Bali // by iPhone
I'm back from Indonesia and overflowing with photos and stories to share. I loaded all my pictures onto my laptop this morning and sorted through them... you guys are going to be seeing Bali for months. [hopefully, you're alright with that.]
let's start with something simple... the best of Bali by iPhone, along with a few short stories. if you follow me on instagram a few of these may look familiar, but my internet was a little sketchy so not all of these were shared.
we stayed all 10 nights of our trip in Ubud, which is in the middle of the island. Ubud is known as the cultural center of the island, the place where Elizabeth Gilbert stayed in Eat Pray Love, for its food + juices, and as the home of the monkey forest. [many stories regarding the monkeys to come.]
a lot of people go to Bali specifically for the beaches. we went to relax. traveling with two teachers who had just gone 100 school days without a break and one student who was studying to be a teacher meant they didn't care so much where said relaxing occurred, so long as it did. so while we made it to the beach one day of ten, most of our time was spent poolside or at the amazing Mexican joint we found.
we also took some time to see a few temples around the island. it seems that a few select sites have been designated for tourists, while hundreds of interesting gems are tucked away safe from those of us with passports and cameras. I was a little disappointed that we couldn't dive deeper into the culture. but I can respect that they want to keep their temples strictly for worshippers, and not sell them out to tourists.
you couldn't walk ten feet in Ubud without someone asking if you wanted a taxi. if you said "no," they asked "tomorrow?" and would try to sell you a tour of the island / rice terraces / swimming with dolphins / volcano trekking / etc etc. most of these guys were harmless, if only a bit annoying. but then there was this taxi... yes that says "sex" on the side view mirror and the first time we walked past it [because it sat on the sidewalk nearly the entire 10 days we were in Ubud] there was a man with dreadlocks sitting inside of it, literally gnawing on the steering wheel. do I want to take a ride in your rusty sex taxi? no, thanks.
but we saw plenty of beautiful things too. sorbet-colored sunsets and lush jungles, endless tiers of rice terraces and far-off volcanoes. Bali wasn't my all-time favorite vacation, but it was certainly worth the trip south of the equator.