Bali had been on my "to do" list for a few years ever since I moved to Bangkok from the US. This May I finally took some time off from my work and flew there. I took me 4 hours or so to get there crossing the equator into southern hemisphere.
I have to say I have never been to a place where the culture oozes out from every where you look. The temples, the rice terraces, the villages, and even the beaches. Even though I spent 5 days on this tiny island (slightly bigger than Rhode Island) visiting all the different places I felt like I barely scratched the surface. Hence this trip was merely an intro and title "Bali 101" seems fitting.
I took about 440 shots in my 5 days there. I am posting 22 of those down below. I will add more when I review the photos again in my spare time.
A day by day account of the trip is certainly warranted I suppose - but for now all those memories are just tucked away in a diary somewhere - will post when time permits.
(click on any pic for a larger view)
At Tana Lot Temple by the Shore. First stop after we landed.
Shore by Tana Lot Temple - looking due northeast - bright mid-afternoon with cool ocean breeze.
Another shot of Tanah Lot Temple. Lot's of devotees and tourists to be seen here. Only other place besides Nepal where they offer rice "tika" on the forehead. Lots of Balinese think that migrated here from Nepal....who knew!!!
You can't enter the temple premises unless you are a Balinese Hindu. This is Taman Ayun Temple in Ubud Area. As you can see the pagoda pyramid gets taller as you move to the left on the pic. There must be some godly reason for that.
Taman Ayun Temple in Ubud from a balcony of a lookout post.
Here is that Lookout post!! Taman Ayun Temple. Temples is Cambodia are all stones - but Bali temples are half brick and half stones. A more colorful look.
Iconic Uun Danu Temple and Lake Beratan. I came here for this. Seemed magical in my imagination and it was!!!
Hindu Goddes - Saraswati or Parbati ot Laxmi or even Ganga may be ....not sure!! By Lake Beratan
Ulun Danu Temple Again - It is a magical place.
Ulun Danu Temple - from a different Angle. Their pagoda style roofs are similar to what you see in Kathmandu Temples. Only difference is these are some dried bush or twig materiel that need replacing every 20 years or so - I was told.
No I didn't stretch the photograph - This is exactly what I saw - Garden by Ulun Danu Temple
Garden and Ulun Danu Temple by Lake Beratan. It was a bright and pleasant day.
Rice Paddy Fields - Jatiluwih Rice Terrace.
Volcano Crater Valley of Batur with Lake Batur and Mt. Abang in the distance - seen from a terrace of a coffee shop on the way there.
I hiked to Mt. Batur a mere 2000 ft hike from the lake bed. Here I am looking down on crater that is at the top. Some parts of the this crater were still fuming. At center of the picture you can still see land charred from lava flow from a recent eruption, as I was told.
Modernity!!! Bali is struggling to keep its old heritage and flaunt the modernization in moderation - an elevated freeway was recently added connecting Nusa Dua to Northern part of the island.
This is a called Padang Beach - lots of surfers were seen here - but you won't see me taking their photos even if they paid me.
Another photo of Padang Beach. Water is very clean. Lots of surfer dudes stay in one of these bungalows. Probably one of the cheapest place to surf all day and party all night. Wave sizes were pretty decent but I didn't bring my telephoto lens to capture those.
Ulluwatu Temple on a Cliff. There was a sheer 1000 feet drop from where I was standing. Monkey that were found here were notoriously naughty. People were busy taking monkey photos. Not me!!!
Don't mess with the Balinese Women - look at that pose. Saw her at one of the restaurant. While all other tourists were using flash I chose to use the natural light.
Another photo of Jatiluwih Rice Fields. This place was calming.
Another shot of Tanah Lot Temple, Bali
View of Lake Batur and Mt. Abang trough my iPhone - Mid way through the hike