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Photo Essay – India’s Golden Triangle

 

India Golden Triangle - Photo Essay - Robyn Around The World

 

I spent ten days in India’s Golden Triangle where I walked the crazy streets of Delhi. I visited a community kitchen that feeds anyone who’s hungry four times a day with a hot meal. I then made my way over to Agra to visit one of the Seven Wonders, Taj Mahal. I thought it was a religious site, but it is actually a token of an emperor’s love to his wife after she died 19 years into their marriage. After Agra, I went on to the final city in the Golden Triangle, Jaipur which has many historic forts. Here is my ten days in a series of photographs.

 

AGRA, INDIA

India Golden Triangle - Photo Essay - Robyn Around The World

One can not fly to Delhi without visiting the Taj Mahal. It is one of the 7 Wonders of the World and is stunning to witness.

India Golden Triangle - Photo Essay - Robyn Around The World

Another tomb in Agra is the lesser known, Baby Taj.

India Golden Triangle - Photo Essay - Robyn Around The World

The details of Baby Taj are intricate.

India Golden Triangle - Photo Essay - Robyn Around The World

All made of marble.

India Golden Triangle - Photo Essay - Robyn Around The World

Kids and families play down below Baby Taj, along the river.

India Golden Triangle - Photo Essay - Robyn Around The World

An older man at Fatephur Skiri.

India Golden Triangle - Photo Essay - Robyn Around The World

A family of 8 piles into an auto rickshaw.

India Golden Triangle - Photo Essay - Robyn Around The World

A family on the streets of Agra.

India Golden Triangle - Photo Essay - Robyn Around The World

Women selling fruits and vegetables.

 

RAJASTHAN, INDIA

 

India Golden Triangle - Photo Essay - Robyn Around The World

Abhaneri Stepwells. Pre-Escher, maybe this is where he got his inspiration from?

India Golden Triangle - Photo Essay - Robyn Around The World

Amber Fort.

India Golden Triangle - Photo Essay - Robyn Around The World

A stray dog walks down the rails of Amber Fort.

India Golden Triangle - Photo Essay - Robyn Around The World

The gardens inside Amber Fort.

India Golden Triangle - Photo Essay - Robyn Around The World

View of the city below Amber Fort.

India Golden Triangle - Photo Essay - Robyn Around The World

There are many monkeys that live around the fort.

India Golden Triangle - Photo Essay - Robyn Around The World

Elephants take tourists up a steep hill in 100F+ weather. Only females are used and they can be seen resisting being forced to go up the hill. Please do your research before riding one, elephants are not meant to be ridden.

India Golden Triangle - Photo Essay - Robyn Around The World

Her sad eyes tell a story of being worked hard in the strong heat.

India Golden Triangle - Photo Essay - Robyn Around The World

Water Palace is out in the middle of the lake, but soon to be made into a café.

India Golden Triangle - Photo Essay - Robyn Around The World

Camels are used for work in India, you can see them in most cities/villages.

India Golden Triangle - Photo Essay - Robyn Around The World

A man talks on his phone and rides his horse in the middle of street traffic.

India Golden Triangle - Photo Essay - Robyn Around The World

Jaipur market where you can find fruits, vegetables, clothes, and other textiles.

India Golden Triangle - Photo Essay - Robyn Around The World

A woman sells pottery at the market in Jaipur.

India Golden Triangle - Photo Essay - Robyn Around The World

A woman shows bangles to a girl.

India Golden Triangle - Photo Essay - Robyn Around The World

Woman buying vegetable from a vendor.

India Golden Triangle - Photo Essay - Robyn Around The World

Fresh dried tamarind ready to be ground into powder.

India Golden Triangle - Photo Essay - Robyn Around The World

Jaipur Market.

India Golden Triangle - Photo Essay - Robyn Around The World

More Jaipur market vendors.

A woman sells her vegetables on the streets of Jaipur.

 

NEW DELHI, INDIA

 

India Golden Triangle - Photo Essay - Robyn Around The World

Men washing themselves at Jama Masjid.

