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Uproar From Balinese Locals After Discovering A Second Nude Tourist Incident This Month

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Local Balinese community members are expressing their horror, frustration, and anger as yet another tourist has been caught posing nude at a sacred site. In photos, that have since been taken down from social media, a young foreign model can be seen posing naked beneath a seven-hundred-year-old eucalyptus tree at the Babakan Temple. 

In the Bayan Traditional Village, where Babakan Temple can be found, community members are disgusted and offended that such behavior could possibly be let to slide by authorities. They believe that the woman in question must have snuck into the temple grounds at dawn before pecalang, traditional Balinese community security guards, arrived to open the temple for the day. 

In the video, the model appears to sit beneath the Kayu Putih tree completely naked. In Balinese culture, the Kayu Putih, also known as the Banyan Tree, represents eternal life due to its expansive canopy and characteristic, far-reaching root system. Banyan Trees are often gathered around during Balinese Hindu ceremonies and are held in reverence. For anyone to pose next to a Banyan Tree without wearing temple appropriate clothing, let alone be naked, is considered deeply sacrilegious. 

Taman Ayun Temple is a Royal Family Temple of Mengwi Empire and it is located in Mengwi Village, Mengwi sub district, Badung regency, Bali, Indonesia.

When speaking to local journalists nearby villager Ni Luh Jelantik said that it was he who contacted the police and the Ministry of Law and Human Rights. He believes that there should be a full criminal investigation for such acts, not only looking into which laws have been violated but also investigating the woman in question’s right to be in Indonesia. If she is found to have broken laws, specifically those around pornography, public indecency, and vandalism of a holy place, that she should be deported. 

The Head of the Marga Police, AKP I Gede Budiarta confirmed that his police force was looking into the matter. He said his teams were ‘still conducting investigations and contacting figures in the Babakan area’ regarding the incident. 

Locals are hoping that justice will be served in both a legal and traditional sense. It is customary across Bali that if an act of desecration is committed in a holy place that a full cleansing ceremony must take place to clear both the perpetrator and the holy grounds to clear the space of the negative energy. 

Outrage from Balinese online commentators across the island has been clear to see. This incident comes as the second of its kind in the space of a month. Balinese are tired and frustrated that their holy sites and culture at large are being disrespected by travelers who feel it is appropriate to pose naked for the sake of a quick photo. 

In addition to the deeply offensive nature of indecent exposure at holy sites, these events oppose Indonesia’s very conservative views on nudity. Indonesia has a zero-tolerance policy for pornography and has increasingly strict societal views about nudity, modesty and the way women should dress more generally. 

Although Bali has a largely Hindu culture, the majority of the Indonesian population is Muslim, holding very conservative views across the board. In Aceh, in the far north of Sumatra, women of any faith or nationality are not permitted to wear bathing suits that expose their skin. Women must wear a head covering in public and failure to do so has resulted in public floggings.

The case comes after the headline-hitting news that a 33-year-old Canadian named Jeffery Douglas Craigen had been detained by immigration officers after he danced naked at the top of Mount Batur. The mountain in Kintamani is another hugely significant holy site for Balinese people. He is currently facing deportation and remains in the custody of the local authorities awaiting trial.

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Wayan Bo

Thursday 5th of May 2022

Same could happen in Islamic Republic of Iran.


Thursday 5th of May 2022

I am American and have been in Bali for almost half a year. I do not know if the perpetrator was American or not, but I can say this: This will not stop unless Bali does something about this. I know the typical American psyche. They are spoiled and entitled and think they can get away with whatever they want. They will keep coming and desecrate sacred sites for views on their social media pages. I came to Bali to escape people like this. Bali is not my island and I must respect what is not mine. But I can also appreciate it for its beauty and culture, as well as the people, who are of a much higher quality than my previous kin. My final point is, other Americans will not stop. This is their attitude. I strongly suggest Balinese people and authorities to take a hardline stance. Such behavior should be grounds for arrest and caning. Do what Singapore does. Make these spoiled brats stop doing what they are doing. You must or this will simply continue, especially with how the younger generation has been raised. All they care about is their social popularity and chance of going viral. Please, the Balinese people must put an end to this. Stand up for your island. For your country. I pledge to help you.


Friday 6th of May 2022

@C, closer to home, the Grand canyon is a sacred place to local Indian tribes who still live in the area and keep their cultural and traditions alive. And yet some domestic American travelers may ignore the facts that some parts of the canyon is tribal lands. Therefore it may be wise to show respect to the local environment when visiting.


Friday 6th of May 2022

@C, It's a Russian yogi and influencer.

Ralph Reid

Thursday 5th of May 2022



Friday 6th of May 2022

@Ralph Reid, why are you screaming? No money no travel. Ask your bureaucrats why they are charging Aussies an expensive covid test to travel abroad. Don't blame the Indonesian covid rules for being cheap.


Thursday 5th of May 2022

Many foreign travelers across the planet lack cultural sensitivity even though they are not doing so on purpose.

However, the willingness to adjust your opinions and behaviors so that you value people and ideas from other cultures can create a deeper relationship with the host countrymen. Nobody is entitled to anything regardless where you come from by visiting another country.

In a nutshell, there 4 main causes of cultural insensitivity ethnocentrism, stereotypes and prejudices, fear and ignorance.

Can you imagine the ramifications of uncaring travelers posing naked or fornicate at the famous Borobudur or Prambanan temples in Central Java or even dancing naked on Mount Bromo at the crack of dawn (well that would be too cold)??

Have there been known news of indecent exposure while attending a church service ?? Probably not… In a very few Western developed countries with a more Puritan mindset, indecent exposure for first time could be an offense or a misdemeanor, second time a felony, third time a long time prison sentence.


Thursday 5th of May 2022

These social media freaks will never stop if they are not punished or fined heavily. Poor Balinese will be left to continue waste efforts, time and resources to cleanse their sacred spaces. Sad. Warning travelers is probably not sufficient for there will always be those unemphatic, self-centered, egotistical, uneducated few who not only think such acts are innocent and harmless, but also fun, thrilling and even profitable.