GALUNGAN is a Hindu holy day celebrated every 210 days based on the pawukon calendar. Precisely, it falls on Buda Kliwon Dungulan. The closest celebration this year is on November 10.
Known as the rerainan jagat or universal celebration, the Galungan is filled with joint worship to the temple of families, clans, village and public temples. All devotees will pay homage to those temples in their respective customary attires.
Generally, related to the implementation of Galungan, Hindus perform a series of main preliminary ceremonies for purification, namely Sugi Jawa (6 days in advance) for the universe or macrocosm and Sugi Bali (5 days in advance) for the self or microcosm.
Penampahan Galungan—Hindus prepare all ceremonial needs such as offerings, meat for ceremonial ingredients and consumption. Especially for the preparation of meat, they commonly slaughter pigs in groups in order to get a cheaper price. In addition to maintaining intimacy and cooperation. Meanwhile, the others buy meat in retail as needed.
Then, the meat is processed into several menus to fill the offerings and consumption. Typical the meat dishes at this celebration include lawar, tum, komoh (clear soup), twisted satay and urutan (sausage).
After cooking and preparing special menus for the ceremony, they also exchange the dish or ngejot to their neighbors, both Hindu. It is intended to exchange dishes so that they can mutually taste what they have cooked.
Next is the installation of penjor in front of the house compound or next to the entrance gate of the house. This penjor symbolizes Basuki dragon which philosophically means prosperity or well-being. This penjor contains some tubers, fruits, snacks, grains of rice, coconut and decorations of young coconut or palm leaves. This symbolizes the expression of gratitude to God for the gift of food. O well, penjor is also equipped with a bamboo platform or sanggah cucuk where offerings are put.
The next measure is to install ider-ider cloth and young coconut leaf festoons on the shrines at the family temple and the bamboo shrine, to install paragons and lelontek at the family temple. In addition to holy places, young coconut leaf festoons are also installed on working tools such as computers, tractors, motorcycles, cars and others which will later be presented offerings on Galungan Day. This is an expression of gratitude to God for His grace and asking for safety when using these tools.
Meaning of Galungan
Galungan is not only a special moment to get closer to the Creator and ancestors, but also maintain social relationship with all relatives and villagers. This is a reunion celebrated once every 210 days. People who are busy with their daily activities and those living in diaspora can also meet to establish social communication and share stories.
Well, it is not surprising if you happen to pass by on the road on the Island of the Gods or Bali, you will find front side of many motorcycles and cars being suspended with young coconut leaf festoons as a series of ritual offerings of Galungan.
In addition, the front of all Hindu houses will be fitted with a penjor which will look beautiful and become an amazing photo object. It’s a good idea to take the time to visit the villages to see up close this Galungan celebration. A unique sight that is famous and attracts tourists is Penglipuran Village in Bangli. With a neat layout, a row of penjors will look very artistic.
Bali November Trip Do’s and Don’ts
Check out the below tips before planning your trip to Bali in November as the weather in Bali is unpredictable.
- Avoid crowded areas like Kuta and Seminyak during the monsoon.
2. Carry an umbrella or raincoat before stepping out and also make sure to check the weather forecast before booking any outdoor activity.
3. Avoid contact with forest animals and don’t forget to carry insect repellants.
4. A light jacket is essential during evening time as it might get a little cold.
5. Bring a waterproof phone and camera cases so you don’t miss out on capturing memories.
6. Do not indulge yourself in extreme water sports like white water river rafting, parasailing or snorkelling as it might be dangerous than usual in the wet season.
7. Do check before heading to sea temples like Tanah Lot and Pura Pulaki as it can remain closed due to rising sea levels.
With the arrival of the rainy season in November in Bali, everything slows down. Though, you can still witness days with sunshine. If rain doesn’t bother you, this is one of the best time to come to Bali for the following reasons.
Beach Hopping: Don’t let the rain stop you to enjoy beaches and surfing. With the average sea temperature being 27°C, the water is good enough for you to experience any type of water sports activity.
Budget Travelling: Room rates during this time reach the lowest possible point. People travelling on a budget can consider this month of the year to visit Bali to receive great offers on shops and restaurants.
Avoid the Bali crowds: If you visit in November, you will be able to avoid the huge Bali crowd and explore Bali that is relatively quiet. You can enjoy good food, read a novel or spend hours in coffee shops interacting with the locals.
Well, now that you know what to expect during a November trip to Bali, what are you waiting for? Book a flight right now, pack those long-abandoned bikinis and swimsuits into your bag, and jump on that plane already. See you in Bali!