It’s Tumpek Landep, when the Balinese come out to give thanks for their cars, motorbikes, and even their computers... in fact, anything that contains metal...
Ceremonies and festivals to honour the gods and give thanks are common in Bali throughout the year, but if you happen to visit during mid-October, you’ll witness one of the more unusual ones.
It’s Tumpek Landep, when the Balinese come out to give thanks for their cars, motorbikes, and even their computers… in fact, anything that contains metal.
The custom goes back to the early days of Balinese Hinduism. Most if not all households had a ceremonial ‘keris’ (dagger) back then, and these were celebrated on a feast day each year – not only for their functionality, but also for their symbolism, as the people aspired to be as ‘sharp’ as a dagger in their actions and thinking.
Over time, the Tumpek Landep festival came to be extended to include offerings of thanks for any item containing metal – and today that means everything from bicycles and other vehicles right up to the latest PCs.
You’ll see cars, mopeds, and more all decorated with flowers on the day, and ceremonies will be held in temples all-round the island. Most Balinese people truly believe that these ceremonies will keep them safe with their metal objects (e.g. keep them free from a car or bike crash) and bring them luck.
As will all Balinese festivals, the ceremonies are a colourful affair, and respectful onlookers are welcome.
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