23 Interesting And Fun Facts About Bali, Indonesia [Explained]

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Bali has always been a beautiful place, but in the past few years, it has gained a lot of popularity. People from all over the world make their way to the island every year to experience its alluring beauty. With its stunning nature and cultural elements, there are many interesting facts about Bali that make it such an incredible destination. 

Historical Facts About Bali

Bali is said to have been inhabited since 2000 BCE, which contributes to the island’s rich heritage. Here are some interesting historical facts about Bali. 

The Island Was Invaded By The Dutch, And Then The Japanese 

Bali, along with the rest of Indonesia, became a Dutch colony in the 1800s. The country remained under Dutch rule until 1941. 

During World War II, the Japanese forces invaded Bali. The local Balinese population welcomed the invasion as they saw the Japanese as a force that could help them achieve independence. 

However, instead of offering independence, the Japanese started ruling over Indonesia. The country was granted freedom when the Japanese troops surrendered in 1945. 

Although the Dutch tried to regain control of Indonesia then, their efforts were thwarted by strong resistance from the local population and other countries. 

The Kecak Dance Originated In Bali 


The Kecak dance is a big part of the Balinese culture. The locals call it tari kecakilolahhe. This dance includes intricate arm and hand movements along with chanting. 

Mostly the word “chak” is pronounced during the Kecak dance. The dance was developed in the 1930s by a German painter, Walter Spies, and a Balinese artist Wayan Limbak. 

You can now catch performances of this traditional dance at the Uluwatu Temple. It has become an immersive cultural attraction that Bali is famous for.

Rice Terraces In Bali Are Around 1000 Years Old


Rice cultivation is a very significant practice in Bali. The most famous rice terraces in Bali are the Tegalalang Rice Terraces, located near Tegalalang in central Bali. These ancient terraces, constructed hundreds of years ago, are a stunning example of rice cultivation on mountain slopes made possible by an intricate subsurface irrigation system.

The cascading green steps of the terraces follow the landscape’s natural contour. Still in operation today, these terraces require extensive labor to maintain. 

However, the extraordinary scenery makes the terraces a major tourist destination in Bali, and an iconic feature of the island’s landscape. You can visit the Tegalalang terraces on a highlights tour in Ubud.

Cultural Facts About Bali

Bali is one of the most culturally affluent regions in the world, known for its diverse cultures and traditions. Here are some amazing cultural facts about Bali, Indonesia.

Bali Has Its Own Local Language 

Even though the locals can speak the national language Bahasa, Balinese is the primary language spoken on the island. It is similar to Malay but with influences from Sanskrit and other Indonesian and Polynesian languages. 

Bali’s Irrigation System Is On UNESCO’s Cultural Landscape 

Bali is famous for the subak irrigation system that diverts water to rice terraces. In fact, this is even on the UNESCO World Heritage cultural landscape list. 

It is a traditional water management system that channels water from rivers and lakes in the mountains through an interconnected series of canals, tunnels, and aqueducts to rice terraces and farms across Bali. 

Governed by temples and farmers, it equitably distributes water, coordinates cropping patterns, and manages pests naturally. 

> Visit Water Temples And Rice Terraces

Bali Is A Hindu Majority Island 


Unlike most of Indonesia, which is predominantly Muslim, Bali’s main religion is Hinduism. The Hinduism you find here is actually called Balinese Hinduism, which is a unique blend of Hinduism, Buddhism, and ancient cultural beliefs.

As such, you can find more beautiful temples on the island. They are not only spiritually important but have become some of the key attractions and landmarks in Bali. 

In Bali, Babies Cannot Touch The Ground 


According to Balinese tradition, a baby cannot touch the ground for the first few months of their life. Usually, this time period is 105 days.

The locals believe that newborn babies are pure, and they have a solid connection to the spirit world, which makes them sacred. This is why the Balinese people give so much respect to newborns. 

You Can See Decorative Bamboo Poles In Bali


Penjor are tall bamboo poles decorated with leaves, flags, and offerings that are set up during religious ceremonies and festivals in Bali. They symbolize prosperity, fertility, and human effort to attain spiritual goals.

The most elaborate penjor is made for the Galungan festival, which happens every 210 days and celebrates the victory of good over evil. Villages and households compete to make the most beautifully decorated penjor for this festival.

Simple Facts About Bali For Kids

If you are traveling to Bali with your kids, these Bali facts can be great for enhancing their interest in the island.

Bali Is A Province With Multiple Islands 


The Island of Bali is one of the most popular places in Indonesia. However, when someone talks about Bali, they might not only be talking about the main island of Bali but several other surrounding islands.

Many people don’t realize this, but Bali is a province. It includes the main Island of Bali and over 30 other smaller islands in the surrounding region. In addition to the island of Bali, the three islands Nusa Ceningan, Nusa Lembongan, and Nusa Penida are also trendy in the province.

> Check Full Day Tour of Nusa Penida (With Snorkeling) 

Bali Has Its Own Calendar 

The island follows three central calendar systems. There is the lunar calendar called the Balinese Saka Calendar, then there is the Gregorian Calendar, and lastly, the Pawukon Calendar which locals use frequently. 

Pawukon is a 210-day calendar, and locals refer to it for rituals and ceremonies. This calendar is said to be based on rice growing cycles on the island. 

Bali Myna Is Endemic To Bali 


The rare white Bali Myna, distinguished by black wing tips, is only found in western Bali in a small protected area. It is locally known as Jalak Bali, and it is a critically endangered bird species. This is one of the most exciting facts about Bali for bird watchers.

