The 8 crucial things tourists must avoid in Bali are important messages and travel guide for them. This is because there are many cases of foreign tourists carrying out activities that have been troubling the Balinese people lately. Thus, many reactions from the Balinese, including the Indonesian government. For those of you who are going to visit Bali, you should pay attention to the things that you should not do as follows:
1.) Immodest Dressing in Public Places except on the Beach
Balinese people are friendly people and have a unique culture. They adhere to the culture of East Asia, which adheres to good manners in speech and behavior. This culture will guide their lives always to be polite and friendly to everyone. They have various levels of language speech, including coarse language, ordinary language, and acceptable language. Likewise, in terms of clothing, they pay great attention to fashion and sort it out in various activities. That means that they will use clothing according to its designation. However, all the clothes they wear will always cover sensitive body parts or those related to pornography. For this reason, everyone living in Bali is advised to dress modestly, at least covering the body and waist up to the knees.
Moreover, if we want to visit a temple, we must wear a sarong. If not, you must be prepared to accept sanctions from the customary local police.
2.) Holding Someone Else’s Head
Holding people’s heads, especially the heads of local people, is an act that is prohibited. This will get a strong reaction from the local people because they feel you are harassing or belittling them. For that, don’t ever do this.
3.) No Respect for Local Cultures
This is very important for those of you who have different cultures from the Balinese. You will feel this cultural difference when you arrive on this island of a thousand temples. Meanwhile, Bali has many cultures, and you must respect them.
- Disrespect To Pecalang
Pecalang is a customary police unit that only exists in Bali. They work in traditional Balinese dress and generally guard the course of religious ceremonies. This local-based security unit is made up of unpaid volunteer groups. They have a central role and are in direct contact with the community. Pecalang exists in every village in Bali, and the Balinese greatly respect them. What security will they do if there is a threat or riot in their area? They also regulate traffic during religious ceremonies.
So, anyone who crosses the street and is stopped by a Pecalang they are obliged to stop and give priority to the ceremonial procession. If you violate Pecalang’s orders, you will immediately be subject to sanctions in the form of legal proceedings up to expulsion from Indonesian territory (deportation). Many tourists are not aware of this, so many have been deported for trivial matters. For that, learn to respect the culture here.
- Disrespect for Hindu Priests
If you meet Hindu priests in Bali, you should be polite to respect them. This is very sensitive for the Balinese when there are people who do not respect their priests. This action will be very detrimental to you if you do not behave politely in the presence of the priest.
- Driving a Vehicle / Cutting the Road During a Balinese Ceremony Convoy
There are some foreign tourists who do not understand this culture so misunderstandings occur. When there is a procession of religious ceremonies in Bali and you have been stopped by local people or Pecalang, then you have no choice but to stop. Pecalang usually reprimands politely and gives directions and alternative routes that you can take if that’s possible. You must put the procession first and must not interrupt it. If not, you will be subject to severe sanctions up to deportation.
- Sitting While Elevating Feet on Tables in Public Places
This is an act of disrespect in Bali. You may not put your feet on the table in public places as you do in your country. You can do it in your hotel room or villa where outsiders don’t see it.
- Drying Pants, Skirts, and Underwear Not in the Proper Place
There are rules for drying clothes in Bali. Drying Pants, Skirts and Undergarments should not be higher than your waist. Moreover, you are drying it on the balcony railing of a house or hotel. This is very impolite which can make the Balinese feel uncomfortable with you. Moreover, in Bali, there are many temples that are believed by Hindus to be sacred buildings. So, these clothes are not natural to be dried above our heads.
- Breaking the Nyepi Rules
Nyepi or Silent Day is the new year for Hindus in Bali where they carry out four Berata Penyepian (four activities that are not carried out). Balinese people use Nyepi Day for meditation and introspection. There are four taboos that cannot be done on that day including No Travel, No Light of Fire, No Fun, and No Work. On that day, all shops, transportation activities, entertainment, to the airport will be closed for 24 hours. Everyone is not allowed to travel because the roads will be closed and the night will be pitch black because no lights are allowed.
Tourists who are on vacation in Bali during Nyepi will receive a little compensation when they are allowed to carry out activities in the hotel and only turn on a few lights in the room. If you violate, of course, you will immediately get sanctions from Pecalang (local customary police). Sanctions range from a warning to deportation.
4.) Doing Illegal Activities or Business
If you visit Bali with a Tourist Visa, you should not carry out illegal activities on this island. This is clear in the rules according to the visa granted by the Indonesian government. There are several foreign tourists who commit this violation. Thus, they have lost time to enjoy their holidays in Bali because they have to leave this island quickly.
5.) Climbing a Sacred Building or Place of Worship
It is a serious violation if you do this. You may places of sacred buildings in Bali. You can’t ride it and even sit on it as this tourist did. The Balinese will not be able to tolerate your actions and you will have to pay dearly for this incident. The process of deportation and blacklisting are the sanctions that you will get if you violate this rule. For the record, in places of worship or holy places, there is no writing that regulates this. But you better know this.
6.) Performing Immoral Acts in Sacred Places/Areas
The immoral acts referred to in this case are having sexual intercourse, making love, being completely naked, urinating, and defecating in sacred areas. It is strictly forbidden to do this in holy places. The Balinese think you are polluting the sanctity of their area or place of worship. For that, don’t ever do this if you don’t want to get a severe punishment and not be allowed to come to Bali again.
7.) Driving a Vehicle Not In Accordance with Police Regulations
- Not Wearing a Helmet
Using a helmet while riding a motorcycle is an obligation because it is already in traffic law. Many tourists have had road accidents and even died because they did not comply with these regulations. If you don’t wear a helmet while riding a scooter, you will be fined by the police. This also applies to local people.
- Replacing Vehicle Number Plates
This is a serious violation if you change the Vehicle Plate Number carelessly. You will get fines until detention if you violate this. There are some tourists who have violated this rule and of course, they immediately get heavy sanctions.
- Driving a Vehicle with a Noisy Muffler
It also makes other people annoyed and angry if your vehicle uses a blaring muffler. Almost all countries in the world apply this rule because it is noisy.
- Not Using Clothes When Riding a Motorcycle
One of the impolite things you do is ride a motorbike without wearing clothes. This is also regulated in the traffic laws in this country. So, you have to wear clothes when riding a motorcycle even if you go surfing. That’s because other people will feel disgusted to meet you on the street.
- Reckless Driving of Vehicles
This also includes serious traffic violations in Indonesia. Because this is very dangerous and can injure yourself and others. In several cases, tourists’ reckless driving has received severe sanctions.
8.) Making trouble or commotion
You need to avoid this if your vacation period is shorter than your plan. And even, this can bury your dream of having a vacation in Bali. Anyone who lives in Indonesia, including tourists, should not make noise, trouble, or commotion. Sanctions ranging from mild to severe sanctions will await you.