The streets are filled to the brim with markets stalls, overflowing with rich fabrics, elegant jewellery, colourful bags and souvenirs, mouthwatering street food and dresses, skirts and flowy pants in every shade of the rainbow. Vendors are yelling after potential customers, promising the best prices in town. Steam is dancing upwards from one of the food carts towards the purple sky in lazy swirls, while the last sun rays are illuminating the tiny cramped street. Soon the store shutters will be pulled down and this street now bursting with life and motion will be entirely silent and wrapped in darkness.
On our fifth day in Bali Mel and I woke up not feeling our best. We suspected that some of the fruit we had the day before for breakfast might had gone off (and later found out that our stomach aches were caused by the combination of jackfruit and snake fruit). Still wanting to make the most of the day, we got on our scooter and headed to The Elephant, a vegetarian cafe just outside of town with stunning views over the palm tree forest. Both of us got the banana and tahini toast (since all we wanted to eat was bread!) and drank what felt like several litres of peppermint tea. After a good amount of self-pitying we got back on our scooter and went to visit the Ubud temple, which is located on the main road right next to Starbucks.A pathway divides a pond filled with water lilies into two, which leads to the impressive temple entrance. The temple is absolutely stunning and one of the most beautiful I have seen in Bali, so don’t miss this one if you’re going to Ubud!
We headed back to our bungalow and passed out for a few hours during which we got some much-needed rest. Later we had our driver Putu pick us up, who drove us to Earth Cafe where we continued to feel miserable and ate pancakes in hopes of them making us feel better. The pancakes were super fluffy and came with rich sugar cane syrup, fresh fruit and chocolate sauce.
After lunch, we went to the Monkey Forrest, which was just a short drive away from the cafe. I was a bit apprehensive about the monkeys at first but ended up having the best time watching them jump from branch to branch high up in the treetops and play with each other. We also had a look at the Pura Dalem Agung Padanglegal temple, which is situated in the middle of the forest and beautiful to look at.
We then headed to what we called the ‘Market Street’, which is a small street leading away from the main road filled with stalls selling clothes, jewellery, home decorations and more. I acquired two beautiful dresses, a tree of life dream catcher and a silver pendant necklace! We ate pizza for dinner and vegan crepe with salted caramel sauce, strawberries and banana for dessert. Then we headed back to where our driver Putu was waiting for us, who then drove us to our next destination: Sideman.