Bali's Cultural Villages

Discover Ten Interesting Villages in Bali Worth Your Visit

Bali is indeed an undeniable brilliance scenery. This is the main cause of why either local or international tourists willingly spend their precious time to pay it a visit. In addition to stunning natural exposures, a group of domestic artworks plays a significant role in enlivening the paradise land. Related to impressive local artworks, there are 10 villages, which are suitable to be inducted the artwork village tag.


Unique art types have enriched these impressive villages. Starting from forged artworks such as, wooden sculptures with their deep values of culture, silver and gold ornament with their flexibilities to learn, painting and dance with their graceful value in their beautiful appearances and movement gestures, decent architectures with their impressive designs, until the very unrivaled divine creation such as majestic nature scenery with its steadiness to pamper your very body and soul. The artworks contained within these villages are the very reason to never miss these destinations. Let us take a deeper look into each village to get better understanding of what they offer.



Batubulan Village


Batubulan is named after its historical establishment. Batubulan which is generally moon crescent in English has an interesting naming covenant in past. A brief history of the place was forged from a story of Dewa Agung Kalesan a descendant of King Badung who wandered along with his underlings into a strange wood and found a stone shinning moonlight. As the prince was attracted by its pure beauty, he praised the strange land as a place of shinning arts and named it Batubulan (a place resembling the shine of moonlight).


Sculpture Made of Wood in Batubulan

Sculpture Made of Wood in Batubulan


Departing from the philosophy of its name, Batubulan residents aspire to create something quintessential. Years of dedication has rendered the village a home for hundreds of decent handcraft products. An array of well-carved sculptures will be general ornaments you will often encounter across the streets. The sculptures are mostly built from stone and wood. What considers the sculpture quintessential is that they are created using the indigenous formulas and techniques. The handcraft with the best quality is frequently judged by the deep meaning contained within and is made of stone. The wooden-crafted products are usually cheaper for the less difficulty of the forging process.


Balinese Artisan


The excitement of visiting Batubulan lies on the availability to self-practicing in creating personal handcraft. Local galleries are widely open in enrolling temporary apprentices for those eager to learn deeper about the village arts. Live-practicing to forge your own personal handcraft will earn you a decent artwork learning as well as precious experience.


To reach Batubulan village, you will be required to take some short trip. The village is located about 10 kilometers from Denpasar and will take 15 minutes driving time. If you happen to be in Kuta beach or Nusa Dua region, it will take you about 45 minutes driving time.



Celuk Village


A gold and silver village is another exciting destination worth your visit. Celuk village are truly praised for its outstanding sobriquet because enormous gold and silver ornaments are harmonically forged there. Located in Gianyar district, to reach this gleaming village, about 20 minutes long distance from Ngurah Rai airport is required. It is considered as an easy to reach destination for the proximity to Bali’s renowned cities, Ubud and Denpasar.


Tourist watching how the ornaments are forged

Tourist watching how the ornaments are forged


This village offers a precious opportunity to those longing to witness how an ornament is made. Day’s scenery be like a college life as if students reading books amid a campus hall where in this case it is not student reading their ledgers, but tourist learning the process of creating silver ornaments. Crafting has never been this easy for all the villagers are ready to assist all learners. As for jewelry admirer, it is such impressive time to craft your beloved form of jewel to suit your very personal desire. There be several ways villagers create the jewelry, traditional, modern, and combination of both. Either way will create high quality of products which you can purchase in affordable amount. This is so perfect for those who want to own high quality ornaments with reachable price.


One example of ornaments made by local people



Mas Village


Mas village is renowned considerably from its historical establishment. A long time ago, a Hindu priest was looking for a settlement in Bali on a pilgrim to maintain Hinduism after being recessively banished away by moslem kingdom, Majapahit, from his former territory, Java island. Word has it that Pedanda Sakti Bawu Rauh is the name of the priest. He then taught his apprentice Mas Wilis all his knowledges which later inaugurated as Prince Manik Mas. At the eve of inauguration ceremony, the most historical event happened when the priest sticking a tall branch into the ground which later transformed into a large tree, a living token we can still see at this age. As the tree is in Taman Pule Mas temple, this city is named after where the holy tree is planted. The holy tree also renders a cause as to why the village is renowned for its wooden artworks.


