The History of Bali: 3.000 BCE – 600 BCE
From around 3000 to 600 BCE,
a Neolithic culture emerges, characterized by a new wave of inhabitants bringing rice-growing technology and speaking Austronesian languages. These Austronesian peoples seem to have migrated from South China, probably through the Philippines and Sulawesi. Their tools included rectangular adzes and red slipped decorated pottery.
Forests and jungles were cleared for the establishment of cultures and villages. They also made some plaited craft and a small boat was also found. Their culinary habits included pork-eating and betel-chewing. They are thought to have focused on mountain cults. They buried some of their more prestigious dead in oval stone sarcophagi, with human heads or zoomorphic figures sculpted on them. The bodies were either deposited in the sleeping position, or folded in two or three for compactness.
An important Neolithic archaeological site in Bali is that of Cekik, in the western part of the island.
These same Austronesian people are thought to have continued their expansion eastward, to occupy Melanesian and Polynesian islands around 2000 years ago. The cultural traits of this period are still clearly visible in the culture of Bali today, and connect it to the cultures of Southeast Asia and the Pacific Ocean.