Hot Springs, Bali

Jessica Peterson

Everyone in Bali is just trying to get ahead. Literally. Riding in a taxi qualifies as a spectator sport, as your driver bobs and weaves through traffic in a hair-raising real life version of Frogger. As he dodges everything from motor bikes carrying families of three (and even four) to macaques to a hunter carrying a dog (photographic evidence below), you can’t help but brace for impact. Admittedly though, after 10 hours on the road we didn’t experience a single collision (I didn’t say there weren’t any scrapes). It’s telling that Balinese, with their quixotic rendering of tropical Hinduism, set up mini shrines at hairpin curves and blind intersections.

Contrast the fury with which Balinese drive to the languid charm of terraced rice fields, blackened temples, and impromptu gardens. After our sojourn up the enchanting mountain, I was irresistibly draw down. (See previous post on Mt. Batur.) A steep descent through charcoaled lava fields was rewarded with this stunning lake view and a spontaneous dip in hot springs, eh hem, sans swim suit (no photographic evidence below). Hey, that’s why I always bring a scarf when I travel.

All of this to say, I know where I want to live next.

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Jessica Peterson
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Jessica Peterson

Jessica Peterson is a travel filmmaker, photographer, and journalist. She released her first documentary film about indigenous culture on Guam in 2016, after having lived nearly 7 years on the Pacific island.
Jessica Peterson
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20 Comments

  1. Andrea Ryan
    Andrea RyanReply
    May 26, 2014 at 3:01 am

    Wow, your blog is so inspirational! Following you. Here is mine if you want to check it out.
    http://www.thefancyfashioncastle.blogspot.com

    • Sound of Chic
      May 26, 2014 at 4:03 am

      Thanks, Andrea! Checking out your NY pics now. Very cool.

  2. James Smith
    February 18, 2017 at 4:04 am

    This is the first time I’ve visited your site on mobile, it looks great on here too! I find in these countries where they drive crazy you have to accept how they drive and they don’t seem to crash, it’s just a different method of driving. You were rewarded with some great views after driving through the lava fields.

  3. Vyjay Rao
    Vyjay RaoReply
    February 18, 2017 at 4:14 am

    Bali is really a place of contradictions. As you mention, serene vistas co-exist with noisy streets. The picture of the hunter with the dog is really a great shot and has frozen the moment in time. The hot springs really look inviting.

  4. Gokul Raj
    Gokul RajReply
    February 18, 2017 at 4:45 am

    I would love to wake up to that view. What a wonderful scenery surrounded by nature. I bet you never felt like leaving that place.

  5. Probearoundthe Globe
    Probearoundthe GlobeReply
    February 18, 2017 at 9:07 am

    Everything looks so lush and green! Lovely pictures, although I did do a double take at the man with the dog, I’m happy to read it is a hunter and not just a man with a gun (and a dog) driving in traffic.

  6. Neha Verma
    Neha VermaReply
    February 18, 2017 at 12:46 pm

    Amazing pictures. The landscape looks so pure and fresh as if it has just been washed by a fresh dose of rain. Bali is so very beautiful. Can’t wait to visit here.

  7. Janine Good
    Janine GoodReply
    February 18, 2017 at 8:46 pm

    Hot Springs au naturelle! that is the way to go 🙂 I would carry a scarf for that purpose too. I have yet to get to Bali, but how to in the near future as it is such a beautiful looking place. I can handle the crazy driving as it is everywhere in the world 🙂

  8. MakeTimeToSeeTheWorld
    February 18, 2017 at 10:15 pm

    I’m sure you can’t get any closer to nature than a nudie dip in a natural hot spring! And it’s just one more reason to carry a scarf whenever you travel, right?!
    I totally agree with your description of the manic driving in Bali too – it’s amazing that there are not more accidents!

    • Jessica Peterson
      February 20, 2017 at 8:36 pm

      Ha ha. It’s like a dangerous game of frogger, but they survive.

  9. Jean Bean
    Jean BeanReply
    February 19, 2017 at 7:28 am

    Who doesn’t want to do a nudie dip in a natural hot spring. I love a good travel scarf. So multipurpose for these kind of adventures. Simply stunning photos of Bali. Makes me reconsider my personal Bali ban

    • Jessica Peterson
      February 20, 2017 at 8:38 pm

      Yes, reconsider Bali. I had a similar feeling before I went. Was glad to be totally wrong about the place.

  10. Sonia Sahni
    Sonia SahniReply
    February 19, 2017 at 8:37 pm

    We went to Bali two years ago but had no clue about the hot springs … never went there! Well, the driving description doesn’t amaze me… that’s how people drive in the whole of South East Asia, including India. Thanks for sharing… I will now add this to my must see list in Bali!

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