Sunday, January 9, 2011

Bali "The Island of the gods"

"Bali, the famed Island of the Gods, with its varied landscape of hills and mountains, rugged coastlines and sandy beaches, lush rice terraces and barren volcanic hillsides all providing a picturesque backdrop to its colourful, deeply spiritual and unique culture, stakes a serious claim to be paradise on earth"

Jamie and I sent out on our trip to Bali on Christmas Day and spent all day in the airport, but the wait was a small sacrafice to pay for the LIFE CHANGING week we were about to spend in Bali, Indonesia.  We arrived at about 2:15 am in the morning and were met by our driver Bade, who was friendly and very outgoing!  We arrived at Flowerbud Bungalows, a beatifully designed bamboo two-story bungalow overlooking beautiful lush gardens to the ocean and Balagan beach.  No electricity, an outside bambo shower with cold water, and lanterns for lights made for relaxation, peace, and a sense of one with nature.  Jamie and I spent two days here travelling and exploring all of the Bukit Peninsula in southern Bali. We traveled through small villages on a motorbike to secluded beaches, temples, amazing ceremonies hindu ceremonies (Kecak Dance) overlooking the ocean in a cliffside ampitheatre.  I tried to go surfing but from being sunburned on the first day and crashing waves, made it difficult to really get ay quality surfing in.  

We then headed to Nusa Lembogan, one of Bali's beautiful eastern islands.  On the boat transfer form the main island we met an Aussie couple, Tara and Shane, who were staying at the same resort we were staying at and became immediate friends and had a more the powerful impact on both me and Jamie proving the interconectedness that is shared between human beings and the energy they possess.  We stayed in a cliffside villa overlooking the Bali Strait with the mighty Mt. Agung being our landscape to the mainland.  It was a mouth-droping eye-poping view which we had never seen aything like before.  We walked along the cliffside into the small village where traditional hindu art was beutifully hand done and sold a small village stores where we met Katut and his wife, whom were so kind and where we bought beautiful buddah wooden carvings, Indonesian masks, and Ganesh drawings.  We went snorkeling the next day at Crystal Bay and Gamat Bay in-between the other two islands where I was literally short for air from the 1st moment I jumped into the water to witness the most amazing coral, fish, and natural enviroment that took me so far out of my element and into the MOMENT!

After speding two days at Nusa Lembogan, we took the boat transfer back to the main island and travelled to Ubud, Bali's beautiful cultural artistic center.  We stayed in a T-House where we were surrounded by beautiful rice paddies, jungle, gardens, and wildlife the like.  As soon as we arrived in Bali and got situated in our T-House we found a brochure on Elephant Night Safari' and we knew we had to make it happen.  Playing with elephants, going on a night safari riding on a beautiful creature such as an elephant, and taking in the beauty of all the elephants was an experience of a lifetime.  The next day we went to the Monkey Forest in Ubud.  This was such a trip and we were warned to not have any jewelry or accessories out or the Monkey's would snatch them up and you might not get them back or if you did in less than mint condition.  Set amongst beautiful shrines, koi fish ponds, and statues, the monkey's were the rulers of their domain and we were guests.  Ubud is filled with amazing art and culture where we really experienced the deleicious food and culture that is Bali, Indonesia.

Our last two days and New Years were spent in Seminyak, Bali.  On the West coast it was definetly where all the action was taking place for New Years and our fellow Aussie friends were staying as well.  We all went out to an amazing dinner with fireworks going off and people dressed to impress.  We ended up at the double 66 party right on the beach where there were 4 stages, olympic size swimming pool, bungee jumping, crazy dance parties, and the beach as our backdrop.  We broke in the New Year with our new friends, the magic that is Bali, and with the woman I love!  In the first few hours of 2011 we were on the beach with waves crashing and fireworks going off in every direction.  Music and circus parties the like, New Years was of EPIC proportion and so was our non-stop action filled week on the "Island of the gods."

Flowerbud Bungalows/Balagan Beach

Uluwatu Temple

Kecak Dance @ Uluwatu Temple

Padang-Padang Beach

Uluwatu Cliffs and Caves

Nusa Lembogan Island

Ubud (T-House, Elephant Safari, Monkey Forest)

New Years in Seminyak with Tara and Shane