A relief of a dancer; an example of Mas village artworks.

Experience the Step by Step Wood Carving Process with the Experts.


The true excitement in visiting Mas village lies on its fascinating to interpret the implication of the artworks. Many wooden crafts are created in abstract form with certain purposes. The local artists base their artworks creating process on a compulsory to infuse values of humanism and naturalism as the central messages. Most of the artwork are supposed to be a media for ceremonial offerings, hence sculptures like Arca and Dewa-Dewa will be the main products to encounter at almost art-shop. As years passed the production of the artworks has been transformed into popular abstract reducing religious impression.


A relief drawing popular life of citizens.

A relief drawing popular life of citizens.


If you are interested in such cultural artwork and plan to visit Mas village, you will be required to travel around 20 km from Denpasar, or about 30 minutes driving time and you will arrive in this impressive village.



Peliatan Village


Amongst the other impressive villages, Peliatan emerges as the completest regarding to indigenous cultural issues. Besides artwork as a mainstay which is mainly made as a handcraft products, Peliatan is famous respectfully with its signature as the village of dance and arts. This village is easy to reach. Only 2 kilometers away from Ubud and 22 kilometers from Bali capital city Denpasar, you will arrive in this impressive city in about half hour of driving time.


Exclusive paintings are to be praised as something so attractive in Peliatan. Words have it that Rudolf Bonnet, a Dutch artist stayed quite long in this village. His stay alone suffices to influence local artist to imitate his style in composing local paintings. The paintings are mostly a portrayal of indigenous people to which sometimes the capture is imaginary person of the artist. You can easily find decent galleries along the boulevard in the village.


Paintings influenced by R. Bonet style

Paintings influenced by R. Bonet style


Another thing to adore is the impressive dances frequently held in Peliatan. Legong dance is the specialty of the village. As the dance is full with gals around the age of 10, this dance will not only exhibit the aesthetic value of grace and femininity, but serve also as a great entertainment on your rest while. Appreciating artwork while watching dance performance will be a good mix to spend your precious time in this fascinating village.


A gal performing legong dance pose

A girl performing legong dance pose



Jatiluwih Village


Jatiluwih village bears differences compared to the former villages. It is appraised not for its craftwork pottential but mostly for the majestic green paddy panorama. Outfitted with well-arranged rice paddy terraces, Jatiluwih has been one of world cultural heritages assigned by UNESCO since 29 June 2012. It is for the unique cultivating system and socio-cultural management that earn the village such precious tittle. To reach this village is considered easy for we need only drive one and half hour away from Denpasar city and we will arrive at this evergreen environment.


Rice paddy terraces

Rice paddy terraces


A truly excitement in visiting Jatiluwih lies at feasting our eyes on a majestic panorama of green paddy landscape which are well-terraced. There be just lush greenery everywhere you look and the mighty Mount Batukaru in the backdrop adorns your gorgeous sightseeing activity. One aspect to complete your fascinating sightseeing is the breeze gently embraces you in the spot. Laying widely for 636 hectares and at an altitude of 700 meters, this area wrought an unforgettable experience of enjoying nature at the fullest.


Majestic view from Jatiluwih

Majestic view from Jatiluwih


Other fascinating aspect in Jatiluwih is the availability of jogging path across the terracing paddy. It needs more or less three hours walking time to cross over the track length. The track extends across 3 kilometers away connecting this village to Besi Kalung temple. Walking in a sunset while enjoying unrivaled view of yellowish gleaming sunset will be an impressive moment you will always remember.



Kertalangu Village


Kertalangu cultural village is located in Sanur, an urban area offering soothing scenery with a stretch of about 80 Ha. This village is enriched with lush greenery field across the area and outstanding facilities to assist the excursion. This village is easy to reach as it is only 6 km from Denpasar which will require about 15 minutes driving time.


