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* Kintamani Volcano Tour: The first stop is often in the village of Batubulan to watch a performance of the Barong and Kris Dance. Afterwards you visit the villages of Celuk (silver jewelry) and Mas (wood carving) to see Balinese artisans at work. Ubud, Bali's cultural center, has grown to a busy town with numerous Balinese art galleries and shops. A scenic drive over small roads overlooking beautiful rice terraces brings you to the mountain village of Kintamani (about 5,000 feet above the sea) which offers spectacular views of Lake Batur and the volcano. You can cross the crater lake below the still active Mount Batur and visit the "Bali Aga" village of Trunyan. Return through traditional villages with stops in Tampaksiring to visit the temple of Tirta Empul, and to visit the Elephant Cave "Goa Gajah", a hermitage from the 11th. century used by both Buddhists and Hindus.

* The "Mother Temple" and East Bali Tour: Drive to Besakih through various villages visiting on the way a weaving factory, see the famous painted ceiling at the old "Palace of Justice" in Klungkung, and visit the school of painting in Kamasan. The "Mother Temple" in Besakih is Bali's most holy and Indonesia's biggest Hindu temple. It was build in the 11th. Century in an altitude of 1,000 meters (3,000 feet) on the slopes of Mount Agung. You pass picturesque rice terraces on the way to the walled "Bali Aga" village of Tenganan, and continue to Candi Dasa on the East coast. On the way back it's recommended to stop at the famous Bat Cave "Goa Lawah" with thousands of bats hanging from the walls.

* Bedugul Tour: After a stop in Sangeh to visit its holy forest inhabited by wild monkeys, drive up into the mountains to Lake Bratan (1,200 meters above sea level) and the picturesque water temple Ulun Danu. Visit the busy flower, fruit and spice market in Candikuning where most of Bali's vegetables come from. Drive back through small country roads, villages and rice fields, with a stop in an artisan village specializing in gold threaded textiles (Ikat) worn during important ceremonies.

* North Bali Tour: Drive the scenic road via Pupuan through the mountains to Bali's North coast. You'll enjoy beautiful views of picturesque rice terraces, and large plantations growing vanilla, chocolate, coffee, cloves, and even wine grapes. Near the village of Banjar is a popular hot spring where you can take a bath in the natural pond. After a lunch on the black beach in Lovina you pass the old capital of Singaraja on the way to Git Git, famous for its multi-tier water fall. Return over back roads to see the unspoiled Bali. (This tour can be combined with the visit to Bedugul.)

* Monkey Forest & Tanah Lot Tour: Visit the royal Taman Ayun temple in Mengwi (built in 1624), the holy monkey forest near Sangeh, and famous Tanah Lot. This picturesque Balinese temple was built in the 16th. Century on a huge rock 100 yards off Bali's West coast and is surrounded by the sea during high tides. Spectacular sight, however, spoiled by thousands of tourists visiting every day during sunset. To avoid these, enjoy the view from the lobby of the nearby Le Meridien Nirvana Resort.

* Handicraft Villages & Ubud Tour: Visit the artisan villages of Batubulan (stone carving), Celuk (silver & gold jewelry), Mas (wood carving), and Pengosekan (painting). Stop at the "Bali Art Market" in Sukawati to bargain for all kinds of handicrafts and textiles.
Already in the 1930s Ubud had been made famous around the world as Bali's cultural center by the German intellectual Walter Spies, the Dutch painter Rudolf Bonnet and other foreign artists who'd made it their home.
Today Ubud is a fast growing town with numerous art galleries and shops offering paintings, wood carvings, textiles, and all kinds of souvenirs. Don't miss the MUSEUM PURI LUKISAN in the center of Ubud, the NEKA MUSEUM in Campuhan, the NEKA GALLERY in Ubud, the AGUNG RAI GALLERY in Peliatan, and the AGUNG RAI MUSEUM in Pengosekan to see the difference between creative art and more commercial products. Problem is that when you see their "Permanent Collections" at many "Galleries" you've seen real art, and when you return to their show rooms you don't like any of the very commercial products any more.
The SENIWATI GALLERY - ART BY WOMEN, founded in 1991 by Mary Northmore (the very personable wife of famous painter Abdul Azis) to help Balinese women to be accepted as artists, is a place you should not miss whatever you do. The main purpose of this Bali art gallery is to expose the long understated brilliance of independent women artists resident in Bali, and to motivate, train, and encourage young Balinese girls with obvious creative gifts. Visit also the BLUE MOON STUDIO and GALLERY, founded in 1994 with an emphasis on exhibiting contemporary artists.
The LOTUS CAFE is perhaps the most popular meeting point in town and has become kind of an institution, and MURNI'S as well as the BRIDGE CAFE offer tasty snacks and full meals in very pleasant surroundings and at reasonable prices. The various Balinese dance and Wayang Kulit performances (see below) in Ubud and in nearby villages are worth spending the early evening there.
  Surfing

