Short History of Munduk Village Prepared by Nyoman Bagiarta 1992 – revised 2014

Ancient period of Munduk Village

lurasidone Lurasidone side effects Today the population of Munduk is about 6000 people. Located on the top of a hill, alongside 5 km of windy road, it reaches altitudes from 500 up to 1200 m above sea level. During the different seasons the temperatures range between 15 – 30°C. The village is surrounded by the second highest mountain in Bali (Batukaru), followed by the mountains Sang Hyang, Guntung, Pucuk and last Mount Lesong. Close by are the twin lakes Buyan (originally called Bulian) and Tamblingan.

There is no exact written documentation about the first settlements in the Munduk area. The first written information is a bronze inscription (prasasti) that was found at the eastern end of the lake Tamblingan. The inscription mentions a small kingdom named Dalem Tamblingan that is located at the top end of the lake. There are two temples built in that area called Pura Ulun Danu (Dewi Danu) and Pura Dalem Tamblingan. At both two temple sites were a number of stones in the form of Linggayoni found. About 500 m on the right side of the temple researchers found several sarcophagus (stone coffins). Researchers estimate that the kingdom of Dalem Tamblingan has existed 2000 years ago during the stone age. There is a legend that says that mount Lesung (Linggam) exploded during that time period. During that period it was a legend that the mount Lesong ( as Linggam ) was exploded.

During the above mentioned period there were a number of satellite settlements connected to Tamblingan Lake namely Hunusan, Gobleg, Tanah Mel and Batu Mejajah, that extended to become Munduk Village. The villages Esong, Pangi and Kedu became Gesing Village. In the west part of the former Kingdom was a center for ricefields owned by the Royal Family of Dalem Tamblingan. This place developed in the village that today is called Umajero. The legend tells that when the explosion of Mount Lesung occurred, the lake was split into three smaller lakes now called Lake Beratan, Buyan (Bulian) and the smallest one Tamblingan. Two geological sites support the theory of the explosion: the crater at the mountaintop that now serves as a water reservoir for the villages around and a deep cave on the slopes of Mount Lesung. The cave that people in Munduk call gua (cave of Nagaloka) appears to be extremely deep but has not been further explored. Vedas mentioned that Nagaloka is the place where the abode of Nagabasuki, the Basuki Dragon, settled, which is actually the God of Prosperity, a manifestation of Wishnu. On the topside of the crater there is also the palace of Siwa (Siwa Temple). The lava, which was splitting the lakes into three (Beratan, Buyan & Tamblingan), created two villages. One was formerly called Benyah (meaning ruin) and is now called Pancasari. The other settlement is called today Gemulak (Boiling Point) and is located on the top of village Munduk. Until today all the ceremonies and rituals to respect the Supreme Being are concentrated and held in this area.

The Dutch Occupation

During the Dutch occupation after the Jagaraga war, North Bali fell 1849 under Dutch control among it also the village of Munduk is located was under control of Dutch. South of Bali surrendered to the Dutch after the Puputan war in 1906. With that the Dutch controlled now whole Bali until the Independence Day and round table in Den Haag in 1949. The Dutch were in power for over 350 years. Today there are still houses in Munduk in the Dutch colonial style. During the Dutch occupation a number of students from Munduk, who studied music at the Capital of Singaraja, learned how to play western instruments very skillfully. Several people from Munduk were able to speak the Dutch language among them were Nyoman Sunu, Ketut Sugatra, Ketut Supatra and Putu Wita. At the same time grass root artist and traditional musicians were very popular at the same time. Among them were Wayan Genjong, Nengah Putra, Putu Togog. They were followed by the young generation with artists such as Made Terip and Putu Putrawan. During that period classical performances such as Gambuh,
Arja, Gong Kebyar, and Legong were a trademark of Munduk Village. Between 1945 (the Independence of Proclamation) and 1949 (Den Haag Round Table conference) all Indonesia was very unstable. There was no peace and safety.

Because of the coffee production that was introduced by the Dutch in 1870 (Arabica coffee) and in 1915 (Robusta, Munduk was one of the richest village during that time. It became one of the main food suppliers for the freedom fighters. Therefore villagers call the time between 1900 and 1965 the Golden Age of Munduk. Additionally the location of Munduk had at scenic view with the twin lakes, tremendous culture heritage and was surrounded by wild forest and mountainous areas. It soon became a place for Dutch people to spend their weekends.

During this time there were a lot of small kingdoms around Bali, especially in the south. The king had normally more than one wife. Among the new generations arose conflict and a competition for power. Under the family pressure some family members resettle in other places, far away form their former Royal family. There was another challenging development going on
in the Munduk area at the same time. The Dutch administration gave licenses out for opening the wild forest for coffee farming. The migrants Arya Celuk, Arya Tegeh Kori, Arya Gajah Para, Arya Kaweruhan and Pasek Toh Jiwa developed the core of Munduk as a village about 200 years ago.

