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Bali Temples: Pura Tanah Lot

All of the pictures of Tanah Lot remind me of Kung Fu Panda for some reason. This lonely tree on a rock, in the middle of the sea...has a certain resemblance... 

A wonderful place, if you discard the crowds! We drove up to Tanah Lot after visiting Pura Geger temple; two utterly different experiences.
This little rock with the monastic structure on top is absolutely sombre and romantic, in front of the setting sun.
 
However! In order to get to it, you have to navigate through a small city of shops that are there just for the tourists!
And once you get to the seaside you cannot get on the actual rock and climb up to the temple, unfortunately. We were told that certain tourists weren't showing the appropriate respect to the religious site hence they closed it for everybody, so frustrating!

On the way in we were sprinting to get to the seaside in desperation. Traffic around the site is horrendous because everybody flocks here for the sunset, so we were late - what a surprise!


On the way back we peaked at the shops. You can buy everything you can imagine, from wooden statues to shell-ornaments and from Kopi Luwak (Cat-poo coffee) to Ralph Lauren clothes; 
there's an actual Ralphie shop within the historic site!
They expect you to bargain, just like in India, but they are not interested if you start comparing prices and push it too much, they are quite proud like that. 





You have to find your perfect spot amongst hundreds of people, on a cliff across the temple, to watch the sunset in the magnificent Bali Sea.
There are lots of little restaurants there, so we grabbed a front row table, popped a straw in an orange Fanta bottle and waited. Whole families sit around, i-devices in hand, to document the event.
It reminded me of Santorini, when the sun sets, everybody goes quite and the sun dips into the ocean.
After the commotion of finding a good spot there comes a moment when everybody settles down and it goes quite, nature takes over with a show of colours and the clouds make their guest appearance.
 
Don't leave your spot before you catch the absolute last glimpses of twilight;
after the sun has set, there is this deep - orange and purple colour in the sky for a couple of moments;
a mystical aura covers the place as the tourists walk away and you are left there in absolute peace!
 

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