Tirtagangga (“Water of the Ganges”) is the last water garden project of raja Anak Agung Anglurah Ketut Karangasem (1887-1966). He started its construction after Indonesia's declaration of independence, when formally he was not a king any more.
The 1.2 ha garden complex sits on a natural spring at 300 m elevation in the foothills of Agung volcano. The spring delivers abundant water all year round to an array of ponds, swimming pools, fountains and spouts in the form of fable animals - as well as to the town of Amlapura.
When Theo visited Tirtagangga in 1969 with a Balinese student, the garden was in a sorry shape. Earthquakes during the prolonged 1963 eruption of Mount Agung had broken ducts, cracked walls, and toppled many statues. As a consequence the fountains and spouts ran dry and the water level in the basins was low. There never was a fence or wall around the garden. The local population - who also had suffered dearly from the eruption - had taken away all usable materials and used the basins as their bathing place. See some historic pictures in the travelogue Tirtagangga then and now,
From 1979 onwards the heirs of king Anglurah Ketut Karangasem have patiently endeavoured to restore the garden. Their wealth being greatly reduced, they had to do this step by step. When Theo visited again in 1991, the upper swimming pool had been fenced; the proceeds of entrance tickets went to the restoration fund.
Nowadays when you visit, you can again see the garden as the king envisioned it. On your right when you enter is Mahabharata pond featuring 20 statues of figures from the Mahabharata epos, which you can admire from close by via a path of stepping-stones. Other highlights are the central eleven-tiered fountain pillar and Demon Island in the large southern pond accessed by dragon bridges. Walk around and admire the attention to details, statues big and small. The best time to visit is in the morning; by 4 pm the garden lies in the shadow of the hill.
If you should wish to stay longer, there is enough choice of accommodation, from bacpacker-style Dhangin Taman Inn right by the garden gate to Tirta Ayu Hotel and Tirta Gangga Villas overlooking the garden from the former compound of the royal family.
Open: 6 am to 6 pm, but 24/24 hours for staying guests.
Admission: Foreigners Rp 10,000, Indonesian citizens Rp 5,000. For the upper swimming pool you pay separately.
In colonial times Bali was divided in eight kingdoms, the kings of which ruled under Dutch supervision. Since independence those kingdoms are now constituted as regencies: Jembrana, Tabanan, Badung, Gianyar, Klungkung, Bangli, Buleleng, Karangasem.
The last raja to rule Karangasem - the most easterly kingdom - was Anak Agung Anglurah Ketut Karangasem. He reigned from 1909 to 1945, and stood out among his colleagues by the number of wives he married and children he sired, and by his obsession with water palaces.
Taman Ujung Water Palace, locally referred to as Taman Soekasada Ujung, was inaugurated by the king in 1921 as a retreat for his large family. Its architectural style is a combination of Balinese and European. The garden complex contains two large ponds, the palace sits in the middle of the northern one and is accessible by two bridges on opposite sides. In the other pond is a bale for ceremonies and theatrical performances. A pavilion at the highest point in the garden provides a look-out over the sea in the direction of Lombok, at the time subject to the kingdom of Karangasem.
The palace and garden were damaged by the 1963 eruption of Gunung Agung. When Theo saw them for the first time in 1969 one could walk freely around the neglected garden and into the ruined palace. Revisiting in the middle seventies he found entrance to the palace barred. Local people said that it had been leased to a foreigner - a retired pilot -, who presumably spent some money in making the place habitable. The earthquake of 1979 did more damage.
The rise of mass tourism finally encouraged the Karangasem government to restore this neglected gem - as much as possible. On September 18th, 2004, the governor of Bali inaugurated the “revitalised Taman Soekasade Ujung Karangasem”. Now the compound is fenced, the gardens are well-tended, the palace-in-the-pond functions as a modest museum with portraits of one-time royals. But lacking are the stained glass windows - part of the original palace design. And the pavilion still has no roof.... see travelogue Puri Taman Ujung.
