Tourist family's confrontation at Bali temple infuriates authorities

Balinese authorities said they've been forced to increase security following the incident last weekend.

Tourists heading to Bali to bask in the sun and rich culture have once again been warned to abide by local customs after a family was filmed being reprimanded outside a temple over Easter weekend.

The heated confrontation reportedly about the way a family were casually dressed was caught on camera in front of Besakih Temple on the slopes of Mount Agung, according to local reports.

Bali authorities confronting the tourist family at the Besakih Temple for their casual dress.
The tourist family were repeatedly refused entry to Besakih Temple in Bali over their attire. Source: Info Amlapura Official – Bali/Instagram

The footage, which was later published online by Info Amlapura Official – Bali, shows security officers trying to refuse the group entry for failing to dress modestly by covering themselves with a sarong or sash, as is required in all sacred areas. The group were also told a ceremony was taking place at the temple.

The father appears to react negatively to the request and can be seen flailing his arms in the air while trying to push a pram through the busy crowd currently celebrating one of the biggest Hindu rituals, an annual ceremony called Ida Bhatara Turun Kabeh. Authorities claim he also gestured rudely.

“They were intercepted twice by officers when they tried to enter the Pura Agung Besakih area via the east route, but the officers lost the argument because the foreigners were a little arrogant,” Head of the Pura Agung Besakih Sacred Area Management Agency, I Gusti Lanang Muliarta, told The Bali Sun.

Bali temple security beefed up after incident

The tourists were reportedly also asked to buy tickets to enter the temple, as is required for those who are non-worshipers, but refused.

“After arguing for a long time, the foreigner finally wanted to calm down and not come back,” Muliarta said, adding he has increased security at all of the temple’s entrances following the incident.

“Earlier I instructed the officers on guard to not dare to argue, if they [tourists] continue to resist, just report it directly to the police on duty around Pura Agung Besakih so that action will be taken immediately.”

In January, a viral video of three women wearing bikinis in a Bali supermarket ignited fears visitors are still ignoring local rules, despite a very vocal Indonesia trying to crackdown on unruly behaviour.

Last year, a 28-year-old German woman was filmed disrupting a performance while completely naked at a sacred temple in Ubud.

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