Diving Pics – Bali 2017

I got around to reviewing the underwater photos that I shot on my four dives in Bali. The following are the best of the lot. My dive camera gear is the simplest of simple, so when I get an interesting one that is not washed out of light due to depth, I am pretty happy with it. These scenes are a mix of shots from Manta Point at Nusa Lembongan and various locations around Amed.

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Sea snakes… if you swim too close, they all hide back into their sand holes.BU4BU5BU6

Mysterious creature… something petrified?BU7BU8

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Alt-Life Ubud

It seemed to me that the “alternative” has taken an ever deeper plunge into the fabric of modern-day Ubud. On my first visit, I compared it to my memories of Santa Fe, New Mexico because of the preponderance of art and up-market eateries. This time, more and more store fronts were dedicated to the following – love it or not.

SoulPath – “Transformational Clothing”  – For those folks where meditation and yoga just won’t do the forgetting thing…UbuSto1

Express yourself…UbuSto2

Native Bali drums, gongs and bamboo flutes – on a millionaire’s budget.UbuSto3

ARMA Museum, Ubud

This was my 2nd visit to ARMA. On this trip, I allotted more time than my first knowing that I would want more time browse the paintings – about 2 1/2 hours. Short for the Agung Rai Museum of Art, this is a private collection exhibited in a beautiful setting. I find it to be extremely educational in understanding the various schools of Bali art and doubles as a relaxing setting to hang out. Unfortunately but understandably, no photos are allowed of the paintings. Highly recommended!

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Bali Parade

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Of course, a trip to Bali is not complete without happening upon one spontaneous parade. This one passed by my hotel on my first morning in Ubud.

Amed Scene

Looking inland (south) into the mountains from one of the Amed beaches. A lot of the beaches here are black sand created by lava flows from these still-active volcanoes that ring northeast Bali.

Canang Sari – Bali Daily Offerings

One of the unique and soulful aspects of Bali are the ubiquitous small daily spiritual offerings placed on the ground at the entryway to all buildings and passageways. The practice is never-ending, freshly prepared daily to honor ancestors and gods. “Canang” translates to a small coconut basket and “Sari” means essence.

Amed Buddha Diving

I had a couple of nice dives while in the Amed area. Almost all the dives there are walk-in from the shore. There are two wrecks in the area, one being the USS Liberty which was a troop carrier torpedoed by the Japanese in WW II. I dived with the shop next door to my accommodation, Buddha Diving. They turned out to be great bunch of folks, run by a French Canadian with a Parisienne girlfriend and a German divemaster. So international! Highly recommended!

Amed, Bali

I moved on from Sidemen to the far northeast corner of Bali, along the beachfront. Here the weather means  hot days and gorgeous breezy nights. A very relaxing and laid-back area, Amed is actually a long series of fishing villages strung together like a pearl necklace running for kilometers along the ocean. I stayed near Jemeluk Bay, pictured here. Of course, that is Mount Agung in the background.

Hindu Misogyny

One thing that I don’t get are signs like this that I see frequently in Bali at holy sites. For the world religion with the most female gods, I am surprised at what appears to me to be blatant misogyny. Can you imagine the uproar if a sign like this went up in front of a Christian church or cemetery in the States?

Sideman, Bali

After Nusa Lembongan, I headed back to mainland Bali and into the interior. I had heard that Sideman is the “Ubud of 30 years ago” – a true rice field village unspoiled by tourism. Indeed, it is exceptionally rural compared to Ubud, although I did spy a small silver shop hidden along the way. From what I can see, the geography is a long, long valley of rice fields running from the base of Mount Agung in the north all the way to the ocean in the south, carved by the river Tukad Yeh Unda running through the center.

There’s Mount Agung in the background, hidden in clouds.

Tropica Shipwreck

I stayed in a really cool place on Lembongan Island for the five nights that I was there. The name was Tropica Shipwreck; it was only about 50 meters from the white sand beach, was a little compound with only four units set off off tbe small alley access. Very quiet and peaceful with a great staff. Highly recommended!