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Friday 20th October
Bali Information - Page 1
Geography
The island of Bali, part of the country of Indonesia, lies in the Indian Ocean next to the island of Java.

Bali is divided into eight regencies. Denpasar is the capital city.

Bali is a mountainous and volcanic island. There are many rivers in the country including the Ayung River.

Bali's climate is pleasant from April to October, the cooler dry season. The remainder of the year is more humid with rainstorms.

Environment
Bali's natural environment varies from volcanic mountains and rainforests to rice field terraces and beaches.

Over the years Bali has suffered deforestation caused by land clearing. However indigenous trees are preserved in the parks and nature reserves and mangrove forests have been replanted.

Wildlife on Bali includes squirrels, deer, monkeys, wild pigs, geckos and snakes. The island is also the habitat of around three hundred species of birds such as kingfishers and bee-eaters. The warm sea is home to many colourful fish living around the coral reefs.

Architecture
Bali's buildings have been influenced by Indian (Hindu) architecture and other styles of Asian architecture such as Chinese. The Bali Museum contains examples of palaces and temples although many thousands of temples, shrines and pavilions can be seen throughout Bali.

Family groups live in walled compounds containing a number of living areas and a family temple. Traditional building materials include thatch roofing, palm wood, mud and stone. Today there is an increasing use of concrete.

Population
The population of Bali is around three million; Most of the people are ethnic Balinese with a Javanese minority.

Languages
Bahasa Indonesian is the official language of Bali.

Religion
The majority of the people are Balinese Hindu - a combination of Hinduism and Balinese animist beliefs. There are Muslim, Buddhist and Christian minorities.

Food
As well as Indonesian and local food, a wide variety of cuisines are available in Bali.

Fish is not very popular for the island community but salted fish is eaten. Spit-roasted pig and baked duck are Balinese specialities. Spices and coconut are used in cooking.

Fresh fruit includes pineapples, mangoes and passion fruit. Cakes, pastries and sweets are also popular.

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