Every place we visit, I like to post photos that capture the everyday magic of a place. For Indonesia, I combined this post to encompass all of Indonesia versus each place since our time was more compressed. Enjoy!
There is a famous yoga studio in Ubud called the Yoga Barn, so I went to check out a Vinyasa class in the afternoon. The studio is incredibly beautiful and it’s in a traditional Balinese structure with a high thatched roof. It gets a nice breeze and really peaceful. Next door is a circular building with the bathrooms and even that has a koi pond as the roof. Pretty impressive.
Class itself was good, not as focused on the breath as the vinyasa classes I’m used to. I appreciated the teacher giving me some individual feedback and it was challenging if you wanted it to be. I think I preferred the yoga classes in Thailand more, but that’s just a teacher style preference.
We did some sightseeing around Ubud today and visited the Puri Lakisan museum and Monkey Forest Sanctuary. The museum was a good primer on the evolution of Balinese art and there were some really nice pieces in there. Then we walked down to the Monkey Forest Sanctuary and temple, which was built around the 13th century. Most of Bali is Hindu (with some Buddhist element) so a lot of the artwork have Hindu themes and the temples are of course Hindu. But the real tourist attraction are the monkeys here. They are all over the place! It’s really sad that the tourists feed the monkeys—they sell bananas right outside the entrance. It’s made the monkeys quite aggressive and if you go near them, they will often try to take things from you. We saw one woman sit down next to one and then it grabbed her arm and bit her!
The banyan trees are really impressive and you can go down some stairs into a narrow gorge where the sides are covered in tree roots. It’s very much a rainforest and makes you wonder how the rest of Ubud looked before there were so many rice paddies.
The temple itself was quite nice, but we didn’t go in since you had to rent proper attire to go in. We’ve seen a lot of temples on our trip. =) Overall, a beautiful sanctuary—we just wish the tourists would stop feeding the monkeys.
Suckling pig at Ibu Oka! This is what we’ve been waiting for. Known for its appearance on Anthony Bourdain’s No Reservations, it’s gotten a lot of hype as Bali’s best babi guling. It opens at 11am and by the time we get there at 11:30am, a lot of the tables are filled and they’re already out of crispy skin. We order two “separates,” essentially you get a sampler plate of all the types of meat with rice and soup separate. At 50,000 IDR, it’s twice the price of Warung Babi Guling in Sanur. But it comes out and looks like its twice the amount of food!
I get a Teh Botol drink to go with it, which is a popular Indonesian drink. Tastes like sweet tea.
The verdict is that the meat is better than Warung Babi Guling in Sanur though I prefer the crispy skin at Warung Babi Guling. We gobbled everything down, no problem. As we were finishing, a roast pig arrived via motorbike and the chef started cutting it up. Inside, you can see a ton of spices that were roasted with the pig to give it flavor and they baste it with coconut water while roasting. Each pig apparently takes several hours and they start at 3am every morning. Once they sell out, they close up shop around 2 or 3pm.
If you walk north of our B&B for 5 minutes, you come upon a cute café in the middle of the rice paddies called Sari Organic. It’s got great views and good healthy eats that are from their organic farm next door. Mike got a salad and I ordered the vegetable quiche. It was nice to relax with the great views and food was really good too!
Ubud is about 45-60 min north of Sanur in the countryside. It’s known for its art community and scenic rice paddies. We’re spending our last 2 nights in Indonesia here, a change of pace from the beach. There are tons of art galleries (good and bad), cute little boutiques, and organic cafes. We are staying at a B&B called Sawah Sunrise, which is in the middle of rice paddies and a 15 minute walk from the main town area. It’s beautiful, complete with its own nature soundtrack (which we found funny that reviewers on TripAdvisor complained about). There are only 4 rooms. Overall, it’s very nice, but I think next time we may pick one that’s closer to town.