Visit to Bali,
Indonesia 4/03 

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In April of 2003, during the War in Iraq, four of us decided to go to Indonesia.
Some of our friends thought we were foolish to go at that time, but we had a
wonderful, tranquil vacation on the lovely island of Bali and on a boat in the islands
of Komodo National Park for scuba diving. The people were all gracious and friendly.
We did not meet any other Americans on our trip!

Welcome to the Island of Bali!


Bali is a fascinating island with maddening traffic and rural tranquility.



There are sacred trees and volcanoes.


There is so much beauty in the mountains, high above the famous beaches.



Pura is the Balinese name for temple.
Up the steps, past the liverwort and moss -covered walls, to Pura Puncak Penulisan,
Bali's highest temple- great beauty awaits.

Gunung Batur Volcano seen from Pura Puncak Penulisan.

Most of the Balinese people are Hindu, and their spirituality is part
of the essence of their everyday life.


Offerings are freshly prepared daily and consist of bamboo, flowers, leaves,
incense, foods, plants, and sometimes coins.


Statues dating to the 11th century are protected with thatch-roofed structures

a mountain village

roosters are kept in
these wicker baskets

Pura Ulun Danu is located in the verdant area near Batur.
It is a really beautiful and tranquil spot with intricate stone carvings.

There was a service going on while we were there and we were able to see
people enter the inner sanctum with beautifully prepared offerings.
They were all beautifully attired with rich, colorful fabrics.




The ornate carvings were inspiring.



The healthy-looking dogs often benefit from the foods in the offerings and
there were lots of them at this pura!

Pura Besakih

This temple complex is Bali's most important. It is located 1000 meters up the side of Gunung Agung Volcano and dates to prehistoric times. The skyline is quite dramatic!
There was a major volcanic eruption of Gunung Agung in 1963 that killed over 1000 people!
Estimates run as high as 2000 people dead and over 100,000 that lost their homes.


This temple complex is very sacred and many areas are not open to the public. There are twenty-three separate but related temples here. It is thought that Besakih dates to the 8th century.


After many many stone steps, we finally arrived at the uppermost temple, Pura Penataran Agung.
It is built on six levels. The view from the top of the steps of the first level is spectacular!
On a clear day, one can see the ocean.


White Starling

Javan Hill Mynah

As we drove through the
countryside, we would see
birds in small cages under
the eves of houses. We were
able to stop and see a few of them.





There was a week-day ceremony at a temple in this village which was ornately decorated
for the occasion with bamboo poles, for miles in the charming manner shown at right.

Ah, we arrive at Taman Rahasia, "Secret Garden" Hotel in Penestanan, very near Ubud.
These tastefully constructed and furnished rooms are both comfortable
and casual in a welcoming manner.


There is a comfortable outdoor sitting area near lovely ponds in a tropical garden.
All areas of the accomodation have vases brimming with fresh tuberose flowers that
impart a sweet fragrance into the warm tropical air.


Think of your fantasy shower,
this could be it! This warm outdoor
shower was absolutely heavenly!


aerial views from the outdoor shower


The gracious outdoor dining area was very pleasant and the food was really good with quite a varied menu. Service was by charming folks, many of whom have been with the hotel from the time of its construction. The pool was the prettiest I have ever seen.

There are full spa services with wonderful massages and even a
reflexology massage by the Balinese healer, Made.



Exotic blossoms of heliconias, bananas, and gingers grace the grounds
are used as cut flowers in the reception area.

Cardi and Wayan

The staff is extraordinarily gracious and helpful!

Dekti and her son Putu

The expanding village of Ubud has been traditionally known for art,
in its many forms, that are sold there. Nearby villages specialize in various art
forms and any drive into the Ubud area is a fascinating drive!


All parts of Bali abound in flowers and carved lava statues,
and the main streets in Ubud are particularly charming




Lotus blossoms

AAdenium blossoms- this was a favorite plant flound on nearly everyone's front porch.


The wood-carvers' village was a feast for the eyes!



Offerings are everywhere. These ladies are on their way to their temple in Ubud.



Monkeys love to come into town from the Monkey Forest at the end of the main road
in Ubud. These Macaque Monkeys often steal food from the offerings.

Charming roadside restaurants beckon... the food is excellent!




This is Wayan with her daughter Wayan.



Our driver, Made, with my husband, Dave.



Traditional Legong Dance performance at the Bali Palace in Ubud- what a wonderful experience!




There is hyptnotic music and a riveting performance by the dancers!

It's a dog's life on the streets of Ubud,

As our plane taxied down the runway on our way to the island if Flores,
we thought about the adventures to come, scuba diving in the Komodo Island National Park!

Part Two- off to see the Lizard (Komodo Dragon)!

All photographs on this page are by Gail J. Worth and are copyrighted.
They may not be reproduced by any method without written permission.

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