“Bali for tourism? NO! Tourism for Bali? YES!”
Well, this is a motto from HPI, an organization which protects tourism in Bali. It is nice and well said, isn’t it? I got it when I was visiting their office almost a month ago. This motto is short but it clearly states about how tourism industries in Bali develop which protects Bali quite well. In this motto, they want people in Bali to work together to develop tourism in Bali without disregarding its culture. They keep on dancing traditional dances such as Kecak dance, keep on wearing traditional clothes in many occasions, keep on designing their home according to the custom rule, and etc. These side of them are very unique. They have their own identity which is different from the other tribes. But Bali is not only about the culture. The beauty of nature occurs in Bali. Starting from the beaches, waterfalls, mountains, hills, lakes, rivers, sea etc., we can find all of them in Bali. Huge trees and vast paddies field are the most common view in Bali, especially when we are in Tabanan region. No wonder if you look at the google map using satelite option, you will see Bali mostly in green color.
Because of the richness of its culture and its nature, people has realized that Bali has a good prospect. It can attract many tourists to come which is good for their economic matters. Then they have started to learn how to manage business and tourism professionally and how to produce and how to market local products. Most of Balinese make a living from tourism.
So almost a month ago, I went to Bali with my friends and lectures from English for Travel class. We took a tour travel agent with us because we planned to visit Bali in three days with a large number, totally 45 people. It is more advantageous for us to use a tour travel agent because it is not easy to arrange all things and manage every person needs by ourselves, starting from the accommodations, hotels, food, the places we want to visit, and etc. By using a tour travel agent every thing will be simpler, easier, and more organized.
But if you want to travel in a few number (alone, partner, or in a group) I think it will be more pleasurable if you travel by yourself. Compared to my experiences, travel solo allows you to enjoy your visit at ease. You do not need to be rushed by the time because you are free to decide how long you will stay at a certain place. While if you use a tour travel agent you cannot do this because they have arranged your schedules before. Then, unlike traveling with a tour agent, in a travel solo, you can change your direction easily if you have a sudden interest of going somewhere or a sudden need. For example, when you are going to somewhere then suddenly you find a new tourist attraction, you can drop by and visit that place for awhile then continue to your first destination. It is more flexible I think. Because it was a tour travel, the joy of the trip lay on the journey itself, not the destinations. It was more special because we spent three days together with friends. A lot of new experiences and funny stories were made. Creating memories with friends is what matters the most.
So, where did we go?
Following to the schedules given by our tour travel agent, we visited seven places which some of them were new for me.
Located in South Kuta, Badung, Bali, Tanjung Benoa is known as the place to play many kinds of water sports such as parasailing, flying fish, banana boat, jet ski, water ski, etc. I decided to try parasailing because it seemed so fun. It costs Rp 100000 each person. I had never tried it before so it was a new experience for me. I was excited and I enjoy it tremendously. When I was flying high in the sky and watching the view below, I was amazed. It was wonderful. I did love to see the blue sky, the horizon, and the buildings which looked small from up there. Unfortunately, it only took 8 until 10 minutes in one turn which it seemed less than a minute for me. I really want to try it again next time if I have a chance, and money of course 😀 It’s a must to try!
Aside from the water sports, another activity you can do in Tanjung Benoa beach is you can go to the Turtle island which costs Rp 500000 per boat with maximum capacity 10 people, or you can just enjoy the view by sitting in a bench or a restaurant nearby the beach.
The guide once told us why Tanjung Benoa has been chosen to be the official place for water sports activities.
“Unlike most beaches in Bali, this beach has no wave and the wind doesn’t blow strongly. It’s perfect for water sport.”, He said.
Located in the west side of Bali, Kuta is known as the perfect place to watch sunset. Sunset in Kuta is indeed beautiful. I ever saw it last year and it was beautiful. Too bad we couldn’t see sunset at that time because we must leave the beach at 4 pm.
Besides the beach, Kuta has another feature to be offered. You can find a lot of interesting malls, restaurants, and hotels nearby the beach. Most of them were designed beautifully which could inspire people who pass by. Whether it inspires them to redecorate their room, house, to write a novel perhaps, or to create handmade things. Then for those who like shopping luxury items, Kuta Beachwalk is a paradise for them. It is close to the beach. However, this beach was quite dirty when we were there. There were too many people came to visit but sadly they left litters behind. The cute thing in this beach was that there were many cute dogs there.
Kuta’s also known as the “Las Vegas” of Bali. Why? Because Kuta never sleeps. Kuta is still crowded whether it is on a day or night!
