of music, art and culture that kicks off with a grand opening parade at the Bali Arts Festival. The festival features uniquely celebrated Balinese talents across Bali and other Indonesian provinces. A treat to the art enthusiasts, photographers and anyone with a knack to experience different cultures, the Bali Arts Festival hosts a collection of events. With almost the entire island swarming in, the festival organises various competitions and activities such as literature competition, fashion, handcraft, painting, culinary, traditional and modern dance performances and concerts.
Date: 2nd Saturday of June till July (estimated)
Venue: Taman Werdhi Budaya Arts Centre, Jl. Nusa Indah No.1, Panjer, Denpasar
Along the coast of Padanggalak, with the onset of the windy season, the Balinese sky is cloaked with kites of all forms, shapes and sizes from simple to three-dimensional figures of gods, goddesses, animals etc. A former seasonal agrarian festival, The Bali Kite Festival has now developed into a competitive sport among ‘Banjar’. The festival aims to conserve and promote the customs of the island.
Date: From Mid August (estimated)
Observed as ‘The Day of Silence’, the Nyepi Eve festival occurs on the third day of the six-day long Balinese New Year’s celebration. As the name suggests, the Nyepi Eve ensures a complete silent day with every shop, commercial sector, transportation etc. shut down. Some of the obligations of this festival include:
1) Prohibition of loud audio; including indoors.
2) Use of minimum light after sunset. The Nyepi Eve is a day dedicated to meditation, tranquillity and introspection turning the island into a quiet paradise.
Date: 3rd March 2022
Nusa Dua is a visually attractive festival with an array of dance shows, food stalls and music concerts. With countless lanterns of varied shapes and sizes, the Nusa Dua adorns the Balinese sky spanning a month and a half of celebrations. The biggest lantern festival on the island, Nusa Dua also hosts hot air balloon rides for visitors and tourists!
Date: 22nd to 24th October 2022
Venue: Nusa Dua
Nationals - IDR 20,000
Foreign Nationals - IDR 75,000
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The Sanur Village Festival is a community event founded by the Sanur Development Foundation. This village feast aims at displaying the relationship between man and nature in a tech and A.I (Artificial Intelligence) driven world. The Sanur Village Festival hosts an array of theme-based activities based on themes, exhibitions, art and cultural attractions, and a myriad of environmental activities.
Date: 21st to 25th August 2022
Venue: Maisonette area of Segara Ayu Beach, Sanur
The Bali Spirit Festival functions on the core mantra of ‘Tri Hita Karana’ or ‘to live in harmony with the spiritual, social and natural environment’. The Bali Spirit Festival offers a chance to entwine oneself with yoga, dance, soothing bhakti music, healing and sacred celebration enabling self-introspection. A global event, The Bali Spirit Festival, is where one would meet teachers in yoga and personal development, meditation, and healing. Delicious and healthy food accompanies the Bali Spirit Festival along with sacred, soothing music and live performances.
Date: 19th to 22nd May 2022
Tickets: Visit the Bali Spirit Festival website
A mega beach festival running along the Legian beachfront, starting from Stones Hotel to the Padma Resort on Legian Beach, the Legian Beach Festival is one of the most anticipated Balinese beach festivals. Organised by the Legian Village community and supported by the Ministry of Tourism, the Legian Beach Festival features over a hundred booths displaying local craftsmanship. Musical performances, bartending shows, fashion shows, culinary competitions, beach cleaning drives, and more earmark The Legian Beach Festival as one of the top excitements in Bali.
The Chinese New Year is a significant Balinese celebration due to its strong Chinese historical ties. Chinese and Buddhist temples, the ‘Klenteng’ are vibrantly decorated in the festive aura. The Chinese New Year in Bali showcases energetic performances of the Chinese ‘Barongsai’; the Lion and Dragon dance troops. Indulged in the drum, cymbal, and wushu presentations, The Barongsai is a wonderful treat as you munch on delicious Chinese cuisine available at nearby food stalls.
Date: 1st February 2022
The Ubud Food Festival presented by ABC is a three-day food enthusiast's paradise. Characterised by some of the top international and local chefs, the UFF is one of the most anticipated culinary festivals in the continent. The Ubud Food Festival houses cooking workshops, food forums, wine tasting sessions and more. It features a tantalising variety of satisfying delicacies.