This village is worth visiting because of the peaceful environment offered. As you cross the main gate, a typical suburb village breeze will be the first thing to greet your arrival in this enchanting village. Just a few minutes driving further into the center of the village, you will witness a monumental building ‘Gong of peace’ used as a symbol of peace amongst the independent countries contra against war. The gong is symbolic and bears sacred philosophy as it is built in mighty structure where the gong is atop figures of leaders countries included as member of peace.


World Peace Gong at Kertalangu Village

World Peace Gong at Kertalangu Village


In addition to the monumental building, Kertalangu is adorned with lush environment mainly containing of rice paddy fields and peaceful resort to make one’s rest worth enjoying. Resting in a peaceful area where green and majestic scenery is the only thing to see is so relieving. The availability of comfortable resort emphasizes the very convenient whilst enjoying such adorable experience. An afternoon riding on a horse around the village is common activity in the village for several horses for rent are available to comfort your places sightseeing.



Green landscape of rice paddy field.


For pedestrian, this village is also awesome to spend afternoon walking. A good infrastructure across the village has rendered this place okay to spend time in walking around. An access to the majestic spot containing impressive scenery like mountain and vast green rice paddy field is well built to ease the visitors. Enjoying vacation in this place is like a rest into pure natural environment where convenient and neat surroundings are to be relished to one’s heart content.



Kintamani Village


Different from the other villages, Kintamani is adorned with complete nature reinforcements. Kintamani destination area is located in Bangli district. It takes about two hours ride from Denpasar or precisely about 80 kilometer from Ngurah Rai international airport. It is suggested that heading for Kintamani is best using car so that one can enjoy the good scenery while on the way.


Kintamani village seen from a hill.

Kintamani village seen from a hill.


The main attraction of this destination is located around Lake Batur, where Penelokan village provides spectacular views of Mount Batur and the crater lake itself. The lake is set in vast volcanic caldera, considered one of the largest in the world, and providing amusement of every nature sightseeing one can get. View offered in this destination is superlative compared to the other villages. A high mountain becomes a good scene amid lush greenery environment where a spectacular crescent lake scattering along.


Another thing to highly appreciate in Kintamani is the availability of impressive and convenient resorts. Decent restaurants, cottages, and hot springs adorn this destination. The resorts seemingly facilitate from mid to high class of services making this place comfortable for those who pay a visit. Due to the well built infrastructure and many decent resorts and restaurants offering such marvelous view in their balconies, enjoying such spectacular view feels so elegant. The geographical location is also something to praise of. Having situated in the slope of mount Batur resulting on chilly temperature, the hot spring is something worth calling an oasis amid a vast desert. With unrivaled spectacular view of Mount Batur, soaking in warm pool will be an experience which is truly a marvel.


Reveling in a majestic scenery in lunch time.

Reveling in a majestic scenery in lunch time.



Panglipuran Village


Amongst the other villages, Panglipuran appears to be the most iconic village for the ancestral life. The village is formed based on the historical establishment of its very name. Panglipuran is basically established from the elimination of the word ‘eling’ in ‘panglipuran eling’, meaning remember ancestral land. Departing from this very philosophy, the villagers are persistent to maintain the condition of their ancestral land which is away from modernization.



A peaceful circumstance in Penglipuran.


Panglipuran is an easy destination to reach due to its location near major cities in Bali. To reach the village can be conducted by either using car or motorcycle for the journey will mainly going through main road and boulevard. It is approximately 45 km from Denpasar or 1 hour driving time. However if you happen to be in Kintamani district, you will only need to travel around 30 minutes long to be in the village.


The excitement in visiting Panglipuran lies on the cozy environment of the village itself. This village is so adorable for its spatial system. The houses are built in almost the same form and size one another. This unique construction makes the village looks perfectly arranged and so potential as a place to live. This fabulous system is adorned with hygienic and healthy environment. The villagers holding tightly their ancestral tradition has render this place majestic and clean for they believe that living harmonic begin from a clean and healthy environment. Thanks to the cool temperature, this village is even more comfortable destination to visit to.