On our last visit, August 2011, we saw an unfinished villa park on the hillside overlooking the water palace. Too big...., if they had built and finished half of it, we could have stayed there.
Open: 7am to 6pm.
Admission: Rp 20,000. A guide may turn up offering to explain the portraits in the museum. You are free to accept or decline the offer.
We had been to Lovina often, but never yet to the Singsing waterfalls. Well, you should not miss them when you stay at Lovina. The little rain-river runs down its rocky bed in several falls, some low some higher. It takes a bit of effort to climb up to the last one; that is exactly why you will have the pool there for yourself!
As the falls are located in low hills, the water is not too clear. But it is good enough for swimming. Even so when we there in June, not the best season. Try going there in the rainy season!
No need for a guide really, although we saw several tourists coming with one.
About 5 km west from Lovina along the main road find the signboard 'Air Terjun Singsing' pointing south. After only 600 m in that direction you have to park your wheels (if you came with them). A footpath leads from there to the left, just 500 m to the first fall and pool. Do not waste your time here. Cross the river and follow the rocky path upstream with the river on your right hand. [Pic 1]
This leads to two consecutive pools. If you think you have climbed enough, then have a dip in the second one behind the disused barrier wall. [Pic 2]
But if you have strength left, find the stairs on the right of the pool when facing upstream. These stairs of 200 steps lead up to a newly built restaurant with good views of the valley below. [Pic 3. Actually you could also drive here, just follow the road past the parking below.]
Walking through the yard of the restaurant and out of the gate, turn left and uphill. Soon the road becomes unpaved and changes into a footpath. Remember that you have to go uphill keeping the river on your left hand. After 15 minutes you reach the river again. Go on upstream finding your way along the rocky river bed until you reach another large pool.
At least this is the last one we discovered, we did not explore the narrow paths leading further from here, but stayed for a good swim.
Spend one evening walking in legian street , you can dine and shop. there's plenty of international restaurants , pups and clothing stores. it's more live at night and can be very crowded but it's safe for female traveler to walk at night.
There is a great beach in Bali, at Nusa Dua. Mengiat Beach is one of Bali’s jewels and a well kept secret. The beach is owned by an association of local fishermen who take great care and pride in their beach.
About 3 kilometers south of Bali's international airport, the fishing village of Kedonganan boasts a traditional fish market and a great number of traditional fishing boats that can be engaged to sail around the gulf for a picturesque view of the cresent beach.
Beji temple is located in Sangsit village. For local people this temple is known as Pura Subak; subak here refers to the organization for water supply or irrigation. Pura Subak is a holy place and here you can worship Dewi Sri the Goddess of rice and the symbol of prosperity. The temple is picturesque and full of ornamental carvings mostly in the form of rambling plants and floral motives as is the typical style of Buleleng. The most significant thing in this temple is that every surface has a carving so it is extremely artistic. Moreover all of the carvings are painted thus making this colorful temple very unique.
You can't visit Bali without going to the spa! in my case I've been to Febri's spa @ Febri Hotel because it was close to my hotel and the reviews were good, it was clean, the treatments not that expensive, the massage was OK but can't say it was the best.
Ps. the complementary juice they serve caused me a stomachache.
i'm balinese in living in bali.. maybe i can suggest something..
Well in Jimbaran there are many beaches which are beautiful that you can enjoy, and your parent also can enjoy Balinese dance its called Kecak dance in uluwatu temple, .. its around 50.ooo rupiah to watch the dance.. the dance is held every 6 pm, when the sun goes down..
Beaches in jimbaran are beautiful such as, balangan, padang-padang, dreamland, pandawa etc...
Well Gili also nice place to visit but there is no such a cultural field there...
If you wanna have day trip you can go to Ubud you will find so many kind of arts and culture ..
Ubud atmosphere is calm peaceful and classic..
that would be good for relaxing too...
have fun :)
It is said that there are more temples on Bali than there are Balinese. If one adds them all up, including those within private Balinese compounds, that would be no exaggeration.
Unfortunately, most visitors to Bali only go to see one or more of the five main temples of Bali, and given their popularity, these five temples have become tourist traps, complete with often aggressive touts and swarms of other tourists.