Date: 24th to 26th June 2022
Venue: Taman Kuliner-Jalan Raya Sanggingan, Ubud 80571
Tickets: Visit 'Ubud Food Festival' website for more info.
Screening various genres of cinema, Balinale is the largest and the oldest Indonesian film festival. Balinale invites global filmmakers to witness independent movies filmed by talented industrial leaders, both indigenous and international. In addition to providing a plethora of opportunities for upcoming film-inclined generations, the Balinale film festival hosts numerous student workshops and informative seminars for the novice.
Date: 9th to 12th June 2022
Ubud Writers and Readers Festival is Southeast Asia’s most prominent annual literary festival for the exchange of words, ideas and cross-cultural dialogue. It aims towards achieving a world which respects inspirations, ideas and concerns of each other to overcome geographical and cultural barriers. With the participation of over 150 literary figures including writers, artists, and activists from over 30 countries, the festival provides a platform to engage in tales and performances to make a difference in the world.
Date: October 2022 (estimated)
Tickets: IDR 50,000- IDR 4,000,000
Strictly reserved for those of 19 years and above, Ultra Music Festival brings Ultra Bali as one of its biggest Asian electronic music celebrations, attended by eminent musicians and DJs from all over the world. It is a beachside music festival, promising you a night full of featuring the world’s best EDM DJs, electronic music, unmatched stage set-ups and most of all, unparalleled fun.
Date: 25th to 27th March 2022
Venue: Potato Head Beach Club, Seminyak
Initiated in 2015, the Bali Blues Festival, was an effort to regenerate Blues Music in collaboration with Indonesia Tourism and Development. Featuring Balinese local and national musicians, The Bali Blues Festival promotes the musical genre of Blues across different generations, with fantastic outdoor shows and performances. These soothing Blues echo through the peninsular island, making it a serene setting.
Date: May 2022 (estimated)
Venue: Muntig Siokan Mertasari Beach Sanur
Tickets: Check balibluesfestival website for more info
Ubud Village Jazz Festival is a paradise for jazz lovers, which promises every jazz genre. Featuring local and international casts from around the world, the Ubud Village Jazz festival gained momentum as one of Bali’s most important cultural and community events. Organised by the Ubud villagers and run by the local workforce, the Ubud Village Jazz festival is a massive boost to the domestic economy.
Date: 12th to 13th August 2022
Venue: ARMA Museum Ubud, Jalan Raya Pengosekan, Ubud, Bali 80571
Tickets: IDR 400,000- IDR 850,000
Inspired by the U.K boutique festival, the Bestival Bali houses some of the best local and international musicians. Groove into uninterrupted electric beats, drums and island-rocking bass along with signature cocktails and native delicacies at The Bestival Bali. Some of the common sights at the Bestival Bali are explosively colourful fireworks and confetti rains.
One of the biggest and oldest Indonesian music and art festivals, Soundrenaline brings the country’s budding rock and roll music to the limelight. A two-day festival, Soundrenaline overflows with local and global concerts and exhibitions of music, art, and photography along with irresistible regional cuisines. From hip-hop to indie, Soundrenaline has a genre available to entertain every music lover.
Held in Seminyak, the Gypsy Land Music Festival is a techno hub of its own kind spread across this three-hectare Balinese plot. The Gypsy Land Music Festival is a themed costume party usually that of good vs evil. The significant focus of this music festival is the designs, props and overall entertainment. Along with an interactive environment, contemporary electronic music is brought together, creating the best fusion of both worlds.
At the criss-cross of art and ecology, the Air Festival emerges with an underground music culture amongst the Balinese landscapes. With broad genres of music, the Air Festival annually improvises with varied themes, aiming toward the conservation of the Balinese land. Although the Air Festival has reached a global pedestal, it is one of Bali's best-kept secrets.
Marking the beginning of many prominent Balinese festivals, The Galungan signifies the triumph of ‘dharma’ over ‘adharma’ (good over evil). Kuningan, the last day of Galungan is believed to be the day ancient spirits return. Hindu devotees suspend distinctive ‘penjor’ or bamboo poles in front of their homes as symbols of the essence of Galungan (good winning over evil). Balinese Hindus perform elaborate rituals in the form of sacrificial contributions, prayer and dance to welcome and honour the creator of the Universe and their ancestral spirits.
