The Regency is just west of Badung, stretching from the coastline of massive black rocks up to the central mountains. Tabanan is an unspoilt of Bali which is also richly fertile, containing the best agricultute and a place to give peace and prosperity to their villagers. In the northwest is a dense forest, part of the wild and natural park. Before the dutch took control over Tabanan , the kingdom was ruled by Ngurah Agung Tabanan, who died in 1903, after having ruled the Regency since 1844. He left two wives,brought up in an old tradition that declared that they would commit ” Suttee ” at the cremation seven months later. The two old women , beautifully dressed in white, walked along specially constructed bamboo paths. At the time, the Dutch Resident declared that this was the last ” Suttee” allowed , though the tradition did continue covertly for a while afterwards.
BALI – TABANAN
INCLUDES BEDUGUL, MUNDUK, KRAMBITAN & TANAH LOT
· MT. BATUKARU
This 2,278 meters peak towers over the local landscape, and strongly influence local spiritual beliefs. All local temples have a shire dedicated to the spirit of the “coconut shell ” mountain , and high on its slopes is the public ( Kayangan Jagat )
Temple of pura Luhur Watukaru.
In the center highland of Bali is the serene mountain area of Bedugul. Here , vegetables, fruits, and flowers thrive in the alpine climate , and a colorful litte market at Bukit Mungsu offers a wide selectionof produce including exotic wild orchids, roses, and colorful birds. There is a large botanical garden nearby. At Pancasari, an 18 – hole championship golf course has been developed, with all the facilities to suit golfing lovers. At Lake Beratan, the area’s climate is refreshing after being in the heat of the lowlands. Bratan Lake, approximately 60 kilometers from Denpasar ( to the north ), also provides exciting surrounding, with cool fresh mountain air .
· ALAS KEDATON
Located about 20 km north of Tanah Lot temple. This forest is inhabited by hundreds of monkey that live amicably. There is a temple where one find something unique happens. It is when a ritual ceremony held there, no one is allowed to use any kind of fire offering equipment, such as incense and candle. Tens of big bats dwell on the tips of leaves of big trees attract the visitors who come there.
· TANAH LOT
Carved out of the landscape by tides, wind, and rain , the huge offshore sentinel rock of Tanah Lot supports a small picturesque sea temple which can be reached by a scramble over the wet rocks. These are reputed to be several large caves just below the water line, at the base of the rock , which shelter large sea snakes, who are the guardians of the temple.
The village of Krambitan, southwest of Tabanan, was once an extension of the ruling Raja’s court and is still a cultural stronghold, with music groups maintaining ancient custom of music and dance, using bamboo instruments.
Approximately 20 kilometers from Tabanan, the road climbs up high into the hills to a small village named Jatiluwih. With a height of 850 meters above sea level, the view here is one of the finest imagineable. Bali’s terraced paddy fields stretch into endless contours over the hills and valleys as far as the eye can see.
The main place to stay in Tabanan is the mountain resort of Bedugul, famed for its cool climate and spectacular lakes, mountains and rice fields. Penebel offers hot springs with modern facilities. Krambitan is the place for an unusual stay in a royal palace. Tabanan’s west coast is being developed as Bali’s newest beach resort-with miles of deserted black sand and a pounding surf. Prices in US dollars. AC = Air conditioning. Telephone codes as noted.
Bali – Bedugul
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A pleasant climate, splendid views, water sports on scenic Lake Bratan, botanical gardens, fresh tropical fruits and vegetables-these are but a few of the things Bedugul offers. Located 1,500 m above sea level, it gets chilly by late afternoon, so bring your sweater. This is a favorite weekend retreat for Jakartans and the local Balinese bourgeoisie.
Getting to know Bedugul
Bedugul’s layout can be somewhat confusing, especially if you arrive in late afternoon after the clouds have descended. Coming from the south, there are two signposts to watch out for: “Bedugul 0.2 km” and “Bedugul.” One might expect to find the village here, but instead the road turns sharply to the left, with a smaller road leading off to the right. The latter leads to the Bedugul Hotel on the southwestern shore of the lake.
The main road continues past a number of hotels on the left until it reaches the village of Bedugul proper. Here you find shops, a few restaurants, a bank, telephone office (wartel, a market selling local produce (including flowers, coffee and vanilla) and a lane leading up to the botanical gardens (Kebun Raya).
