Ankor på vift

A freedom-oriented travel blog

Tag: Lombok

Slowboat to Bali and Ubud Monkey forest

How fun it would be to go with the cheaper slow boat from Lombok to Bali we thought. We will see so much of the western part of Lombok and the islands situated between Lombok and Bali we thought. The first part  by car went relatively smooth while it was bringing us to the ferry terminal in Lembar. The interesting part of the journey started when we arrived at the ferry port. In Lembar, we had to jump on a bus to get on the boat, while the rest of the tourists could walk on the ferry. Why we had to jump on a warm bus to carry us on board can speculated about. Even the locals on the bus had to jump off and walk onboard the ferry.
We had been informed that the slow boat would take approximately 3 hours. However, we can now refute that information. It took more than 4 hours to cross the thirty kilometer water passage and then another 2 hours where we had to wait just outside Padang Bai, the ferry port of Bali, where there was a queue of boats waiting to enter the harbor. The view was fine, but being so close to the goal, yet so far away, really got to us. We arrived to our favorite place in Bali several hours later than we expected, so take the fast boat if you’re not on a tight budget or in a hurry.

We wanted to show our family the small hub in the world called Ubud and one of the things we did in the city was to experience the Monkey Forest. It is an open park where several different groups of macaques live. The monkeys can move freely in and out of the park, but they stay in the area, because they are fed by park managers every day. Our tip is to visit the park in the afternoon, when the monkeys have been fed and are satisfied. Otherwise they can jump on you, which they might do anyway, and search your bag. Yes, they do know how a zipper works, and they will know if you have something edible on you. They also like ice cream so pay attention if you are in the vicinity of the park. The Balinese has a very natural relationship to nudity and you can find statues in the park showing that. You can also visit a spa to experience it, which Ulrika’s family got to experience, but more about that it in our next blog post.


Vad roligt att åka med den billigare långsamma båten från Lombok till Bali tänkte vi. Vi kommer få se så mycket av västra delen av Lombok och öarna mellan Lombok och Bali tänkte vi. Den första delen gick relativt bra med bil som tog oss mot färjan i Lembar. När vi sedan kom till färjehamnen, så började roligheterna. I Lembar var vi tvungna att hoppa på en buss för att överhuvudtaget komma på båten, medan resten kunde promenera på färjan. Varför vi blev inslängd på en varm buss för att ta oss ombord kan man ju spekulera över. Lokalbefolkningen på bussen fick däremot hoppa av och gå ombord på båten.  

Vi hade fått information om att den långsamma båten skulle ta 3 timmar och den informationen kan vi nu dementera. Det tog 4 timmar att tuffa de tre milen över vattenpassagen och sedan ytterligare 2 timmar där vi fick vänta precis utanför Padang Bai, hamnen i Bali, då det var en kö av stora båtar som väntade på att lägga in till hamnen. Utsikten var visserligen fin, men att vara så nära målet, men ändå så långt borta tog verkligen på psyket.  Flera timmar senare än vad vi räknat med kom vi till vår favoritplats i Bali, så ta snabbåtarna om du inte har en liten budget eller inte har så bråttom. 

Vi ville visa familjen den lilla oasen Ubud och en av utflykterna vi gjorde var att uppleva Monkey forest. Det är en öppen park där flera olika grupper av makaker lever. Aporna kan röra sig fritt i och utanför parken, men de stannar kvar i området då de blir matade av parkansvariga varje dag.  Vårt tips är att besöka parken på eftermiddagen då aporna är mätta och belåtna. Annars kan de hoppa på dig, vilket de kan göra ändå, och rota i din väska. Ja, de förstår hur ett blixtlås fungerar, om du bär på något ätbart i väskan. De gillar även glass så var uppmärksam om du är i närheten av parken. Balineser har ett väldigt naturligt förhållande till nakenhet och det är synligt om du ser på statyerna i parken. Du kan också uppleva det om du besöker ett Spa, vilket Ulrikas familj fick erfara, men mer om det i nästa inlägg.

The family got to experience the local way of taking the bus, on plastic chairs!

It was much nicer on the roof of the ferry! Rebecca certainly enjoyed the fresh air.

We did see a number of different islands and an Indonesian military ship. Lombok in the background.

Niklas at the time we still thought that we only would spend approximately 3 hours on the slow boat.

But it would turn out to be more than 5 hours on the slow boat.

Finally in Ubud and resting by the pool after a long day of travel the day before.

The siblings are solving crossword puzzles together.

We brought the family to a vegan restaurant that accepts bitcoin, called the seeds of life, and we think most of the family enjoyed the experience.

We also visited the Monkey forest in Ubud, 50 IDR per visitor and you can buy bananas inside for 20 IDR if you want to interact with the monkeys. There are rules on how you can interact with the monkeys in the park, so be aware of the signs describing them for you.

There are temples inside the park, which you can not enter, but you can see the statues surrounding the temple.

