An eco bike tour in Bali
An eco bike tour in Bali
What a wonderful experience an eco bike tour in Bali was when a group of friends and I did it in March 2015. We all felt it was one of best days in Bali.
To see Bali from the smiles on the side of the road, to the cars honking their considerate horns to advice of their companionship on the narrow cobbled roads.
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From the moment we were picked up at 7am from our hotel in Ubud we were cared for. On the way we stopped to see the splendid engineering masterpieces of Bali’s rice fields north of Ubud.
Of course there are many rice fields tucked just behind a road even in downtown Ubud but this was an elaborate, steep, hillside maze of water and irrigation channels.
Our entertaining, charismatic and past life stand-up comedian ‘Ring’ met us at Penelokan, at Mount Batur, for a scrumptious buffet breakfast with all the trimmings of spicy coconut garnish for our eggs and black rice pudding, and for pancakes, fruit, juice and coffee.
With flair he presented a detailed history lesson of the most recent volcanic eruptions and how it interfaces with the local village lifestyle, spiritual practises that affect living in the shadow of a sleeping dragon.
Then it was onto a local organic coffee and cocoa farm with an outstanding presentation of all the exotic spice trees an avid health fanatic like myself could only dream of growing.
As we walked through the garden Ring tested our culinary senses with tasting a cinnamon leaf then the vanilla, then the nutmeg, galangal leaf, sapote and finally cocoa leaves.
What a divine experience and then to see the little civit sleeping on the branch before his nights work of digesting the coffee beans was very cool.
As we arrived we were able to see the coffee roasted on a small stove, turned by hand. It takes 40 minutes for normal Bali coffee to roast and 90 for the luwak so it is quite time and labour consuming.
It takes the civit 1 year to produce 900 gm of the luwak coffee beans. We were then dished up an array of local teas, coffee and tobacco for tasting.
Ginseng coffee, coconut coffee, cocoa coffee, ginger and lemongrass and rosella tea and then local organic chili chocolate. A wonderful atmosphere to meet the others journeying with us all this before the bike ride.
By now it was around midday and we had already had a interesting and delectable day and so we moved onward to select a well maintained mountain bike with water for the fun and easy, 22 km descent through meandering rice paddies, mountain tracks, 500 year-old banyan tree, a local spider interlude (see the photo) and village roads.
Then we stopped at the bottom by the shady river where we were each given the option of continuing the last 5 ks, mostly uphill, or getting into a bus. The last 5km uphill through villages was testing for some but achievable with the bus lurking to pick up any stragglers.
Then another scrumptious meal at yet another beautiful gardened local restaurant. Coconut juice with nasi campur and local cuisine with flair, service and presentation to match.
A definite 10/10 experience and one I would seek out again and highly recommend.
By Pam O’Connor, March 2015
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