Subak Photos on UNESCO Website are Not Representative


Bali Tourism observer Prof I Nyoman Darma Putra thought that subak photos on UNESCO website are not representatively describing the traditional agricultural system in Bali.

“UNESCO has appointed subak as a WBD (Worls Cultural Heritage) but unfortunately the illustration photos on its website are below the photography standard,” a professor in Udayana University Denpasar said.

He said that six photos of subak on the UNESCO website gallery ( can’t represent the beauty and uniqueness of subak in the Island of Gods.

“Many people wonder why UNESCO as an international organization doesn’t try to put photos with international standard,” the author of “Tourism Development and Terrorism in Bali” said.

Compared to world cultural heritages in other countries that is appointed by UNESCO, subak photos in Bali have the worst quality.

“The photos of Comodo Island and Borobudur Temple are categorized as beautiful and representative,” Darma Putra said.

Bali landscape and subak system were acknowledged by UNESCO as world cultural heritage in the middle of 2012, which is named “Cultural Landscape of Bali Province: the Subak System as Manifestation of the Tri Hita Karana Philosophy”.

Darma Putra added that beside for preservation, the authorization of an area to be the worls cultural heritage is for improving tourism attraction.

However, since the photos posted on UNESCO official website is less beautiful, that purpose is not achieved for bali landscape and subak system.

“Whoever see the subak photos posted on UNESCO website will not be interested to see and visit,” Darma Putra said.

For that reason, he suggested that Bali subak photos posted on UNESCO website should be replaced with photos with international standard so the beautiful rice fields  and unique rituals can be clearly described.

“Indonesia or Bali have many photographers and they have many beautiful terraced rice fields photocollections that could be illustration for UNESCO website,” he said.

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