Bali authorities are newly committed to preventing tourists from posing in front of sacred temples in bikinis, citing a decline in the ‘quality of tourists’ visiting the island.
According to a report from The Guardian, the deputy governor of Bali said that authorities were concerned by a rise in tourists behaving disrespectfully when visiting sacred Hindu sites.
The deputy governor said that the regional council would be re-evaluating the system that means tourists are allowed to visit temples unaccompanied.
Nobody explicitly said Australians were to blame, but given the number of Australians who use Bali like an island-sized local pub, I wouldn’t be at all surprised if drunk Australians were contributing to the problem.
Apparently, the crackdown was prompted by a photo of a Danish tourist sitting on a sacred temple, so at least we aren’t alone in going to Bali and behaving terribly.
Dealing with different cultural expectations and requirements is part and parcel of travelling, and Bali isn’t alone in wanting tourists to respect the sanctity of religious sites; virtually every church in Italy or Greece requires you to cover your shoulders and legs.
I know that Bali’s hot, but you can chuck something on over your bikini before you explore a religious site. If you don’t want to, stick to the resorts, bars, and beaches, like you probably want to anyway.
Seriously, just… be respectful and chill when visiting other countries, okay? We don’t need to hammer home that ‘drunk, belligerent Australians on holiday’ reputation any more than it already has been.
(Header photo by Marka/UIG via Getty Images)