Monday, February 29, 2016

Ubud, Bali {Markets, Temples & Monkeys}

Walking everywhere around Ubud worked for us most of the time, however, we loved that we had our hotel's free shuttle to rely on when it was raining or a long walk. We jumped in and headed for breakfast at the Lotus Cafe. This was right in front of Sarasawati Temple - which I thought was the most beautiful of all temples we visited in Bali.

This temple was right across from Ubud Market, so we explored a bit in here as well. We had visited the previous day as part of our cooking class as well. In the morning, the market is produce and meat - in the afternoon, the market turns more touristy with souvenirs, bags and $3 "ray-bans". Ha. We picked up some beautiful wood carvings, silver jewelry boxes and an ornamental necklace. And then some fun cheapo things as well, like a woven bag and those previously mentioned sunglasses!

 After, we walked along Monkey Forest Road (one of the main roads in town) to the Monkey Sanctuary. There are a few notices up, but basically, don't bring anything shiny, don't hide food because they monkeys WILL find it, don't make eye contract and don't feed them anything other than bananas! We saw some guy giving one candy and it made me SO angry. The monkeys here weren't particularly aggressive and we enjoyed walking around enjoying their cuteness.

It was rainy, so you can see a super cute picture of some monkeys huddled under cover. We wandered around for a while, working up an appetite. We had a super delicious and boozy lunch at Three Monkey's Cafe and watched the rain falling over the rice paddies. Afterwards, we had them call our hotel to come pick us up.

That afternoon we had arranged a driver to take us to the rice terraces, Royal Temple and Tanah Lot temple. It was still pretty rainy out, so we were glad to have someone driving us around. This was the first time rain had really impacted us at all - surprising since we were traveling in rainy season - so we weren't really all that upset. The rain was definitely on when we arrived at the Tegallalang Rice Terraces. They were beautiful, but there isn't really a ton more to see than this. You weren't able to walk down the rice terraces or anything. 

Next up was the Royal Family Temple (Pura Taman Ayun). Interesting sign before you walk into the temple. Apparently menstruating women (or anyone with an open wound) are not allowed in the temple! Tanah Lot was really the main attraction, but due to the CRAZY umbrella destroying winds, we weren't able to get very close.

The rain impacted our drive to our next hotel - we were probably in the car for about 2 hours, just trying to avoid flooded roads, getting detoured and generally just sitting in terrible traffic. The infrastructure in Bali is just...horrible! This is what is keeping a lot of places "off the beaten path" though, since it really is hard and takes a long time to get anywhere. We were pretty happy to finally arrive at our hotel in Legian. We grabbed a quick and easy dinner, had a soak in our outdoor bath tub and called it a night!

Up Next: Our Last Bali Post - Beach Bars, Yummy Food and Relaxation!

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