Things to do in Lovina, North Bali

Balinese woman cleaning the temple grounds at Brahmavihara Arama temple close to Lovina north Bali sitting next to a statue of the Buddha

And my contribution to Life Framers contest – Humans of the World

Views of the temple grounds at Brahmavihara Arama temple close to Lovina in North Bali

I enjoy visiting temples, but what are temples without people. There has to be someone who keeps the temple grounds clean and also, temples, especially in Bali, are very lively. There are local communities celebrating different holidays and showing respect to the deities. And of course, there are tourists. When I was visiting the beautiful Brahmavihara Arama buddhist temple close to Lovina I was amazed by the beauty of the temple and temple grounds. While walking around and taking in the sights, and taking photos, I saw one woman cleaning around one of the Buddha statues. I realised she’s as much part of the temple grounds as the temple, and the statues, itself. So, I started photographing her while she was working. I talked to her and asked if I could take her photo. She looked so proud of her work when I photographed her. Now, when I finally have time to work properly again, I decided to submit my photos of her to Life Framers contest Humans of the World.

Balinese woman cleaning the temple grounds at Brahmavihara Arama temple close to Lovina north Bali sitting next to a statue of the Buddha

I realise now how lucky I was to experience Bali at the end of the pandemic, when the world and Bali was opening up again. Especially in north and east Bali I got to experience lots of local life since I was almost the only western tourist. On the weekends, Indonesian tourist from Jawa used to show up in their cars, but apart from that we weren’t many tourists and I had Bali to myself. And I loved it. This year when I came back I was surprised in the beginning, “Oh look! A western tourist!” , until I realised we were now so many on the island.

Brahmavihara Arama buddhist temple, view of the temple grounds and mountains, Lovina, North Bali, Indonesia

When I visited the temple Brahmavihara Arama I made a day trip of it by going swimming in the holy thermal springs of Banjar Sekar. There it was just me and a lot of balinese kids. Or actually, I met three Scandinavian women but they weren’t swimming just had a look at the springs. I’ve always wanted to visit the holy spring, since I’ve seen photos of it. The dramatic contrast between the balinese statues, the surrounding greenery and the green water. The water is warm and smells a bit but it was a great experience and felt like it was doing me good.

The holy thermal bath of Banjar Sekar, Lovina, North Bali, Indonesia
Swimming in the holy thermal bath of Banjar Sekar that's decorated with statues of dragons, Lovina, North Bali, Indonesia

Visiting holy baths and waterfalls is a big thing while in Bali. There are usually many tourists swimming, and posing, in the waterfalls so when I visited with my camera, I took the opportunity to take some photos and test slow shutter speed to see how it would turn out handheld. But I did some swimming too. When I was in Ubud I went to Kanto Lampo waterfall, which is a short drive from Ubud. There are many more waterfalls on the island of Bali, and everything is theoretically a short drive away. It just depends on the traffic, that’s why I like to stay at different places on the island and explore the local area so I don’t have to spend too much time in traffic.

Woman posing at Kanto Lampo waterfall, Central Bali, Indonesia

A tip if you’re heading to Lovina from Ubud, or from the south coast in general, when choosing your route, is to head to Lovina from Ubud via Singaraja. That road is much newer and better. You’ll get to see temples, mountains, beautiful views and, of course, monkeys during the drive. While moving from one place to another on the island I usually use one of the mobile apps that are available – like Grab, Gojek or Blue Bird – to find a driver. And if we get along, I get the drivers number and text them on WhatsApp to arrange for excursions. And, it’s not expensive. If you’re using local drivers you can always check the price in one of the apps to get an estimate of how much it should cost.

Lovina is a very central location in the north for visiting other places along the north coast of Bali. One day I went snorkelling at Menjangan island. The island is part of a national park in the north west, Taman Nasional Bali Barat, West Bali National Park. Menjangan Island is famous for its good conditions for snorkelling and diving. There are also lots of deer on the island and a Ganesha temple. It was one of the best days of my stay in Bali last year, a bit of sightseeing and great swimming.