India Golden Triangle - Photo Essay - Robyn Around The World

Locals seeking relief from the hot sun inside the walls of the mosque.

India Golden Triangle - Photo Essay - Robyn Around The World

Worshipers praying at Sikh Temple.

India Golden Triangle - Photo Essay - Robyn Around The World

Volunteers peeling vegetables at the community kitchen.

India Golden Triangle - Photo Essay - Robyn Around The World

A happy volunteer stirs a vat of dal to be served at lunch.

India Golden Triangle - Photo Essay - Robyn Around The World

A women makes roti for the community kitchen.

India Golden Triangle - Photo Essay - Robyn Around The World

Cows can be seen walking down the streets of Delhi.

India Golden Triangle - Photo Essay - Robyn Around The World

An auto rickshaw.

India Golden Triangle - Photo Essay - Robyn Around The World

A man carries goods down a busy street in Old Delhi.

India Golden Triangle - Photo Essay - Robyn Around The World

Tiles of religious figures are mounted to the walls of alleys to discourage men from peeing on the wall.

India Golden Triangle - Photo Essay - Robyn Around The World

Laundry is done with an iron heated by coal.

India Golden Triangle - Photo Essay - Robyn Around The World

Many stray dogs live on the streets of India, surprisingly there were only a few cats.

India Golden Triangle - Photo Essay - Robyn Around The World

A man sweeps out in front of his shop.

India Golden Triangle - Photo Essay - Robyn Around The World

Old lady walking the streets of Old Delhi.

 

I’m so glad I made the time to stop in India, even though it was only for ten days. To do it right, you’d really need at least a month or two to be able to explore all the India has to offer. But this little taste has changed my perception of India, as I felt safe and well taken care of while I was there. I know many have had bad experiences, but I opened my heart and decided when I landed that I would not let other people’s experiences dictate mine, and it was an incredible time with beautiful, colorful people.

 

India Golden Triangle - Photo Essay - Robyn Around The World

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The Temples Of Bagan – The Best Sunrise You Will Witness




The Temples of Bagan - Robyn Around the World

Myanmar stole my heart within minutes of landing in Mandalay, but nothing prepared me for what I was about to witness in Bagan. Rivaling Angkor Wat’s temples, I’m amazed this place isn’t swamped with tourists. The temples should be part of the seven wonders with over 2000 temples in the area; you can’t walk a few hundred meters without running into one.


EXPLORING THE TEMPLES


The best way to explore them is by e-bike. Myanmar doesn’t rent scooters to foreigners, even if you have a motorbike license and International Driver Permit. You must have a Myanmar license to rent a scooter. To get around this problem and give tourists a similar option there are many shops renting battery powered bikes for $3-4 a day depending on the size you rent.

There are temples all over Bagan, but they are split into two parts: New Bagan and Old Bagan. All the temples you can climb on are in New Bagan, so that’s where I spent all my time. I took the bike around to check out all the popular ones (Ananda, Dhamayangyi, and Shwe San Daw) which were all packed with people.

The Temples of Bagan - Robyn Around the World

The Temples of Bagan - Robyn Around the World

The Temples of Bagan - Robyn Around the World

The Temples of Bagan - Robyn Around the World

My favorite though was Hannah’s secret temple. I spent three days there hanging out at the top for hours writing postcards and taking in the view without other tourists up there with me.

The Temples of Bagan - Robyn Around the World


THE BEST VIEW IS AT SUNRISE


Bagan is the most jaw-dropping sunrise I’ve seen in Southeast Asia to date! My friend Hannah over at Eat Sleep Breathe Travel gave me directions to a secret temple she found when she came here last year and promised it would be empty. She was right! I was the only one at the temple for sunrise! It was kind of magical being the only one up at the top of this temple watching the sunrise and freaking out that I was in Myanmar witnessing all of it! Even though I didn’t get to see hot air balloons (they only run October to March) it was still pretty amazing to witness all the temples in the early morning light.

