North of Ubud, sits a truly beautiful spectacle, Tegalalang. It is rice paddy fields like you have never seen them. Many people visit this site briefly on the way to other tours, such as the Mt Batur bike tour, take their photos from the viewing point and continue on their way. I would highly recommend actually going in to explore the terraces!
I left home a tad too late and got to Tegalalang at around 11.30. Therefore, by the time I got there it was quite touristy and very hot. Tip: Leave in good time..
I parked my bike, found one of the paths and descended in amongst the rice terraces. I came across a sign showing the rice field trek which I followed. There was another sign indicating the fresh water spring and so I went off in search of that. It wasn’t anything to write home about and so I came back and continued along the ‘trek.’ I had to pay a very small fee which was fair.
Albeit beautiful, I wanted to keep walking until I found a less touristy area. The trouble with wandering further off the beaten track is that signposting begins to disappear. It was a fairly obvious path and it didn’t take long until I was the only person wandering around taking photos. One of the locals told me I was going the wrong way, but I could not understand him.
After a while I ended up here – beautiful but still no footpath …
Stubborn to complete a loop around this area, instead of go back the way I came, I remained hopeful that I would re-join a path. Out came my reckless alter ego – balanced perilously on the edge on one of the terraces I continued my adventure. Eventually I came across a very sheer dead end and had to go back the way I came.
After trial and error along various pathways I found some local farmers who pointed me in the right direction. Back on the beaten track it was a fairly simple walk back up to the viewing spot. I had some lunch in one the many cafes. It was called ‘Teras Padi’ and looked out over the rice fields. It was mainly local food and quite pricey - I’m sure one of the other places would be much cheaper.
I am yet to construct my top 10 places for Bali, but I am sure this will be one of them.