This month sees the arrival of the annual Bau Nyale festival. 'Bau' means to catch, 'Nyale' is the a type of sea worm. This unique tradition falls on the 20th day of the 10th month of the traditional Sasak calendar, around February every year.
The festival commemorates the Sasak legend of Princess Mandalika. According to the legend, the father of the beautiful Princess held a contest for young men to fight for his daughters hand in marriage. Mandalika, opposed to fighting and bloodshed in her name, jumped into the sea, advising the Lombok people to live in peace, and promising to return on the 20th day of the 10th month. On the long awaited day, only the Nyale worm could be seen everywhere in the sea, and thus, the people believed the worm was a reincarnation of the Princess.
Nowadays, thousands of people swarm to the beaches surrounding Seger to the East, to catch worms at the break of dawn. They can eat them fresh, or smoke them in banana leaf first.
Official events are between the 17th - 25th February, and include a surf contest, stick fighting, and live music, but the arrival of the worms may not necessarily coincide with this. A full itinerary has not yet been released, but if you are interested to experience this unique event, we advise staying for the entirety of the festival.
A quick word of warning, Kuta and the surrounds will get incredibly busy at this time. Be careful on the roads, and ensure your bike is securely locked (we recommend a thick padlock around the wheel if going to stay the night in Seger)
We'll try and update with a full itinerary when we know more!