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Another way to do Bali

The Indonesian island of Bali is a tourist’s dream, offering a wide variety of culture, religion, excellent scenery, beaches and fine temperatures.

It is also an island of many parts and this particular review, the second of a series, covers what can be achieved in the northern most part of the island.  It should be of particular interest to those passengers onboard Star Clipper which makes a stop at Lovina Beach…

…during it’s Bali circumnavigation season.

*****

This itinerary can also be enjoyed by cruise ship passengers arriving at the Balinese port of Benoa with the added attraction of a scenic drive across the island, over Bratan volcanic  caldera,  and past Lake Beratan.

Pre-cruise research had indicated that there were four attractions in the area that were of interest to us that had not been covered on our previous visits. My wife and I had decided to hire a private local tour guide named Herman Suparta…

…who runs his own company…

http://lovinatours.com

Herman picked us up promptly in his comfortable air conditioned SUV and we headed off for the 30 minute drive to Aling Aling Waterfall…

…and once parked the 15 minute walk through lush jungle. a walk that will certainly  appeal to nature lovers and  hikers as well as those who simply enjoy the great outdoors…

*****

*****

The Aling-Aling Waterfall tumbles over a 114-foot (35-meter) cliff in two side-by-side streams flowing at completely different speeds—making it one of the most unique waterfalls in Bali.
The trail extends along the river to further falls and pools…
Some available for swimming…
*****
…and bamboo bridges to several rocky outcrops…
…and the odd Buddhist Shrine on the way…
A great place to  explore and sample the true tropical Bali countryside.
Having completed a successful and invigorating visit to Aling-Aling waterfall we headed for our next chosen site, the Buddhist monastery of Brahma Vihara Ashmara…
The Buddhist temple is not overly touristy and  the entrance is free: though  donations are welcome and sarongs, needed to enter the temple, are free. The Temple is built as a series of terraces and located on a hill that offers a grand view…
*****
Buddhist shrines abound on the terraces…
*****
 On the highest terrace of the complex is a Stupa, which is a small version of the Borobudur in Java…
It is possible to enter the Borobudur Stupa via  side and rear entrances…
…and view the chambers that contain Buddhist artefacts …
…and marble wall inscriptions…
The Brahma Vihara Ashmara is the largest Buddhist temple in Bali. It is a quiet and peaceful place set in beautiful countryside and well worth a visit.
Our next chosen stop was a considerably more famous tourist place, the sacred hot springs of Banjar Air Panas…
Set in the midst of the jungle in a beautifully landscaped tropical garden, close to Lovina Beach, it consists of three public and one private pool.
*****
The sulphuric water is of volcanic origin and has an agreeable warm temperature of 37 degrees celsius, supposedly ideal for people suffering from rheumatic diseases. During our time there I couldn’t honestly say I spotted any sufferers…
The hot spring water gushes from the mouths of eight stone carved Naga (mythical dragon-like creatures) into the oblong shaped upper pool
*****
 From this upper pool the water flows through 5 more Naga and heads into the main pool. The third pool is much smaller…
…and the water pours from 3 four meter high spouts.
During my research I had noted that there was in the Lovina Beach area a Dutch War Memorial, though the exact position of the site  proved elusive. I mentioned it during an exchange of emails with Herman and to his credit he researched the site. It was to be our next stop…
For whatever reason we found the memorial was in a poor state of maintenance and badly neglected. Noting my  disappointment, with the state of the memorial,  Herman immediately suggested a possible bonus that he would throw in, a short drive further up the hillside to a pretty good viewpoint…
A careful look left of the centre line  and you can see our ship, the Star Clipper,  anchored off Lovina Beach.
 With our itinerary now concluded it was just a short drive back to Lovina Beach.
Herman’s tour covered 5 hours and 39 Kilometres…
 …for which he charged us IRP 350,000 ( that’s less than £20.00 in our money).
Herman’s website  offers a variety of tours which may be of  interest to other travellers. Here’s his website..

Summary

Herman’s service was nothing short of outstanding. He speaks excellent English and is a most knowledgable guide who gave the impression that nothing was too much trouble. I have no hesitation in recommending him to anyone visiting Bali and in particular landing from Star Clipper at Lovina Beach.

We were so pleased with Herman’s service that it was of little consequence to double his fee in way of a gratuity.

Herman can be contacted directly by email…

hermantravelbali@yahoo.com

He informs me that he can also do very reasonable rates on transfers to Menjangan Island which featured heavily on Star Clippers excursion programme.

 

If you have enjoyed this review of a day in Bali  and would like to be amongst the first to hear of new reviews including  a return to Cunard’s Queen Victoria and a Viking River Cruise along the Seine plus future port reviews that will include  Part 2 of a New Orleans review and one to Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon), then Why not join over 670  followers by clicking on the ‘Follow’ link on the front page.

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©2016 – 18 * Solent Richard’s Cruise Blog * All Rights Reserved

Duplication in part or whole without prior written consent is prohibited by international laws.

 

Disclosure to potential conflict of interest:

It is common throughout the travel industry for travel journalists and many cruise bloggers to be provided with complimentary cruises for the purpose of their reviews.

Solent Richard has no ‘conflict of interest’ as he is not an accredited journalist, he pays for his cruises, and is happy to confirm that all his reviews are his own given without fear or favour.

 

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