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Saturday, February 22, 2014

Last days in Ubud (Bali)

Even though we'd thoroughly enjoyed our road trip it was great to be back in Ubud. Foremost on our 'To Do' list was to have another massage. Following a recommendation for Funny Monkey, one of the many salons along the main street, we tried a full body 1-hour massage. Wow, to feel so good for so little, only IDR150,000 (about US$12.50) for both of us! Excellent value for money!

We fitted in repeat visits to all three of our favourite restaurants. Café Lotus is located on the main street and has a magnificent view to the adjacent temple.

The view from our table in the restaurant -

Café Gayatri serves the most delicious 'Opor Ayam' - a chicken curry full of flavour! The garden seating at the back of the restaurant also looked out onto a small temple. At night the glowing votive candles that line the entrance bridge and walkways create a very romantic atmosphere. It was so inviting and we loved it ... enough to return again and again!

We'd pre-arranged to return the motorbike to the couple who had rented it to us, Nyoman and Tinni, at the Biah Biah restaurant. We greeted each other like old friends and shared tales from our adventure. Over a 2-week period we'd traveled almost 600kms (about 375 miles) on the bike and we think Nyoman was relieved to have it back in one piece. He gave it the once-over and declared we could rent it again anytime!

As for us, the limit of our good karma on the bike may have been reached, at least on this trip. We'd survived without serious accident but we both felt our odds were diminishing fast. The bike had undoubtedly made a huge difference in our holiday experience but we were also a little relieved to see it go. Free from any responsibility, we could fully relax and enjoy our authentic Balinese food, served tapas-style on banana leaves!

The white-tented restaurant on the quiet rice-paddy walk lured us back; it was rather noisy when the breeze picked up but the food was absolutely delicious! 

We squeezed in the time to mail all our postcards. At one stage in its history Bali was occupied by the Dutch; when I looked at the sign for the post office I found myself wondering how much of that language had made it into the daily Balinese vocabulary. The camera accompanied me on our walks around town and I snapped a few shots of things that interested us.

Rules are obviously meant to be broken - this photo was taken outside a government building!

A typical street scene; motorcycles far exceed the number of cars.

The Ubud Royal Palace, now used as a main site for nightly cultural dance performances.

A treehouse that childhood dreams are made of?

What a beautiful setting for a wedding!

Some of the shopfronts begged to be photographed.

The music shops were interesting; the traditional instruments fascinating.

On our last day in Ubud we spontaneously chose to have another massage. How could we not take advantage of these fantastic prices? We picked somewhere at random and enjoyed another 1-hour full body massage, this time for a total of only IDR130,000 (about US$10.70). Our three massage experiences have been different but all equally as good. If only there was time for more!

Note on current exchange rate: US$1.00 is about Indonesian Rupiah IDR12,160 is about ZAR10.60

1 comment:

  1. I am thrilled that you and Dennis managed your trip on the scooter without major incident! What a great experience Bali has been - wouldn't it be lovely if massages were that price in SA or USA! I'd definitely schedule a weekly session into my schedule!