The Day Of Silence In Bali 

On the New Year’s Day of the Balinese calendar, the locals observe a day of silence. This day is called Nyepi. On this day, people on the island don’t talk to each other; they don’t answer phones or watch tv. 

You wouldn’t even find any traffic on the roads; even the airport shuts down on Nyepi. People usually stay indoors for 24 hours and meditate or fast. 

Useful Bali Facts For Travelers

If you are one of the millions traveling to the island paradise, then these fun facts about Bali can help you during your stay in Bali. 

Bali Has Pristine Beaches 


Bali’s natural beauty is one of the primary reasons the island is so popular amongst international tourists. One significant aspect of Bali’s natural beauty is the pristine beaches you can find on this island.

The island is surrounded by stunning stretches of sand, from the crowded beaches in Kuta to the more secluded ones in Lovina. The beaches are perfect for swimming, snorkeling, surfing, and sunbathing. You will also find some exquisite beaches with black sand. 

There Are Two Active Volcanoes In Bali 


Indonesia is famous for its imposing volcanoes scattered throughout the country. Mount Agung and Mount Batur are two active volcanoes that tower over Bali. 

The latter last erupted in 2000, while Mount Agung is even more active. It erupted over ten times between 2017 to 2019.

If you are traveling to Bali, research before you start trekking or climbing Mount Agung. The government issues warnings if there are chances for an eruption, and you should steer clear of the surrounding areas. 

One of the best ways to check out these volcanoes is with experienced tour guides. The Mount Batur sunrise hike and hot springs visit is a popular activity to soak in Bali’s beauty.

The Island Is Within A Coral Triangle

The Island of Bali lies in the Coral Triangle, the most biodiverse marine area on Earth. As a result, it is great for scuba diving, snorkeling, and experiencing marine life. It is believed to have more fish species than the Great Barrier Reef. 

> Snorkel With Giant Manta Rays

Try Staying Away From The Local Moonshine 

Try keeping your hands away from the local moonshine, especially if it is offered by someone you don’t know. Bali’s local distilled spirit, arak, can contain high levels of methanol.

Numerous deaths have been linked to drinking adulterated arak. If you are a risk taker and still want to try it, it is best to get it at a good restaurant. 

Common Facts About Bali

Long-Tailed Macaques Can Be Found In Bali 


The Monkey Forest of Ubud is home to around 1000 monkeys and macaques, including the endangered black long-tailed macaques. These macaques have become accustomed to receiving food from tourists. 

While they are adored and respected residents, do exercise caution around them. In some cases, they can get aggressive and may also steal your food and belongings. 

The Four Common Names In Bali

The island of Bali in Indonesia has a unique naming tradition. All Balinese people are given one of only four names; Wayan, Made, Nyoman, or Ketut. 

The naming order is based on birth order, with the firstborn always called Wayan. The second child is Made, the third is Nyoman, and the fourth is Ketut. Though there are only four names, they can be modified in various ways to create some individuality, like adding a unique name to these names. 

Bali Is Known As The Island Of The Gods 


Bali is sometimes called the “island of the gods” or “island of a thousand temples” because of its pristine natural beauty, strong-rooted Hindu culture, and vast number of temples. 

The Most Expensive Coffee In The World Comes From Bali 

The coffee beans for the most expensive coffee in the world come from the droppings of Civet cats. This coffee is called Kopi Luwak and was first produced in Bali. A single cup of this coffee can cost upwards of $100.

Other Interesting Facts About Bali

The Locals Give Daily Offerings To The Gods 

Small woven baskets containing flowers, rice, and incense are found placed around homes and temples as daily offerings in the Balinese Hindu tradition. These offerings are known as Canang Sari. 

Bali Has Its Own Famous Pork Dish 

This Bali fact might surprise many people, mainly because Indonesia is a predominantly Muslim country, and Muslims do not eat pork. 

However, there is a famous Indonesian food originating from Bali – a roasted suckling pig called Babi Guling.   

It is a popular delicacy among both locals and tourists. The whole pig is stuffed with spices and roasted on a spit.

David Bowie’s Had A Unique Request Related To Bali 

Rock legend David Bowie was a very spiritual man. He had a keen interest in Buddhism, so much so that he wanted his ashes scattered in Bali in accordance with the Buddhist faith. The star passed away in 2016, and his request was fulfilled.

There is, however, some confusion amongst his fans as to why Bowie chose Bali as the place for his ashes. Traditional Balinese funerals include cremating the bodies, but that is because it is a Hindu Dominant island and not because of Buddhism. Buddhists only make up a minority percentage of the population. 

Discovering More Fun Facts About Bali

These are some of the most exciting facts about Bali, Indonesia. Bali is a beautiful and culturally rich island in Indonesia that offers visitors a unique experience.

From elaborate temples and spiritual ceremonies to gorgeous beaches and vibrant nightlife, Bali has plenty to offer. Whether you want to relax on the beach, surf epic waves, explore jungle waterfalls, or immerse yourself in Hindu rituals, a visit to Bali will create lasting memories.



Book Your Flight

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Find Your Accommodation

Booking.com is my usual platform for finding accommodation options as they have one of the largest selections. Hostelworld is great for booking hostels. For more private or long term accommodation, Airbnb is my go-to platform.

Travel Insurance

Travel insurance is important for to protect yourself against unforeseen circumstances. I usually look at a few insurance companies depending on my travel needs.
  • SafetyWings for Travel Health Insurance
  • IMG Global for added Insurance when doing activities outside of usual coverage
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Welcome To NomadsUnveiled
This is Rax. For over a decade, I have traveled to over 60 countries - from a budget backpacker to a business traveler, expat and then a digital nomad. You can find insights and perspectives from myself and other world travelers that will inspire your journey of discovery.


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