Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Bali High - You Want Temples? I Got Temples Part I

We saw a whole ton of sights while in Bali. Since I wasn't sure what Husband J's inclinations were going to be re: sightseeing I just figured that we would do most of it in one jam packed day. We were escorted around for the day by a great guide, Marco Dewa (or Dewa Marco, Balinese names confuse me...although Marco is definitely not a Balinese name!). We loved hanging out with him. He is very friendly, super knowledgeable, a good driver and an overall cool guy. It was fun for us to just have someone all to ourselves for the day. For a list of great private tour guides, check out the Bali Forum on Trip Advisor. It is a treasure trove of info on traveling to Bali (especially if you're Australian...just kidding! There are a ton of Australians on the forum as they are the largest group of travelers to Bali.).

One of our first stops was to Gunung Kawi. Before I get there I should warn you that often you'll see us "dressed up" a bit in our pictures. Many of the sites/temples we saw are used daily by the Balinese, and we needed to adhere to temple dress meaning we needed to have our KNEES covered. For those of you who end up going to Bali, sarongs are almost always provided at many sites. People will try to sell them to you. If you'd like to buy one, by all means do so, but you're not required to buy anything. Some sarongs we got from the temples were better than others.

I think Husband J makes a good model.

Gunung Kawi is split into two parts. It's believed that this portion pictured below is a set of tombs made by King Anak Wungsu for his four favorite concubines. I wonder what the others got? :) They are stone reliefs chiseled from a rock.

The temple at Gunung Kawi

Many of the temples and sights in Bali are smack dab in the middle of some gorgeous scenery.

One of my favorite sights of the day was the Taman Gili (Island Gardens) at Semarapura (the town formerly known as Klungkung).

Bale Kambung (Floating Pavilion)

This area represents the remains of the former Semarapura palace. Bale Kambung was used primarily for important ceremonies.
Another bale next to Bale Kambung, Kerta Gosa, is believed to be an area that was used as a criminal court. On the ceiling, there are intricate drawings depicting what many think are the cruel punishments that awaited criminals way back then.


The view from Bale Kambung was picturesque in itself.

Bale Kambung's ceiling depicts Balinese astrology.
Taman Gili also has a small but not to spectacular museum that you can walk through rather quickly. One thing the museum was helpful for was understanding the Balinese resistance to Dutch colonization. As Husband J said, between Manhattan and Bali, the Dutch had to give up some great islands.


BigAppleNosh said...

So cool! I've never been anywhere remotely like this!

Mrs. Hot Cocoa said...

Sigh. Bali looks gorgeous. If only we had had time for a honeymoon . . . .

Try Anything Once Terri said...

@Mrs. Hot Cocoa - Definitely go somewhere and just call it a honeymoon :) I feel like we had a much better (and much more romantic if I do say so myself) time in Bali than we did on our mini-moon. Hopefully, Husband J doesn't read this. :)


Try Anything Once All rights reserved © 2010
I am a HowJoyful Design