You can find the Buffalo races in Jembrana about 65 km from Pemuteran, it takes 1,5 hours by car. Mekepung is the name for these incredible event.
This spectacle takes place on Sunday mornings after the harvest season and is a popular gathering for the locals. Races start around 7 o’clock and continue until mid-day. It is crowded, noisy and everyone from the regency of Jembrana gets absorbed by the races, often betting money.
It is still part of the local culture. The buffaloes are brightly decorated; the races are a mix of sport and circus, with pairs of riders and teams thrashing around an oval track, kicking up dust and sweat.
A warning: Buffaloes are not horses and so stopping these forces of nature is far from easy. They can go off track and accidents happen to spectators who get too close to the action. Be aware too of the extreme heat, dehydration and sunstroke. Moving through the crowds on the rough ground is a challenge. Children or sensitive people might feel upset at the sight of the bleeding animals.