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Quoted from Vilondo.com, Nyepi Day falls every year on the Hindu Lunar New Year. For 2020 it will start from 6 am on Wednesday 25th March and finish at 6 am on Thursday 26th March. For tourists, it’s a great experience to immerse yourself in Balinese culture by watching the pre-Nyepi Day celebrations.
In the months leading up to Nyepi Day children and men of all ages will be building ogoh-ogoh statues of various sizes, sometimes up to 25-feet tall. The cost to make one statue can range from hundreds of thousands to tens of millions of rupiah ($10 – $1000 USD). They are symbols of mythological beings or demons, a spirit into which negative energy can be emitted into. Once made, on the day before Nyepi (Tuesday 24th March 2020) a procession through the village will take place where music will be played, and men will carry the ogoh-ogoh on their shoulders. It is believed that through this process evil spirits will be disoriented and thus leave the village and cease to harm human beings. Once the procession has taken place, the ogoh-ogoh will be taken to the cemetery or beach where it is finally burnt to ashes as a symbol of purification.
From personal experience, Nyepi has been a day where you wake up in the morning to silence. It makes the hairs on your arms raise up and you feel a sense of calm. You won’t hear the rumbling of a motorbike or tooting of a car horn. It’s a day where the island paradise of Bali stops as one and observes this sacred ritual of stillness. There are four main rules to be mindful of out of respect when it comes to Nyepi Day:
Similar to a public holiday in most countries, all shops and businesses are required to close for 24 hours. Unlike other countries, for this day all businesses mean all businesses. With an exception for local police and emergency personal, everyone is required to stay home or in their accommodation. Not to worry, this is a great time to chill out by your pool and relax without the temptation of leaving your villa.
For a local, this would mean, no electricity or lighting of fires. As a tourist, it is also expected out of respect that light is kept to a minimum after dusk, we suggest keeping your curtains drawn and only use the light when necessary. Don’t worry, your villa will have electricity for you to charge your devices and keep cool in the air-conditioning.
You will find that local TV stations will be switched off and mobile data services may be slow or limited. This, however, won’t affect the wifi in your villa and thus besides enjoying all the activities inside your villa offline (reading a good book, floating in your pool, playing board games), you will still be able to surf the web as much as your heart desires.
You will find that no planes will arrive or depart for 24hours and thus trickles down to no movement of cars, motorbikes as well as people on foot. You are required to stay inside your villa.