Friday, 29 March 2013

On the road to ... Ubud

A few posts back I mentioned that my plans to post my favourite photos from 2012 had gone awry. The reason for this was that when I started to review my photos, I realised there were quite a few I still hadn't posted.

One of the images that was foremost in my mind was this Balinese lady picking flowers (marigold and gomphrena). I don't know that they are the greatest of photos, but the subject and the colour palette appealed to me. I think if Monet had ever visited Bali, he would have loved it too.

I spotted the flower gatherer while I was hurtling at breakneck speed between the main tourist drag in Bali and my favourite place, Ubud, up in the hills.  On my two short visits last year, I was based near the beach (Kuta for a work conference, then Sanur for a long weekend), but, on both occasions, my friends and I hired a driver for a day trip and left it in their hands as to what points of interest we stopped at along the way.

When one of the drivers suggested a waterfall,  the one we visited exceeded my expectations. Just lovely!

Many of the villages along the way specialise in a particular craft, and one of the most spectacular is the stone carving. The sculptures are exquisite and made me plot mad schemes involving shipping containers that I didn't go ahead with, but what a fabulous feature any of these would be in the garden.

We called in at a village temple.

This lovely lady was making temple offerings, and I couldn't resist the photo opportunity.

Further along there were shops selling beautiful kites. I'll definitely investigate how these fold up on my next visit. I love the butterfly one!

We saw demonstrations of how batik and ikat fabric is made. The building below is a jeweller/silversmith's shop. The decoration on the building featured ceramic plates.

Another favourite stop was this artists' compound with beautiful orchids in bloom throughout. I didn't actually buy a painting there on the day, but I have bought one nearby each visit and just love them.

A few mad hours of shopping in Ubud, followed by lunch, and the return drive.

A beautifully decorated shrine in the restaurant.

Another tiny shrine with marigolds adorning the deity and a tiny water feature.

Koi at the restaurant 'The Three Monkeys'

A flawless waterlily spotted on our walk.

If you are interested, you can see more of Ubud and the surrounding area by clicking here and a number of other posts (check the labels under 'Bali').


  1. I would have held one of those stone sculptures on my lap during the plane ride home. What a beautiful place, I have always wanted to go.

    1. It's a wonderful place for gardeners to visit, Les. I'm not one for the bars in Kuta, but once you get off the beaten track, it is paradise.

  2. Thank goodness, these lovely photos did not stay hidden around in your camera.
    I loved every single one of them. The waterfall is absolutely beautiful, and the tropical surroundings are Garden of Eden-esque.
    I agree with Les, I would have left all my clothes behind and made room in my suitcase for one of those gorgeous stone carvings.
    The ceramic plates embedded in the decoration outside the building was also captivating.
    YOU my dear have the best job in the world. My old corporate job destinations were nothing compared to yours.

    1. I have been in my job for a very long time (more than 25 years) but I have certainly been lucky in the two short term postings I have had overseas - Tonga and Indonesia.

  3. Your travels are amazing to me. I would love to go to Bali. How cool to have a driver take you where ever he chooses. That waterfall is gorgeous! I never knew gomphrena grew in tropical places. I grow it in my garden every year. :o)

    1. Having a driver is a great way to see a fabulous place (from around $50 a day). The scenery there is incredibly diverse - beautiful lakes, volcanoes, mountain villages, temples, and beaches, and there is accommodation to suit every budget.



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