Book a room
Raffles Bali - Understanding Tri Datu: The Three Divine Forces.

Understanding Tri Datu: The Three Divine Forces.

The Tri Datu bracelet is a powerful symbol that embodies the essence of Hinduism and its core principles. The word “Tri” means three, while “Datu” means power, and the bracelet represents the Tri Murti, the great triad of Hindu gods responsible for the creation, preservation, and destruction of the world, depicted by the three colors in the bracelet’s yarn.

Lord Brahma, represented by the color red, is the creator of the world and all living beings. He is associated with fire, the transformative element that brings new forms and states into existence and provides sustenance. Balinese people offer canang, a small offering, in their kitchens as a symbol of gratitude to Lord Brahma. Lord Vishnu, represented by the color black, is the preserver and protector of the universe, who descends to Earth to restore balance during troubled times. Lord Shiva, represented by the color white, is responsible for destroying and recreating the universe, inducing beneficial change and reminding us of the circle of life.

The Tri Datu bracelet serves as a reminder of the power of creation, preservation, and restoration, and the key components that define us as humans: our minds, bodies, and souls. It conveys the need for balance and reminds us of the tenets of Hinduism. Its history in Bali dates back to the 14th and 15th centuries, when it was worn to indicate obedience and faithfulness to God.

While the Tri Datu bracelet is commonly worn by Hindus, it is not claimed by them exclusively. Those of other religions and beliefs are also permitted to wear it, but should do so properly and wisely. The bracelet reminds us to be wise, to be careful, and to consider our behaviors and intentions as we live our lives in this world that we share with others.

In essence, the Tri Datu bracelet is a powerful symbol that represents the essence of Hinduism and the need for balance in our lives. By wearing it, we are reminded of the importance of healthy minds, thoughtful words, and good deeds, and the need to create balance in our lives to live in harmony with ourselves and others.

As part of our unwavering commitment to upholding and preserving the rich and vibrant Balinese culture, we proudly offer our well-traveled connoisseurs a Balinese Tri Datu bracelet as a cherished memento upon departure.

Raffles Bali is a haven of luxury and wellbeing, seamlessly blending Bali’s vibrant history and culture into its concept to offer guests an immersive, authentic experience. With awe-inspiring architecture, intricate decor, and handpicked local activities, our resort celebrates Bali’s rich heritage while remaining committed to wellness. Delighting the discerning connoisseur with a cultural feast, we showcase Bali’s fascinating stories through carefully curated activities and expertly narrated tales.

Long ago, Bali was actually connected to East Java by a land bridge, thanks to the Sunda Shelf, an enormous continental plate protruding from the Asian mainland. During the Pleistocene glacial periods, ice caps solidified much of the world’s waters, leading to lowered sea levels that made parts of it fall dry and periodically gave way to land masses.

Hindu Java began to extend its influence into Bali during the reign of King Airlangga, from 1019 to 1042. When his uncle lost the throne, 16-year-old Airlangga fled into the forests of western Java but gradually gained support, won back the kingdom, and became one of Java’s greatest kings. Airlangga’s mother moved to Bali and remarried after his birth, creating an immediate link between Java and Bali. At this time, the courtly Javanese language known as Kawi came into use among the royalty of Bali, and the rock-cut memorials seen at Gunung Kawi (Mt Kawi) near Tampaksiring are a clear architectural link between Bali and 11th-century Java.

Bali retained its semi-independent status after Airlangga’s death until Kertanagara became king of the Singasari dynasty in Java two centuries later. Kertanagara conquered Bali in 1284, but his power lasted only eight years until he was murdered and his kingdom collapsed. With Java in turmoil, Bali regained its autonomy, and the Pejeng dynasty, centered near modern-day Ubud, rose to great power. In 1343, the legendary chief minister of the Majapahit dynasty, Gajah Mada, defeated the Pejeng king Dalem Bedaulu and brought Bali back under Javanese influence.

Although Gajah Mada brought much of the Indonesian archipelago under Majapahit control, Bali was the furthest extent of its power. The ‘capital’ then moved to Gelgel, near modern-day Semarapura (once known as Klungkung), around the late 14th century, and for the next two centuries, this was the base for the ‘king of Bali,’ the Dewa Agung. The Majapahit kingdom collapsed into disputing sultanates, but the Gelgel dynasty in Bali, under Dalem Batur Enggong, extended its power eastwards to the neighboring island of Lombok and even crossed the strait to Java.

