Thursday, January 18, 2007

Bali sightseeing photolog (part 2)

The next day, we got up earlier and continued our Bali sightseeing tour.. This time, we asked our guide took us northward - onto the Kintamani Vocalno-Ubud route. Gunung Batur is one of the two volcanoes which are either active or dormant. And Ubud needs little introduction. I was really looking forward to visit the place full of arts and cultural heritage..

It was another hot day but this time I have both my sunnies and hat. ;) On the way, we stopped by a batik-weaving place (for toilet stop mainly), a silver & goldsmith shop, a oil-painting/art gallery, coffee plantation.. and in between, stopped for lunch at a restaurant with a great view of Gunung Batur.

Guess what I saw! A Jojo-lookalike at the gold/silversmith place.

The entrance to shop for paintings. I ended up buying two paintings - one abstract and another traditional Balinese drawing in woodcarving frame. And yes, I had to employ my bargaining skill and managed to slash the prices down to almost 70 per cent. Two nice paintings for just RM120.

A local artist at work

We reached Kintamani at lunch time and our guide led us to a restaurant with a great view of the volcano and the lake surrounding.. We had buffet but the main attraction of course is photographing the scenery!

Restaurant with a view

My buffet lunch.. (first serving)

The majestic Gunung Batur

Outside the restaurant after lunch. After which we adjourn to a coffee plantation for free coffee!

Trying my hand at roasting coffee beans!

At the coffee plantation

Sampling coffee, tea and other drinks, as well as rolling cigarrettes! (which wasn't easy at all)

It was then driving back southwards towards Ubud and stopped at two interesting `pura' (temples) along the way.. They had quite a lot to see and although we knew time was a bit limited, we still wanted to see as much.. so finally we didn't have much time left to explore Ubud town itself.. which was such a pity. Ubud streets consist of rows of interesting shops selling all types of arts and handicrafts.. But we only got to explore the market place for a while before heading back to Kuta. I told myself I would spend a day in Ubub the next time I come! (and yes, i am definitely going back!)

The entrance to the Holy Spring Temple - Tirta Empul

At the `holy spring' where devotees cleansed themselves

In the inner court of the Holy Spring temple

Offerings for the gods

Next we went to the Elephant Cave temple or Gao Gajah..

Touching the `holy water'

At the entrance to the Elephant Cave where statues of idols and gods were displayed inside.

A huge rock with Buddha's face that was split open due to earthquake

A man selling handicrafts - we bought some painted eggs from him and bargained hard - yes, it was me again at work but with my two friends around giving the man pitiful look, I couldn't be too `ruthless'!

Finally we reached Ubud town and first made a stop at the market which I ended up buying quite a bit there! We just walked nearby for a while and as it was getting late.. we had to go back.

With a local vendor at the Ubud market

On the way back, the guide stopped by a spa which I booked myself in for the next day.. I kinda regretted soon after as I found the spa was located by a main road thus traffic noises could be heard! Well, too late.. it was quite a good experience (more on that and other misc. of Bali later..)

We reached a busy Kuta and found quite a nice place for dinner to chill out a bit, and did some walking on busy Legian Street.

The popular Bounty club at Legian Street

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