This day trip begins in Batubulan, for a cultural performance of Barong Dance. In traditional Barong dance performances, portrayed the struggles of the two principle characters, Barong is a mythological animal that represent a good spirit and Rangda is a mythological monster that represent an evil. A great introduction to the world of colourful Balinese Dances and often inspired by religion, the dance is often portrayed with two monkeys and is probably the most well-known dance in Bali. The Barong is a large lion type creature played by two men, Rangda is the epitome of evil with long fingernails and droopy breasts. Ultimately a battle ensues and the Barong’s followers begin attacking Rangda with their Keris (daggers). Rangda, being a witch, is able to use magical powers to turn the daggers against their owners, who fall into a trance and try to stab themselves. In Balinese dance the movement is closely associated with the rhythms produced by the gamelan, a musical ensemble specific to Java and Bali. Multiple levels of articulations in the face, eyes, hands, arms, hips, and feet are coordinated to reflect layers of percussive sounds. Our trip then continue to Bangli regency, lies Pengelipuran village well-known for its tidy row of traditional Balinese entrance gates and its unique architectural traditions. The village has also succeeded in preserving its 75 hectare bamboo forest located in the northern part of the village. The Desa Adat, a well-known Balinese village institution, has played a consistent role from generation to generation in the preservation of local Balinese traditions. One of them is a strong commitment to the system of `ayahan desa` – a philosophy committed to respecting the land on which the village stands. The village land may not be transferred to anyone without the knowledge of Penglipuran villagers. The bamboo forest`s future is therefore assured. The community members who are given pieces of bamboo forest ground usually fell bamboo trees once a year by selective cutting, leaving the younger ones intact.
After lunch at a beautiful rice terrace panorama of Rendang, then we ascend to Bali Mother’s Temple of Besakih, rising majestically on the western slopes of Mount Agung, and referred to as the Mother Temple of Hindu Bali. Facing Mt. Agung’s highest peak, believed to be the abode of the gods, and located at an altitude of 900 meters. The most important, largest and holiest temple of Hindu religion in Bali serves the entire island’s population. It is an extensive complex of 23 separate but related temples with the largest and most important being Pura Penataran Agung or the “Great Temple of State”, the center of the temple complex and Bali’s main place of worship, a complex comprising twenty-two temples on six rising terraces set on parallel ridges and surrounded by breathtaking and scenic rice paddies, hills, mountains, and streams. This complex expresses the essential belief of the Balinese known as Tri Hita Kirana, meaning that life on earth must be lived and kept in balance and harmony between man and God, man and society and his fellow human beings, and man and his natural environment.
After visiting the temple, we go down to the district of to Klungkung to visit Kertagosa, a former 18th century royal court of justice, consisting of two pavilions with painted ceilings, the convicts were able to view the ceiling which depicted different punishments in the afterlife, the results of karma, while they were awaiting sentencing. The ceiling paintings of the Kerta Gosa are one of the outstanding examples of the Kamasan (or Wayang) a typical Klungkung style of architecture and painting.