November 17, 2020
Derived from the Balinese word kepung, meaning ‘chase’, Makepung Lampit is a traditional Balinese water buffalo race, held in Jembrana, West Bali and is a legacy of the area’s cultural tradition. Lampit refers to a traditional rice plow tool, pulled by a pair of water buffaloes. The lampit is traditionally used to flatten muddy wet fields. Once the fields are flattened, the rice planting can begin.
A twist on the regular Makepung Bull Races, the Makepung Lampit Race is held in wetlands on a straight race track of about 100 meters in a water filled field. Inspired by Balinese agricultural traditions, Makepung Lampit signifies gotong royong, where everyone helps one other for the same communal purpose. In the villages, everyone contributes to the land levelling process to prepare for the rice planting season. This tradition led to initiating the Makepung Lampit.
Early in the last century, Makepung Lampit was very popular, but the tradition almost disappeared. Only in the last few years have the tourism authorities of Jembrana revived the tradition, after decades of hiatus. Now once a year, Makepung Lampit is held at the end of the dry season.
Due to the current Covid-19 pandemic, it is likely that the Bali government may limit large gatherings this year. Please check ahead of time if you plan on travelling to specific areas.