Some things never change: rent keeps going up and tourists keep acting like d*ckheads in Bali. This weekend, however, one incident sparked debate online after an identical re-run of an offensive photoshoot that took place last year reared its ugly, naked head once again…
History has a funny way of repeating itself. Last year, a wannabe internet star was chucked out of Bali for taking some pretty risque photos with one of the island’s most sacred trees that’s over 700 years old.
And yet, the exact same thing has happened again in the exact same place. Sadly, it seems that some people just never learn, least of all influencers who want to turn a quick buck by getting their kit off.
All of this comes amid a sustained PR push from Bali government officials to educate tourists on how to better behave, with consistent d*ckheaded behaviour from Aussie visitors high on their list of concerns.
This weekend, we were treated to another version of the same old story: Russian woman, Luiza Kosykh, was arrested and is due to be deported from Bali after a photo of her posing naked with a sacred tree has surfaced online.
WATCH: Aussie tourists go wild in Bali, much to the upset of locals.
This incident follows hot on the heels of a Russian yogi and social media influencer, Alina Fazleeva, who was deported last year for doing precisely the same thing: posing naked with the same sacred 700-year-old Kayu Putih tree before uploading the photos to social media.
The backlash prompted Ms Fazleeva to delete the images and post an apology video, praying at the base of the sacred tree while fully clothed.
The Balinese entrepreneur, Ni Luh Djelantik, who called on authorities to intervene in Ms Fazleeva’s case last year, shared Ms Kosykh’s photos on Instagram this week. In response, she wrote:
“To all foreigners who disrespect our land, Bali is our home, not yours!”@niluhdjelantik
Speaking to a press conference over the weekend, the head of the Immigration Division of the Bali Office of the Ministry of Law and Human Rights, Barron Ichsan, said that Ms Kosykh has told authorities that she took the picture with her friend because she wanted to “be at one with nature.”
Mr Ichsan acknowledged that such photos can be understood and appreciated as art but stressed that the sacred tree is not an appropriate place for such art to be created…
Bali authorities are fed up with misbehaving tourists and are attempting to crack down on unruly behaviour. In the first quarter of the year, 620 foreigners were deported from Indonesia, according to Indonesia’s director general of immigration, Silmy Karim.
It seems that tourists making a mockery of Bali’s sacred culture is regular enough to set your watch by. Though the government has big plans for billboards, they might need to add arboreal bodyguards to their government job openings…