On our next morning in Bali, Nyoman, Chris and I traveled to Ganung Kawi, an approximately 1,000-year-old Hindu temple complex about 45 minutes' drive from Ubud. To reach the temple, we hiked down into a river valley, passing by some beautiful rice terraces and local villages:
We next visited the remains of a former royal palace in East Bali, built during the 1700's. Sadly, most of the palace was destroyed when the Dutch invaded in 1908. Many of the people who lived in this area were the last holdouts against Dutch conquest, and perished while making their final stand.
What remains of the palace compound are the Taman Gili - a beautiful water garden - and the Kertha Gosa Pavilion, which features a beautifully painted ceiling depicting scenes from a famous Hindu epic, Bhima Swarga.
On the way home, we stopped off to visit Nyoman's former place of employment - he managed Bali's only recycling center. This was a very unusual experience, but I think it's worth its own post, so stay tuned for more on this.
That evening, we had dinner with Paul and Nyoman at Cafe Lotus, and met Paul's friend and tennis partner, Hans, an Austrian expat who manages the restaurant. The setting of Cafe Lotus, is very unique, as it's open to the outside and the back overlooks the Ubud palace, where you can see a nightly dancing show performed from across a large lotus pond. It was a beautiful scene!