The Temples of Bagan - Robyn Around the World

The Temples of Bagan - Robyn Around the World

The Temples of Bagan - Robyn Around the World


GETTING TO BAGAN


I took the bus from Mandalay, it was a 5-hour ride and costs $9. There are many local buses that go each day. Ask your guesthouse to book a seat for you and the bus will pick you up at your guesthouse. Once you reach the border for Bagan, the bus will pull over for you to buy a week pass to see the temples. The pass is 25,000 Kyat ($25), and you must keep it on you at all times.

The Temples of Bagan - Robyn Around the World

Traveler tip: You can now apply for an e-visa online that allows you to get in to both Mandalay and Yangon.


10 Places To See In Mandalay




Top 10 Places to See In Mandalay, Myanmar - Robyn Around the World

I spent three days in Mandalay and wished I was there longer! All the blog posts I read before I went there talked about how there was nothing to do in Mandalay and don’t spend that much time there. I loved Mandalay, and was overwhelmed with everything there was to see! Even after all I did, there were still a few things that I didn’t get to see. Here are ten things I did while I was in Mandalay.


WATCH 1200 MONKS RECEIVE ALMSGIVING


Around 10:30 am every day 1200 monks line up to get almsgiving and have breakfast. It’s one of the largest Almsgiving that I’ve witnessed during my time in Southeast Asia. Unfortunately, this has become a favorite spot for tourists, and you will also see them lined up to photograph the monks. The monks could care less that you’re there, and I bet they wish you weren’t. I caught a few off guard when I smiled at them and said ‘Mingalaba’ which means hello. I even got a smile back. If you go, don’t treat them as a zoo, smile and say good morning, your pictures will turn out better that way too.

Top 10 Places to See In Mandalay, Myanmar - Robyn Around the World

Top 10 Places to See In Mandalay, Myanmar - Robyn Around the World

Top 10 Places to See In Mandalay, Myanmar - Robyn Around the World


PLAY WITH CHILDREN AT AUNG MYAE OO MONASTERY


My favorite place in Mandalay was the Children’s monastery. I’ve never met more happy kids! The girls are called nuns and wear pink robes, where the boys wear the traditional orange. They’re over 2500 kids, and it was fun to watch them play. The girls kept coming up and put flowers in my hair. I had 4 or 5 flowers by the time I left.

Top 10 Places to See In Mandalay, Myanmar - Robyn Around the World

Top 10 Places to See In Mandalay, Myanmar - Robyn Around the World

Top 10 Places to See In Mandalay, Myanmar - Robyn Around the World

Top 10 Places to See In Mandalay, Myanmar - Robyn Around the World


VISIT WEDDING DRESS FABRIC MAKERS


These needle workers are no joke! There are two on one loom, and it takes one month to finish a sheet of fabric. The material is then used to make wedding outfits for the bride and groom. Not cheap, though. The silk fabric turned to wedding dress costs upwards of $1000, but gorgeous no the less.

Top 10 Places to See In Mandalay, Myanmar - Robyn Around the World

Top 10 Places to See In Mandalay, Myanmar - Robyn Around the World

Top 10 Places to See In Mandalay, Myanmar - Robyn Around the World


WITNESS THE LARGEST BOOK IN THE WORLD


The largest book in the world in at Kuthodaw Pagoda. There are 729 pagodas, each housing one large tablet with the Buddhist scripture. The pagodas are all white and in rows with large trees intertwined in the area. You will see many locals sitting on the grounds reading or praying. If you wanted to try thanaka, local ladies will paint a leaf on your face for free, but then try to sell you their postcards.

Top 10 Places to See In Mandalay, Myanmar - Robyn Around the World

Top 10 Places to See In Mandalay, Myanmar - Robyn Around the World


SEE PUPPETS BEING CREATED


These intricate woodworkers not only create planks of doors into beautiful doors, but they also make puppets on strings. I didn’t have a chance to go, but there is a marionette show in Mandalay that I heard is worth checking out. The puppets themselves are beautiful.