Date: 14th to 24th April 2022
Celebrated once every two hundred and ten days, Saraswati Day is regarded as the ‘Knowledge Day’ for Balinese Hindus. Goddess Saraswati is considered to be the deity of wisdom, art and music, while the day composes of offerings made to the holy books and scrolls. People avoid reading or writing on Saraswati Day as these texts are offered to the Goddess for her blessings.
Date: 5th February 2022
Melasti is a millennial ritual regarded as a purification ceremony, held three days before the Saka New Year, according to the Balinese Calendar. Melasti, held on the beach's edge, is believed to cleanse the world from sin, aiming to purify oneself by throwing away the bad 'karma' into the ocean water. A stunning sight, Melasti comprises white and yellow-clad pilgrims carrying temple heirlooms to the coastlines symbolising a connection with the Almighty.
Puranama Kedasa is a frequent festival as it occurs upon a full moon. Balinese Hindus celebrate with grand ceremonies in the belief that God descends upon the Earth to bless the Earthlings and brings prosperity among them. Thousands of devotees flock to ‘Besakih’, the mother temple for the holy ritual of ‘Betara Tarun Kabeh’; an invite to deified ancestors and gods onto Earth.
Date: 17th March 2022
Pagerwasi Day is a mid-night celebration three days after Saraswati Day. On this night, Balinese devotees indulge in rituals to strengthen their souls and minds against evil, by building a robust personal fortification. The term Pagerwasi is derived from two Balinese words; ‘Pager’ and ‘Wasi’ meaning fence and iron respectively. The Pagerwasi day is a dedication to Lord Shiva or ‘Sanghyang Paramesti Guru' who is believed to drive all the evil out of the world.
Date: 30th March 2022
Balinese hold great value for animals, and Tumpek Kandang is a day reserved to worship Sang Hyang Rare-Angon, the deity of animals. Some of the essential rituals include washing, dressing, and feeding domestic animals such as cows, pigs, chickens and ducks that are further offered to prayers. Reminding masses of the sacred relationship between man and nature is the belief behind Tumpek Kandang; thus, the festival also enforces the preservation and prosperity of the environment and especially animals.
Date: 30th January, 28th August 2022
Tumpek Uduh is the celebration of gratitude towards nature for plantations and a fruitful harvest. Tumpek Uduh is a day dedicated to offering respect to nature, trees and plants. As the Balinese economy highly depends on coconut palms, they form a significant part of the Tumpek Uduh rituals. Clothed in Balinese linen, the trees and other greenery are adorned in scarves, headbands and belts as well.
Date: 14 May 2022, 10 December 2022
The Ngrupuk Parade or Ogoh Ogoh Parade is held before the Bali island goes into hiding for Nyepi. During the Ogoh Ogoh parade, Balinese Hindus carry out celebrations with drums and torches. The highlight of this parade is the giant wood, bamboo and paper monster dolls made in varied artistic shapes and sizes representing harmful societal. The monster dolls represent mythological demons that are burnt at the end of the ceremony to signify the end of all aspects of evil, thus purifying the environment.
Odalan is a temple celebration held at the mother temple of ‘Pura Besakih’, the largest Hindu temple in Bali. Pura Besakih is a millennium-old temple that witnesses varied Balinese communities coming together in prayer and processions during Odalan. One of the great traditions of the festival comprises women head-balancing baskets of fruits and flowers as an offering to the Gods
Also referred to as Saniscara Keliwon Tegeh, Tumpek Landep takes place every 210 days according to the Pawukon Calendar in Bali. During the Tumpek Landep, devotees make ceremonial offerings made of metal. The village temple overflows with special prayers and offerings made in the belief that the blessings in return would bring them luck and safety.
Dates: September 2022 (estimated)
With most of the Balinese celebrations based upon the native religion, myths and culture, there are a few open and exciting to a general crowd. Unique in their own way, each festival is Bali is an excellent interactive time with the locals, especially for tourists. Some of the best ways to immerse in the Balinese tradition is to participate in their arrays of celebrations.
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