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Directory Home> About Bali > History of Bali
 
HISTORY OF BALI
 
Many visitors also chose to settle on the island at this time, including the famous German painter Walter Spies who later in 1938, together with Beryl de Zoete, wrote "Dance and Drama in Bali", published by Faber and Faber Ltd. London. This book is a comprehensive reference to all dances and other performing arts of that time.

Two major incidents interrupted this peaceful period. Firstly, the Japanese invaded and occupied the island, as an attempt to overrun the Dutch government that had her central office on Java Island, although the authentic Balinese culture could still be maintained. Secondly, when the Dutch tried once more to exert their influence after the Pacific War, Indonesia's President Sukarno declared independence in 1945. It took the Indonesia's War of Independence a .further four years before the Dutch finally accepted the authority of the new government, and even after that Indonesia remained unsettled.

Bali also suffered from individual disasters, a plague, a period of chronic food shortage, and a volcanic eruption in 1963 that made Surabaya have a dark day and Jakarta had rains of dust. Bali only opened up to tourists again in the late 1960s, when the new President recognized the value of the island as a tourist destination. The Bali Beach Hotel, now The Grand Bali Beach Hotel, was started to be built early in 1960s on President Soekarno's order, after the building of Hotel Indonesia in Jakarta completed in 1962.

Since then Bali has been heavily promoted for its tourist value, and has also quite naturally acted as a magnet to the many types of tourists who enjoy Bali. Artists, surfers, backpackers, divers, shoppers, adventurers, scholars, writers and a whole range of visitors now appreciate the many facets of the Balinese environment and culture.
 
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