Climbing the volcano known as Mount Batur, Kintamani, Bali

On 12 August I went with Mathieu and Milly to Kintamani to climb the Batur Volcano.

At 02:30am the driver picked us up from our hotel in Ubud. It’s about an hour drive from Ubud to Kintamani.

Before we started climbing we got a small breakfast of banana pancakes and coffee.

Fortunately we brought some warm clothes because early in the morning in the mountains it is rather cold. After breakfast we drove to the starting point near the bottom of the volcano but we were not the only one there… Many people had the same idea, it was busy, hundreds of people planned to climb the volcano that morning.

Eddy, our guide gave us water and a torch. The torch is a very important tool for the climb as at 04:00am it is still very dark. Eddy also explained there are around 100 guides working at the Mount Batur climb and each guide is allowed to take a maximum of 4 persons. So if all guides were working with full groups there were around 500 people going up. It seemed less although still plenty! As we started as one of the last ones we saw a Christmas tree like mountain due to the torches going up in a long line. Funny sight actually.

To be honest, I thought climbing the volcano would not be so difficult, but I was wrong, it’s not easy walk in the park. Some parts were steep and you had to focus were to place your feet as it was a very uneven path with rocks and cracks etc.

The plan is to reach the top before sunrise. As the sun rises approx. 06:30am and it takes 1,5/2 hours to reach the top.

We made it, reached the top half an hour before sunrise. We were very lucky with the weather. Clear sky and no rain or clouds and therefore had a beautiful view. We saw the sun come up and it was really great.

We got a special breakfast at the top. Eggs boiled in hot lava steam, bread with steamed bananas, hot thee and coffee and when we finished the breakfast and after taking lots of photos we went down. Going down went faster and I think it was easier also.

Later, not far from the volcano we took a swim in hot spring water. The hot water comes from the volcano and was very soothing for our tired muscles from the climb.

We felt very satisfied because we made it!











Ubud Village Jazz Festival 2014

Our friends living in East Bali asked if we would like to join them to Ubud Village Jazz Festival 2014. Because we love Jazz music very much we decided to go with them.

It was the 2nd UVJF and the location was again at the Arma resort & museum. It’s an amazingly, beautiful venue.

The UVJF lasted two days. At the festival were 3 stages on which 100 musicians played their jazz tunes. Two music clinics, several food and drink, clothing, music cd’s and music instrument booths.

We were very exited because for us was it the first time we visited a Jazz festival in Ubud. Most of the artist we didn’t know but we loved the idea to see and hear Jazz music performed by international musicians from over 8 countries, including some brilliant (young) Indonesian talents as well as some Dutch musicians.

We had a great time. The weather, food and drinks were great, but most importantly there was excellent jazz music that we enjoyed together with our friends.

A wonderful experience and we are definitely going again next year.


Alexandre Cunha band, Brasil

International Big Band | Uwe Plath and Ondrej Stveracek

Deborah Carter, USA

International Big Band | Arne Dornadell

Jiwa Band, Indonesia | Rio Sidik

Jiwa Band, Indonesia | Eric Sondhy

International Big Band

Astrid Sulaiman, Indonesia

Yuri Mahatma, Indonesia

Ben van den Dungen, the Netherlands

Dwiki Dharmawan, Indonesia

The Gapp Project, Indonesia-Australia

Double T Tour for Yayasan Kerti Praja Foundation

This time a different kind of post, but it also has to do with Bali.

This post is about Yayasan Kerti Praja Foundation.

The Kerti Praja Foundation provides a comprehensive strategy to HIV&AIDS prevention, care, support and treatment.

The projects address the medical, social, psychological and economical challenges faced by all people in Bali living with HIV&AIDS. For more information please click on the website of Yayasan Kerti Praja.

Like all foundations Yayasan Kerti Praja needs a lot of money to help these people.

Mathieu Nagelkerke from villa Blubambu/Blubambu Foundation and Ad Landheer from villa Santai Jasri/Binapurwaka Foundation have created a joint activity named Double T Tour to raise money for The Yayasan Kerti Praja Foundation.

The Double T Tour is created to find sponsors and the sponsor money will be donated to the Yayasan Kerti Praja Foundation.

The Double T Tour is a bicycle tour from the beautiful water palace Tirta Ganga in Karangasem all the way to the fantastic temple in the water called Tanah Lot in Tabanan. A tour of around 105 km over flat roads through the rice paddies in Tabanan region but also crossing steep hills in Karangasem.

Last weekend we travelled to Jasri in Karengasem so Mathieu and Ad could train together in the steep hills.

The Double T Tour will take place 20th April 2014 and sponsoring is still very welcome!


