Let me guide you around Bali (image heavy and a good read)

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It's been 2 weeks since we returned from Bali. It was our first time to visit Asia and we loved it! 1 week before, we went to Bali I received my new D800. I didn't have much time to play with it. A vacation is the perfect place to try out the nice camera! I promised myself to read the manual to see if there are any drastic changes in comparison with my old faithful D3, but on the airplane I preferred reading the 4th book in the Dark Tower series of Stephen King. 3 more books to go and I'm done!

Anyways ... we stayed in Bali for 2 weeks. I promised my fiancé to do a mixture of exploring and relaxation at the pool. That's probably the reason why I ended with approximately 1,500 pictures instead of 3,000.

We stayed in 4 different hotels. The first one would only be for 2 nights in Sanur, not far from the airport. This way we could rest a bit after our 24 hour journey. The second villa was in the North in Kalibukbuk, Lovina. We then stayed some time in the center of the island at Ubud. Then back to Sanur for our last days.

Our first hotel was at the beach. The perfect place to play with my new Big Stopper of Lee. 10 minutes later I discovered I had a light leak in my Nikon 24-70 F2.8. Fortunate I could fix it with Photoshop. Still need to send my lens into repairs ... not in the mood for that to be honest. :(

#1
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The restaurant of the hotel was next to the beach. When it got dark, suddenly the beach was full of little, tiny crabs. The next evening, I took my macro lens, tripod and flash with me for dinner. I think this was the moment my girlfriend was realising she was going to marry a freak. ;)

#2
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We traveled to Lovina in the North of Bali. We traded the white sandy beaches for volcanic black ones. They say the sunsets here are the most beautiful so at the end we went down to the beach at 6 pm every day.

#3
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Picture of a lonely fisherman while waiting for the sun to set ...

#4
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I wanted to catch a sunrise at Lake Bratan. There's a temple there and I really wanted to photograph it in the first light of the day. So we got up at 4 am ... to have only clouds and no sun.

#5
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10 second picture to gather light before the sun was really there.

Next stop was the Munduk waterfall. More beautiful then the Git Git waterfall which is more touristic.

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On our way back we stopped by a forest where there were a lot of monkeys. You can buy bananas there, so when my girlfriend enjoyed herself feeding them I had the chance to take some pictures.

#7
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Not really a dangerous monkey I suppose ... I think he was just yawning, I just got lucky to press the button at the right moment to make him look as if he was going to eat me! You can see more monkeys on my website by the way.

Back in Lovina for another sunset!

#8
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They use this kind of boats to fish and to transport tourists into the sea to watch dolphins. For those dolphins, we needed to get up at 5 am because all the boats leave before sunrise.

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#11
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And after 2 hours of boating we saw some dolphins! Not very easy to photograph to be honest ...

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After a couple of days of relaxing, we did a jungle trek in the West of Bali. We didn't see many animals, except a cat at starting point, some insects and lots of monkeys at a temple in the middle of the jungle.

Balinese people offer fruit to their gods. The monkeys are very smart and steal the fruit as soon as the people turn their back. So wherever there's a temple close to the forest, most likely there will be monkeys. They're called grey macaques to be exact.

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#13
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#14
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In Ubud, we stayed at the Kupu Kupu Barong hotel. The best hotel we stayed in, ever. You have a nice, wooden room build on the slope of a valley, you have your own terrace with a private pool, sun loungers and this view ...

#15
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On the river they organise rafting tours. We didn't do that. We didn't have much time left, and I promised my girlfriend horse riding on the beach. For me probably as adventurous as rafting ...

One of the next days our driver took us to see how the people live; well the people which are Hindu. Like 85% of Bali. It's a tradition that the whole family lives in the same house. Actually a house is a small gated community with a couple of buildings. Each building represents a kitchen, bedrooms, bathroom, etc. Each 'house' has their own temple where they pray. Very interesting. When a couple gets married, the wife will live at the family of the man.

#16
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The oldest family member of the house we visited. He was 93 years old and a fine business man. ;)

Next stop was a woodcarving atelier, a goldsmith and a painters atelier. 2 men were working on a painting which needs more then 6 months to complete.

#17
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In the afternoon, we visited some rice fields. We had a bit of bad luck because there was no rice planted and harvesting was mostly done. Some pictures have fire and smoke in them. When they have (literally) beaten the rice out of the plants, they burn the leftovers.

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#19
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At the end of our day we visited Pura Tanah Lot. A temple in the sea. At low tide you can walk around the temple. No tourists are allowed inside though. It was very crowded. And this night, there was going to be a full moon which leads to special ceremonies and even more crowds.

Beside Lovina, Tanah Lot is recommended to watch a sunset. Fortunate I carry my tripod anywhere with me. Let me say, it was a very beautiful night!

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#21
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The Pura Batu Balong temple. 5 minutes from Tanah Lot.

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The day after we had very special guest visiting us at the pool.

#23
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We both ran inside as soon as we saw the spider. Only difference is that I ran inside to get my camera.

It was almost the end of our vacation and on our way to our last hotel in Sanur we visited the mother temple. The largest temple on Bali. It was like Disneyland. Very very crowded. With that many people I mostly don't bother to take many pictures ...

#24
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And then for some more rice fields. :)

#25
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On the last day I went out very early to photograph a sunrise. I was hoping for low tide, but I had a bit of bad luck. Still managed to get a couple of pictures before we flew home.

