A ‘purnama’ (full moon) puja at the foot of Mount Agung temple
As in most early societies, purnama holds a special magic to the Balinese hence their combining of purnama with the Hindu festivities. There are many good temples to do our night puja but unfortunately (this is my old-fashioned personal opinion) all of them have now adopted the modern flood-lit lighting which absolutely destroys the atmosphere and magic of purnama!
There a couple of lesser known temples that offer similar atmosphere and breathtaking views which have so far escaped this ‘lighthouse’ treatment with either minimal or no electric lighting to speak of. One is a recently ‘rediscovered’ important temple, still being rebuilt and also set at the majestic setting at the foot of the imposing holy mountain. So let us keep them nameless and lesser known as long as we can!
While most retreats are scheduled to coincide with or in the vicinity of purnama, there are times when other constraints come into play such as school holidays which may not offer us the luxury of having the retreat to encompass a purnama night. In that instance we may or may not include the temple puja in our program.
A talk on Gandhian Ashram and meditation
Again by Pak Sadra who is going to ‘make time’ for our group. He has been with the Ashram since its inception, spent an extended stay in India to experience the various Gandhi Ashrams in India, and has recently returned from a meditation retreat of total ‘silence’ with Pak I Gede Perama, a spiritualist who is also an economist and motivational speakers of national standing. He will share his knowledge and I’m sure it would be of great value to us all.
Klungkung is the first large town going back westwards towards Denpasar about 40 minutes from Candidasa. It has a wealth of important regional history (see guide books) and is well worth a visit. The fabrics and clothing market is also interesting to explore. Before Klungkung is Goa Lawah, (bat cave temple) a well-known tourist destination. By car the total round trip would probably take three hours.
Amlapura is the biggest daily market, best visited in the early morning when all the action is happening, also cooler. About half an hour to the east by car. Also can include a visit to the ATM.
Apart from all the foodstuffs, the markets (above) sell many types of practical craft work, woven containers, temple accessories, etc. The Ashram car departs between 7 and 8 am to go to the Amlapura market to purchase daily supplies. Those interested in experiencing this shopping, with some minor adjustment to our group’s morning schedule, can tag along and you would still be back well before the 10 am start of the asana class.
For the more adventuros ones, this is also a nice trip by public bus when you can be close to the locals, squashed in with school kids and market goers (and all their purchases). But allow flexible time for free-lance trips (two to three hours round trip) so this may mean sacrificing some of your yoga sessions, or to do it in the afternoon when there is less yoga session is scheduled, although the food section may not be operating as fully as in the morning.
Airport pickup, hotel transfers, and general tours
We can help you organise land tours for Bali’s East – Tenganan, Water Palaces, Lempuyang temple/climb, Amed, Budakeling or general area
Write an email to BaliWheels@gmail.com or phone +62 818 0538 2077 if you want to book in advance. Once in Candidasa, you can ask at directly at the Ashram’s Office.
Mr Belly (+62 819 1664 8385) is a very experienced and knowledgeable trekker, and we can help you book a trek with him.
Fisherman Ketut (+62 878 6183 2195) can take you snorkelling and also to Pasir Putih “White Sand Beach”.
There are a number of these in the easter region ranging from the not too far to the ones of about an hour drive from the Ashram. The bigger ones involved about an and a half of quite steep climbing to a height of around 1200 metres and it’s quite taxing and normally, if we do go, from experience we will schedule this about midway through our retreat to allow for extra ‘toning-up’ of normally unused muscles to reduce the climb’s after effect on calf muscles etc.
Water and City Palaces
The last rajah of the region built three. The well-known one is Tirtagangga, a beautiful, cool place of large ponds, fountains, flowers and ornamental fish. You can also swim here in a spring-fed bathing pool. About 40 minutes by car via Amlapura.
Nearer than Amlapura is Ujung which is more exposed and nearer the sea. It has been rebuilt since almost total destruction after the eruption of Gunung Agung in 1963 and is worth a visit.
Probably can fit both of the above (or perhaps just one of them) and a palace visit at Amlapura in about 3 hours, unless the group decides to have a dip at the Tirtagangga pool, rather chilly as it must be coming from a deep natural artesian spring water but heavenly in the middle of the day or afternoon in which case the second water palace in Ujung may have to dropped. Else we may reverse the route to visit Ujung first and then Tirthagangga with or without the swim depending on the time available and inclinations of the group.
Snorkelling off Candidasa Shore
One of our former Ashram members is a fisherman who takes guests for fishing/snorkelling trips in a motorised perahu with outriggers, and only when the sea is reasonably calm. Primarily there are two trips on offer: on to the ‘Blue Lagoon’ (about 30-40 mins boat ride south) and the other one is near the ‘Gilis’ (small islands off the Ashram, only about 10 mins ride).
Both are good to snorkel above submerged reef though I would recommend the one near the Gilis which I think is slightly better, also more chance encounter with turtles or dolphins, plus is only a few minutes boat ride, therefore more ‘seasick’ friendly. The only downside is that it requires calmer water due to stronger currents, but the boatmen will keep a good watch and call or pull you back if you stray too far from the group.
Must wear good hats and sun-screen as it’s an open boat and the duration is between one to two hours,perhaps three for the Blue Lagoon. Snorkelling gears are provided and he is a very dependable and safety aware operator, especially good with beginners or kids as he goes in the water with you. You pay directly to the provider, but we’ll organise the booking for you.
Bus to Ubud / Padangbai
Check Perama Bus Timetable and/or call their office for estimate of duration and stopovers of trip, not just departure timetable