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This paper addresses a research gap in tourism studies by examining the distinctive case of the Paluang Car Temple in Nusa Penida. While discussions on authenticity and uniqueness in tourism are prevalent, research exploring these concepts in culturally unique, non-mainstream destinations like Nusa Penida remains limited. The unique cultural elements, exemplified by the car-shaped shrines at the Paluang Temple, influence a destination's appeal. By analyzing the impact of these features on tourist experiences and overall destination allure, this research provides insights into the development of tourism products that leverage local distinctiveness. It contributes to a broader understanding of how authenticity and uniqueness shape travel preferences, bridging a critical gap in tourism and cultural studies.
Employing a descriptive-qualitative approach aligned with the interpretive method, the article delves into the attraction of the Car Temple's unconventional design, which has attracted significant attention. Despite its modest place in the Balinese temple hierarchy, the temple consistently features on religious tour itineraries in Nusa Penida, driven by its unmatched uniqueness and authenticity. Additionally, the Car Temple often complements visits to the renowned Klingking Beach, a nearby tourism highlight. In summary, this paper underscores the pivotal role of the Car Shrines' uniqueness in motivating tourists, contributing to the temple's success in a competitive tourism market.
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