People were also scuba diving but I enjoyed snorkelling along the drop, or wall as you might call it. I love that, seeing the sea suddenly getting deeper. It’s almost like when you’re on top of a mountain and looking down over a cliff. But you look deeper into the sea. My fear of height doesn’t apply in the water though I just love seeing how deep it might drop and looking at, and taking photos of the marine life.

One image that has stayed with me from my visit to the north coast is when we were driving down the mountains towards Lovina and ahead of us was a truck full of cows. I still wonder how those cows felt, considering I’m afraid of heights, are cows uncomfortable travelling down mountains in trucks. Guess that’s a subject I have to look further into.

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42 responses to “Things to do in Lovina, North Bali”

  1. [YOU]: “I enjoy visiting temples, but what are temples without people. There has to be someone who keeps the temple grounds clean and also, temples, especially in Bali, are very lively.”

    [ME]: True ๐Ÿ’ฏ๐Ÿ‘Œ. They will be nothing without people, become extremely dilapidated and completely taken over by the critters and beasts of nature, so I 100% agree with you that people are essential to the maintenance and atmosphere of these temples ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿ˜†.

    [YOU]: “. I realised sheโ€™s as much part of the temple grounds as the temple, and the statues, itself.”

    [ME]: That is a great point. She is like the guardian of the temple and its surroundings; the temple is her life. Without her and the people who cherish it that makes the place what it is, much like the statues and other things (as you have pointed out) , it won’t be the same ๐Ÿ˜…๐Ÿ˜….

    [YOU]: “So, I started photographing her while she was working. I talked to her and asked if I could take her photo. She looked so proud of her work when I photographed her.”

    [ME]: I can’t imagine that she wouldn’t be. She would have to have so much passion, love and respect for the temples and that area as a whole, to be spending so much time and energy there, unless there are other benefits and incentives that would compel people to do so, but that’s a whole other story. Based on what you have said, I actually think she just genuinely loves that place and she is proud of what she is doing.

    [YOU]: “So now, when I finally have time to work properly again, I decided to submit my photos of her to Life Framers contest Humans of the WorldI enjoy visiting temples, but what are temples without people. There has to be someone who keeps the temple grounds clean and also, temples, especially in Bali, are very lively”

    [ME]: Indeed my friend. The temples were probably built and designed to be frequented and patronized by people and as many people as possible, because they are where people were supposed to pray to the gods and support them, make sacrifices and whatnot; they where pretty much like churches way back when, but of course in modern times, they have become attraction spots where people mostly visit to see alot of the cool depictions and architectural aspects that they have, and learn about their history and things like that. It is seriously cool of you to submit the photos that you took of her to the Life Framers contest ๐Ÿ–ผ๐Ÿ™Œโ˜บ๏ธ๐Ÿ’ฏ.

    [YOU]: “So, I started photographing her while she was working. I talked to her and asked if I could take her photo. She looked so proud of her work when I photographed her”

    [ME]: I read your post and there are a couple of places where you mentioned this more than once. Just thought I would point that out ๐Ÿ’™๐Ÿ’™

    [ME]: This place looks incredible โœจ๐Ÿคฉ๐Ÿคฉ. It as if it’s a massive beautiful garden, which is an eye-poping contrast to the modern cities that many of us see very often with the typical skyscrapers, hotels, blocks of modernized complexes and so on ๐ŸŒณ๐Ÿบ๐Ÿ›•๐Ÿชด๐Ÿ˜ฎ๐Ÿ‘.

    [YOU]: ” And I loved it. This year when I came back I was surprised in the beginning, โ€œOh look! A western tourist!โ€ , until I realised we were now so many on the island.”

