The evening of the first day at Bali was spent viewing majestic sunset and spectacular traditional beach festival and heavenly Kuta Sea Beach. We first visited the Turtle breeding area near Kuta whether sea turtles are careful preserved, nursed and released to the ocean every year through a festival. We participated in the grand kite flying event.
I chose the Kite made like Brazilian flag while Rozy preferred Argentinian Kite. However, I could win against three competitors while Rozy won all and won a lovely souvenir (Boutique Dress) from the host .We were given a great treat of fabulous dinner at the sea side restaurant. The music, dance and hospitality of Balinese were to be seen to believe .On way back to the hotel we visited few Muslim shops and bought some gifts for our daughter in law.
We met an Indian Journalist couple at our hotel lobby when we returned. The lady Joya was from Mohali and the gentleman from Jaipur. Rozy speaks hindi very well. Within minutes they started talking about Bollywood, Hindi Serial and Indian food. I talked about Cricket Soccer, International trade with Ajoy. However we decided to Visit Uluawttu Temple and Beach next day. Subcontinent people love gossip and get along well whenever get acquainted on a tour.
There special morning treats as we were lucky to witness a traditional marriage reception at breakfast in the hotel. All the guests especially the ladies were very attractively dressed in traditional Indonesian attire .All hotel boarders were treated with sweets. We planned to reach Uluwatu before sunset. On the way we stopped at a supermarket wherefrom we purchased some gifts for family and friends. Travel to Uluwatu itself was memorable. The hilly raod, marvelous looking road side villages presented enchanting views.
We reached the hill top resort at around 4 PM and found the area full of tourists from all over the world. At the entry we were given special robe to put around our waste and were briefed about safety .The area had several wild monkeys and very steep slopes around the hill top. The hill top temple had magnificent views around. The beautiful landscape, multi colored flowery tress, fascinating blue Indian Ocean were treat to watch. While taking photographs a big monkey grabbed Rozy’s scurf which could only be recovered exchanging a banana for it. We could take several photographs of the sunset and the environment around.
Uluwatu Temple (Pura Uluwatu) is one of Bali's nine key directional temples. Though a small temple was claimed to have existed beforehand, the structure was significantly expanded by a Javanese sage, Empu Kuturan in the 11th Century. Another sage from East Java, Dang Hyang Nirartha is credited for constructing the padmasana shrines and is claimed to have attained Moksha here. Even more remarkable than the temple itself is its location, perched on steep cliff 70 metres above the roaring Indian ocean waves. There are more steep headlands on either side and sunsets over Uluwatu are a sight to behold.
We were required to be properly dressed to enter. Sarongs and sashes were available free at the entrance. Guides, once famously mercenary, hassle visitors less than they used to, although they offered to "protect" us from the monkeys, for a tip of course. The temple is inhabited by large number of monkeys, who are extremely adept at snatching visitors' belonging, including bags, cameras and eyeglasses. We were advised to Keep a very close grip on all our belongings and stow away our eyeglasses if at all possible. If the monkeys did have something taken, the monkeys could usually be induced to exchange it for some fruit. Needless to say, rewarding the monkeys like this only encouraged them to steal more. Locals and even the temple priest or monkey ranger were happy to do the job for the visitors.
Just before the sunset a spectacular dance drama featuring the special section of Ramayan was displayed. Looking at the setting sun sinking below the Indian Ocean leaving crimson flavor behind flashed back some memories of Bangladesh in 2003 when I spent few days on the Shangu Off shore Gas Field pipeline rehabilitation works at Cairn hired lay barge . It also reminded me some memories of similar sunset that we experienced at Colombo beach beside Taj Samundra hotel in February 2014. It is great to watch sunset but that also rings sad tunes if thought deep. Rozy this time had opportunities to test her photography skills.
We could stay longer. Rozy was not willing to leave. But we thought of returning early as we planned for a dinner in an exclusive sea side restaurant at Nusa Dua on way back Nusa Dua was designed to be an ‘all-inclusive’ type of tourist destination. The pristine Bali Tourism Development Centre’s (BTDC’s) complex of world-class hotels, an up-market shopping complex with well-maintained facilities, a luxurious 18-hole golf course, white-golden sandy beaches and much more.
The name Nusa Dua is derived from the two small islands to the east. Though it’s the most developed area in Bali, it still houses many temples, a museum, and lots of other attractions. The enclave is an idyllic place for honeymooners and for those who bring the entire family.
We were greeted in a traditional Balinese way when reached the entrance of the sea side restaurant. The food the fishes were special. We hand 5 kilos of fish – mostly fresh sea salmon cooked in special way along with especially cooked rice in coconut oil. We could see the waves of Indian Ocean breaking on the shore and sea few ships anchored in the deep sea. The local dancers and singers were performing. The two hours on this special dinner with my wife was unforgettable memory. I must thank my creator to give me opportunity for spending such an enjoyable day in a place of tourist delight.
To be continued…
BDST: 1810 HRS, AUG 16, 2014