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'Nyepi' Day, Bali's biggest festival - out with the old, and in with the new

A giant monster, or "ogoh-ogoh"
This was the scene just metres from Poppies on Jalan Legian, on the night of 18 March. Symbolizing evil and other destabilising forces, gigantic papier-mache monsters - made mainly by the youth from each local community throughout Bali - are paraded along the streets as noisily as possible, accompanied by gamelan bands, and beautifully costumed dancers, as part of a centuries-old annual cleansing ritual.

Next day is the Day of Silence ("Nyepi"), representing the dawn of a promising new year in the Balinese calendar. All shops and businesses close, and traffic ceases completely. Even Bali's airport closes for 24 hours.

Posted on Monday 19 March, 2007 by GM - General

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