Jatiluwih Rice Field at Tabanan Regency
Jatiluwih is located at the administrative area of Kecamatan Penebel, Kabupaten Tabanan, very closed to national park border of Mount Batukaru around 65 km from Denpasar. One can reach the village via the road leading from Denpasar to Bedugul, and in Pacung village, take the road to the left before the restaurant, or from the town of Baturiti take the road to the left downward. The location of this village is a little bit lower then the altitude of Bedugul which is around 800 meters above sea level.
The name of Jatiuwih comes from 2 Balinese words jati + luwih. Jati means real, and luwih means beautiful or excellent. This name is given to the vast stretch of rice field dug in terraces on the slope of mount Batukaru. The rice terrace forms beautiful sight at all seasons, during the watering, or before planting the rice looks like a tremendous construction big glass with irregular size of frames. When the rice almost reaches harvest time, often the color varied between green, and dark yellow. This mixture of color forms a breathtaking views on such as wide view over the terraces which border is very far away down there. Road that cut the rice terrace near the top border is a good place to enjoy this man made natural scenery, and at one of the high place has been built a hall by the villagers where local people can open small restaurant or selling snacks to the visitors.
The name Jatiluwih means ‘truly marvelous’, and indeed, it is one of the most beautiful places to visit on the island. Situated 700 meters above sea level, and surrounded by mountains and tropical forests, the air here is cool and fresh, and the land is the most fertile in all of Bali, making it ideal for agriculture. The rice fields here are distinguished by their large size and high quality.
Jatiluwih was also recently listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site for its preservation of traditional and organic Balinese farming techniques. These include the ‘subak’ irrigation system where farmers share water – a tradition that dates back centuries. The process of growing and harvesting rice is a large part of the unique Balinese culture, and here you can witness the way of life that revolves around rice.
It’s the perfect place to enjoy the village atmosphere surrounded by spectacular scenery, observing farmers at work, accompanied by flocks of ducks and water buffaloes – all part of rural Bali life.
Jatiluwih is a lot harder to get to and since everyone in Bali doesn’t want to make the effort to explore Bali, you can see these beautiful rice terraces without hordes of people crowding around you or ruining the scenery. The terraces span a huge area.
A day trip here will give you a good feel for them but to really explore THEM, I recommend a two day trip, though it depends on how much hiking through rice terraces you like (I’m a big fan). You’ll get to explore different parts of the terraces, jump over rivers, and even sit down to a nice lunch in the terraces. I only got to hike around for a few hours but I dream of coming back to hike more.
Moreover, there are beautiful mountains in the area, small villages to explore, and great restaurants to eat at. The area might not be easy to get to but if you really want to see Bali as it is outside the tourists, make the effort to spend a few days in the area. You’ll find some cheap guesthouses in the villages and explore real everyday, tout free Bali.