Friday, March 6, 2015

Bali Trip - Enjoying Paradise in Ubud

Wake up wake up!

It was our time to enjoy the scenery by cycling around Ubud like Julia Roberts. So we woke up early and got ready.

We asked the staff and he suggested us to drive out and rent the bicycle around the town.

So we got to go, but before that we enjoyed our fabulous villa and the breakfast.

Peeking inside the villa
Two storey luxurious villa. Cool, huh? 
There's a balcony at the second storey. Unfortunately we did not have time to enjoy it.
I want to wake up to this scenery everyday. Can I?
He looks like Balinese, huh?
Let's get going. Mwacks!

We started our journey. First of all, we should walk back to the place where we parked the car. The previous night it was dark and creepy, but this morning it was just fantastic.

The view. Oh I am in love.

We drove to one of the main streets in Ubud near the market. Only four youngsters decided to pedal around. We negotiated the rental price and we got IDR 20,000 per bicycle. We promised him that we would be back within 4 hours.

He then told us the preferable route. Initially we wanted to go to Bukit Campuhan (Campuhan Hill) but he told us not to because last night was raining and the road would be muddy and less safe. We followed his advice and drive to another way.

When it was still in the town, it was difficult because of the traffic. But once we were out, it was so nice and relaxing. We passed by forested area, villages, and of course paddy fields.

You can see how happy we were
Green and green and green 
Me with the greenery

There were still a lot of pictures in dad's phone but I had yet to get it. He snapped quite a lot while we were cycling along.

When we returned to our starting point, I felt quite sore on my bumps and legs already. We did not realize that we had cycled for almost 2 hours. We then went to Pasar Ubud (Ubud Market).

Pasar Ubud with big access road and ample parking area. There is also parking area for bicycles.
Cute figurines

Besides arts, Pasar Ubud also offers accesories and fashion items. There are a lot of alleys for you to stroll and there are a lot of sellers for you to choose. The market opens from 08:00am. One tip for visiting this market: come early and you will get the best price but you shall bargain!

And when we headed back to our car, we realized that it was already past 1:00pm and our extended check out time was only up to 3:00pm. Bro quickly went and bough the famous Nasi Babi Guling Bu Oka (Bu Oka's grilled pork rice) and we headed back to the hotel.

After showering, it's time for lunch.

The portion costs IDR 55,000 (~SGD 6)

I am not a pork person and I think this food is too overrated. The pork still smelled so pork and the flesh was not marinated. The rest, even the pork lover, also said the same.

After checking out, we continued our journey to another temple. Pura Tirta Empul (Tirta Empul Temple) is located by the sides of Istana Kepresidenan Tampak Siring (Tampak Siring Presidential Palace).

Tirta Empul means water that comes out of the ground. Pura Tirta Empul has a holy spring that flows to Pakerisan River. This temple was built around 960 AD and consists of 3 area: front, middle, and back.

According to the folklore, there was a mighty king called Mayadanawa. Due to his power, he regarded himself as god and banned his people to pray to other gods. However, one of the old monk called Mpu Kul Putih sought for help by meditating at Pura Besakih.

He got his help from Bharata Indra who brought his army to fight Mayadanawa. Mayadanawa and his army was not in par with their foes. However, Mayadanawa's wicked mind brought him to a plan. He created a poisonous spring nearby Bharata Indra's camp and caused a lot of people to die. Knowing this, Bharata Indra created a holy spring nearby to cure his army.

Getting the strength of his army back, Bharata Indra continued the  search of Mayadanawa. Mayadanawa tried to escape by transfiguring himself into a lot of creatures but to no avail. In the end he turned himself into a stone and got arrowed by Bharata Indra. Since then, the death of Mayadanawa was known as Galungan, which means the winning of good against evil.

Before entering the temple, we parked our car in the designated parking lot and paid IDR 15,000 (~SGD 1.7) per person as the entrance fee. By the sides of the parking lot, there is a row of shops selling clothes, accessories, and foods.

Before entering the temple compound, all visitors who wear shorts or skirts will be lent a sarong to wrap themselves. Those who wore long pants will be lent a yellow ribbon to tie around the waist.

The front porch of Pura Tirta Empul, called Jaba Pura

The middle area is called Jaba Tengah and consists of a squarish pond with thirty holy springs. Each springs are believed to have different effect for people who wash themselves there.

People, local or not, are queueing to wash themselves and get the blessings

While moving from the the second to the third area, we passed by a square that gave us unobstructed view of Istana Kepresidenan Tampak Siring. This palace was built during the time of the first president of Indonesia, Mr. Soekarno.

Can you see on top there?
The gate to the the back area

The back area, called jeroan, is the most important place in the whole temple as it is used for prayers and any other religious events. Unlike Pura Taman Ayun, we were allowed to enter this area. But when we entered, the drizzle turned heavier and we were stuck.

While waiting for the rain to stop

We waited for about 20 minutes before we gave up and called an umbrella girl to bring us out to the car park.

It was almost 5:00 pm when we drove out of Pura Tirta Empul. Actually I would like to visit the paddy terraces along the way in between Tampak Siring and Ubud but it was quite late for a visit to paddy fields so I gave up on it.

We just drove all the way back to Ubud and had our late lunch cum early dinner.

At another duck restaurant.

Bebek Tepi Sawah.

Bebek Tepi Sawah is translated as Duck by the Side of the Paddy Fields. This restaurant really supports that concepts by having rows of huts by the side of paddy fields.

The 'bald' paddy field
Another angle showing the bale (hut)
The stone ducks! And you really can find live ducks playing at the muddy field.
Look alike? We are to scare all the crows and save the paddy

We were seated at a hut facing the west so we could enjoy the sunset while having our dinner.

Crispy Duck
Smoked Betutu Duck 
Grilled Duck

To be honest, all the food here lost to its competitor, Bebek Bengil. No more comments are needed. However, we still enjoyed our time here.

Pretty sun setting at the west

We were to spend our night at another villa and we drove there to check ourselves in. This villa was known as eco-villa because the structures use bamboo as well as the facade. The design of the villa was cool.

Cozy corner 
Kitchen and bar
Living room

I was impressed at first but it was raining so hard at night and the roof was leaking so bad until some of our stuffs got wet!

Love is in the air,
Little Feet

Next Post - Farewell Ubud

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