Tegallalang Rice Terrace: Where Does the Donation Go?

Tegallalang Rice Terrace is one of the attractions that I mentioned on my post about Travel Guide: Ubud. If you remember that I also mentioned the caution about donation request in some spots of this Rice Terrace, I was completely ashamed by the image that we, Indonesian, gave to the visitors for this. I think I also express how disappointed I was for being asked for donation when I had paid for the official entrance to Tegallalang village. It is even more frustrating because I couldn’t really explain to my French travel mates who were going with me there when they asked why we had to pay again. I could not understand, where would this money go?

This year, I had my long weekend escape in March before Hari Raya Nyepi (Silent Day) so I decided to come back in Ubud, for the curiosity on what ceremonies and events there would be before Nyepi, and this time I invited my mother to join me.

As soon as we arrived in Bali Airport, we had our rented car & driver to drive us straight to Tegallalang Rice Terrace. I actually a bit hesitated to come back again to Tegallalang because I was still discontent when I remember about that donation. But well, I wanted to take my mother somewhere she had never been. So yes, Tegallalang Rice Terrace was (again) on my list.

I was worried to take my 60-years-old mother on trekking in Rice Terrace. Unexpectedly, she quite managed to keep up with my pace and she told me that she would like to make sport as her habit, which is good for her. So come back to Tegallalang, as expected, first donation was paid to get the gate open for us to continue the trek. I saw there were some big money (IDR 50,000 and IDR 100,000) and small money in the bottle. With hesitation, I gave only IDR 12,000. Surprisingly, the “guard” let me in gracefully with only that small money. Very good! The next spot, I took some photos and I tried to remember what it looked like the rice terrace some months ago.

It was a shock for me. The rice terrace now looks differently, in a good way. There are some improvements made to ease the visitors. The rice trekking is now equipped with blocks pavement to protect the visitors from tripping. The bridge connecting one ground to another is now renovated into a better one.

Tegallalang Rice Terrace

Before: Visitors may trip while trekking; After: Simple improvement reduces the risk of hazard

Now that I understand where does the donation go, I really felt guilty about the way I wrote about this donation on my previous post. Eventually the official entrance ticket that all visitors have to pay is only intended to enter the village, not the Rice Terrace.

In this article, even when there is no complain about my post, I would like to humbly apology for my ignorant post to the Balinese who keeps making an improvement for the sake of Tourism in Indonesia.

Thanks Bali, for the beautiful and meaningful escapes. So guys, do not hesitate to spare some money for donation.

Tegallalang Rice Terrace

A better bridge

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