‘Pelebon’, a Balinese Royal Family Cremation

A very large ‘pelebon’  will only be done by a royal family. The cremation icon called bade, at least 26 meters tall and weighing about six tons, also a cow sculpture, called Bali residents with lembu, coloring royal cremation at a royal temple.


Cremation in Bali is attended by thousands of citizens, as well as the foreign tourists who had come to witness the activities pelebon very rare in Bali. Bade is carried by about 4000 people or more. Because it is very heavy and high, then the road to the cremation site (setra) should be sterilized from obstructions. Royal households in Bali represent the focus of Bali’s religious and culture life; the royal cremation will involve the active participation of more than 60 villagers.  A cremation is not a program of mourning but an organized program of entertainment for the souls of the dead to ensure they are not distracted by the tears of those left behind. On another level, a cremation is a shared enterprise of in which the deceased’s family and the local community each play a role in order to share the burden and expense of the event.

Generally the main road was closed and covered with people – both locals and tourists. The VIP invites, dressing up in Balinese costumes, were seated along with the family members under the Bale facing the main road.

 Pelebon Ngaben Cremation Ubud Gianyar Bali

The preparation of Pelebon usually takes months and it costs a fortune too. Each move brought a gasp from the audience as each krama had to move at the same time, while the Priest remained still on top of the bade along with a few family members. There were thousands of people covering all areas along Ubud’s main road. People were on top of cars, on the roof and on every possible higher flat area along the main road.


The experience could be very exhilarating and overwhelming. Thousands of people will remain patient in waiting for the Bull sarcophagus to be burned before it got dark around 5:30pm after the Priest and family members completed their prayers. This event is a good reference for you who want to attend a Balinese traditional ceremony for once in a lifetime experience.

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