Driving Around Bali aka Being a Tourist Again

Read more about my Self Care Sabbatical and the other places I’ve visited! 

Through our Tulamben resort, we were able to book a transfer from our hotel in Uluwatu which would take a few hours. It was suggested that we make a few stops along the way to break up the drive which sounded perfect to Kirsty and I as we hadn’t planned much sightseeing in Bali. Of course, we end up stopping at some very touristy places along the way. Still glad we were able to see something…but felt quite ripped off by the time we arrived at our place in Tulamben! I did not miss being a tourist! 

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If you are in Bali you will not be able to miss the Luwak coffee. You will see signs for it everywhere. This coffee includes partially digested coffee cherries, eaten and defecated by the Luwak (similar to a weasel). Fermentation occurs as the cherries pass through the animal’s intestines, and after being defecated with other fecal matter, they are collected, cleaned and roasted and made into coffee. The place we stopped offered a little 101 of the coffee-making process followed by a tasting of a variety of coffees (not including the Luwak) and teas. The tasting was free, but ordering a specific drink would cost money. I opted for a cup of the Luwak just to try it (50K rupiah) and knowing that we had to buy something. Verdict: The sampler was fantastic, the Luwak coffee was not. 

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After our coffee, we stopped at the first of two temples, Pura Goa Lawah, which cost 30K each to enter. Included in our entry was a sarong which was wrapped around each of us (we had our shoulders covered already). Even though we were both wearing long pants, the sarong is mandatory for women to wear. So now we were roasting in all of these clothes!

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The temple itself was nice to see and, having had a break from temples for a while, it was a peaceful break in our mini road trip. That is until we were ready to leave and were suddenly approached by multiple women and girls trying to sell us magnets, bracelets, sarongs, and postcards. Eager to get out of there, Kirsty and I bought a few (very overpriced) souvenirs and ran towards our driver. Yep, did not miss being a tourist! 

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The second temple was actually a water palace and this also felt incredibly touristy. After paying 40K each to get in, we spent about 20 minutes snapping photos and avoiding obnoxious tourists before deciding it was time to leave. It was the kind of place that would be really lovely if it were completely empty.

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The best part about our drive to Tulamben was the scenery. We saw urban life closer to Uluwatu which then changed over to a more rural, jungle area (including some rice terraces) before we arrived in coastal Tulamben with Mount Agung looming up above us.

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