Day 2 (Part 1) – Pura Taman Ayun, Strawberry Stop & Pura Ulu Danu @ Bratan Lake, BedugulOctober 16, 2009 | 9,086 views
From previous chapter of Bali Day 1 – Bali Sorgawi Hotel & Made’s Warung in Kuta …..
Breakfast spread at Bali Sorgawi Hotel in Kuta, Bali – Complimentary with the rooms provided (for rates and contact, please refer to the previous post HERE)
After endless hours on transportation modes, from trains to bus and flight to van, we retired to our slumber in record’s time, but not before channel-surfing for a dose of Hollywood in the form of Terminator : Rise of the Machines on cable channel. Nothing beats a shower after some serious brisk walking for at least a kilometre (or probably more) from Bali Sorgawi Hotel to Made’s Warung, followed by some pampering in the form of appeasing the couch potatoes in us.
The entrance to Pura Taman Ayun (Taman Ayun Temple in Mengwi, Bali)
Day two of our journey started off with a bang. Waking up refreshed, and recharged, we had our breakfast in the hotel. Options include the predictable toasts, fried rice and fried noodles. But we ain’t complaining, for free food sounded good, plus eliminating the need to walk under the hot sun (note that the sun rises comparatively early in Bali, and by 9-10am, it got a little too warm for a leisurely stroll).
Better plan ahead, ladies. Or bring along some pills to delay your monthly calling.
Shrines in the courtyard of Pura Taman Ayun, Paintings drawn on the spot, and the quirky Easter eggs?
Pura Taman Ayun, or Taman Ayun Temple in the village of Mengwi about 8km from Ubud is one of the many temples in Bali that warrants a visit. For photography sessions and camwhoring, the awe-inspiring architectures of the temples and shrines in some of Bali’s most popular temples (trust me, you’ll be seeing a LOT of temples in the future posts) did captivate our utmost attention.
As they said, either you’re in Bali for the temples and sight-seeing, OR you’re in for some surfing-good fun at the beaches and relaxation at the spa.
Sights in and around Pura Taman Ayun
Entrance fee is IDR3000 / RM1 / USD0.30 per person, and decent clothes is expected. But no ‘sarong’ (kilt-like fabric commonly worn by men and women of Muslim origin in Asia) was put on any of us at Pura Taman Ayun, unlike the other temples we’re about to see in my future posts.
Charming pagodas of Pura Taman Ayun at the last courtyard that is not accessible to the public, unless on certain occasions whereby the ladies would offer their prayers in front of the merus
A sense of serenity swept over me. But only for a very, very short moment. Darn the blistering hot weather!!!
You can read more about the history of Pura Taman Ayun HERE. The temple has a long-standing 375 years of history, thus a visit to this beautiful temple is almost compulsory on every first-timer’s itinerary.
### Talking about itinerary, throughout our stay in Bali, we hired a driver named Komang Triawan to ferry the TEN of us around in his personal microbus (yes, smaller than a minibus, but larger than a van – go figure!). For a full day’s tour, the rate is IDR500,000 / RM182.50 / USD 52, while half day’s tour about IDR 300,000. Full review of the driver to come in a later post. Yup, he probably deserves a whole post to himself. Not all positive/glowing reviews though, mind you.
Tel No : +628124656357, E-mail : firstname.lastname@example.org ###
From Pura Taman Ayun, we proceeded to Strawberry Stop at Bedugul, a cooling mountain town to the north of Kuta. Almost reminded us of Cameron Highlands. Notice I used the word ‘almost’, as the hot sun was permeating through whatever mist/fog enshrouding the mountains and Bratan Lake,a vast lake that is breathtaking, and said to be filling an ancient volcanic crater in Bedugul.
The Strawberry Stop covers a rather small piece of land, with various plantations, such as strawberries, bananas, vegetables, and flowers, as well as a cafe that serves various savoury and sweet delights.
Strawberry plantations – WITHOUT any ripe strawberries. Duh.
The officially FIRST lunch in Bali that did not manage to impress. Hmm ….
Our driver was intending to send us for a buffet lunch in Bedugul, that might well cost us an arm and a leg. And then some. But we protested, for buffet lunches suit the typical tourists well, but definitely not us. Hence we chose to have a simpler lunch at the cafe at Strawberry Stop, that serves various local delights such as fried rice and noodles, as well as toasts, pancakes and jaffles. Jaffle is a rather popular item on the menus in Bali, which sounds fancy but in reality is merely toasted sandwich with fillings.
Thirst-quencher of a Strawberry Milk Shake (IDR10,000 / RM3.65 / USD1), Fresh strawberries with Vanilla Ice-Cream (IDR8,000 / RM2.92 / USD0.83) and Pancake with Strawberries, Honey and Vanilla Ice-cream (IDR15,000 / RM5.50 / USD1.60)
The desserts outshone the mains, no doubt. Try the strawberry milk shake, and the slightly sourish tamarillo milk shake (that’s equally pink, and tasted almost like strawberries, but it’s actually a vegetable). The meal came to about IDR30,000 / RM 11 / USD 3 per person.
Strawberry Stop is NOT a common stop-over for tourists to Bedugul. And if you’re intending to savour a buffet spread of Indonesian delights, your driver may not even put this on the itinerary. Nothing much to see here, but some vegetations, live rabbits (to be slaughtered for their meat, it seemed) and the strawberry desserts.
Pura Ulu Danu @ Bratan Lake, Bedugul, Bali – A magnificient sight to behold
Thankfully, albeit the sweltering heat, the mountainous terrains of Bedugul was a cool respite. As we adjourned to the temple by Bratan Lake, another famous destination named Pura Ulu Danu (Ulu Danu Temple), we felt deeply soothed by the breeze, and the significantly cooler climate.
Entrance fee to the temple is IDR10,000 / RM3.65 / USD 1 per person.
Vibrant colours and fresh flowers surrounding the temple afloat the lake
We could’ve spent hours by the lakeside, soaking in the chilly breeze and scenic atmosphere ….. had it not been the growling tummies and the prospect of watching sunset at Tanah Lot
Magnificient. Wondering how they can reach the temple by foot?
Do visit Wikitravel’s article on Bedugul for a clearer picture of the central highlands named Bedugul in Bali.
to be continued ……….