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Donnerstag, 19. Januar 2017


Bali - Land of a Thousand Temples

My travelteddy at the beach
Everywhere you hear about Bali, the cultural, the beautiful, the amazing Bali. Well, I have been here for four days and I have to say: It's not a paradise! Bali is full of contrasts.

Chilling in Canggu

Sika Homestay
Our first day in Bali, we spent chilling because we were really tired after our sight seeing days in Singapore. We went to the beach and got shocked! Ever single meter that doesn't belong to anyone was full of waste, plastic bottles, glas bottles, just plastic in general. Unfortunately it was the same at the beach. The waves were breaking loudly and we were watching surfers falling into the ocean. If you don't look around the beach and just focus on the sea it was amazing. So we sat down and enjoyed ourselves. Unlucky for us, we look like rich, white tourists and after a few minutes a sales woman approached us to sell necklaces and bracelets. We said "no" for a thousand times. Then she moved on. When the next one came, we decided to buy one. Then another came and because we were talking so nicely, I bought one again. Then a third. Then a fourth balinese woman came and tried to sell us her jewelry. We said, we had already and then the first woman came back. She started to swear at us, because we didn't buy from her but from the other women. We had to flee!

The odyssey of Vinz and Viola

A hidden temple we found when we didn't find our way
After this little escapade we tried to find a different way home by walking alongside the waves. After a while we got lost. The sun burned our skin, the hot asphalt on my bare feet started to hurt. Thanks to Google Maps, we found our way back - but burned red already and tired. Since every Balinese has its own temple, we found a few nice picture motives on our way - although it's hard to hold the camera in the right angle, so you don't see the plastic waste everywhere.
In Bali it is still customary to put offerings for the gods outside everyday. This is a nice tradition and in earlier days the offering was some home cooked small meal in baskets made out of leaves. Today the offerings also contain sweets, packed in plastic, that will lie on the streets forever.

You can go everywhere in Bali, just not where you want to go

Tanah Lot with all the tourists..
The next day we wanted to see a bit more from the island. Unfortunately it started to rain. Who would've thought, that it rains in the tropics? Well, our tour was cancelled. We were stranded in Canggu, so we decided to walk a little to see the village. The armies of traffic and the waste on the streets made us want to go home soon. We did see a few more nice temples though.
In the afternoon the rain (at the place, where we wanted to go) did stop and our guest mother Sika brought us to the Tanah Lot Temple (or as I call it - the Tanah Lots of Tourists Temple). We knew that it was one of the most photographed sights in Bali - this should've been a lesson. So many people tried to get a good picture! We had to wait in line...

The smell of rain and pizza

La Baracca
In the evening it finally rained in Canggu as well. The heat stopped to be so depressing for a while, when the wind made our hair fly. For the first time in Bali, I was completely relaxed, sitting under a safe hut, watching the rain wetting the rice field.
When it stopped for a while we went for dinner. The italian place next door, called "La Baracca", had delicious food and the atmosphere was amazing. Finally I made my peace with all the contrasts in Bali and started to enjoy the calm, stressfree way of life here.

Who stole the bananas?

My new best friend sitting on my shoulder :)
On our last day with Sika, she took us for a longer trip. First we went to the famous monkey forest. Our hands full of banana, we tried to see lots of monkeys - that was really not a challenge. The challenge was not to give all the banana away at once. A park ranger told us, how to hold it, so the monkeys would sit on our shoulders. After a few tries we finally made it without fear.
Afterwards we drove through ricefields to the Tegenungang waterfall. Because the stream was full of plastic waste as well, we didn't want to go for a swim. Feeling the waterdrops on our faces was nice enough though. The price to enter was high - not in money but in steps. A hundred steps down and back up again. My legs will hurt the next day.
In the end our lovely guest mother Sika brought us to our hotel in Denpasar. We felt, we left our new home, that we found with her.

Last day - Chill day!

Some masks in the Art Museum

On our last day we decided to rest again, since there was not much to do in the area. We went for a little walk - but the street was so full of traffic, we returned after a few minutes. Directly integrated in the hotel was the Art Museum. While I thought this would be local art like paintings and textiles, instead there were old masks, tools, statues - very interesting but again too little information for me (for example if there was a statue, the sign just said where it came from and what it was called, not why the might have made it or who it should represent).
Like in Canggu, Denpasar is a city full of waste. Bali did disappoint me a lot in this way. So here are some not so nice pictures about all the plastic lying around.

Off to Brisbane with the best parting gift

In the evening just before we had to leave for the airport, Bali gave us an amazing parting gift. The last half hour we spent sitting on our balcony just looking and enjoying the most beautiful rainbow during an amazing sunset!
Is there anything more amazing than an rainbow during sunset over the jungle?

Time was flying by again on the island of 1.000 temples and although I didn't find the promised paradise here on Bali, I think it was a good experience, realizing how tourism can destroy or define a culture - and just look at all the pictures - there are some really nice sights here! Also: all the nice and beautiful people make it an amazing experience, being here!

Please forgive me for all my spelling, grammar and vocabulary mistakes!!
My mother tongue is German..

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