Bali’s New Year Day of Absolute Silence, and its preceding Rituals

This year, Nyepi,  Bali’s New Year Day, which is a day of complete silence and meditation, falls on Saturday21st March 2015.

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So, visitors planning to spend their holidays in Bali around this  date please note:

On 21 March the entire island of Bali will be in lockdown mode. So as to allow residents to follow the prescribed rituals for Nyepi, all vehicles and pedestriantraffic across Bali will be barred from the streets, except for emergencies. The airport will be closed and no planes will land or take off for 24 hours. All shops are closed.  No one will be allowed on the beach or on the streets. There will be local watchmen known as pecalang to ascertain that this rule is obeyed. At night, all lights will have to be turned off. Hotels will close all curtains that no ray of light shines outside. All sound and music indoors should be held to its lowest volume.

 

Every culture and religion in the world has its own way of defining and celebrating the coming of the new year. While the Chinese have the Imlek celebration, the Muslims celebrate the first of Muharram, and the world in general celebrates the first of January, the Hindus of Bali welcome the New Year based on the traditional Saka Calendar called : Nyepi.

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