Here is one example of how the Balinese is not afraid of nudity!

And here is another example.

Monkey forest in Ubud. The park is open for the monkeys to walk in and out of.

 

Exploration time in Ubud.

The Wallace Line – separating Bali and Lombok

It’s not just a cultural difference you notice when you travel to Lombok from Bali, but you have also crossed an evolutionary biological line called The Wallace Line. Just before Darwin published his book “On the origin of species,” the naturalist and explorer Alfred Russel Wallace explored the islands of southeastern Asia. Between 1854 to 1862 he explored the Malay archipelago and took notes on the species of plants and animals that lived on each island he visited. He did so from today’s Malaysia via Borneo down to Bali, and when he planted his feet on Lombok, he discovered something very peculiar. It is only about 30 km of water that separates Bali and Lombok, but animals and plants that were common on the islands he had previously visited was now absent. Instead, he noted several plants and animals that he had seen only in Australia. So he formed a hypothesis that all islands east of Borneo and Java was part of an Australian, or a former Pacific continent, that the eastern islands had separated from. Wallace findings from the Indonesian archipelago gave support to Darwin’s theory of evolution, which was published 1859, and in 1869 the well-known biologist Thomas Huxley named this dividing line between the islands the Wallace Line.

In 2017, it was the family Englund/Mai/Persson/Lindblom’s turn to set their feet on Lombok and for two days explore the island.


När man åker över till Lombok från Bali, så är det inte bara en kulturell skillnad man får se, utan man åker också över en evolutionsbiologisk linje, kallad “The Wallace Line”. Just före det att Darwin publicerade sin bok “om arternas uppkomst”, så utforskade naturalisten och utforskaren Alfred Russel Wallace öarna i sydostasien. Mellan 1854 till 1862 utforskade han den Malajiska arkipelagen och på varje ö han besökte noterade han vilka arter av växter och djur som levde där. Han gjorde så från dagens Malaysia via Borneo ned till Bali, och när han gick i land på ön Lombok upptäckte han något besynnerligt. Det skiljer endast cirka 30 km mellan Bali och Lombok, men djur och växter som var vanliga på öarna han tidigare besökt lyste nu med sin frånvaro. Istället noterade han åtskilliga växter och djur som han endast sett i Australien. Han formade en hypotes om att alla öar öster om Borneo och Java bildade en del av en australiensisk eller Stillahavs-omfattande kontinent, från vilken de senare separerades. Wallace fynd från den indonesiska skärgården gav stöd åt Darwins teori om evolution, vilken publicerades 1859, och 1869 namngav den välkände biologen Thomas Huxley denna skiljelinje mellan öarna till Wallacelinjen.  

2017 var det familjen Englund/Mai/Persson/Lindbloms tur att sätta fötterna på Lombok och under två dygn utforska ön.

The Wallace Line. Separates Southeast Asia from Australia.

Picture taken from here, where you also can read more about Alfred Russel Wallace.

We rented scooters one of the days to drive around and explore Lombok.

Maja and Mats on our first stop just south of Senggigi.

If Bali is called the islands of thousand temples, then Lombok is the island of thousand mosques. That is another thing that differs Bali from Lombok, and most islands in Indonesia, the religion in Bali is Hinduism and in Lombok it is Islam.

The street of Senggigi, a town close to where we stayed in Lombok.

We went to the beach in Sengiggi to see where the locals where swimming.

At least the locals are growing the same thing in both Bali and Lombok.

We had an awesome accommodation in Lombok. The White Rose is situated just 5 kilometers south of Senggigi and is very pleasant, if you don’t want to live in the center of the town.

And it’s quite close to the Cowshed, which is an awesome steakhouse and dart place.

We rented a car (and a driver) for our second day in Lombok and went out exploring the northern part of Lombok.

Lombok is so green!

We found macaques on Lombok, which also must have crossed the Wallace line at some point.

We visited a local market and we learned that our favorite fruit in Bali, the snake fruit, does not grow in Lombok. It is imported from Bali, so we found evidence for the Wallace line right here in the market.

Our goal this day was to hike in the mountains and to see waterfalls.

The Lombok people transports crystal clear water down from the mountain using aqueducts (sorry for terrible exposure in this photo).

An aqueduct that is also a bridge and a waterslide for local children.

First waterfall we visited was Sendanggia and you can see a video from our first part of the hike just below.

Then we walked for 30 minutes more to reach the second waterfall, the Tiu Kelep waterfall.

Ulrika’s brother, Niklas, wading through the cold water.

Tiu Kelep. We could swim here with the locals and it was really cold!

We walked through the water tunnels on our way back to our car.

We went to Malimbu hill to watch the sunset.

But dark clouds and rain came over the mountains, so we had to leave just before the sunset.

Ulrika’s family got to try real local food during our last night in Lombok.

Big Thanks to Bob and Stephanie for your hospitality and amazing bed&breakfast! We loved staying at your place, the White Rose!

 

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