Day 1: You will leave the USA for your flight to Bali. The adventure begins.
Day 2: In flight - Cross international dateline, you will lose this day; regain it on the return flight.
Day 3: Bali Arrival You will arrive in Bali (Denpasar) where your guide will meet you and transfer you to your beach resort hotel where you can rest up from your journey.
Day 4: Half Day Garuda Wisnu Kencana and Uluwatu Temple
This morning you will have some free time to enjoy the local beaches, visit the local shops or even just hang around your hotel. This afternoon you will visit the Garuda Wisnu Kencana and the cultural park. Then we will take you to the Uluwatu Temple, which is an architectural marvel situated on the edge of a steep 300 foot rock facing the ocean. This temple has some of the most exquisite architecture in Bali and was first built in the eleventh century. There are numerous monkeys on the walkway to the temple, who are delighted to receive food from you. You shouldn’t have anything loose on your clothing or body, such as earrings, pens and glass-cases and you should hold your camera bags tightly. These mischievous monkeys will quickly snatch them and will only give them back for a ransom (typically peanuts and bananas). Then you will proceed to the temple. This is a small and simple temple, but it is a good introduction to the style and function of the Hindu temples on Bali.
Afterwards you can enjoy the sunset while watching the performance of Kechak Dance, which presents the Mahayana story with actors-dancers, beautiful costumes and accompanied totally by the Kechak dancers-singers (no gamelan orchestra). Afterwards we will take you to dinner at a seafood restaurant with tables on the beach. Though not fancy, the food and ambience are delightful. Then we will drive back to the hotel where the rest of the evening is at your own leisure. Bali is famous for their massages and spa treatments. Any day or night you have the option of utilizing these services.
Day 5: Kuta - Belimbing
The day will begin early with a drive west up the south side of the island. You will stop at Tanah Lot Temple. This is a more elaborate temple and is striking along the sea. They also have a "holy serpent" there which you can see if you like. Then we will drive you inland to Belingbing, where you will see some spectacular countryside. The terraced farms in this area are beautiful and amazingly immaculate. You will have lunch in the area. Then we will give you a walk through nature (1- 3 hours, depending on your stamina and desires). This is a very rewarding opportunity to see rural Bali which will give you a better picture of Bali before the tourists came.
Day 6: Belimbing - Free Day to explore the beautiful countryside, go on hikes, and enjoy the resort and the natural beauty.
Day 7: Belimbing – Batur
Breakfast at the hotel. Drive to Munduk and Bedugul. We will see beautiful countryside and rice terraces along the way as well as the beauty of twin lakes, Buyan and Tamblingan. Some stops will also be made on the way, the waterfall at Munduk, then Pura Ulun Danu Beratan at Bedugul which is built on the shores of the lake and the spice / fruit market at Candikuning. Lunch will be provided at Local Restaurant.
The next stop will be made at Mengwi, which was one of the main island kingdoms, where you can see one of the grandest water garden temples on the island called Taman Ayun. The temple was built around 1740 and symbolizing the cosmic union of sea and mountain. Then we will take you to the Batur area. There we will check you into your boutique local hotel.
Day 8: Batur. Today we will give you some nature walks in the valley of the volcano area. There are some lovely nature walks in this area. Your guide will show you the best of the area.
Day 9: Batur - Ubud. In the morning you can continue to enjoy the Batur area. Then we will drive you in the afternoon to the Ubud area and check you into your resort outside of the town.
Day 10: Ubud
Today we will take you to the Monkey Forest Road where there are some delightful shops, restaurants and coffee shops to visit. We will take you to a Masks, Antiques and Puppets shop which has many incredible collections. After lunch you will visit the Seniwati which is a gallery specializing in Women’s Art. If you want you can spend the rest of the day walking along some of the cultural streets, which is full of interesting shops and restaurants. Option: A pretty unique museum where you can not only see a Balinese gamelan orchestra but you can actually try your hand at playing on the instruments. This is also a great place to better understand the relationship between European and Balinese artists: Agung Rai Museum of Art (ARMA). This delightful museum not only has excellent art pieces from Balinese and European artists but also many other cultural artifacts of Balinese culture.
Day 11: Ubud – Nusa Dua
You will leave early in the morning to see an excellent Barong Dance. This is the traditional Balinese Hindu dance of the battle between Good and Evil, the Barong and Rhanga. This dance also involves several other characters and is the main dance which in its purest religious form leads to its participants going into trances. Afterward we will take you to a Master Mask Maker. You will see his beautiful masks and how they "come alive". These are truly incredibly well crafted works of art. The master mask maker also can demonstrate the appropriate dances and moves to complete the effect. These masks are also for sale. Then we will take you south to Nusa Dua. The rest of the day is free.
Day 12: Ubud - Nusa Dua
Today you will have a leisurely morning. You will have a cooking class where you can learn to cook typical Balinese dishes. We will drive you to the Nusa Dua Beach hotel for accommodation. The rest of the day is free at leisure.
Day 13: Nusa Dua
Today is a free day to enjoy the beach or:
- Option 1: We can take you on a cruise to Lebongan Island off the east side of Bali where you can snorkel, swim in a pool, walk around the island, take a variety of tours, utilize a glass bottom boat.
- Option 2: We will take you to the City Market in Denpasar and the fabric district.
Day 14: Nusa Dua – Yogyakarta
Today you will fly to Yogyakarta. Upon arrival you will visit the Water Castle, which was a place in the city that the Sultan used to go for various reasons. Here you can walk through the complex including the Underground Mosque. After lunch you will visit Prambanan. This Hindu temple complex was built in the 9th Century. In the 11th century it was destroyed by an earthquake and forgotten about. In the early 1900’s it was rediscovered and put back together with the original pieces. It is an incredible work of art and the intricate details in the stone carving are quite remarkable. Certain areas are restricted because of some damage from a recent earthquake.
Day 15: Yogyakarta
Today you will visit Borobodur. This Buddhist temple has a similar story to that of Prambanan. It was also constructed in the 9th Century (about 20-40 years before the Prambanan), and was also destroyed by an earthquake and put back together. Here you can experience the excitement of being able to walk throughout the area. You can read the story of Buddha in the picture story in the relief along the walls. If you would like there is a very simple hotel in the park that you can stay in. You can eat breakfast with a view of the temple.
Day 16: Home: You will have a transfer to the airport for your departure for your flight back to the USA with many wonderful memories. End of Tour.
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Asia Indonesia Local Culture Cultural Journey