As the Majapahit kingdom fell apart, many of its intelligentsia moved to Bali, including the priest Nirartha, who is credited with introducing many of the complexities of Balinese religion to the island. Artists, dancers, musicians, and actors also fled to Bali at this time, and the island experienced an explosion of cultural activities. The final great exodus to Bali took place in 1478.


As you step into our resort, you will undoubtedly be struck by the diverse array of flora and vegetation. This is no coincidence, as our landscape was meticulously crafted by none other than Made Wijaya, who carefully selected indigenous plants to maintain the natural balance of the ecosystem in the area.

Made Wijaya was a world-renowned tropical garden designer and one of Bali’s most flamboyant and larger-than-life characters. He was an artist, designer, photographer, videographer, historian, journalist, humorist, satirist, diarist, anthropologist, and more. In 1973, Made Wijaya, then known as Michael White, sailed to Bali on a break from his architectural studies. However, his temporary visit became permanent when he immersed himself in Balinese life, learned the island’s intricate rituals and history, and gained an encyclopedic knowledge of Bali that rivaled that of many Balinese natives. In 1975, a priest in a temple ceremony officially renamed him Made Wijaya.

Initially, Made Wijaya coached tennis and English to wealthy Balinese, but his own sense of aesthetics drew him back to architecture and garden design. He saw gardens as a theater and created dramatic vistas with bright tropical shrubs and creepers flowing from one well-chosen classical sculpture to another. His first major project was revamping the Bali Hyatt Hotel in Sanur, followed by the Oberoi in Seminyak, which was designed by Australian architect Peter Muller. Made Wijaya went on to create over 600 tropical gardens in Southeast Asia and around the world, including David Bowie’s garden on the island of Mustique and the Naples Botanical Garden in Florida.

Made Wijaya’s extensive knowledge of Balinese culture and his unique brand of caustic wit led him to write a column called “Stranger in Paradise: Diary of an Expatriate” in The Sunday Bali Post. He also authored several books, including “Tropical Garden Design” (1999), “At Home in Bali” (2000), “Modern Tropical Garden Design” (2007), and “Architecture of Bali” (2011).

In summary, Made Wijaya was a well-known Balinese landscaper who left a lasting impact on the world of tropical garden design. His knowledge of Balinese culture, his wit, and his artistic sense were integral to his success, and his legacy lives on in the hundreds of stunning gardens he created.

Indulge in a sustainable herbs ingredients at Raffles Bali’s Botanical Garden. Inspired by Made Wijaya and the lands of Jimbaran, some beneficial herbs have beautifully grown such as chili, flavorsome kefir limes leaves, curry leaves, passion fruits and stingless bee honey. Explore our wide range of lush botanical garden delivered by Raffles Bali Botanical Guru.

Celebrating the arrival of the New Year is a significant event in every culture and religion worldwide. While some cultures like the Chinese and Muslims commemorate the occasion with music and festivities, others like the Hindus of Bali choose a more solemn approach with their ritual of Nyepi.

In stark contrast to boisterous New Year celebrations, Nyepi is a day of complete silence and self-reflection. The day after the dark moon of the spring equinox, the island of Bali shuts down all lights and sounds, stops all traffic, and abandons all worldly activities to focus on connecting more closely with God and introspection. The word Nyepi means “to keep silent” in the local language.

The day before Nyepi, the Balinese carry out the Melasti or Mekiyis or Melis ceremony, which involves cleaning statues or symbols that help concentrate the mind for praying. The ceremony is a way to clean up the universe and its contents and take Amrita, the source of eternal life, from water sources like the sea, lakes, and rivers.

Three days before Nyepi, villagers symbolically take statues of their gods from their temples to be cleaned in rivers or the sea. The gods’ symbols are then purified with water and brought back to their respective temples.

The day before Nyepi, villagers exorcise the devil in the main street of the village with an Ogoh-ogoh, a giant statue symbolizing evil spirits made of bamboo, which is paraded around the village before sunset. The Balinese believe that Ogoh-ogoh represents the evil spirits surrounding their environment that must be removed from their lives to create a harmonious relationship between man, God, and their environment. At night, they celebrate Ngerupuk by making noises with bamboo and burning Ogoh-ogoh as a symbol of getting rid of “bhuta kala” or demons.

On Nyepi day, Hindus follow the four restrictions of “Catur Brata Penyepian”: prohibiting the lighting of fires, physical work, movement or travel, and entertainment. The Pecalang, traditional Balinese security forces, ensure road safety and prohibit activities that disturb Nyepi. Non-Hindus are also asked to stay indoors to honor this significant day. Any violation of these provisions incurs penalties determined by local villages.