    [ME]: ๐Ÿคฃ๐Ÿคฃ๐Ÿคฃ So profoundly stated. I suppose it was only a matter of time; especially with so many jaw-dropping images and stories out there from people such as your self who have enticed many with your experiences, tales and legends โ€ผ๐ŸคŸ๐Ÿ˜น๐Ÿ’ฏ.

    [YOU]: I am glad that you got to swim in the holy thermal springs of Banjar Sekar at the temple of Brahmavihara Arama; that must have been unbelievably good haha. The tip that you provided to those who may be heading to Lovina is insightful and a priceless piece of information to keep in mind for all travelers to and from. I loved reading about your visit to the holy baths and waterfalls; thank goodness for your snorkeling at Menjangan island too because those pictures you took of the location are remarkable ๐Ÿซถ๐Ÿ‘Œ๐Ÿ“ธ๐Ÿ˜„

    • Thank you ๐Ÿ™ and thanks for the proof reading help ๐Ÿ˜‰ I was just so happy to be able to do a blog post and finally share my photos and experience with the world. Iโ€™ll edit it soon. Thanks again ๐Ÿซถ

      • You are welcome hun ๐Ÿ™๐Ÿ™. Exactly, I was reading along and when I reached to them, I thought that you were just reiterating, but then I realized that they were actually mistakes because they were all exactly the same thing being stated in the same exact words lol.

        I understand where you are coming from ๐Ÿ‘Œ๐Ÿ’ฏ. It’s nice that you actually get to do a blog again after being so busy with other things. I love reading them, they are always exciting and I am glad you made this one ๐Ÿ™Œ๐Ÿ™Œ๐Ÿ˜„

      • Thanks ๐Ÿ™ I replied on my post about Singapore, but I can say it here too. Copy/paste doesn’t always work, so … proof reading is essential ๐Ÿ˜‰ And, it’s very nice to have time for other things besides unpacking boxes!

      • You are wecome and thank you for point that out. I spotted it and this one but I thought I had replied only to find out days later that I did not, i don’t know how that happened, it’s as if I was high or something and I don’t even smoke LOL. So I am sorry about that <3 <3. It looks like I also have to double check my replies ๐Ÿ˜ƒ๐Ÿ˜†

        Proof reading is essential; I also need to remember that and take my time sometimes and check over my sessions because grammatical errors are also no joke ๐Ÿ˜…๐Ÿคญ๐Ÿ‘Ž. Hahaha yes, atleast roof reading frees you from the shackles unpacking boxes ๐Ÿ™Œ๐Ÿ˜น๐Ÿ˜น

      • Yes, indeed ๐Ÿ™„ it’s just so annoying that I had proof read it in the other program but, I was surprised that the first paragraph was sooo long. Didn’t check why ๐Ÿ˜‰ And then the post went out to something like 600 subscribers. Well, WP has some strange ways now … I can read a post in reader and like it, but then that like disappears. No idea why, and also a hidden apology ๐Ÿ™

      • Indeed, I see your point about how surprising it was lol.

        Yes, I know the issue about the likes seemingly disappearing in reader mode, it has actually been like that for a long time now and it’s something that is noticeable across the board and not just a specific issue that you are having. When you switch back to the regular view the likes (and other elements) will be visible ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿ˜น. What do you mean by hidden apology?

      • LOL, me neither. That was just my playful, whimsical response ๐Ÿ’™๐Ÿ˜น๐Ÿ’™.

        How is your Instagram and your Shop?

      • Thanks ๐Ÿ™ my instagram and shop is coming along nicely. Planning. Taking part in seminars ahead of the launch of my webshop. There’s so much to consider when starting the web shop; like where the products are made, where my customers are, how long the transport of the products might be, how the conditions for the workers are in the factories, the environmental impact of the production process, how much waste the products might produce and so on. The list is endless. Have you checked out my Instagram? helenaisthlm is my main account. It’s coming along nicely as well, been there since 2009 so sometimes you have to take it a bit slower. And, how are you?