The fact is that many of the most beautiful temples in Bali are off the well worn tourist paths and to find them takes a bit of effort, thus it is always best to use a local and independent Balinese driver to take you around to see some of these incredibly beautiful temples that are located all over Bali. Tell your driver that you want to visit temples off the beaten track, both with and without current ceremonies in progress and he’ll make sure to bring proper attire that you can borrow.
These are just a few shots of two particular temples in Bali, the Pura Gunung Raung in the village of Taro not far from Ubud, and the Pura Dalem Tenggaling in our village of Bunutan-Kedewatan, located right next to the entrance to the Kupa Kupa Barong Resort.
Bali offers some of the best scuba diving opportunities in the world. From beginner to master diver, the variety of dive sites offer endless opportunities, and some of the most diversified species of sea life, as well as brilliant jeweled coral reefs, can be found here.
Having tried various areas, our personal favorite is the Amed area of the eastern coast of Bali.
The Amed area is a string of Balinese fishing villages along the north/south road of Bali's eastern most coast. These villages are great to stay for a few days to enjoy the beauty and tranquility of this part of Bali. There are more than ample places to stay, many with cottages right along the beaches. Most of the best spots are easily accessible from right off shore…no boat necessary. The wreck of the USS Liberty in Tulamben, just a short drive north of Amed is particularly excellent with its superb coral growth and amazing variety of sea life including the rare pygmy seahorse. Because this wreck is right off the beach and in somewhat shallow water, this is also a perfect spot for snorkeling.
The Amed area is a perfect spot to learn scuba. There are several dive shops in the Amed area that offer open water instruction and certification. All the photos here were taken when getting our oldest boy Bima and his cousin Sita open water certified with our great friend, Dive Master John Huxley of Eco-Dive at Jemeluk Beach, Amed.
Cliff diving in southern Bali, in particular Nusa Penida and Nusa Lembongan, is world class and during the months of July through September it can afford the rare opportunity to see the elusive mola mola, (giant sunfish) on their annual migration. However, this is no place for the novice diver as the currents there are very dangerous.
There are a few show that one should see in Bali. One of them is call "Kecak Dance" and "Barung Dance". Kecak dance is perform without instruments except from this group making sound using their mouth and Barung Dance is where in the finale those performers stab themselves with "Keris" and it can't go through them.
A must place to visit is Tanah Lot. A temple located by the sea.
Bali's road is narrow and winding. Infect if you are not a good driver do not make an attempt to drive yourselves. The attraction places are quite far from one another in this island. Public transport isn't so good. My tour guide is a very nice young local guy and help us a lot with our luggage and children. First day we were taken to visit the production of silver and gold in Celuk Village. Their craftsmanship is unbelievable.
The next stop is Batur Mount Volcano which is located at Kintamani District. Upon arrival we had our buffet lunch where we can view the Mount Volcano. Weather is slightly cooling here.
On the way back to Kuta we stop by to see the production of Coffee Luwak. Hubby have his first taste on the coffee luwak here but as for me I dare not try. Well, I am not that gutsy.
Along the way I manage to snap a few pix of the padi terrace. Baby and kids are too tired to stop for a closer view.
On our return day, when everybody was busy in shopping in Matahari shopping complex area in Kuta Beach, myself and Munu quickly sneaked out and made a quick visit to this thousand years temple, PURA KALANGAN MAJELANGU, DESA ADAT KUTA.It is situated just on the beautiful Kuta Beach.
There are many temples in Bali, which people miss just by chance. I am happy of not wasting my time in bargaining in the shopping street!
Overlooking the temple on a hill above is a suprisingly modern building: the Government Palace, built in 1954. Originally a residence for Dutch officials, it was later used by former President Soekarno during his frequent trips to Bali.This is the govt guest house but actually very famous as President Soekarno's Palace. The President was very famous for his love for young women. He married 12 times besides he had an array of girl friends. The people say, he would come to Tirtha Empul Temple , every now and then with a new women!
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