Nyepi is a time for introspection, closeness to God, family, and Bali itself. By ceasing all activity, the earth is given an opportunity to breathe and regenerate, and the Balinese take a short break before resuming daily activities. Ngembak is the day when Catur Berata Penyepian is completed, and the Hindu community forgives each other and engages in Dharma Canthi, reading ancient scripts containing songs and lyrics.

In conclusion, Nyepi is a unique and special way of celebrating the New Year for the Balinese, focused on self-reflection, spiritual growth, and environmental regeneration. Its rituals and traditions make it one of the most profound and significant cultural events globally.

Let us take you on a bespoke Stargazing experience using our own in-house Telescope during Nyepi Day to pinpoint your favourite constellations or just marveling the magnificence of the heavenly bodies. A once in a 420 days journey.

Kecak, a form of Balinese Hindu dance and music drama, is a true masterpiece of Bali’s cultural heritage. Developed in the 1930s by Walter Spies, this dance is based on the story of Ramayana and is performed primarily by men. The first women’s Kecak group was formed in 2006, and since then, this performance has been enthralling audiences in temples and villages across Bali.

Also known as the “Ramayana Monkey Chant,” the Kecak Dance is performed by a group of up to 150 men, who wear checked cloth around their waists, and chant “chak” in unison while moving their hands and arms rhythmically. The performance showcases a battle from the Ramayana, with the Vanaras, led by Hanuman, helping Prince Rama defeat the evil King Ravana. The Kecak Dance has its roots in Sanghyang, a traditional Balinese dance that induces a trance-like state.

Kecak Dance performances take place daily at 6 pm in Balinese Hindu temples. The dancers include the male-chanters and the main Ramayana performers who play the roles of Sita, Rama, Lakshmana, Ravana, Hanuman, and Jatayu. Some sections of the Kecak Dance include trance rituals, such as the depiction of the burning of Hanuman, where the dancer playing Hanuman enters a trance state and performs a fire-kicking dance without feeling any pain.

Uluwatu Temple is well-known for its Kecak Dance performance set against the backdrop of a mesmerizing sunset. With a private limousine transfer and reserved front-row seats, you can witness this enchanting dance in complete comfort. The dancers move in concentric circles, chanting together to create a breathtaking wall of human sound. After the performance, you can return home for a progressive South East Asian degustation dinner at Rumari Restaurant.

Don’t miss the chance to experience the magic of Kecak Dance. Contact our Butler to arrange a visit to Uluwatu Temple and be captivated by this mesmerizing performance set against a spectacular sunset backdrop.

Raffles Bali Resort is undoubtedly a beautiful resort in an incredible location, but what would it be without an incredible staff. To celebrate 1 year of impeccable service an anniversary celebration and appreciation event was held on December 7th at the resort. This included a full moon ceremony, followed by traditional cutting of a cone of yellow rice.

We also proudly celebrated Raffles Bali being named Hotel of the Year 2022 by Destination Deluxe, an award we would not have achieved without our dedicated and professional staff.

Our staff members, or Heartists as we call them, were also invited to celebrate the anniversary together on the 5th & 11th of February at Bali’s premier waterpark, Waterbom.

We started the day gathering for a photo session to commemorate the moment and then headed into the park for team building games and fun. Waterbom has a great grassy area for this purpose so our large team of Heartists had lots of room for friendly competitions.

To say a big thank you, Raffles Bali also offered some amazing door prizes on the days. Lucky winners got Raffles Singapore vouchers, a 32” Android TV, Bali Safari Vouchers and more. There was a lot of excitement about the door prizes and everyone was thrilled for the winners.

Of course everyone needed a good lunch to keep their energy up for climbing all those stairs to the slides. Eating together is always an activity that builds togetherness and everyone enjoyed chatting and spending some downtime together outside the resort.

After lunch it was time to get on all the rides. Waterbom has fabulous group and solo slides, with everything from calm and relaxed to serious adrenaline rides. The bravest of the Heartists went on the heart stopping climax and pipeline, but everyone enjoyed the more moderate constrictor, and python. Some opted for the milder rides like the serene lazy river that winds its way through the park.

We believe that a happy, healthy team is key to running Raffles Bali Resort with the highest standards of service. Spending a day together laughing and having a great time was the best way to celebrate our successes and say thank you to our fantastic Heartists for being a huge part of our first triumphant year.

For over a century Raffles Hotel Singapore has been the epitome of style and class in Singapore. In colonial Singapore the hotel and its famous watering hole, The Long Bar, was one of the most popular spots for Singapore’s expats to socialise and do business over icy cold gin & tonics (to keep malaria away of course).