      • Couldn’t agree more ๐Ÿ’ฏ๐Ÿ˜†. I definitely get the picture that it is a significant undertaking and everything you mentioned are critical things that most businesses constantly keep under evaluation ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿ‘.

        Plus since you are now on the come up, these issues will be even more imposing, but I am glad that you are taking the steps because when you learn as you go along, and you become more invested in your business, it would be very life-changing when all of that work starts paying off ๐Ÿ“Š๐Ÿข๐Ÿ“ˆ๐Ÿ˜Œ๐Ÿ‘Œ. Yes I checked out your Instagram since our last convo and tried viewing what I can without an account (I have to make one soon ๐Ÿ˜น๐Ÿ˜น); you have a ton of terrific stuff on it ๐Ÿ™Œ๐Ÿ˜†๐Ÿ“ธ๐Ÿ–ผ๐Ÿคฉ. You are right about sometimes having to take things slower and I am glad that things are going well ๐Ÿ™๐Ÿ™๐Ÿฅฐ.

        I am doing terrific; thanks for asking ๐ŸŒน๐ŸŒน. I have plans and projects in the works, I am just currently trying to get most of the equipment and tools I need which I am making progress on despite the fact that having to obtain most of the stuff from abroad, can be a time-consuming process, and sometimes the politics at play makes the situation needlessly more technical (and costly) than it needs to be ๐Ÿคฃ๐Ÿคฃ๐Ÿคฃ. I like working with electronics and automobiles and I actually have plans to become self-employed too, but I am making sure I don’t put the cart before the horse, so I am happy that I can say that, so far, I love how things are going ๐Ÿ˜น๐ŸคŸ

      • It’s great that you’re well and things are moving along ๐Ÿ‘ I might have put the horse before the cart and need to turn it around now, but getting there ๐Ÿ˜‰

      • Thank you โ˜บ๏ธ๐Ÿ’Œ๐Ÿซถ

        Hahaha it doesn’t look so, but if that turns out to be the case, there is nothing to worry about, because I know that there is a method to your madness ๐Ÿ’ฏ๐Ÿ˜๐Ÿ˜†

      • Yeah, well ๐Ÿ™„ there’s so little time to actually finish prints and products. And work out everything else. Yesterday I drove 250 kms in -17 Celcius just to prepare my, unsold, house for the winter. It was the 2nd time I did that drive last week. But I know what I have to do and in which order. So. Getting there ๐Ÿ‘

      • There is just a wave of momentum happening with the many things that you are trying to manage ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿคฏ๐Ÿ˜†. I just have to say wow about your long travel through those extremely frigid conditions to prepare your house for the winter โ„๐Ÿ ๐ŸŒจ.

        All the work and maintenance you are doing with it should show people that it’s definitely the “hottest” house on the market to buy this winter ๐Ÿ‘Œ๐Ÿ˜ƒ๐Ÿ˜น

      • Well, let’s hope somebody buys it ๐Ÿคž did a bit of marketing of the house myself on my social media and there was a rise in visits on the ad. Usually when I’m doing things I have to fill my head with information and then … all of a sudden everything falls into place. I just hope that’s the case now too. I’m doing too many things. I realise that but hoping that it will get easier soon. I’m starting a new temp job this week too. Not enough days and hours. But, I’m getting to enjoy walks and bicycle rides in the winter and my yoga practice is coming back too. Just checking in here and then I’ll get my mat out ๐Ÿง˜โ€โ™€๏ธ and as always, thanks for stopping by and commenting!

      • Most likely it will get sold eventually, but the housing market and real estate is a very competative industry, so for now the best thing you can do is what you are already doing, which is maintaining the home and checking in on it to make sure that it doesn’t become delapidated or the new habitat for some adventerous creatures ๐Ÿฆฅ๐Ÿ•Š๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜ƒ.

