It is incredibly beautiful, more beautiful that it looks like on TV. Everything about Bali is beautiful: the traditional clothes (which I will get to in a later post), the incredible temples, the offerings that people leave at their temples at home, even the food is beautiful!!
The only downside is that alcohol is really expensive in Bali-- an inexpensive local beer (think Bud/Miller) is the equivalent of $10!!! But rather than focus on the one negative, lets look at some pictures instead:
The incredible beaches. The top right corner is a sculpture of a crustacean, and the little umbrella in front houses a holy offering-- its made of bamboo and palm leaves, and usually has fruit and flowers in in it. The two pictures in the bottom panel are from a seafood restaurant on the beach.
Bali is famous for its beautiful temples. Unlike in India, the temples are only open on certain days. They are only accessible to people who are there to worship and in traditional dress. The top panel is a temple on the lake, and the bottom panel shows two different temples at the sea. Both spots were absolutely breathtaking! The pictures do not do them justice. AT. ALL.
One of my favorite parts of the trip was a visit to a monkey sanctuary. Here they monkeys just run around, and are fairly tolerant of humans, although you are warned to (a) not step on the monkey's tails and (b) not carry any food into the sanctuary. None of these pictures have any zoom-- they were literally THISCLOSE!! At one point, another tourist was a victim of theft by monkeys-- they stole his water bottle, opened it, and drank right out of it!!! Its a little dark, but the bottom left panel is a teeny tiny baby monkey--- SO STINKIN CUTE!!!
The beautiful Balinese food. We tried a number of traditional dishes like Nasi Goreng (the national dish), Satay, Nasi Campur and Mie Goreng. Delicious!!!
Unfortunately we weren't there long enough to fit in scuba diving or snorkeling or surf lessons, but if Bali is on your travel wish-list, I would highly recommend giving yourself at least 5 days to see the sights and get in some water sports!
And don't forget to pack your sunblock!!