Bali, an island of Indonesia. It lies immediately east of Java between the Java Sea on the north and the Indian Ocean on the south. Bali is 90 miles (145 km) long and 55 miles (89 km) wide. Its area is 2,243 square miles (5,809 km2).
The island is largely mountainous, but the southern part is a large plain. The highest peak is Mount Agung, an active volcano rising 10,308 feet (3,142 m). The island's rivers are not navigable. Bali has a tropical climate. Rainfall is light in the north and heavy in the south.
Most of the Balinese are farmers, although cattle-raising and fishing are important. Main farm products are dried coconut, rice, coffee, and tea.
The Balinese, known for their physical beauty and high level of culture, are related to the Javanese. They are skilled in such handicrafts as woodcarving, metal working, and weaving. They are also notable for their dancing and music, often combined in folk drama. The main religion is Hinduism, introduced in the seventh century. The population of Bali is 3,151,162.
Bali was ruled by the Javanese from the 10th to the 15th century. The Dutch came to the island in 1579. It was held by the British, 1811–16, and then the Dutch fought until 1849 to reestablish control over the native rulers. When Indonesia gained its independence in 1949, Bali became part of the new nation.