The Legend Of Mount Batur And Lake Batur

Published: 15th July 2010
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There is a ancient story behind the existence of Mount Batur and Lake Batur. The myth tells how Bali's Lake Batur and Mount Batur were formed. It is believed that there was once a giant as tall as a mountain who roamed the island, called Kbo Iwo.

He would help the Balinese people build temples and villages, dig ditches and cut terraces out of the hillsides for rice paddies. All he asked for in return for his help was food. His appetite was enormous, however, and there was never enough food to satisfy him. His hunger would sometimes make him angry and he would destroy the things that he helped to build and then eat the villagers.

One year there was a very poor harvest of food and the Balinese people could barely feed themselves, much less a giant. This angered Kbo Iwo so much that he rampaged across the island, killing and destroying everything in sight until all the homes, rice fields and temples were ruined. The people were very angry with Kbo Iwo and gathered together to decide how to stop him. They planned to make friends with the giant again and then kill him.

The people begged Kbo Iwo to help rebuild the temples, homes and rice fields that he had destroyed in his rampage. The giant agreed and worked at replacing everything that he had destroyed. The Balinese people then asked him to build a well, which he started digging. As he dug, the earth piled high next to the well.

The pile was as high as a mountain.

After eating, the giant fell asleep in the well. Whilst he was sleeping the people poured huge amounts of lime (a sticky substance) down the well. The lime set around the giant and when he woke up he was unable to escape. The well then began to fill with water and it soon overflowed to become a lake.

Today many believe that the lake is Lake Batur, Bali's largest lake. The pile of earth that Kbo Iwo dug out of the well is believed to be Mount Batur, Bali's third-largest volcanic mountain.


Video Source: Youtube


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