Top 10 Places to See In Mandalay, Myanmar - Robyn Around the World

Top 10 Places to See In Mandalay, Myanmar - Robyn Around the World

Top 10 Places to See In Mandalay, Myanmar - Robyn Around the World

Top 10 Places to See In Mandalay, Myanmar - Robyn Around the World


WATCH BUDDAH SCULPTURED OUT OF MARBLE


One street in Mandalay is responsible for all the marble carvings in the country. These workers carve Buddha out of marble in all sizes then polish and hand paint detail on them, before placed in homes and temples.

Top 10 Places to See In Mandalay, Myanmar - Robyn Around the World

Top 10 Places to See In Mandalay, Myanmar - Robyn Around the World

Top 10 Places to See In Mandalay, Myanmar - Robyn Around the World


SEE THE PAGODA MADE OF GOLD


There are two pagodas in Mandalay made of gold. Mahamuni Pagoda is a favorite with the locals. Don’t miss walking down the side streets, there are a couple markets where you can buy local goods and souvenirs.

Top 10 Places to See In Mandalay, Myanmar - Robyn Around the World

Top 10 Places to See In Mandalay, Myanmar - Robyn Around the World


TALK TO MONKS AT THE TOP OF MANDALAY HILL


You can either walk or take a motorbike up the hill. Beware, though, my motorbike taxi’s bike was old and couldn’t make it up the hill, so I walked part of the way. Once to the top, there’s a 360-degree view of all of Mandalay. It’s perfect to go up for sunset. Also on top are many monks who come up right before the sun sets hoping to talk to foreigners to practice their English. I talked with a 13-year old who has been with his monastery for three years and had another two years to go. His English was impeccable.

Top 10 Places to See In Mandalay, Myanmar - Robyn Around the World

Top 10 Places to See In Mandalay, Myanmar - Robyn Around the World

Top 10 Places to See In Mandalay, Myanmar - Robyn Around the World


WALK ALONG THE LONGEST TEAKWOOD BRIDGE IN THE WORLD


U Bein Bridge was built out of teakwood in the 1800’s and is 1.2 Km long. If you come at sunset, don’t plan to get the bridge to yourself. Tourists and locals both come here to watch the sunset and are packed to the brim with people taking selfies. There are boats that you can hire for a ride around the lake and get a better view of the bridge, albeit full with people on it.

Top 10 Places to See In Mandalay, Myanmar - Robyn Around the World

Top 10 Places to See In Mandalay, Myanmar - Robyn Around the World


VISIT THE TEMPLES AT INWA BY HORSE BUGGY


To visit Inwa you need to take a passenger ferry then from there you can walk (which I don’t recommend) to the temples, but will take you about 2 hours to get there, or you can hire a horse buggy $10 per carriage for 90 minutes. The carriage ride is very bumpy, but the four temples are worth going to see.

Top 10 Places to See In Mandalay, Myanmar - Robyn Around the World

Top 10 Places to See In Mandalay, Myanmar - Robyn Around the World

Top 10 Places to See In Mandalay, Myanmar - Robyn Around the World

Top 10 Places to See In Mandalay, Myanmar - Robyn Around the World


My 5 Favorite Temples At Angkor Wat



Angkor Wat Temples

Angkor Wat complex, which means ‘City of Temples’ is a UNESCO Heritage site that is considered the largest religious structures in the world covering over 400 acres of land. With over 50 temples to see, the site can get overwhelming really quick especially in the mid-day heat. Angkor Wat provides 1, 3 and 7 day tickets at $20, $40 & $60 respectively, so that you don’t feel the need to see it all in one day. I only bought the 1-day ticket, but winded up going for a second day. I had done my research and already knew which temples I wanted to see. My top three were Angkor Wat at sunrise, Bayon and Tomb Raider’s Ta Prohm. As I usually do, I picked up a pack of postcards to see what other temples would look cool to photograph and added Preah Khan and Ta Som to my list. There are 2 ways to see the temples. You can ride a bicycle or hire a tuk-tuk. I hired a private tuk-tuk for $20 for the day and they usually provide cold water for you during the day and will take you through the temples as a private guide. We went to a few more that weren’t on my list, but the 5 I choose to see winded up being my 5 favorite temples at Angkor Wat.