Puja Mandala is located in Nusa Dua, Badung, Bali. It is a complex of five worships in one place. Those five worships represent five religions in Indonesia, Islam with the mosque, Catholic and Christians with the churches, Hindu with the temple and Buddhist with the vihara. Uniquely, the area and the height of those five worships are exactly equal. No worship is higher than the others. No worship is wider than the others. No worship is narrower than the others. All of them have the exact amount of area and height. This shows the tolerance among people with different religions and beliefs in Bali. Therefore Puja Mandala is a symbol of tolerance that teach us to live harmoniously, tolerate and respect each other whatever the religions people hold.
Pantai Pandawa or Pandawa Beach
Located in Kutuh village, Bali, Pandawa beach is the newest beach in Bali which is quite well-known. The huge limestone craved beautifully along the way to the Pandawa beach reveals the vast green-blue ocean. Leading down to the beach, there are six large statues displayed which each of them is derived from Mahabarata epic. They are Dewi Kunti, and the famous five Pandawas which are Dharmawangsa, Bima, Arjuna, Nakula and Sadewa. Pandawa beach is known not only because of the limestone and the statues, but the beach itself is indeed beautiful. It has white sand beach, green-blue sea water, and low wave which allows us to swim and canoeing. However, this beach was too crowded for me. It was more crowded than Kuta. It was uncomfortable. I couldn’t enjoy the beach with pleasure because there were too many people around. So when the first time I saw the beach, I did not have any interest, and so did Emyl. After sitting on a bench quite long and doing nothing, we decided to stroll around and finally found a quiet place far from the crowd. We could enjoy the beach without having too many people around. That was the first time I realized that this beach was actually worth to see. That green-blue sea water degradation is what I like the most.
Jimbaran beach is the best place to spend your dinner time. Sitting by the beach with the scent of the sea, with the view of peaceful vast ocean, beautiful sunset, and planes landing once in awhile, and with the wave sounds… Woa, what a perfect blend! It’s kind of romantic, isn’t it? That’s why people love to come here with people they love to have dinner together, whether they come with their family, friends, or lover. The main menu in every restaurant commonly is seafood made of fresh fish straightly from the fishermen. Beside seafood, they also have the other menus so for those who have an allergic to seafood, you do not need to be worry. You can order your favorite menu here too.
Beratan Lake, Bedugul
Beratan Lake is one of popular tourist attractions in Bali. It lies on the 1231 meters above sea level so it has cool temperature. The combination of the view of the lake and mountain is peacefully amazing. You will feel relaxed in this place just by looking at the scenery. Many kind of activities you can find here, such as canoeing, jets ki, or riding a kind of motor duck? lol I don’t know what it’s called. Nearby the lake, there is a mosque so for Moslem, they can take a rest and pray there. Fyi, finding a mosque is quite difficult in Bali because the majority people in Bali are Hindu. Here I have some lists of mosques in Bali. You can click here.
Tanah Lot is a temple which lies in the middle of the sea. It is located in Tabanan region, about 20 kilometers from Denpasar. The sunset view in Tanah Lot is indeed beautiful. When I was there, there were some couples doing their pre-wedding photo shoots. One of them was from South Korea, which I could recognize them from their language and face. They were so cute and lovey dovey. Somehow they reminded me of a my favorite couple from Korea which also came to Bali several months ago. I miss them so bad! 😦 Sorry for off topic ^^p
Well, a lot of myths spread out around here. First, if you go to the temple with your boyfriend or girlfriend, your relationship won’t get long. But it doesn’t happen for married couple. Lol, many couples came here, including that Korean lovebirds. They haven’t married yet though, Opss. Second, for woman who is pregnant and menstruation, she is not allowed to enter the temple because she is regarded as dirty and it’s a holy place. Third, there is pure water under the temple. People believe if they drink the water it could bring out their fortune. Fourth, there is a white snake sacred by Balinese. This is not a myth. You can see it in the cave and you can touch it. Well, I tried to find the snake with Ory but we didn’t make it. The sea water was getting higher and we didn’t want to wet our clothes so we didn’t go to the temple. Those are the myths from Tanah Lot. Believe or not, it’s up to you. It depends on your faith. 🙂
I never get enough of Bali. I always fall in love with Bali every time I visit this island. It served me well to get out of my hectic college life for a while, at least for three days.
Oh, I almost forget to tell you this. This is an item you must bring if you plan to visit Bali. An identity card or KTP. Always bring it every where when you are in Bali. If you don’t bring it, prepare yourself to be kicked out from Bali. You are not allowed to enter Bali without identity card. Usually they will check it in Ketapang. But I don’t know why, they did not check our identity card at that time. And sorry for putting too many pictures. To be honest, I would put all my pictures if I could. hehehe It’s too bad not to be showed :p That’s all from this post. I hope you enjoy my post and Sampai Jumpa! 😀