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Few days in paradise – Bali. Episode 4: Ubud – Sanur

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Last day in Ubud – Bali … instead of running around to temples or rice fields, I chose to walk and closely watch the people in town … behind Monkey Forest Road, life is more normal, quieter and deprived of the Western luxury of farang restaurants.

In Ubud, there are two main parallel streets … one is Monkey Forest Road, the touristic street, bright, with nice restaurants, cool bars, art galleries and luxury spas… The second is Jalan Hanoman, with fewer stores and restaurants, but with many local markets and it is here you may take a look to everyday life, as well.

I have already said, in a previous episode, that morning begins with giving offerings to the gods. In front of shops, restaurants and houses, women and men kneel and lay larger or smaller baskets made ​​of banana or palm tree leaves, filled with multi-colored flowers … it is the custom that will make their day auspicious, will bring health and good luck…

Bali is a clean place… even at European standards, cleanliness stands at a place of honour … there are not many garbage men or public cleaning services… Each person is in charge with cleaning around his home. In addition, children are taught to clean since early childhood… I even met some kids in uniforms, who had come barefoot from school, but who were holding small sweeping brooms to clean the streets… and this seemed like a really fun activity.

I bought some batik shirts from Ubud – the multicolored batik is one of Bali’s symbols (indeed, it originally comes from the neighbouring Java, but what difference does it make now!) … Obviously, you can find shirts at great prices on the main street, some even brand names, but if you get to the secondary street, on entering the store, take off your shoes (it is a sign of politeness) and have tea with the gentleman or lady owner, you can get even better prices … Once, I negotiated two shirts, but only one of them fit me. I left promising to return later when, half an hour later, the two of them –husband and wife, stopped their motorcycle right next to the place where I was (I have no idea how they found me) holding the shirt in the size that fit me!

I also crossed the central market, quite close to the royal palace. It is not really obvious, it is behind some buildings, but once there, you have a huge range of products… Although we have not negotiated anything, those are probably the best prices.

As I was saying at some point, probably the most beautiful things in Bali are the flowers… they are everywhere … obviously, they are helped by nature. I like many of the Balinese flowers (well, typical for the Southeastern Asian region, not only for Bali), but maybe some of the most interesting ones are the frangipans, the lilies and the banana flower. Frangipans are some ephemeral flowers that bloom on trees. What is interesting is that they bloom about once every fortnight, after a week, falling to the ground and then the cycle starts again… many Balinese (lady tourists, too, of course) put frangipan flowers around their ears for beauty. In many temples, I saw some gorgeous lilies in small ponds… In many religions, the lily is a sacred flower and we knew that it is the symbol of Buddha’s birth, but we did not know it was just as important for the Hindus, as well. And finally, the last flower is that of the banana … I have been a fan of bananas since childhood when I used to eat one every few years (perhaps I am a big fan because it was the forbidden fruit), but I could never imagine that banana trees can make such beautiful flowers.

I left Ubud with the hope that I will return sooner or later … But, once a traveller, always a traveller and, an hour or so later, I was going to arrive at Sanur, on the seashore where I was going to discover another paradise in the gardens of the Hyatt hotel … but I would show you the marvelous gardens of Hyatt Sanur in another post…

How to get there

There are quite a lot of trans-continental flights connecting Bali to Europe or other far away places, however, these direct flights are sometimes quite expensive. When you plan a trip to Bali, check also the prices towards the more competitive hubs of Singapore and Kuala Lumpur, and from there you can jump over Bali with the help of an Asian low cost carrier such as Air Asia and Jet Star !

Where to stay

Ubud is full of nice hotels… I stayed at Sehati Guest House, a really nice place at a good price. A double room costs 300,000 Indonesian rupees ( 24 euros).

Visas

The bad news is that most of foreign nationals need a visa. The good news is the visa can be obtained on-arrival on the Denpasar airport by nationals of 63 countries from around the world. Check this list here.

Where to eat

Do not be afraid, Ubud has the best restaurants within a radius of 1000 km. Even if you are not a fan of Asian cuisine, you can spend even a lifetime in Ubud and eat only European food.

Pictures of Bali

Bali travel: Batik shirts

Batik-shirts

Bali photo

Bali pictures

Holding brooms, since childhood

Bali photos: Offerings

Offerings

Bali travel

Bali travel

Bali photos

Bali travel

Bali travel: arund the fair

Around the fair

Bali photos: Ubud Mayor's house

The Ubud Mayor’s House

Bali photo: Banana tree flower

Banana tree flower

Bali photo: A pond with lilies

A pond with lilies

Bali picture: A pond with lilies

Bali Pictures

Bali travel: A pond with lilies

Bali travel: Around the Ubud streets

Around the Ubud streets

Bali travel: Around the Ubud streets

Bali trip: On the way to Sanur

On the way to Sanur

Bali travel: The sculptors’ village

The sculptors’ village

Bali restaurants

As soon as you get to the coast… here’s a Mac (entrance in Sanur)

Bali travel: Hyatt Sanur hotel lobby

In the reception, at Hyatt Sanur

Bali pictures

 

Până acum există "5 comentarii" la acest articol:

  1. Very well taken photos. I will add the city to my to do list.

  2. Anamaria C. says:

    Nice memories from Bali. I sure will go back sometimes.

  3. Jasper says:

    Nice pics indeed! I missed Ubud on my last visit to Bali, will have to make sure I hit it up next time.

  4. Clariza says:

    Your pictures are so stunning!! Me and a friend went to some of these place twice. I just realize that I miss out a lot of things regarding small villages and temples when I look at your pictures.

  5. Suresh says:

    That is not a “banana flower”. It is an heliconia.
    Cheers

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