Climbing Gunung Batur & Beautiful Ubud

Trip Start Jan 16, 2008
Trip End Nov 2008

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Flag of Indonesia  , Bali,
Sunday, July 6, 2008

We arrived in Bali & headed straight for Ubud a two hour drive into the hills in the centre of the island. We both loved the tiny town, with lots of traditional houses and beautiful Balinese architecture.

We stayed at Sama's cottages where breakfast was served on our veranda every morning by one of the locals, we felt like royalty! The town was surrounded by magnificent rice fields which I just couldn't get enough of. Really took my breath away.

The locals were dressed in their traditional costumes as they had a cremation coming up; one of the royal family was being cremated so the town was doing offerings around the street and getting ready for the day, pity we couldn't stay but it was a wonderful experience seeing the lead up to it. Ruairi even helped with the work making up some dragons for the cremation..

We attended a Legong dance show in the palace where the musicians played a local instrument using a type of hammer. Gorgeous costumes and an extremely tight and well put together show.

We did a nights trekking to Gunung Batur Volcano. Up at 2am and after finding a guide in the local village we climbed over volcanic terrain in the darkness under a blanket of a million stars up the mountain with only a small torch. It was challenging and freezing but so rewarding! The views from the top were spectacular as the sun rose. We enjoyed breakfast(fiery rice dish & fried banana sandwiches) at the top and walked to the crater. We felt like we were in oue of the movies of the Lord of the Rings as the steam rose and filled our nostrils with the smell of sulphur. Our guide was excellent and shared many of his experiences with us. The volcano last erupted in 2000 killing two German girls who were in the crater at the time. Our guide was the one to carry out their bodies.

We finished our visit with a quick stop to the hot springs where the locals jumped at the chance to give us a foot massage... so good! To finish our visit we treated ourselfes to a spa evening of massage and a spicy herbal bath.. mmmmm so nice!
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