09 August 2013

Bali - Pura Pulaki

Pura Pulaki
From Lovina, travel the road west toward Gilimanuk through a relatively arid landscape of coconut groves and grape orchards.

The administrative center of Buleleng Barat is the small market town of Seririt, 22 km west of Singaraja. At Seririt, turn right for the road to Pemuteran.

Pura Agung Pulaki, large, dramatic temple only 25 meters from the sea, is situated 30 km west of Seririt (48 km west of Singaraja) near the grape-growing village of Banyupoh. Cliffs tower behind the temple surrounded by jungle and overrun by hordes of simians.

Considered sacred, the macaques are well-fed by locals but always eager for tourist handouts. This important temple commemorates the arrival of the Javanese saint-priest Nirartha to Bali in the early 16th century. It was completely restored with black stone gates and terraces in 1983 in a ceremony presided over by the governor of Bali and the Bupati of Buleleng.

Legend has it a great village exists here, invisible but for its temple. It is said that when Nirartha lived in Gelgel he was forced to hide his daughter because she would be abducted by the king. He finally brought her to this remote place, rendering it invisible to keep her safe. To this day, the people who occupy the invisible village are known as 'gamang' and are said to wander the countryside.

The parking lot is jammed with food stalls. Also a handy stop for truck drivers headed to and from the ferry terminal at Gilimanuk. Time your arrival for the sunset at beautiful Pantai Gondol which offers clean white sand, coral reefs, and above-average snorkeling. There's a smaller, monkey-infested temple one-half km west of Pura Pulaki where a tunnel has been cut through large rocks hanging over the road.

One km past Pulaki and 500 meters off the road is an 'air panas'. A more famous hot springs, known for the medicinal qualities of its mineral waters, is at Banyuwedang. It's 900 meters off the highway just before the entrance to Bali Barat National Park.

In a beautiful setting, only two km from Banyupoh at the end of a pretty country road, is Pura Melanting. Dedicated to the god of prosperity, this temple with its huge and ornately carved 'candi bentar' is set impressively against a mountain. Zero tourists visit this site.

Pura Melanting

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