|Bali (day 8): Bat Cave Temple, Demonic Ceilings (klungklung), Mother Temple Besakih & Bangli
||[Jan. 14th, 2015|12:14 pm]
Tuesday 13 December
That day we decided to change from just booking a taxi driver for the day and booked on a tour. A little bit cheaper, but a bit more on a time schedule (like 1 hour for that temple...) but as it was just us on it we able to tweak the tour a bit to fit more our preferences)
This was an east of Bali tour.
We started with another Batik factory but this one had some amazingly complex machines and a fab very kitsch temple in the middle.
That where all the bicyle go to heaven :)
little temple in middle of factory
more colourful creatures :)
From there we went to the coast and our first sighting of the blue sea, the temple we weer much looking forward to visit was: Goa Lawah
Goa Lawah or Bat Cave Temple
This temple had grown around a cave of thousands of little fruit bats, they just added a few temples in front of them but you can still see them well in full daylight. The most bats i have ever seen and the odd bat carvings on the temples too. Unfortunately we were slow at reacting the guy showing us the entry, decided to double up as a unwanted guide, making it all a bit hush and stressful and of course wanting money at the end. I've read it enough in guide always say no, but it all happen a bit too fast (and up to now never been an issue at any temples) so that temple ended up more costly, especially as it's seller outside were impossible to shift and ended up with more costly bracelets than planned...and as Simon posted with 'you buy... you buy!' ringing in our ears.
i guess the upside of a guide we have rare photos together
front of the cave
the cave and its many many bats
little bat souvenir
At least the next temple was back to usual serenity in Klungkung Water Palace, the basic remains of the palace are the court of justice pavilion, the main gate and a floating pavilion, the Bale Kembang. Very pretty setting but most fantastic was the painted ceilings of the pavilions with scenes of local myths involving demons boiling people in pots, chopping them up, burning them or eating them.
various way to depict violence and death :)
Next was the most important, oldest, holiest and highest temple in Bali it has surrounded itself with satellite temples for every religion and occasion: Mother Temple of Besakih. Perched nearly 1000 meters up the side of Gunung Agung and is built on six levels, terraced up the slope. Unfortunately you tend to be forced to make 'donations' at every turn and for every reason, our driver tried to warn us but hard when asked by officials at entry, we tried not to have a guide but were told that he was not a guide but a "guardian" and being such holy temple you cannot go without (every tourist seemed to have one until we saw one strong tourist escape entry without one with strong NO!!! but that was at the end of our tour) For the first time i got a bit annoyed (and that was only the entry) but then he managed to make me feel a bit guilty about it....of course he turned out to be just a guide and an unhappy one when we refuse to give him much money at the end. This was the worst visit as a result and to be fair of all the temple in Bali the least interesting one visually. Still it makes me trust my organisation skills as it was not one i was planning to visit and just happen to be part of the tour.
That visit was a bit disappointing but then considering how many lovely and relax temple visits we have done , one stressful one is not too bad :)
in cloudy mountain
the "guardian" at least was trigger happy with our camera
Slightly battleworn by those visits our driver took us to a lovely restaurant overlooking rice terraces and more fabulous kitsch creatures dotted around.
i just love those wish i could fit them all in my suitcase
feeling replenished and refreshed after quite a morning
The last visit was the traditional village Penglipuran in Bangli (we did call it the Balinese Cotswolds), old fashion setting with one street with quaint little houses on each side you can pop by and have a look , gosh it was hot !!! of course various local temples dotted at top and end of the street but we were temples out that day so mostly enjoyed visiting the village.
those bamboo deco are all hand made for the galangan festival and are just everywhere