ANGKOR WAT


I was picked up bright and early by my driver at 4:40am to head to get my entrance ticket with swarms of other people. I couldn’t believe how many people were at the ticket office at 5:00am! Literally hundreds! I waited in line for 15 minutes to get my one-day pass then I was off with my driver to get a spot to watch the sunrise. We picked a place outside the temple as there were droves of people going inside to get a view my the inside lake. Unfortunately the day I went, there was no sunrise, just clouds in the sky (that’s what I get for going during monsoon season). I was still pretty pleased with what I got but after seeing other peoples pictures from better days, I wish I had forced myself up early for one more try. The temple itself is impressive and huge! There are monks that can be seen doing daily chores at Angkor Wat first thing in the morning. Well worth making the effort to get up early to see it.

Angkor Wat Temples

Angkor Wat Temples

Angkor Wat Temple Monks


BAYON


Home of the smiling Buddha’s! Ok, so the first day I went it was one of the last temples I visited and I was tired from the heat. My guide gave me a tour of the bottom of the temple which has a story carved out in stone all the way around the temple. After an hour of seeing the carvings and hearing the story, I wasn’t keen on hiking to the top of the temple. We winded up going a second day where I was able to enjoy all the huge smiling Buddha’s up top! This is definitely a hot spot with the tourists so I would suggest doing this early as in, be there soon as gates open at 7:30am to see it before the crowds.

Angkor Wat - Bayon Temple - Home of the smiling Buddhas
Angkor Wat - Bayon Temple - Home of the smiling Buddhas


TA PROHM


Home of Tomb Raider! Made famous by the movie, I was obsessed with the trees! They’re called Spung trees and they’re known for their roots which have grown over and around the temple. It felt like being in a fantasy film walking around there. I winded up going two separate days. The first day I got there a few hours after sunrise and it was jam-packed with people. I went a second day right at opening to beat the crowds. I also brought my GoPro for the second visit. The roots were so massive my 14-50mm lens couldn’t fit it all in, you definitely need to bring a wide-angle lens (12-24mm) for this temple to get it all in! Luckily my GoPro had a wide setting and am really pleased how all the pictures from the second day turned out!

Ta Prohm - Tomb Raider Temple

Ta Prohm - Tomb Raider Temple

Ta Prohm - Tomb Raider Temple


PREAH KHAN


This is a temple I saw on a postcard and decided to visit. Like Ta Prohm, it has Spung Trees that overtake the temple. To get to the trees you walk through a series of doors that get smaller and smaller as you walk through each and once out the other end is a huge tree overtaking the temple with it’s massive roots and other trees with branches hanging down like the trees you’d see Tarzan swinging on.

Angkor Wat - Preah Khan

Angkor Wat - Preah Khan


TA SOM


Ta Som, although not as impressive as Preah Khan and Ta Prohm also has a Spung Tree that covers a door opening where there is a Buddha face on the other side.

Angkor Wat - Ta Som

Angkor Wat - Ta Som


THE GATES


The temples aren’t the only main attraction. I loved each of the gates we went through that welcomed you into the temple complexes. Some were lined by demons and gods, others were just a huge gate with hidden smiling buddha’s. One’s of note were Victory Gate, North Gate, and South Gate.

Angkor Wat - Victory Gate

Angkor Wat - North Gate

Angkor Wat - North Gate


Top 10 Things To Do In Phuket



Top 10 things to do in Phuket - Robyn Around the World

I spent a month in Phuket in Rawai, which is at the very south end. I wanted to be away from the crowds of Patong, but near a beach. I found a place on Airbnb for $180 for the month that had a private room and shower so I settled in for the month to explore and hang with the locals. Being a creature of habit, even when I’m traveling, I found myself eating at the same food stalls every day. By the end of the month they all knew what I wanted (Hot Basil Chili please!) and I started getting freebies like fruit at the end of my meal. I didn’t do a whole lot here besides hang at the beach and walk around my neighborhood, but I did venture out a few days a week to see other parts of Phuket. Here’s my top 10 list of spending a month there!

