Colourful Preparations for a Balinese Temple Celebration


Earlier this year, I took an early morning walk around the back streets of Seminyak in Bali, when I came across a temple I had passed and photographed several times before. Although well before nine a.m., there were several people busy decorating the building and laying tables inside. Unfortunately, I did not have a sarong and was unable to enter, but I managed to take several photographs of the interior, with through the doorway and by hoisting myself up on the outside walls.

I was told that a celebration would be taking place later in the day (although I am unclear what was being celebrated and could not find any generic events in the local calendar). During the evening there would be a Barong dance.

Almost every part of the temple,including the guardians at the gate, was embellished with cloths, sashes and frangipani flowers.


Ribbons flowed from the temple towers…


When I returned a little later, even more decoration has been applied and offerings were stacked several high at the entrance.


Peering over the wall, I could see that there was hardly room to move for all the beautiful objects, and yet more piles of offerings.



Tables were laid with hundreds of colourful woven boxes. What they would contain, I have no idea.


And of course the ever-attractive umbrellas and banners added even more to the display.


I wish I had had the time to visit later in the day to see the celebrations and dance in progress, although I don’t know whether it was a private or public affair.