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Wonder of Bali

Subak irrigation – the Wonder of Bali

Developed in the 9th century, Subak, which is the water management irrigation system for paddy fields on the island of Bali in Indonesia, is counted among the top points of interest in this island destination. Listed as the ‘Cultural Landscape of Bali Province: the Subak System as a Manifestation of the Tri Hita Karana Philosophy’ and recognized in 2012 A.D. by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site, this amazing system, which consists of five terraced rice fields and water temples covering the area of approx 20,000 hectares (49,000 acres), is an ultimate cultural point to visit here. The rice terraces can be explored at Tegalang, Gyanyar. The major focus of this cooperative water management, which is referred to as ‘Subak’, are the temples of this cultural site. The Balinese believe that irrigation is not for watering the roots of the plants, but water is used to build a complex pulsed man made ecosystem.

The components of Subak are the forests that conserve the water supply, rice fields, terraced paddy landscape linked by a system of tunnels, canals and weirs, temples, and villages of different size and significance that symbolize either the source of water or its passage through the temples on its way downhill to water Subuk land.

This system consists of Supreme Water Temple Pura Ulun Danu Batur and Lake Batur, Subak Landscape of Catur Angga Baturkaru, Subak Landscape of Pakerisan Watershed, and Royal Temple of Taman Ayun. All of these have been inscribed upon a World Heritage list of the conservation pertaining to the protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage.

Subak Museum

Opened in 1981 A.D. at the Tabanan Regency, the Subak Museum, which has the unlimited items until now, is a must visit to this spot.