 


PHUKET AQUARIUM AND MARINE CENTER 


I’m not a huge fan of aquariums since becoming more aware of the ocean, but I will spend time if the primary purpose is to advocate for the ocean or is a rescue center. I found out about this aquarium and that it wasn’t really an aquarium, but a Marine Biological Center that has a turtle rescue center. The aquarium itself is small (2 rooms) with mostly local sea life, but it’s the turtle center and hatchery that are the main attractions here. The entrance fee was modest at $5 to get in, and you have to walk through the aquarium to get to the hatchery and turtle center. I spent over an hour at the turtle center. They rehabilitate turtles that have been caught in fishing lines and have eaten plastic. Many can be rehabilitated and released back into the water, but some are too damaged and won’t survive if they’re released so will remain at the center the rest of their lives. These are usually the turtles that are missing 1 or more of their limbs. It’s so sad to see, but it was great to learn they bring schools here to educate the children on the importance of not littering and show them first hand what littering does to the environment.

Top 10 things to do in Phuket - Robyn Around the World

Top 10 things to do in Phuket - Robyn Around the World


CHALONG BAY DISTILLERY


Not one to pass up a local distillery or vineyard. I heard of this place, and it was close to my room, so I checked it out, twice! They only make one kind of rum, and they do it well, and it’s the only distillery in Phuket. I didn’t take the tour, but they do offer them for $9 and includes their Signature Mojito. I fell in love with the Spicyrinna, which was rum mixed with ginger, chili, and lime. So good!

Top 10 things to do in Phuket - Robyn Around the World

Top 10 things to do in Phuket - Robyn Around the World

Top 10 things to do in Phuket - Robyn Around the World


PROMTHEP CAPE: WATCH THE SUNSET


Right around the corner from my place in Rawai was Promthep Cape This is a must when visiting Phuket. I rode through it one of my first days there and walked around then decided to come back for sunset. Honestly, Thailand has been some of the best sunsets I’ve seen during my travels. I read reviews that it gets crowded so I got there about 45 minutes before sunset and found a spot on the wall that had a view of some trees to get a beautiful frame of the sunset. I went here twice and both times the sunset didn’t disappoint!

Top 10 things to do in Phuket - Robyn Around the World


TRICK-EYE MUSEUM


Not one to do a generic museum that can be found all over the world. I was intrigued when I walked by The Trickeye Museum. It was $15 to get in, so I decided why not and so glad I did! What a crazy fun time I had! My private guide took so many fun pictures of me with the art. All of them totally facebook worthy. If you haven’t been, it’s a bunch of artists that create paintings with the illusion of you living in the painting. There were over 50 pictures to look at (I think I took pictures with 15 of them!). My favorite and most popular was the two-story waterfall.

Top 10 things to do in Phuket - Robyn Around the World

Top 10 things to do in Phuket - Robyn Around the World

Top 10 things to do in Phuket - Robyn Around the World


BIG BUDDHA


When I was there, the big Buddha was free to get in because they were doing construction. I took the bike out early morning to get up to the top of the hill where you’ll find 180-degree views of Rawai below. The Buddha is the only thing up there, and he is big. Might be a nice place to come to watch the sunset, the views are stunning.

Top 10 things to do in Phuket - Robyn Around the World

Top 10 things to do in Phuket - Robyn Around the World


KARON VIEWPOINT


On the ride up the coast to Patong from Rawai, you will hug the coastline with a view for days of the water and beach. Along the way, there is a stop called Karon Viewpoint where you can park your bike and get great pictures of Kata and Karon Beach. There will also be a few vendors selling ice cream, water, and snacks.