However, while men drank freely, it was frowned upon for women to be seen drinking alcohol or appearing inebriated. This is where legendary barman Ngiam Tong Boon stepped in to ensure the ladies would not be left glumly to their tea and fruit juices. Being not only a great barman but also a smart businessman, Boon hid gin and cherry brandy in a fruity cocktail for the ladies, and the men in the bar were none the wiser. Hence, The Singapore Sling was born and is now an icon of Raffles Singapore and also a staple on cocktail menus worldwide.

As a nod to the century old Singapore Sling, The Writers Bar at Raffles Bali Resort presents their own signature cocktail, the Bali Sling. The story of its creation is very different from its Singaporean counterpart but no less meaningful. Concocted from gin, Balinese arak infused with blue pea tea, tangy jackfruit, and grenadine, the Bali Sling is truly a reflection of the fertile land of the island and the produce that it nurtures. The magic sights and smells of Bali, from bustling markets, to fragrant frangipani, and vibrant tropical fruits are the inspiration behind this drink that will no doubt become iconic in its own right.

In keeping with the eco-friendly principles of Raffles Bali, almost all of the elements of the Bali Sling are home grown either within the resort, or on the island of Bali. The blue pea flower and jackfruit are handpicked from the resort’s farm gardens, which also supply the kitchens with wonderful fresh produce.

One of the most important elements of the drink is the Balinese arak, a local spirit made from the sap of tapped palm trees or rice. The Dewi Sri brand used at The Writers Bar is a family owned company that has been distilling the local drink since 1968 in the coastal town of Sanur.

Honouring the goddess of rice, fertility, successful harvest, and family prosperity the name Dewi Sri is celebrated in Bali and abroad.

The Bali Sling is not only delicious, but is beautiful to look at. The tall glass topped with a frangipani flower is quintessentially Balinese. Frangipanis grow all over the resort and are a beautifully fragrant flower that is used for Balinese Hindu offerings as well as for decoration. You will also notice that your Bali Sling comes with a cassava starch straw. Raffles Bali has eliminated the use of plastic straws in the resort, instead using locally made products that are 100% biodegradable.

Just as no trip to Singapore is complete without a Singapore Sling at The Long Bar, a Bali Sling at The Writers Bar at Raffles Resort is a must for the full Bali Island experience.

Gebogan symbolize the gratitude to the God for the infinite blessing. It is made for offerings to the Deities and ancestral spirits for all the grace and fertility, which has been given to the humans. Gebogan consist of fruits and traditional cake. Which are arranged neatly in a special pan, to form the composition of fruits and traditional cake that make up the tower with high artistic taste, thus forming a beautiful and attractive offerings.

Gebogan can be very tall and in some ceremonies reach up to more than one and a half metres. Balinese women carry the Gebogan to the temples on their heads. Women very suitable to bring these offerings. Therefore, a woman has a heart that is soft and quiet. Because when they are carrying the Gebogan to the temple, sometimes the temple is located quite far, they should be have a good balance and poise, thus the Gebogan not to fall.  The Banten Gebogan is recognizable by its towering, cone-like shape and is adorned with canang and sampiyan offerings as a display of devotion to the creator of the universe.

Traditional cake that is used to make a Gebogan are usually made by ​​their own. Because making traditional cake is usually done by women in Bali. If you would like to make a fruit tower, whether as a table centerpiece or as your own form of gratitude, you will need a Dulang (Offering bowl made from wood or metal with an iron stick in the middle), a banana trunk on the dulang, you can insert bamboo sticks into the fruit and then into the trunk, then arrange flowers or ribbons at the top of tower. You can buy a dulang in local gift shops or traditional Balinese markets.

Bali, widely known as The Island of The Gods, is a place steeped in history and culture. As a surviving fragment of a once-mighty Hindu empire, Bali enchant in its spiritual feel at every moments.

When you walk around Bali while enjoying your holiday, you probably notice at least one small square palm leaf made, filled with colorful flowers lying on the ground either in front of houses, shops or temples. It is called Canang Sari, daily Balinese offerings. The phrase Canang Sari is derived from the Balinese words means essence and canang means a small palm-leaf basket as the tray. It is the symbol of thankfulness to the Hindu God, Ida Sang Hyang Widhi Wasa.  It is offered every day as a form of thanking for the peace had given to the world.

Canang sari is normally filled with a multitude of colorful flowers. The colors of the flowers are white, red, yellow, and either blue or green. The colors are not randomly chosen; they have different meanings and are placed in specific directions in the Canang.