Beyond the village the road descends towards the lake, turning left at the Ashram Hotel. The road then continues north to Candi Kuning. On the right hand side is the entrance to the Pura Ulun Danu and other temples. A line of souvenir shops indicates the way. A fee of Rpl,000 is required to enter the temple.
The walk from Bedugul market to the Ashram Hotel takes about 10 minutes. The temples on the shore are another 10 minutes further on. From the market to the entrance of the botanical gardens takes about 15 minutes on foot.
How to get to Bedugul
Bedugul is situated on the main road connecting north and south Bali. It is the perfect place to stop for a night on an island tour. Rent a car and explore the area at you own pace.
If you are going by public transport, catch a bemo from Ubung terminal in Denpasar to Bedugul for Rp3,000. The fare is the same from Singaraja. The nicest way to get around Bedugul is on foot in the invigorating mountain air. Or charter a bemo, carrying up to seven persons, for about $10-$20 a day.
The High Read to Bedugul
Most people traveling between the highland resorts of Kintamani and Bedugul travel the circuitous route via Singaraja and the north coast to get from one to another. An alternative route, used by very few people, leads south through the mountains, offering spectacular scenery and a close look at the vanilla and coffee producing area of the island.
The road is good enough for cars or motorbikes, although there are several places where deep potholes make driving fast a big risk. It’s best is to allow half a day for the route between Kintamani and Luwus, where you meet the main road between Denpasar and Bedugul. This way you can stop along the way, have a coffee in one of the villages and enjoy a leisurely ride.
From Kintamani, follow the main road north until just beyond Penulisan and the Tegeh Koripan temple. Take the small road that branches off to the left towards Belantih village. Continue west past Belantih to Lampu and the neighboring village of Catur, where the road bends south. Lawak village marks the beginning of the vanilla-growing region where the harvest can often be seen drying in shelters.
After Belok (keep right) head for Pelaga. Just before the village there’s a sharp right turn which leads to a shortcut west to Lake Bratan. Not many Balinese expose their vehicles to this road though, as chances of ruining them or at least getting stuck are pretty high. Another reason to avoid the shortcut and continue south is that the best has yet to come.
Beyond Pelaga and Kiadan, the elevated area around Nungkung and Sandakan is extremely beautiful. A bit further ahead lies the Islamic village of Angan Tiga with it’s small mosque. The next village, Kerta, has a police post and even a bank. Past the bank take the right turn to Bedugul (the road continues straight to Denpasar which is only 32 km away). The stretch of road between Kerta and Luwus via Peria is extremely bad. In Luwus you reach the main road. Turn right for Bedugul or left for Mengwi and Denpasar.
Eating in Bedugul
There are only a few restaurants in Bedugul but they do cover a wide price range. Opposite the road leading up to the botanical gardens, on a right hand bend, there are three small eating places serving cheap meals from 6 am to 7 pm. A good meal costs around $1. Try the ferns (sayur pakul at Ananda I. Friendly service.
There are good restaurants in the main hotels: The Bedugul Hotel’s restaurant by the lake serves meals costing around $7. Try the Chinese food at Pacung, especially their crab fried rice (nasi goreng kepiting). The Bali Handara’s Kamandalu Restaurant is more up market. Strawberry Hill serves tasty Indonesian favorites, soups, fresh salads, steaks, and fish. On chilly days and evenings savor a drink at Bedugul’s only bar beside a log fire. Managed by the owners of Poppies in Kuta.
Indonesian food is available in front of Ulun Danu temple in small food stalls-not recommended for those with sensitive stomachs. Overlooking the temple and a big banyan tree is the Perama Tea House, a small restaurant by the lake. The open-air patio is a pleasant spot for a refreshing cup of tea. Try their pisang bakar Candikuning grilled banana with grated cheese on top.
Ayam Bakar Taliwang Bersaudara is just before the famous Ulun Danu temple and has a view over the temple and the lake. A favorite with locals. The spicy hot dishes from Lombok are just right for the cold weather. Order the sate or tofu if you don’t like food too spicy. $4. Jember Indah is on the higher slopes just outside Bedugul. Cheap east Javanese food and beautiful views down to the sea. Try the soto Madura for $4. Minang Saiyo, in front of Candi Kuning market, sells spicy Sumatran Padang fare.
gain-don’t feel reluctant to offer half the asking price. Also available are fresh flowers, including wild orchids and a number of other ornamental plants.
