Garuda Wisnu Kencana Cultural Park, GWK for short, is condesidered one of the most magnificent tourist spot in Bali. This Cultural Park is located in Tanjung Nusa Dua in southern Bali, about forty kilometers from Denpasar. This cultural park was built on a limestone plateau with great scenery. You can still see the cut out of the lime stone that formed cliffs inside this cultural park.
The Giant Sculpture
The original plan of The Cultural Park was to build a sculpture of Vishnu while he rode his mythical bird, Garuda and display it in the cultural park. The sculpture would be more than a hundred and thirty meters high with the wingspan of the Garuda sculpture would be sixty six meters. With a size this big, the sculpture of Vishnu and Garuda would be bigger than The Liberty and could be seen from twenty kilometer radius. It means, the sculpture could be seen from other cities in Bali such as Kuta, Sanur, Nusa Dua, and even Tanah Lot.
However, this ambitious project was stopped middle way due to the crisis and parts of the sculpture are displayed in GWK. The sculptor of this magnificent sculpture, I Nyoman Nuarta, is determined to finish this project and since August 2013, the project is continued and is expected to be finished by 2016. For the time being, tourist can enjoy the giant sculpture of Vishnu’s body and the head of the giant Garuda that are displayed in this cultural park along with other magnificent sculptures.
Amphitheatre and Dance Performances
Aside from the giant sculptures, you can also find other attractions in The Park. There is an amphitheatre in which Bali dance performances such as kecak and barong dances are performed every day. You can also enjoy the beautiful wall relief and the many Hindu inspired rock sculpture that are spread out in this huge cultural park. You can also do sports and fun rides, such as rock climbing, flying fox, and rappelling since the park is surrounded by tall rock walls. There are also many venues that are able to cater many events and processions such as the Street Theatre that is suitable to host a fashion show or other moving shows, the Lotus Ponds which is surrounded by rock pillars with the Garuda head sculpture as the background that can host up to seven thousand people.
There is also the Plaza Kura-Kura that can held up to two hundred people and is very suitable for a conference venue. The Exhibition Gallery is about two hundred meter square and will be very suitable to hold art exhibition events. Near the sculpture of Vishnu’s body you will find the legendary Parahyangan Somaka Giri which is a sacred spring that contains many strong minerals that are believed to be able to cure illnesses. All in all, as big as Garuda Wisnu Kencana Park is, it summarized every single thing that you can get from visiting Bali for its cultural attraction.