Bali is well-known as a paradise island located at the Pacific Ocean and is a perfect holiday destination for all ages. Some of the best surfing beaches in the world can be found on the western side of the island, whilst the eastern part of Bali is a wonderful haven for families, surrounded by picturesque beaches and gentle seas.

If you have always had a secret inclination to surf, here is your chance. Experience the thrill of surfing with qualified professional instructors on Bali's Kuta beach. The long, rolling waves and safe sandy bottom make Kuta beach a renowned surfing venue. Beginners will usually be given a two-hour group lesson in the swimming pool. Here you will be taught the basics of water safety, surfing etiquette and surfboard handling. After that, the lesson adjourns to the beach where another team of coaches will show you the finer points of surfing.

Skydiving

One of the fastest growing high adventure sports is skydiving. Rapidly gaining popularity in Bali, tandem skydiving is available to give you the adventure of a lifetime at 10,000 feet above ground. You will first be given a 30-minute introduction to the sport and a briefing on safety. Next, you will be fitted into a harness before boarding the aircraft. The plane will take about 20 minutes to climb to the required height whereby at this point you should be securely attached to the harness of your instructor. At the right moment, the Tandem Master will signal you to jump out of the aircraft and you will instantly be hit by the thrilling sensation of free-falling! When you've reached 4,000 feet, the Tandem Master will pull the rip cord to open the main parachute, pulling you up from an amazing 180 km per hour to a steady 20 km per hour. You will get to see Bali at an unbelievable bird's eye view. The instructor will then regain control at about 500 feet above ground for a smoother landing. It will definitely be an unforgettable experience.

Elephant Safari Park

Do not leave Bali without visiting the Elephant Safari Park, which is situated in the cool jungle of Desa Taro, 20 minutes north from Ubud. This nature park offers you the priceless chance to feed, touch, and interact with these wonderful creatures that are set in an exotic, landscaped environment. Elephants can be seen immersing themselves in the cool waters of the park or grazing peacefully. Elephant Safari ride tours are also available where you will sit atop an elephant in a traditional teak wood chair, while swaying through the refreshing jungle of Desa Taro.

Bali Bird Park

Bird-watching enthusiasts, good news for you! You will be able to catch sight of the world's rarest and most captivating feathered friends at Bali's Bird Park. Hundreds of species dwell within this scenic and fascinating park, enthralling you with their brilliant colors and rarity. Indonesian parrots, cassowaries, black palm cockatoos, hornbills, and an impressive collection of Birds of Paradise will delight you. Apart from these exciting creatures, the extraordinary komodo dragons also make their home here. Set in magnificent botanical gardens with a backdrop of ponds and waterfalls, the Bali Bird Park is the perfect environment to enjoy the glorious myriad of birdlife as well as nature.

Jungle Trekking

Explore and discover Bali's glorious flora and fauna via the nature reserve of Mount Batukaru in an 'off-beaten' track adventure that will lead you into the cool surroundings of a tropical rainforest. You will be introduced to the hidden world of Bali's wildlife and native plants, as you pass by ancient strangler trees, ferns, wild orchids and hanging lianas - the home of many species of tropical birds and animals. Stop awhile for a reviving picnic lunch by a clear mountain stream and savor the crisp mountain air before continuing your journey to the archaic temple of Batukaru.

Rice Paddy Trek

Follow the farmers' tracks through Carang Sari's emerald-green paddy fields to catch a piece of traditional rural life that has remained unchanged for a thousand years. Skirting the Ayung River valley, you will have the chance to observe the timeless routine of plowing, planting and harvesting using hand-crafted tools and primitive techniques. Do not forget to visit village temples, coconut, mango and jackfruit plantations, all set in a background of unspoiled Balinese countryside.

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