Borobudur and Bali — their names alone conjure up images of lush tropical scenery, seaside relaxation, and imposing ancient monuments. We will spend ten days exploring breathtaking landscapes and learning about historic temples while along the way stopping to delve into the fascinating day-to-day culture of this less-travelled area of Asia.
We begin with a brief stop in Yogjakarta on the island of Java in Indonesia, where we’ll engage with the arts in a hands-on fashion with visits to a local puppet maker and batik workshop. The next day we’ll explore one of the most remarkable architectural monuments known to humankind — the 9th century Buddhist site of Borobudur — “rediscovered” in 1814 by Sir Thomas Raffles and now a UNESCO World Heritage Site. With over 2672 carved relief panels and hundreds of Buddha statues, it is the largest mandala in the world. While visiting the site, we’ll discuss various theories as to why the site was abandoned as well as efforts to preserve it over the centuries.
From Java, we’ll take the short hop over to Bali, diving right into the local culture with a stay at a resort embedded deep in lush gardens. The next seven days will feature a mix of art, architecture and local culture:
- Experience religious life at Balinese Hindu and Buddhist temples.
- Take in the views from temples perched on the slopes of Mount Batukaru.
- Marvel at Ullawatu Temple perched precariously over the ocean.
- Encounter the wild at a monkey sanctuary and a sacred Hindu bat cave.
- Enjoy traditional Balinese dance performances.
- Contemplate the artistic richness of Bali past and present with museum visits.
- Explore local markets in the major cities and small towns of Bali.
- Learn about plants from visits to farms, fruit plantations and gardens.
- Relax at carefully selected boutique accommodations in spectacular and varied natural settings.
See the draft Itinerary and click on the photo below to see an excellent gallery of the places we’ll go. Also, expand the “Komodo Extension” item below for more information on that optional add-on!