Top 10 things to do in Phuket - Robyn Around the World


OLD PHUKET TOWN


I loved Old Phuket Town. It’s not that big only a couple of streets long, but it’s a fun area where you’ll find colorful shophouses and cute cafes. You can easily park your motorbike and walk the whole area by foot. I went in the morning and caught a glimpse of an engagement photo shoot happing. The architecture and colors of the old shop houses make it a prime place to take photographs.

Top 10 things to do in Phuket - Robyn Around the World

Top 10 things to do in Phuket - Robyn Around the World

Top 10 things to do in Phuket - Robyn Around the World


SUNDAY MARKET


The streets in Old Phuket Town turn into a market on Sunday’s. Not your typical Thailand market, here you can get street food from trying horseshoe crab to bbq ribs. There are street performers making balloon animals for children and caricature drawings, and you can also buy handmade items here.


Top 10 things to do in Phuket - Robyn Around the World

Top 10 things to do in Phuket - Robyn Around the World


BANZAAN FRESH MARKET


Many people flock to Patong. I rode through it once, and that was enough for me. While I was there, I found a wet market right outside the strip. It was a great place for pictures and to grab some lunch. They sell everything from live seafood and meat to vegetables, fruit and flowers. I ate lunch at one of the many vendor stalls and grabbed a bunch of mangos to take back to my room!

Top 10 things to do in Phuket - Robyn Around the World

Top 10 things to do in Phuket - Robyn Around the World

Top 10 things to do in Phuket - Robyn Around the World


WAT CHALONG


This beautiful temple is the largest in Phuket and is three stories high. Once inside you’ll find many Buddhas, but the paintings on the walls are the show stopper here. The murals tell a story of the life of Buddha. Very busy with tour buses in the afternoon, if you get there in the morning, you’ll get to witness monks doing their daily prayer.

Top 10 things to do in Phuket - Robyn Around the World

Top 10 things to do in Phuket - Robyn Around the World


Temples of Bali

 Bali Temples

Bali has thousands of temples, called Pura, where locals worship and give daily offerings. Pura’s can be found on Balinese family compounds (family temple), in town (village temple) and professions (functional temple). I saw many while I was in Bali, my favorites of the public temples were Uluwatu, Ulun Danu, and Taman Ayun.


LUHUR ULUWATU


Luhur Uluwatu Temple

Uluwatu was my favorite temple, explicitly for the view. The temple sits on top of a cliff with crashing waves below. This temple has monkeys roaming free, like monkey forest, but they were more aggressive here. Even with me being the only visitor for the first hour, one showed his teeth, letting me know he didn’t care to have his picture taken. 😉 Lighting was really strong the day I went, even for 8am. I needed to do some Photoshop magic to get the colors and highlights balanced.

Luhur Uluwatu Temple  Luhur Uluwatu Temple


ULUN DANU 


Ulun Danu Temple   Ulun Danu Temple

When I think of temples in Bali this is the one that comes to my mind, Ulun Danu. It’s the one that I see the most pictures of on the Internet. Although after going there, I didn’t expect it to be so small. There are two temples on the small island it inhabits. I got there around 10am, and it was packed with visitors taking selfies. If you don’t want a selfie, you can hire one of the many cameramen selling souvenir photographs to take one for you. You can also rent canoes and paddle boats to tour the lake and there’s a small playground for kids to play on.

Ulun Danu Temple    Canoes and paddle boats at Ulun Danu Temple


TAMAN AYUN 


 Taman Ayun Temple

Taman Ayun is dubbed the floating temple because it’s surrounded by a big fish pond. You’re welcomed onto the temple grounds entering through a beautiful garden. Once inside, the temple was a little hard to photograph because it’s surrounded by a big concrete wall. This left little room for mobility and angles, so I played around with taking some shots through the holes in the wall.

 Taman Ayun Temple   Taman Ayun Temple

 Taman Ayun Temple

All the temples charge a minimal donation to go inside. The temples I visited charged a donation between 15,000 – 30,000Rp ($1.50-$3.00 USD)

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