  • The white-colored flowers that point to the east as a symbol of Iswara. Iswara is regarded as one of the primary forms of God.
  • The red-colored flowers that point to the south as a symbol of Brahma. Brahma is often referred to as the progenitor or great grandsire of all human beings.
  • The yellow-colored flowers that point to the west as a symbol of Mahadeva. Mahadeva means “Great god” also one of the main deities of Hinduism.
  • The blue or green colored flowers that point to the north as a symbol of Vishnu. Visnu is conceived as “the Preserver” within the Trimurti, the Hindu Trinity of the divinity.

Normally, Canang Sari stays for one night after it is being prayed and offered before it is being removed to be replaced with the new one. After all, Hinduism is very concerned with the relationship between humanity and the environment. Whatever comes from nature, it has to be back to nature. Our Raffles Wellbeing Butler will be happy to assist should you wish to learn on how to make this offering and any other cultural activities.

Jimbaran Bali is home to a number of luxury resorts, including Raffles Bali Resort. The area is best known for its gorgeous sparkling bay with iconic sunset views making it one of the most desirable holiday destinations in Asia. The beauty of Jimbaran itself might be enough, but there is plenty more in the area for guests that enjoy exploring outside their resort as well. Art, culture, and social experiences are right at your doorstep when you choose Raffles Bali, so we’ve put together a list of our top 7 tourist attractions close to Jimbaran.

Balinese House Visit

Raffles Bali has collaborated with the local community in Jimbaran to give guests a deeper dive into Balinese life. Just 5 minutes from the resort, guests will be welcomed into a traditional Balinese home where they can learn about the layout of Balinese compounds on a house tour, make some of the offerings presented in Balinese Hindu ceremonies, and try traditional snacks and jamu, a health drink made of natural herbs and spices.

Kedonganan Beach and Fish Market

Kedonganan is the true name of the village, white sand beach, and famous fish market often referred to simply as Jimbaran. During your stay at Raffles Bali it is definitely worth a visit to see the fish market in full swing and have a stroll down this beautiful beach. Early morning is a wonderful time to visit to see a Balinese life in action, and sunset is a good time to watch Mother Nature showing off at her most colourful. Kedonganan is only a short 10 minute drive from Raffles Resort.

Jenggala Ceramics

Established in 1976, Jenggala is Bali’s foremost producer of handcrafted ceramics in Indonesia. Whether you are interested in shopping, visiting their workshop, making your own ceramics, or painting one of their ready-made pieces, it is an easy 10 minute drive to Jenggala Ceramics from Raffles Resort. This is a wonderful place to see artisans in action and buy or have a go at creating your own souvenir of your time in Bali.

Garuda Wisnu Kencana

Garuda Wisnu Kencana is a 60-hectare cultural park just 15 minutes’ drive from Raffles Bali. Home to a towering 120-metre high statue of the Hindu God Wisnu atop his mythical mount Garuda, it is an iconic landmark in Bali and one of the tallest statues in the world. GWK is also host to cultural performances, and has incredible panoramic views of the south of the island.

Balangan Beach

The picture perfect white sands of Balangan Beach is just 20 minutes by car from Raffles Bali. Popular with both surfers and sunbathers, the 200 metre stretch is beautiful for a stroll or a swim in the crystal clear waters. The panoramic views also make this beach the perfect destination for romance or just an ice cold drink while watching the sunset paint colours across the sky.

Museum Pasifika

For lovers of art and culture, Museum Pasifika is a short 20 minute drive from Raffles Resort. The museum showcases over 600 artworks from local and international artists that reflect and are inspired by both Bali and further afield in Indonesia and the Asian Pacific. The collection includes the Indonesian masters Raden Saleh, Lempad, Affandi and Hendra as well as Bali‘s most famous foreign artists in residence Walter Spies, Miguel Covarrubias, Jean Le Mayeur, Willem Hoffker, Rudolf Bonnet, Arie Smit, Charles Sayers and Theo Meier.

Uluwatu Temple and Kecak Dance Performance

For one of the most indelible experiences of Bali, Uluwatu Temple and the evening kecak dance performance is not to be missed. This temple is around 40 minutes from Raffles Resort and is one of Bali’s oldest and most important sea temples with incredible views out to sea. Every evening a spectacular kecak dance performance is held at the temple with the sun setting in the background. This rhythmic chanting dance is based upon the HIndu epic the Ramayana and is absolutely entrancing. This will be a cherished memory of your holiday in Bali.

With so much to see and do so close to Raffles Bali Resort, it is the ideal place to base yourself for your explorations of this extraordinary island.