Planning for a family trip with people of diverse interests has never been an easy job. I would love to visit all the temples and watch every dance performance in Bali as each of them presents an unique opportunity for photography enthusiasts like me. However, I am sure I would be faced with a group of grouchy and sulky mates if I had really planned the itinerary my way. 😦
So if I had to choose only one dance performance for the entire trip, I think the Kecak dance at Uluwatu Temple should be it. This dance is a combination of ancient ritual, dance, drama and even has a sense of humour in it. These, plus the backdrop of a setting sun over a cliff, makes this performance one of the most spectacular ones.
There are 5 acts in the drama where it started with how Sita (wife of Prince Rama) was captured by another king, Rhawana, and the entire rescue process. Like I said earlier, there is also humour injected into the show as there was a scene where the Monkey King made fun of the audience. It doesn’t really matter where are you seated, in case you think that the upper few rows are “safer”, as the Monkey King will randomly pick his “victim”. 🙂
The almighty Thor was not in a good mood that day and he sent rain crushing onto us shortly after the show had started. Although the performers were very professional and continued with the performance, the audience were not prepared to brave the rain. We didn’t finish the show, FYI. Sigh.
The Monkey King Hanoman making fun of the audience
Useful Information – Kecak Dance at Uluwatu Temple : Admission Charges, Rules and Advices:
- Adult 70,000 IDR
- Child 35,000 IDR
- Kecak Dance at 1800 hrs daily
Rules and Advices:
- It’s free seating and do go earlier (20 minutes should suffice) if you want the central view
- I didn’t see any restrictions on the usage of cameras. In fact, my DSLR should be quite prominent and I didn’t get any warning. So I guess it’s perfectly alright to use camera during the dance.
- Sarongs are required to enter the sacred area
- Women who are having their period can only go until the steps of the temple
- Loose items such as glasses, sunglasses, handbags, etc should be handled with care. Leave them in the car if possible. Monkeys snatching these items from the visitors is a common sight. I witnessed a tourist’s pair of glasses being taken away from a monkey. See my previous post for evidence. *** You have been warned ***
- A lot of vendors will be selling you food like bananas and peanuts to feed the monkeys. You DO NOT HAVE to buy from them. In fact, these items are “monkey-magnets”.
Estimated traveling time by car:
- Pandawan Beach → Uluwatu Temple: 30 minutes