An old woman doing a tradition.



Sebatu Village


By the name of Bali as the land of Gods, it is legitimate to say that it is good to feel any spiritual sensation in one’s excursion in the land of Gods. Resembling Bali, Sebatu village bears little different from the other villages in offering attractions toward its visitors. The village is rich for its superstitions that many people come into. Hence, visiting this destination is mainly about religious tour of indigenous cultures. Reaching this religious destination is easy for the distance is about 40 km from Denpasar or 20 km from Gianyar city. Several minutes journey using either car or motorcycle will prize you this attractive village.


Gunung Kawi Temple seen from outside


Temples and sacred places will be the main excitements in Sebatu village. Pura Gunung Kawi Sebatu (Gunung Kawi Temple) is one of which. Built based on hinduism culture, this temple is deemed a sacred place for the citizen around. The temple has been favorite destination for tourists in regards to its beautiful environment. The temple is adorned with large hall which merely means to accomodate worshipers. Hence, when the time is right, this temple is likely to have so many worshipers praying there. Another thing worth full attention is the availability of moderate pond consisting attractive golden fishes which local people believe as a symbol of harmonical life.


A pool in Gunung Kawi temple.

A pool in Gunung Kawi temple.


Melukat festival is another fascinating thing in this village. Melukat is the activity where people attend a holy temple to meditate while soaking his whole body beneath a fountain within the temple. Hindu people believe in a faith that after melukat has been conducted, one is considered pristine from his/her sinful deeds. The event is usually held at several temples such as Pasiraman Dalem Pingit and Tirta Empul temple, places whose fountain is believed to contain of sacred power. The excitement of this activity is tourists either can only watch people meditating beneath the water or try the event themselves to prove whether it is worth the superstition. The view where melukat is held is usualy so natural hence sightseeing and relaxing are worth one’s while.


Melukat is believed to be able to erase all negative influences.

Melukat is believed to be able to erase all negative influences.



Tenganan Village


Tenganan Village is one of the oldest Balinese Ancient Villages located in Karangasem Regency, east part of Bali. This Bali traditional village is much referred by cultural literature science of Tenganan Pegringsingan, very famous literature in the island. It owns very unique local community life pattern that only available in Bali Ancient Villages (Hindu Prehistoric). The residences obey to the Awig – awig ( Balinese rules ) such as married only with man or woman in their village, no divorce, traditional architecture of house, thatch roof, and soil fence. For these fascinating phenomenon, the village has been appointed as a place for tourist destination in Karangasem Bali. Tenganan Village is geographically situated among the hills in west and east part of this village. Furthermore, this village’s located in Manggis sub district and Karangasem Regency or about 1 hour drive from Denpasar Town.



A shot from the entrance of Tenganan.


Architectural structure of Tengangan village is to be appreciated in this impressive destination.  Different from the other villages, the structure of resident in Tenganan village is built in linear consisting of six rays. Each of ray consists of some lawn broadly, the building form where the local community use it to present the handicraft for tourists. All the tradition existences of the human being are harmoniously pertained to the God, human and environment as according to Tri Hita Karana concept.


Tengganan village

Traditional architectural design of Tenganan.


Beside the decent environement of Tenganan village, the tradition and culture of the residents are something worth to visit. The culture and tradition in this village have wrought impressive excitements. Mekare-kare is one of which. Mekare – kare is an offering ceremony conducted to honor the god Indra (god of war) and the ancestors. This event which is basically held in June is a battle between two men amid other men participating and people watching. Having rule in using pandan leaf as the main weapon and leaving middle up the body dressless, this battle often renders harm toward its contenders. However, the harm is seen as a sign of men’s masculinity and the bleeding scars resulted are a decent offering toward god Indra. Many villagers and tourists usually come by the time  this event is held.



Mekare-kare; a festival to honor Indra, the god of war.


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