Squirrel’s Secret Spot 3a. (Bali – beaches)

on Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Tanah Lot Sunset

Shopping Near Tanah Lot

Pura Tanah Lot

The Impossibles - big waves for surfing

Bali is a paradise which is located just east of Java in the Indonesian Archipelago. Its image within the world’s consciousness has been tarnished by the two bombings that occurred in Kuta and Jimbaran on the island. These tragedies have very little to do with the local people of the island who are Hindu or animalist by religion and peaceful by nature and who have themselves suffered heavily through loss of life and also loss of their main income which is through tourism.

There is so much to see, to do and to appreciate within a small island. Their culture, dance, arts and crafts are quite exquisite and distinctive. Their religious practices, festivals and temples are colorful and mysterious. The island is also blessed with natural beauty with its beaches, surfing and diving locations, cliffs, forests and volcanic mountains. Even its famous man-made padi terraces are simultaneously inspiring and soothing to the soul. Its also a shopping paradise with cheap bargains to be had.

In fact, there is so much to describe that I will do this over several scattered postings. Today, I will describe some of the wonders along the varied coastline of Bali.

There are many beaches. Kuta, Sanur, Jimbaran and Legian are popular but are relatively crowded. There are plenty of nice beaches further a field. For those willing to part with a bit more money, the tourist enclave in Nusa Dua has great beaches for both courting couples and young families. Jimbaran is popular as a place to get good grilled seafood served to you right on the beach as you watch spectacular sunsets. Some beaches are also great for the surfing crowd.

In many places, there are spectacular seaside cliffs and rock formations formed by the power of the ocean’s waves and almost everywhere there are temples (called Pura) or shrines. One famous coastal temple is the Pura Tanah Lot. This temple occupies the entire tiny island outcrop that is just a stone’s throw from the main island and can be reached by foot at low tide. Surprisingly, the temple island has its own freshwater spring. The surrounding area is also spectacular and is another favorite spot for visitors to take in the spectacular sunsets. For the shopaholics, there are lots of small stalls here too to occupy you for hours.

As nice as the beaches are, I think Bali’s other charms are even more entrancing but that is a story for another time. For all those who are stressed or facing the current winter storm in North America, come with me in your mind’s eye and imagine lying on the sunny beach in Bali. The sea’s waves are lapping gently in a relaxing lullaby. The coconut palm fronds are waving gently in the breeze and its green nut is sitting in the sand next to your hand; its nectar cool and sweet and its fresh and young meat practically melts in your mouth. A local Balinese is expertly giving you a deep, relaxing massage and it’s a balmy 32○ C. That’s right, 32○ C. Got your attention?


Josie said...

That island looks like Heaven on earth. I've just booked my ticket.

I can feel the warm sunshine. Omigosh. What a great post. Thank you.


Lone Grey Squirrel said...

Hi Josie,
I wish I was there too. There'll be more about this island later.
Keep warm.


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