A guesthouse was built around 1920. It was as a famous stop over in Bali on the route to Denpasar when the Dutch tourists passed Munduk.
In 1925 Munduk was advertised by KPM in Holland with the harbor of Buleleng to attract Dutch tourist to visit North Bali. In 1927 the Bali Hotel was built in Denpasar to facilitate visitors in the south. A number of Dutch scientists stayed frequently at Munduk Village for searching cultural heritages especially Lonthar. Therefore the three scientists Van der Tuuck, Liferinck and DR Goris established a Lonthar Museum at Singaraja, now called Gedung Kertya (1928).

Munduk after the proclamation of Independence ( 17th of August 1945)

Munduk was located close to the road that was used to move freedom fighters between the two bases of Mount Agung and Mount Batu Karu. Therefore the upper part of Munduk was very popular for a stop over for freedom fighters. During that time the free dance (Joged Bumbung) was very popular. During 1945–1949 Munduk was not peaceful. Everybody worried that it could come to a clash between the Dutch soldiers and the freedom fighters. After the round table in Den Haag, the Dutch accepted the proclamation of Independence of Indonesia (1949). Shortly after the Korean war (1950) the price of coffee fell down dramatically due to the overproduction of the world coffee in South America.

The capital of Bali was 1958 changed from Singaraja to Denpasar. Therefore all business and human activities also moved to Denpasar. A performance combination between traditional music and modern music instruments were performed in front of the first President Soekarno at the residence of the governor Susanto Tirtoprojo. The president was very surprised and
advised not to do this anymore. He saw the traditional music endanger. Another thing weighed heavy on the farmers. The government introduced the law of land reform (1965), which says that the farmers are only allowed to own a limited amount of land. One family can only own a maximum of 9 Ha dry land and 7 Ha rice fields. This was a big problem for families with more then five children.

There was also chaos because of the September coup in 1965. People were killing each other without knowing the real reasons. There was an invisible hand commanding to kill all people who were accused as communist followers. Munduk’s economy collapsed deeply until the people start to change the coffee farming into clove farming in 1975.

Munduk after the opening of Ngurah Rai International Airport (1974)

Another strong influence and milestone in the mass tourism development of Bali was the opening of Ngurah Rai as International Airport in Denpasar (1974). Hotels boomed between 1980 and 2000. Thousands of rooms needed staff. From all parts of Bali including Munduk youngsters moved to work in the tourist industry in the South.

This development was a serious impact for The North, because almost all youngsters left the village and nobody remained to cultivate the rice fields.. There was a strong imbalance of development between the North and South.

It was an experimental idea to establish a small-scale self-sustainable tourism in Munduk Village (1992). In the beginning the goal was to provide 10 rooms. This was done by renovating five of the Old Dutch style houses as well as five rice storage barns. It took nearly 22 years of development but people from Munduk can now provide for themselves without leaving the
village and agriculture work due to the additional income through tourism.
2014 the IPEC 2014 Conference (Indonesia Poverty & Empowerment Conference) took place at Munduk. Munduk was used as role model to study tourism as one of the powerful instruments to minimize poverty in the village. They did a study and interviewed all people at the village.
According to this study there are no unemployed people living in Munduk anymore to village administration it was found there is no more unemployment people at Munduk nowadays. It was originally a NGO foundation called Synergi established by the former minister of cooperation
and Prof. DR. Subroto from Jakarta that had the idea.This organization ran a workshop to find a solution for minimizing the poverty in the village.

When we started to introduce sustainable tourism in Munduk (1991) we had a number of contributors to assist Munduk in developing sustainable tourism here:

  1. On 1992 – Goethe Institute and British Council. Goethe Institute was organizing International Environment Art Installation Workshop at Munduk. They invited artists from Germany, Netherland, Japan, China, Indonesia, and Bali locally. It was a big event that Goethe Institute invited Journalists, Travel Writers and observers to come to Munduk. This event had strong promotional value without any expenses for Munduk. British Council provided a study to visit at UK for observing the work of conservation of culture and environment in the UK.
  1. On 1995 – UNDP and Canadian Embassy. Both provided a fund for reforesting along the riverbank at the Munduk waterfall for a distance of two kilometers. Canadian Embassy provided a fund to conserve wild chicken in Munduk Village.
  2. On 1995 – Victoria University donated to build a hall for Art & Music conservation.
  3. On 2011 – A generous family Mr. Hellstern donated a modern big kitchen for training and apprentice, office and nursery for herb. A library for children will be coming soon under the same donation
  4. On 2012 – A generous Swiss Peter Herzog, through his foundation has been donating a coffee seeds (young plants) for planting Arabica Coffee at upper part of Munduk for saving rain water and protect the land from erosion. Presently about 29 farmers to become a member of coffee Arabica foundation in Munduk Village. It is a big hope that all the above assets will be pushing and pulling the economic development in the village. Hopefully those powers will create a strong economic and spiritual development of the Munduk Village community.