Places in Bali Island
Bali is famous for its culture and beautiful natural view. The culture
is so unique and nowhere else to be found in the world. The view is
dominated by beautiful rice field terraces, coconuts and rain forest
as the main occupation of Balinese is farmer. The culture and the nature
have a strong relation with Hindu, their religion. Everywhere you go,
you may see many Hindu temples. And their life is also strongly related
with and influenced by their religion. This is the reason why Bali is
called the Island of God, the Island of Thousand Temples, and the Paradise
Below some interesting places in Bali Island;
Known as the "Mother Temple of Bali", the sanctuary of Besakih
on the slopes of Mt. Agung is the biggest and holiest of all Balinese
temples. Over a thousand years old, steps ascend through split gates
to the main courtyard where the Trinity shrines are wrapped in cloth
and decorated with flower offerings.
Around the three main temples dedicated to the Trinity:
Shiva, Brahma and Vishnu, are 18 separate sanctuaries belonging to different
regencies and caste groups.
To the Balinese, a visit to the temples sanctuaries is a special pilgrimage.
Each has its own anniversary celebration or "Odalan". The
sight of the temple against the background of the mountain is impressive
and during festivals, colored banners add a touch of gaiety.
The mountain resort of Bedugul, 18 km north of Denpasar, is known for
its excellent golf course. Located beside Lake Bratan, it is surrounded
by forested hills. A beautiful sight is the "Ulun Danu" temple
which seems to rise out of the lake. The area offers good-walks. Boats,
water skiing, and parasailing are available for hire. The Bali Handara
country club has bungalows for rent and a restaurant.
When the heat and humidity gets to you, why not escape
to Bedugul, Bali's highland retreat tucked into the crater of an extinct
volcano 1400 metres above sea level.
Here three lakes provide everything from recreation to the water for
springs, rivers and rice fields below. Lush pine forests seem to create
a freshness in the air. Bedugul is known for the quality of its fruits
, vegetables and flowers.
The spectacular mountainous region around Kintamani with its deep crater
lake and bubbling hot springs, make this region a must to visit. Lake
Batur is the largest lake in Bali and the region offers some of the
most spectacular views to be found anywhere on the island. Lake Batur
also provides water for an underground network of streams and springs
across the southern slopes of the mountain.
The district is the earliest known kingdom in Bali, dating from the
tenth century. The evenings get cool up here but it's well worth the
stay overnight to climb the volcano and watch the sunrise. Many cheap
losmens are available here.
Tanah Lot Temple
One of Bali's most important sea temples, Tanah Lot is built a top a
huge rock which is surrounded by the sea. Built by one of the last priests
to come to Bali from Java in the 16th century, its rituals include the
paying of homage to the guardian spirits of the sea.
Poisonous sea snakes found at the base of the rocky island
are believed to guard the temple from evil spirits and intruder. The
best time to see Tanah Lot is in the late afternoon when the temple
is in silhouette.
The capital city of Bali, Denpasar has many community temples called
"Pura". One is the Museum called Pura Jagatnatha which is
dedicated to the Supreme God, Sang Hyang Widi Wasa. The statue of a
turtle and two dragons (prevalent in all temples) signify the foundation
of the world.
The Museum offers a fine variety of prehistoric and modern art, whereas
its architectural design resembles that of a palace. The government
supervised "Sanggraha Kriya Asta" has a wide variety of handicraft
and works of art. The "Werdi Budaya" presents a yearly art
festival between June and July, with performances, exhibitions, art
contest and so on.
The cultural image of Ubud is paramount to people as home to the best
art museums in tte country, like Puri Lukisan, Neka Museum, ARMA (Agung
Rai Museum & Art), etc. Ubud is an ideal place to see Balinese dance,
Legong, Ramayana, Baris, Kecak and Sanghyang (the fire dance) are performed
nightly in or aroud the Ubud area.
Ubud gives you opportunity to see real Bali. It is a place
for leisurely strolls through rice terraces, lush forests, breath-taking
gorges and deserted swimming holes, all within walking distance from
the center of Ubud. You must visit Monkey Forest - walk along Monkey
Forest Road from Ubud, down into a dense forest where you will find
a bunch of happy monkeys waiting for passing tourists.
Goa Gajah Temple
The Elephant cave is carved in to rock face and reached by a flight
of steps. It probably dates back to the 9-12th centuries and shows elements
of both Hindu and Buddhist. You can enter the cave through the huge
mouth of a demon. In front of the cave are two bathing pools with spring
water gushing from spouts help by female figures.
A kilometer from Goa Gajah is Yeh Pulu. After a short
walk through rice terraces, you will arrive at an ancient rock carving
dating from the 14th century. The carving depicts various scenes of
everyday life and the figures of elephant-headed Ganesha indicating
a close relationship between the two sites.
South Bali on Bukit Badung. This cliff top temple, dedicated to the
spirits of the sea, has spectacular views and is popular for viewing
sunsets. The famous Pura Luhur Uluwatu temple is an architectural marvel
situated on headland at the western tip to the plateau. According to
local tradition, the first Uluwatu temple was built in the 11th century,
In the 16th century, it was rebuilt into its current state. The temple
has some of the most exquisite architecture in Bali. The carvings made
in the unusually hard coral stone have withstood time well.