        I see your point and I hope that things fall into place, and I am glad to see that you have started a new temporary/parttime job, because while you have your bigger goals and plans, you still need to worry about day to day things which will be a more difficult task if you keep all of your eggs in one basket, although as you noted, there will still be challenges with time โฒ๐Ÿ‘ˆ๐Ÿ˜….

        It’s awesome that there is a lighter side of things where you are able to enjoy the fun walks and the fun bike rides, and of course yoga ๐Ÿง˜โ€โ™€๐Ÿง˜โ€โ™‚๐Ÿ˜„๐Ÿ™Œ. I love hearing from you, and you are welcome, it is my pleasure to stop by and check out your super site ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿ˜น๐Ÿ˜

      • As, always ๐Ÿ™ everything is, sort of, working out fine. I’m just happy I survived one of the most intense weeks this fall ๐Ÿคž and it’s nice to have a job too with colleagues and doing something that’s important and I enjoy, which is helping older citizens, and that’s also something I’m good at and been doing for a big part of my life. But for now, I’m going to enjoy the weekend! Hope you have a good one too ๐Ÿฅณ

      • Correct, I am happy that you survived that you survived those weeks of intensity ๐Ÿ˜…๐Ÿ’ž๐Ÿ™Œ.

        It’s admirable how you have a job with colleagues that you enjoy working with, where you get to do something that has been a significant part of your life and that you are good at, which is help older citizens, and I know that (especially at this time of year) your help would be greatly appreciated by alot of them.

        Enjoy every second of your weekend, and thanks alot for wishing me the same ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿ˜น. You can reach me at anytime Helena ๐Ÿ’Œ๐Ÿ’Œ

      • Thanks ๐Ÿ™ and one intense week was followed by … surprise … another intense week ๐Ÿ˜น still here tho ๐Ÿ‘

      • You are welcome ๐Ÿ˜

        I hear you on the intensity part ๐Ÿ˜น. I am happy you survived againโœŠ๐Ÿ˜ƒ

      • Yup ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿ˜น, I hope it goes how you want it to go, especially around Christmas so you don’t miss out on the fun ๐ŸŽ„โ„โ˜ƒ๐Ÿ˜๐Ÿ˜†. But until then take care my dear ๐ŸŒน

      • Thanks ๐Ÿ™ itโ€™s not easy living in the north. Had to wait for the bus for 70 minutes last week in -10 degrees C ๐Ÿฅฒ my toes are still suffering from that. Maybe next week ๐Ÿคž

      • No problem ๐Ÿ˜น๐ŸคŸ.

        Whoa, being held up in -10 degree frosty conditions for minutes definitely isn’t good ๐Ÿ˜…. I hope you can get your precious feet feeling fabulous! again ๐Ÿ™Œ๐Ÿ˜Œ๐Ÿ’™

      • Finally ๐Ÿ™Œ my feet are back to normal. Yes, the feet are a very important part of the body. I’ve broken my toes so many times, and, that can cause other problems ๐Ÿ˜น but, all in all, I’ve survived everything so far ๐Ÿคž

      • Hahaha, HOOORAY! ๐ŸŽ‰๐ŸŽŠ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿ˜‚, your feet are FINALLY! back to normal ๐Ÿ˜๐Ÿ˜น๐Ÿ’™.

        You are right, breaking or damaging your toes can cause serious issues especially later on in life so be very careful with your cute steppers ๐Ÿ˜„๐Ÿ‘. But it’s awesome that you have survived everything — keep it up ๐ŸคŸ๐Ÿ˜น

  2. Wow, what a beautiful place to visit. The temples are amazing! I love all your photos. It’s nice to get to see places like this through someone else’s lens since I know I’ll never go there. Thank you

    • Thank you! Maybe one day you’ll be able to visit. Who knows? I never thought I, a couple of years ago, that I would visit the places I’ve visited. But now I have. So, you’ll never know what happens ๐Ÿ˜‰

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