Some small shops selling souvenir crafts are found around Pura Ulun Danu and the lake. Shops in the Bedugul Hotel compound sell film.
Bedugul Activities – watersports
A range of water sports are available next to the Ulun Danu temple and at the lakeside hotels such as Bedugul and Lila Graha. The usual rates, including insurance, are as follows:
Motorboat $20 for 30 mins.
Covered Boat $20 for 30 mins.
Water cycle $20 for 15 mins.
Rowboat $15 for 30 mins.
Bali – Munduk
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The village of Munduk, actually in the Buleleng administrative regency, is located on a ridge along the mountain road leading from Wanagiri, just north of Pancasari to Mayong, some 25 km south of Singaraja as the crow flies. Overlooking coffee and clove plantations, the area comprises the pristine Lake Tamblingan with its traditional fishing community, as well as nearby forests, waterfalls and some of the most beautiful views on the island.
Munduk is a perfect base for treks into the mountainous Balinese hinterland. You can walk to Mt. Lesong (1,860 m), around Lake Tamblingan or visit the area’s five waterfalls.Munduk is the center for an innovative community tourism development project. The village, which has strong links with the Hotel and Tourism Training Institute in Nusa Dua, has set up a number of activites for visitors, centered around Puri Lumbung Cottages (see below).
Go from Bedugul to the Pancasari bemo termnal for Rp1000, then take a bemo to Munduk for Rp. l,500. Alternatively hop on the bemo at the Pempatan crossing.If you hire a car or motorbike, drive cautiously on the road down to Munduk-it’s steep and treacherous.
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The hot springs of Penebel and the rice terraces of Jatiluwih make the slopes of the Mount Batukau (2,276 m) well worth visiting.These areas are most easily reached by bemo from Tabanan or Mengwi in the south via Pacung. The village of Blayu, just north of Mengwi, is worth a stop-off for those interested in handicrafts. It is famous throughout Bali for weaving and woodcarving.Soka Restaurant in Jatiluwih serves good Indonesian and Chinese food for $10.
Tanah Lot Bali
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Shortly before Tabanan on the main highway from Denpasar a signboard directs you southwest to Tanah Lot. Alternative access if north of Legian, turning west toward Canggu, following the signs to Tanah Lot. There are a number of shops and restaurants nearby. Tourists congregate at this Balinese landmark by the busloads at sunset.
Eating in Tanah Lot
Recommended are Dewi Sinta Restaurant at the hotel of the same name and Bali Lestari Restaurant. Several upscale dining outlets are at Le Meriden Resort and Nirwana Golf Club.
Shopping Numerous outlets surround the entrance to the temple in organized market fashion. Aside from the usual Balinese souvenirs, clothing and novelties, there are the Polo Ralph Lauren outlet and a BDFS (Bali Duty Free Shop) offering counterfeit branded goods. There are film outlets and money changers. Mertha Ayu, further inland, has dry goods. Golf Nirwana Bali Golf Club is an 18-hole, par 71, Greg Norman designed course, opened in 1997. The course winds among active rice fields, a dozen family temples, the resort hotel and residential villas, with views of Tanah Lot from several holes. Two holes shoot from cliff top to cliff top across the Indian Ocean. The membership course is open to resort guests. Visitors may play at management’s discretion.
Dances Kecak dances are held near the temple gate on an irregular basis. Call Dewi Sinta Hotel to confirm 6.30 performance.
Bali – Krambitan
Located to the southwest of Tabanan, Krambitan is a small town which was once the center of a small principality. Its court culture is retained in the area’s particular styles of dance and painting. A branch of the current Tabanan royal family owns the two palaces here.The main attraction here, besides the quiet, everyday village life, is to order your own dinner and calonarang trance play performance in one of the palaces, which also offers rooms for rent. The whole village participates in these shows,” and members of the royal family welcome you as their guests.
To get there, continue west from Tabanan until you see an intersection and a road to the left with a sign indicating “Krambitan 5 km.”
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