Sangeh is the famous Monkey Forest, set in heart of the only primary
forest in southern Bali. This forest consists entirely of pala (nutmeg)
tree. The monkeys living here are considered sacred and hence used to
Tourists looking for a quiet beach resort can head 10 km west from Singaraja
to Lovina, a long stretch of beach (with hotels and bungalows). The
black sand beach is safe and a perfect place for the swimming and snorkeling.
Lovina also offers dolphin viewing. It is the perfect base from which
to explore northern Bali.
Goa Lawah Temple
Goa Lawah is the bat cave. This cave is crammed with thousands of bats
which are unseen but certainly not unheard during the day. The cave
is part of a temple that is said to lead all the way to Besakih but
it's unlikely that anyone would be interested in investigating.
Kerta Gosa was used a venue for the administration of justice by kings
and priests during pre-colonial times. It is surrounded by a moat and
is decorated with beautiful paintings on its ceilings, which depict
tortures in hell and bliss in heaven.
The Bale Kembang (Floating Pavilion) stands behind the
Kerta Gosa. Its painted ceilings depict the legend of the hero Sutasoma
and his sacrifices, and of Pan and Men Brayut, known as the couple who
had too many offspring.
West Bali National Park
West Bali National Park is situated in two regencies: Jembrana and Buleleng.
The entrance on the Jembrana side of the park is at Melaya on the Denpasar
- Gilimanuk road. Visit this place if you are looking for pristine tropical
nature. The park is the last natural habitat of the endangered Jalak
Putih, fewer than fifty are believed to be left in the wild, where they
are threatened by poaching. The park also home to banteng and deer-like
Menjangan. The National Park contains a broad rang of natural environments,
from magrove coastal forests to savana and rainforest shelters.
To enter Bali National Park one must go to the park office
in Cekik. Accommodation is available in basic huts but you must bring
your own bedding and untensils.
The temple of Pura Tirta Empul is built around the sacred spring at
Tampaksiring. Over 1000 years old, the temple and its two bathing places
have been used by the people for good health and prosperity because
of the spring water's curative powers. Regular ceremonies are held for
purification. Specialties of the area are bone and ivory carvings, and
Driving northeast from Denpasar, stone figures on the roadside mark
the village of Batubulan. Divinities and demons are carved from sandstone
for ornaments of houses and temples. Workshops can be visited to watch
artists at work.
Batubulan also is famous for Barong Dance which is performed
daily here. The dance symbolizes the never-ending battle between good
and evil. The Pura Puseh Batubulan, a beautiful temple, is also worth
visiting while in Batubulan.
Celuk is center for Balinese goldsmiths and silversmiths. More 40 jewelry
workshops are located along the road from Batubulan to Celuk. The jewelries
are exported worldwide.
Sukawati is famous for its art market (Pasar Seni) and dalangs (puppeteers).
Set in a two-floor building, the market sells everything from statues
to dance costumes.
Mas is famous for woodcarving. Mas offers a myriad of wooden items.
The main road of the town is lined with dozens of workshop.
Once a lonely village on the road from Denpasar toward the Bukit Peninsula,
Kuta is now a thriving tourist resort, popular mainly among the young.
It is a beach for surfing although currents make it less suitable for
swimming. Coast guards, however, are on constant duty during the day.
Kuta faces toward the west offering beautiful sunsets.
Accommodation ranges from international hotels to home
stays. The village abounds with restaurants, shops, discotheques and
other tourist facilities. It is easier to find regular performances
of Balinese music and dance in Kuta, staged specially for tourists,
than anywhere else in Bali. Some performances are staged nightly. The
village is ideal for meeting and mixing with other people, locals as
well as visitors from abroad.
This little island off Bali's west coast is known for its beautiful
coral reefs found nearby and the wealth of tropical fish inhabiting
the waters around it. The island itself including Terima Bay, are by
themselves worth a visit because of the beautiful sceneries they offer.
Nusa Lembongan Island
Nusa Lembongan, a small island between Bali and Nusa Penida in the Badung
Strait, is the perfect location for a holiday hideaway with few visitors
and pristine unspoilt beaches. Overlooking Sanghiang Bay with its clear
sapphire-blue waters, the Nusa Lembongan Resort offers a panoramic view
of eastern Bali and the majestic silhouette of Mount Agung.
The Nusa Dua tourist resort is part of the Bukit Peninsula in southern
Bali. Some of the most beautiful and luxurious hotels are found here.
The resort is known for its clean white beaches and clear waters. The
surf is gentle along the northern side of the peninsula, bigger along
the south. The most convenient form of transportation to and from Nusa
Dua is by taxi.
Sanur beach has long been a popular recreation site for people from
Denpasar. The palm-lined beach curves from the Bali Beach Hotel toward
the south, facing the Indian Ocean towards the east. Sanur offers many
good hotels, restaurants, shops and other tourist facilities. It is
only a short distance from Denpasar. Public transportation to and from
the city are easily available until well into the night. Offshore reefs
protect the beach against the waves to make it popular for wind surfing,
boating and other water sports.
Peliatan is located between Ubud and Mas. It has been known as the center
of traditional music, and dances. The fine art of local woodcarvers
started a new style of wood carving producing such things as fruits,
flowers and trees in their real shapes and colorings.