Bali, Indonesia

Oh Bali, you have beautiful temples, rich culture and good food, but I would not want to go back there. May be it was the location, the time of year, or the taxi scam at the airport, but none of these contributed to a great overall experience. The discrepancy between the well-manicured, posh resorts for tourists and the local neighborhoods was too great, which made me feel out of place the entire time. The beach was just ok. The water was nice and clean in the morning, but by the afternoon the currents brought trash.

We hired a car and driver for a day and explored some of the sites on the island. We started early in the morning to avoid the traffic, which could get pretty bad on the narrow one-lane streets. To get away from the frustration of hassling with the locals at the Mother Temple of Besakih, we decided to skip it. Even our driver agreed that the locals around that temple are out control and advised us against it. There were plenty other temples to see.

A statue at the entrance to the Royal Temple of Mengwi

A statue at the entrance to the Royal Temple of Mengwi

The Royal Temple of Mengwi

At 7 am only the cats were roaming the Royal Temple of Mengwi

The Royal Temple of Mengwi

The Royal Temple of Mengwi

Tegallalang Rice Terraces

Tegallalang Rice Terraces

Pura Tanah Lot

Pura Tanah Lot

Pura Tanah Lot

Pura Tanah Lot

In Indonesia they grow and harvest the most expensive coffee in the world – luwak coffee. The coffee beans are consumed and excreted by the Asian palm civet which looks like a weasel. Gave it a try, meh. With my unsophisticated taste buds not worth the money:)

Tea and Luwak coffee tasting

Tea and Luwak coffee tasting

Pura Ulun Danu on the Bratan lake

Pura Ulun Danu on the Bratan lake

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Dressed up for a ceremony at the temple

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Women are carrying on top of their heads their baskets with offerings. Amazing skill.

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More people coming to the ceremony at the temple on lake Bratan.

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Waiting for the tourists to buy him bananas

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Typical village in Bali. According to the driver, these are decorations for the local “Christmas”

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The beach

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Dinner on the beach

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If you want to have dinner on the beach, you better share with the local dogs. They were not aggressive at all, they were using the ‘puppy eyes’ approach :)

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The hotel villa was very nice. The net around the bed is what kept my blood safe from the mosquitoes.

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Outdoor bathtub

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private pool

We had some amazing, Michelin-star quality food with infusions, powders and foams which surely woke up our taste buds. We accidentally came across Cuca restaurant on the way back from the beach and what an experience! It’s run by a Canadian born Chef and his wife. All the tapas were out of this world, both presentation and taste.

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From the top: some sort of foam, smoked fish, octopus and cauliflower, sesame seed chicken, pulled pork, risotto, ice cream in caramel sauce

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