Bali, the island of the gods, was inhabited by the Austronesian peoples around 2000 BC. They migrated from Taiwan through Southeast Asia. Culturally and linguistically, the Balinese are closely related to the peoples of the Indonesian archipelago, Malaysia, the Philippines, and Oceania. Stone tools dating from 2000 BC have been found near the village of Cekik in the island’s west. In ancient Bali, nine Hindu sects existed, namely Pasupata, Bhairawa, Siwa Shidanta, Waisnawa, Bodha, Brahma, Resi, Sora, and Ganapatya. Each sect revered a specific deity as its personal Godhead. Balinese culture has been strongly influenced by Indian, Chinese, and particularly Hindu culture, beginning around the 1st century AD. The name Bali Dwipa – Bali island – has been discovered from various inscriptions dating from 914 AD. Read more here…
In Bali, the practice of Subak refers to the cultural, religious, and practical tradition of irrigation which primarily revolves around rice farming. Additionally, this term describes a democratic association of farmers practicing the cultural traditions of Subak. The word is first referenced in writing more than 1,000 years ago, in 1072 AD to be exact. In the 11th-century individual Subak systems became so massive that they became man made watersheds, and began to change the geography of Bali shaping it into the landscape we know and love today.
From 1389 the Majapahit empire began to decline. Expeditions led by a Chinese Muslim admiral, Zheng He, along with contact by Muslim Arabs, began to expand the influence of Islam throughout the North of Java. This began a migration of Hindus from Java to Bali, which at the time remained free of Muslim influence.
After contact with the Portuguese around 1585, Bali was inserted into European sailing charts. This led to a Dutch expedition to the island in 1597 AD. After This initial explorative expedition, the Dutch East India Company established its presence here in 1602, thus setting the stage for colonial rule.
Western tourism began in 1930, when a KPM steamship line started encouraging Westerners to go to Bali on vacation. Hundreds of visitors came to experience the unique culture of the island. Nowadays tourism flourishes with up to 400,000 visitors to the island of the gods every month. Read more here…
Jembrana – the regency that Medewi Manor is situated – spans the North West region of Bali and remains one of the most isolated and untouched areas. Today, most travelers pass through the region on buses, along the 134 km road from Denpasar to Gilimanuk. The regency offers an utterly unique dance and gamelan tradition. Its isolation is also truly unique when compared with other tourist areas of Bali. Jembrana boasts a series of stunning sea and inland temples. It is home to some of Bali’s best waves that break from top to bottom and features a 71 km stretch of highway paralleling a coast lined with rocky, black-sand beaches. It is simply idyllic.
Similar to Bali’s other regencies, Jembrana is slowly developing its tourism potentials and yet it remains a region that is untouched by the negative influences that can take hold in some global tourist centers. Inland from the coastal region, the area is dotted by networks of rural villages covered by the forest of Bali’s Northern National Park. The majority of the population in Jembrana work in agricultural fields with the main crops being rice, coconut, coffee, cloves, and vanilla.
The Medewi | Yehsumbul area is a conservative Muslim area with small pockets of Hindu’s. The local Balinese are very friendly, conservative and family orientated. The layout of the Medewi | Yehsumbul area holds two very appealing aspects, that of the coastline with dense forests and smaller rural villages inland. It is dotted with both Hindu temples and Muslim mosques and has a rich history to explore. It is an area that allows you to completely unwind and relax.
The Bali Arts festival is an annual event that runs through the months of June and July. Whilst the epicenter of the festival is Denpasar’s Taman Werdhi Budaya Arts Centre, there are events and various other gallery’s showcasing the wealth of the islands artistic output. Featuring both traditional forms of performance and visual arts through to contemporary expressions, with a focus on dance, shadow puppetry and music, the festival attracts many artists from the Indonesian Archipelago, Bali’s nine regencies as well as International artists. If you are visiting Medewi Manor from mid June through to mid July, Yani and or Wawan are available to help you plan a day trip to selected events of your choosing.
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