It’s almost an Aussie rite of passage to go to Bali, but despite living in Perth for over ten years, hubby and I never made it there, until recently. I guess you can say we’re relaxed travellers, and don’t want to spend all day driving everywhere, so we chose Ubud, and just explore around the area. We were only there for four days. Just for a challenge and wanting to photograph a nice sunrise, I signed us up for a Sunrise Trekking Tour to Mount Batur, Kintamani.
Mount Batur, Kintamani
This was definitely the highlight of our trip! It started at around 2am, the driver picked us up, as well as ten others from different hotels and resorts and we made our way towards the mountain. I think we got to the gathering area around 4am. I was really glad that there were a lot of people, and I mean in the hundreds. I was afraid we would be the only ones and no one would see my fall off the side of the mountain, lol! I would say we are not the fittest people, and I was carrying almost 10kg of gear: camera, tripod, a few lenses. It’s also our first hike ever, and it was not what I expected!
The climb was tough for me, and it was in darkness. I thought it would be steep, but I did not expect it to resemble rock climbing at a 45 degree angle (towards the top, the last hour of the climb). Our group was really fit, and it took hubby and myself maybe an extra hour after our group to reach the peak, I think in total was about 3.5 hours. Anyway, we made it, just in time for me to set up. The view was certainly worth it, and lugging all the camera gear up was worth it too!
That second peak on the right is where we were! Well, we walked further after sunrise to see the active volcano, the hot steam coming up from the earth, a glimpse of a cave and lake, then it’s 3.5 hours walking back. I would say going down the mountain in broad daylight is scary, I’m happy the guide held my hand and showed me where to step. Since it’s loose gravel, it’s quite easy to slide or slip, but since there were so many people there’s literally a line and queue down, someone is always there to help catch you or stop you from falling.
Since it started at 2am, we didn’t sleep that night, and we only arrive the same day before, so by the time we got back to our villa, we were so exhausted we slept till 6pm.
Tegenungan Waterfall, Ubud
The next day, we decided to visit the waterfall nearby. It was really hot and humid, and lo and behold, another hundred steps down to the waterfall and back up (my legs are like jelly by this point). It’s beautiful and refreshing, but I would say Malaysia have prettier waterfalls. 🙂
The highlight is this guy right here, the lifeguard sleeping, and facing away away from the waterfall!
Monkey Sanctuary, Ubud
I’m not really fond of monkeys, they are so naughty and mischievous and all the ones I know just tend to steal things and bite you. So I was a bit apprehensive going into this monkey forest, but it turns out they are all very friendly and quite tame. I didn’t have a long range lens so I had to get pretty close to them to get these shots.
Amrit Villa Bed and Breakfast, Mas Village
We stayed at this lovely villa in the wood carving village known as Mas, in a cluster of craft villages. The family lives there as well in a separate building, and the area also has a sculpture gallery and workshop. Wayan’s father is the main carver, the whole village use to be wood carvers or sculptors in fact, but now it’s down to about half as the younger ones want to do something different. The place is clean, secluded and they have made it easy by offering free rides into the main town, only ten minutes away. On our last day we used their scooter and drove ourselves around Ubud!
It was definitely an adventure, we did many things we haven’t done before! Stayed at an AirBnb, hiked a mountain, rode a scooter through town!