Bali Culture – Bali Kite Festival
The Bali Kite Festival
The Bali Kite festival is a series of events that take place traditionally in July and August the windy season in Bali. The main events of the Bali Kite festival takes place along the eastern coast of Padanggalak, just north of Sanur. The 26th to the 28th of August this is taking place at the Sanur Village Festival which takes place every August.
Traditionally the festival was for thanking the heavens for abundant crops and harvests, but now it is a huge completion for village youth groups who send their ‘sekaa layangan’ kite teams to participate and hopefully win prize money.
The Balinese traditional kites can be huge, measuring up to four meters in width and 10 meters in length. The ‘bebean’ type is the most common design with a traditional outline of a fish, and is the common ‘giant kite’ of Bali that dominates the skies. Some other versions, such as the ‘janggan’ resembles birds with shorter and rounder wings and their long flowing ‘kedeber’ ribbon tails often reaching 100 meters or more in length. A competition is also usually held for ‘new creation’ kites, which may include detailed three-dimensional figures and unusual designs, from Hindu gods, cars and motorbikes, to mascots.
Some kites are fitted with sound instruments in the form vibrating bows called ‘guwang’, which generate a resonating hum that can be heard from afar.
During the Bali Kite festival, hundreds of competing kite troupes gather from all over the island to pilot their traditional kites. A traditional orchestra called a gamelan accompanies the troupe and plays during the take-off and landing sequences.
Each piloting troupe normally comprises a dozen or so boys and men. Categories to win include ‘best launch’, ‘best design’ and the ‘longest flight’
Enjoy the Sanur village Festival and the Bali Kite festival over the next few days
And any time you are heading to the beach during August don’t forget to look up!
To find out more about the unique culture of Bali check out our Diving Indo Bali land tours