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Mekotekan Rituals
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Mekotekan Rituals

The Mekotekan Rituals are part of the traditional Kuningan Festival, which is celebrated to battle evil spirits that are said to attack Munggu Village.

The Kuningan Festival is held every six months per the traditional Balinese calendar. The festival’s diverse rituals aim to purify the locals and the village. By eliminating any evil spirits, the locals can ensure that only good spirits remain.

Mekotekan Rituals Date 2024, Ubud Bali Traditional Festival

The ritual involves men re-enacting the Blambangan war by carrying wooden sticks to the temple. They are sprinkled with holy water and lay the sticks into a huge pyramid. Some men will climb the pyramid to “face-off” with each other whilst cheered on by the large crowd.

This ritual dates back to the 17th century, around the time of the Mengwi Kingdom. Legend has it that the Mekotekan ritual was conducted to welcome the kingdom’s soldiers back from the battlefield after fighting against soldiers from East Java’s Blambangan kingdom. On their way to the centre of the Mengwi kingdom, Munggu village, residents cheered them as the winners of the war.

This ritual was banned during the Dutch rule of Indonesia around 1915, but the village resurrected this important cultural event, and it remains today.

Visitors are welcome to watch the ritual, though they should not participate as it is considered disrespectful to the Balinese people.


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