#26
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#27
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I hope you enjoyed my story and my pictures. Bali is really a very nice place to visit. Really nice people, good food and beautiful scenery. There are more pictures on my website should you be interested in seeing a bit more photos. You can find them in the Gallery section.

Thanks for reading! :)
 
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LyndeeLoo

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I love Bali!!

It's an extraordinary place and, hands down, is my favorite country in Asia. These images bring back so many memories for me, and they are awesome!! :tongue:

Which hotel did you stay at in Sanur? And did you visit Jimbaran Bay?

You got some fantastic shots at Tanah Lot. Each time I've visited, there really wasn't a sunset to speak of (both times, it rained...).

Excellent work, Frank - and thanks so much for showing these! Honestly - these made my day... :smile:
 
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Bravo, Frank, well done...!

I enjoyed every bit of this series, thanks for sharing your vacation...! :smile:
Thank you William!

I love Bali!!

It's an extraordinary place and, hands down, is my favorite country in Asia. These images bring back so many memories for me, and they are awesome!! :tongue:

Which hotel did you stay at in Sanur? And did you visit Jimbaran Bay?

You got some fantastic shots at Tanah Lot. Each time I've visited, there really wasn't a sunset to speak of (both times, it rained...).

Excellent work, Frank - and thanks so much for showing these! Honestly - these made my day... :smile:
Glad to hear I could revive your memories. Thank you!

Our hotels:
- Sanur: Puri Santrian
- Lovina: Villa Teman
- Ubud: Kupu Kupu Barong
- Sanur: Mahagiri Villas

I got lucky at Tanah Lot. We only went there one evening. We had friends which also visited Bali a couple of years ago. They also tried to watch a sunset for 2 times, but there were always clouds.

I was a bit surprised Bali isn't the islands with 100% clear blue skies. It's always a bit cloudy. Certainly in the middle of the island where the mountains are. Before noon you will have good weather, but in the afternoon all the clouds gather and it rains mostly.

So John, if you cant to visit things in the center of Bali ... be sure to get up early. At the coast most of the time it's always good weather during the non raining season. :)

We didn't visit Jimbaran Bay. To be honest from the airport we only went North. We didn't visit anything in the south below. I've read there are also good beaches to photograph sunsets.

Wonderful photos, great sunsets. I am off to Bali at the end of August and I hope I can get some shots as good as yours.
Thank you! Looking forward to your pictures! :)

every one of those is a great image. well done
Thanks Dylan!

Excellent set and story. Thanks for that!
Your welcome, thanks!
 

Rob Zijlstra

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Great story Frank and really a beautiful set of pictures.
I hope that 24-70 is repaired! If you got more, I hope to see more of Bali from you!
 

LyndeeLoo

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Glad to hear I could revive your memories. Thank you!

Our hotels:
- Sanur: Puri Santrian
- Lovina: Villa Teman
- Ubud: Kupu Kupu Barong
- Sanur: Mahagiri Villas

I got lucky at Tanah Lot. We only went there one evening. We had friends which also visited Bali a couple of years ago. They also tried to watch a sunset for 2 times, but there were always clouds.

I was a bit surprised Bali isn't the islands with 100% clear blue skies. It's always a bit cloudy. Certainly in the middle of the island where the mountains are. Before noon you will have good weather, but in the afternoon all the clouds gather and it rains mostly.

We didn't visit Jimbaran Bay. To be honest from the airport we only went North. We didn't visit anything in the south below. I've read there are also good beaches to photograph sunsets.
On my first visit to Bali, I stayed at the Puri Santrian! Wonderful beach area behind the hotel!

And no - it's definitely not 100% blue skies all the time. Once I went in January, and while the weather was nice and warm, it rained - a lot, and unfortunately, there were not a lot of glorious sunsets during that visit.

If you ever return, I do recommend a visit to Jimbaran Bay, and their seafood resturants. You can watch and photograph the fisherman bring in their catch at the end of the day. In the evenings, the restaurants set up their tables directly on the beach, and you dine by candlelight and the stars in the sky, while listening to the water gently hitting the shoreline, and a live band that wanders up and down the beach. Marvelous...and the food is just excellent... :smile:
 
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Great set of pictures, looks like you will get on great with the d800.
Despite the fact you wanted low tide I really like no.26.
 
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Great story Frank and really a beautiful set of pictures.
I hope that 24-70 is repaired! If you got more, I hope to see more of Bali from you!
Thanks Rob!
Well I have a piece of black tape on the AF scale window. Problem is fixed temporarily. :)

On my first visit to Bali, I stayed at the Puri Santrian! Wonderful beach area behind the hotel!

And no - it's definitely not 100% blue skies all the time. Once I went in January, and while the weather was nice and warm, it rained - a lot, and unfortunately, there were not a lot of glorious sunsets during that visit.

If you ever return, I do recommend a visit to Jimbaran Bay, and their seafood resturants. You can watch and photograph the fisherman bring in their catch at the end of the day. In the evenings, the restaurants set up their tables directly on the beach, and you dine by candlelight and the stars in the sky, while listening to the water gently hitting the shoreline, and a live band that wanders up and down the beach. Marvelous...and the food is just excellent... :smile:
Yes, Puri Santrian was a very nice resort! Great atmosphere, beautiful pools and beaches.

Jimbaran Bay sounds lovely. I'm gonna make sure I'll visit it when I go back some time. :)

Great set of pictures, looks like you will get on great with the d800.
Despite the fact you wanted low tide I really like no.26.
Thanks!
I really love the D800, it gives me much more freedom in post processing due to the dynamic range compared to my D3.
 
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