Think you’ve seen it all in Bali?
Yes it has an amazing coast and a uniquely pleasant atmosphere, but the really amazing part lies in the eerie locations that are unlike anything you’ve seen before.
Making a ‘curious tour’ of Bali is something totally different.
Regardless of where you are located, you can escape the hotspots for something more peculiar.
Discover some of the island’s uniqueness, and find places which are beautiful and strange at the same time.
All adventurers on board? Let us show you around! These are the 10 ‘weirdest’ spots in Bali.
1. Taman Festival
Taman Festival, is a ghost town on Pandanggalak Beach where few tourists wander for unique sightseeing.
It is the massive, spooky remains of a theme park.
It used to be a favorite pastime destination for both locals and tourists when it opened in 1997, but was closed only a few years later in 2000.
Shut down because of financial issues, the ruins were handed over to the government, who did nothing to revive it.
In the daytime, Taman Festival creates a ‘bristling’ scene.
There is a rusty gate, which used to be marvelous and lead hundreds of smiling children to the ‘world of fun’, a completely abandoned ticket desk, deserted cafeterias, and partially demolished buildings with no roofs.
It is almost the kingdom of neglected vegetation, with nasty vines covering broken windows and indomitable moss on the huge, even lonelier ornaments.
It feels like discovering a post-apocalypse world.
Be prepared with decent shoes, mosquito repellent and a flashlight (if you are heading there at night). If you are into the mysterious, Taman Festival is a must-go!
2. Trunyan Necropolis
Location: Trunyan Village, Batur, Kintamani
The ancient Balinese village of Trunyan will greet you with coldness and peril.
Trunyan is located on the Eastern coast of Batur Lake, overlooked by mountains.
Unlike typical Balinese Hindus, known to perform cremation ceremonies for their deceased, the locals from Trunyan have a harder time saying goodbye to their loved ones.
They wrap their deceased, put them on a boat, and take them to the village graveyard. Instead of burying them, they are put in special wooden caves to protect them from lurking animals and weather conditions.
The caves are laid around an ancient stem, believed to have magical powers. The ‘Taru Menyan’ tree grows exclusively in the village, and has a unique fragrance, believed to absorb the decomposing odour of the dead.
It is incredibly important you remain respectful and calm when visiting Trunyan necropolis.
As bizarre and weird it may be to you, this is how the locals respect their dead.
3. Goa Lawah
There are three things you could associate with the Goa Lawah Temple with – caves, bats and legends.
Besides the wonderful scenery, the locals love to tell the tale of the 25km passage from Goa Lawah to the island’s mother temple, Besakih Temple on Mount Agung.
According to them, the passage if full of secrets and traps, and there is no way for a normal human to cross it.
Does it really exist? That’s up to you to decide.
The story of Goa Lawah may not be as obscure as the one of similar Bali temples, but it is equally exiting.
The Goa complex is built halfway between Candidasa and the Eastern coast, within a hardly accessible cave.
The cave is home to thousands of nasty bats, which use every opportunity to feast on insects or ‘play’ with unexpected visitors.
4. Bengkala Village
Bengkala Village has an incredible story.
The village has an insanely high deaf-since-birth rate. Of the 3000 person village, 40-50 people are born deaf!
Balinese legends say that the people of Bengkala stood up to a corrupt King, refusing to listen to his unreasonable commands. In turn, the King cursed the village with deafness for their refusal.
Science says that the locals carry a recessive gene that can cause deafness from birth.
The fact that over 2% of Bengkala’s population suffers from damaged hearing would probably be less strange, if it didn’t go on for seven generations.
Instead of getting swept up in the disability, the villagers in Bengkala embraced their differences and created their own form of communication.
Kata Kolok is their own form of sign language that uses natural movements as a way to communicate. Everyone in the village knows the sign language, creating a community spirit.
5. The Lost Airplane
Location: Jalan Bypass Ngurah Rai, Jimbaran
Somewhere between the airport and Nusa Dua is the remains of an old, white Boeing 737.
Thought to have been bought and placed by an ambitious entrepreneur, the plane was left to rust when the owner ran out of money.
Oddly, this isn’t the only abandoned plane on the island.
There are 2 other landed planes in the South of the island which don’t really have any purpose other than being mysterious and an interesting backdrop for a photo shoot.
6. Goa Gala-Gala
Believe me, there is no way you want to miss out on Goa Gala-Gala.
It was an ambitious project of building an underground labyrinth, but developed into the construction of a hidden house.
In the hole, it will take you a while to discover all of the well-connected and spacious chambers the house has.
The owner, Made Byasa, did his best to turn the 7m-deep hole into a living space, with bedrooms, a kitchen and all necessary facilities.
He started the construction of the underground home in 1961 and finished in 1976!
The underground home was inspired by a classic Dalung (shadow puppet) story, Wana Parwa, in which a family hideaway in a cave from danger.
7. Hotel Pondok Indah
The Pondok Indah haunted hotel was supposed to be a luxury resort, but the project failed in the early 90s, due to financial issues.
If the project was located elsewhere in the world, it would not be surrounded by such mystery.
However, Bali is an incredibly spiritual island and the Balinese have created many stories and legends around the hotel.
They believe there are many lost spirits in the building, which led to the demise of the business.
8. Goa Gong Temple
Location: Jalan Goa Gong, Jimbaran
The Goa Gong Temple is among Jimbaran’s last authentic monuments.
The rapidly modernizing region has made admirable efforts to preserve this stalactite miracle – once you visit, you will understand why!
The entrance to the cave is outside of central Jimbaran, guarded by a pair of enormous cat statues, colored in red and dressed in chequered garbs.
An incredibly ornate and beautiful space, it leaves visitors in awe.
Entrance into the cave is only possible with the presence and approval of the temple’s supervisor priest, Mangku Gurun Simpen.
9. Goa Peteng
Location: Jl. Goa Peteng, Jimbaran
Goa Peteng, meaning dark hole, is a breathtaking cave located near Ayana Resort and Spa.
Inside is a limestone sinkhole, and the ‘treasure’ of farmer Pak Ketjuh’s family.
The carved walls are covered with long vines which neutralize the guano smell spreading through the dense air, but as you go deeper and daylight disappears, the smell becomes harder to stand.
Most tourists give up on exploring further.
The non-quitters among you will find a magnificent pool of ice-cold water at the end of the tunnel.
Legend says that when the moon is full, the water starts running through a narrow passage, showing observers the secret way to an ancient chapel.
There is more to the island of the Gods than beach clubs, luxurious villas and rice fields.
Some of the most interesting things to see are totally unique and spooky.
Let us know if you check out one of these creepy spots out!