Sunday, April 9, 2017

A long day around Ubud

I am skipping ahead to our last full day tour in Bali which was on Friday, the last full day Stef was with us.  I will post the rainy Thursday tour later.

We had heard that Ubud is known as the spiritual capital of Bali and that it had a lot of things to do and see around it.  Unfortunately it is about 2 1/2 hours away from Villa Oscar so it made for a long day.  We also wanted to get some photos of things we had passed by Thursday but it was to rainy/foggy to see.  Getting anywhere from Villa Oscar requires driving on mountain roads that are very narrow, usually one lane, but two way traffic, and hairpin turns.  Putu was a very good driver and I always felt safe with him.  There is much beeping of car horns.  It can be a warning that you are coming when going into a hairpin turn.  It can be a warning to a motorcyclist coming up a side street.  It can be a warning to on coming traffic where an aggressive driver is trying to pass someone else and is in your lane.  It can be a warning to dogs and chickens to get off the road.  Or maybe it just means hello to a friend!  We stopped for mountain vistas - this time it was not raining, but still very foggy  the higher you were in the mountains.
Later and lower in elevation we were able to get a few photos.
We went to a couple of different spots to get shots of the rice terraces as they are know as a World Heritage Site.

We passed through the flower growing area.

The orange ones in the last picture are marigolds.  Next, views of Lake Buyan and Lake Tamblingan known as the twin lakes.  As you can see the fog is just starting to burn off.

Next we pass by vegetable growing areas.  The people in the first photo are harvesting spring onions. In the lower pictures they are spraying pesticides.  And yes, I was surprised at this.  There are places that specialize in organic - so that movement has started here as well.

Our last photo opportunity was a volcano in the distance.  I'm not sure which one it was, I think either Batur or Braten.

Then it was finally time for lunch.  Babi Guling or roast pig is very popular.  Its like bar-b-que in the States - that is all the restaurant serves.  Like other hot countries - the restaurants open up to the street on one side.

After lunch we drove into Ubud.  Yes - we finally made it.  We first went to the market, but could not find parking.  Putu ended up driving down a one way side street the wrong way - no one got upset.  Cars just went around him.  We turned onto the next street going the way we wanted to go and Putu suggested we go to the museum first.  Shortly after that we arrived at Blanco Museum.  The paintings of mostly nudes by Antonio Blanco are housed in his former home.  The house is pretty spectacular in its own right.  You enter into a large atrium flanked by two large curved staircases.  The center area is open all the way to the third floor.  Their are rooms off to the side that you are not allowed in - I would guess that those were the actual living quarters.  Of course you are not allowed to take photographs inside.  Antonio apparently liked exotic birds.

The last two shots are a few of the decorations that were at the floor of the building.

Next we went a little out of town to the Goa Gajah or the elephant cave temple.  It was nice but not near as exciting as I thought it would be for all the hype.
 This is the entrance to the cave.  It is very small.  The floor is uneven and not much to see inside.

And lastly - back to the Ubud market.  This time Putu found a place to park not terribly far away.  Trying to get out of the car we were accosted by a very aggressive salesman selling chopsticks of all things.  They don't use chop sticks here.  Here are a few market pictures.  We had been told by our driver that we should bargain at the market - but not of the sellers would negotiate!  So we did not buy anything.  One place wanted a $1 for a 3 color thread bracelet - that is US prices!

 These look very much like Native American dream catchers.  I am not sure if this is something that is par of local culture or they are copying for the tourist market.
 These last two pictures are of young boys two wearing a monster costume and a group of boys playing instruments following.  Our driver/guide explained that they were practicing on the tourists so they would be good enough to participate in Hindu ceremonies.

1 comment:

  1. mom - no explanation about the giant, wooden penises??