Subak Museum in Bali

Bali Museums

The Subak Museum, or Museum Subak, is a repository that showcases the centuries-old Balinese agrarian way of life - the management of rice fields and its irrigation systems collectively known as 'subak'. Unique to Bali, the subak, as well as the wealth of traditional agricultural methods and tools, are collected, recorded and kept within this Subak Museum, which is located on Jalan Gatot Subroto, in the Kediri district of the Tabanan regency. The museum is approximately an hour’s drive from Bali’s capital city Denpasar, and only five minutes from the town centre of Tabanan.

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The Subak Museum specifically collects and preserves all data and items connected to the Balinese agricultural traditions. The museum is both a tourism and educational site, divided into several sections. The main section is open to the public. There is also a holy complex that includes several shrines such as a Padmasana and a Bedugul, with layouts generally adhering to the traditional science of architectural spacing and measurement, known as Asta Kosala-Kosali.

An open museum section includes a miniaturised version of the subak system meant to exhibit the various agricultural activities involved, such as irrigation, pools and channelling into paddies. A main building acts as an information centre, housing an audio-visual room, study and exhibition room that displays various traditional agricultural tools used by Balinese farmers to tend the fields.

Visitors can view various wooden and metal harvesting tools, cattle-drawn ploughs, various fish and eel traps, nets for capturing dragonflies and locusts (the Balinese used to gather amounts of a large species of dragonfly known locally as ‘capung jaran’, and/or locusts, and prepare a tasty meal from these), various mock-ups and miniatures of old farming village layouts, traditional Balinese kitchens, and others.

Good to Know about Museum Subak

Museum Subak features public facilities for visitors such as restrooms, parking spaces and accommodation facilities. A visit to this site is a refreshing one, with large old trees and tropical plants providing ample shade and pleasant settings.

On June 2012, subak was eventually included on the UNESCO World Heritage Site list, as the ‘Cultural Landscape of Bali: the Subak System as a Manifestation of the Tri Hita Karana Philosophy.’ It identifies the island’s wealth of 19,500 hectares of paddies and associated temples.

The museum is located in the village of Sanggulan along the main road to Kediri in Tabanan, which is frequented on touring routes to the western parts of the island, thus making for a convenient and insightful stopover along several itineraries.

Subak Museum

  • Opening Hours: Mon - Sat: 08:00 – 17:00, Fri: 08:00 – 13:00
  • Location: Jalan Gatot Subroto, Sanggulan, Tabanan
  • Tel: +62 (0) 361 810 315
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