Ad’s bike


Mathieu’s bike


Pump up the volume


Check the vital systems


Final preparation


Seat adjustment, crucial element for the long trip


Ready, set, go…

Ogho Ogho 2014

Today is Neypi, the day of silence. The evening before Nyepi the Balinese people have driven away the evil spirits with big and small scary ugly statues, loud music and burning torches.

Balinese men carry the statues to a crossroad or T-junction and rotate clockwise three times to scare off the evil spirits so they leave Bali.  They call this procession Ogho-Ogho.

After Ogho-Ogho Nyepi, the day of silence, starts. On Nyepi nobody is allowed to work, no lights, no cooking, no watching tv, no use of cars or other transport even airplanes are not allowed to land on Bali. Because of the silence and the darkness in the night the evil spirits can’t find the way back to Bali.

For more interested information about Ogho Ogho or Neypi day you will find on Wikipedia.




Balinese men waiting in anticipation of the Ogho Ogho procession to start


To drive away the evil spirits they use burning torches,


play loud music


and carry big scary ugly statues



at the crossroad or T-junction they rotate clockwise three times



Men, women and children are present at the Ogho Ogho procession



Melasti Ceremony 2014, Petitenget Beach in Bali

Melasti Ceremony is a Hindu religious ceremony to purify Bhuana Alit (small world) and Bhuana Agung (the universe). This ceremony is performed with a parade procession followed by thousands of Hindu people by bringing all the equipment ceremonies and the symbol of gods to the sea or other water sources that are believed by Hindus as a place to purify all the elements of this universe. The usual symbols of gods brought to the sea are Keris, spears, banners (Umbul-umbul), statues, Barong etc. This procession is one of the unique Hindu ceremonies where the procession was followed by thousands of Hindus who wear the clothes and other accessories in white to indicate the purity.

On 28th of March 2014 Melasti Ceremony took place in Bali. When I am in Bali I try to go to this ceremony. The ceremony is very impressive. The Balinese people are beautifully dressed. The temple elements are colorful and carried by Balinese men. Every were you hear the gamelan music being played. The beautiful women carry food or fruit on their head. The children are all dressed in traditional clothes and look amazing, so beautiful. I was happy I could join also this year for Melasti.



The men carry the elements from the temple in front of the sea


A sample of the offerings



The people purifying themselves in the sea


All praying together


Representatives of one of the participating desa’s


Returning home after purifying ceremony


Folk Art Gallery jUjU Art Jewelry

A few months ago I placed a post about Folk Art Gallery in Bali. This time I do it again! Why?… Besides the fascinating collection of museum grade art and artifacts they also sell amazing beautiful jewelry, called jUjU Art Jewelry. I just have to show you…

jUjU Art Jewelry is the culmination of over 30 years of jewelry design, creation, and folk art experiences. All of jUjU Art Jewelry is handmade from beginning to end, one unique piece at a time.

If you’re going to Bali or you are already in Bali you should visit Folk Art Gallery and you will notice I am right. If you enter the gallery you feel you are discovering exotic locations of the globe…

If you are not going to Bali then you should have a look on their websites. If you fall in love with the fascinating collection or the beautiful jewelry, no problem you can buy your favorite piece via the webshop.

Folk Art Gallery, Jalan Laksmana (Oberoi) 17B, Seminyak, Bali 80361, Indonesia

Phone: +62 (0)81 338 332 373  | + 62 (0)361 738 113

www.folkartgallerybali and


Folk Art Gallery in Seminyak, Bali


jUjU Art Jewelry

Catrina the skeleton figure a caricature of a fancy dead woman… in her party cloths. She has articulated legs and arms, known for day of the dead in Mexico

Yalalag Maria cross, a folk cross from Oaxaca. Mexico symbolizes the Trinity, made with red heart beads

Frida Kahlo hand earrings carved from bone,  patterned after a pair of earrings that Picasso gave to Frida. She painted them in many of her self portraits

Frida Kahlo as a Tehuana. Taken from one of her self portraits wearing clothing from the Tehuanapec Peninsula. A matriarchal society, a pendant

Frida Kahlo with a ruby stone, a pendant

Catrina bracelet, made of brass

Catrina ring, made of brass


‘Cybelle’ textured brass, circle necklace brass


Gold plated Angel wings earring


Dragon/Naga coin ring with amethyst stones, brass


Mother of Pearl earring with crescent moons and stars, on symbol, gold plate


Aurora flower necklace and earring in silver plate


Venti interlocking hoop bracelet, textured metal


Angelina earring L.G. pear shaped, freshwater pearl in silver plate

Harvesting the rice in Canggu, Bali

Last May my posting ‘Pure’ was about farmers planting the bibit (young rice plants) in the earth by hand.

Harvesting of the rice comes when the plants are about a meter tall and turning yellow. Last week it was time to harvest the rice plants. Still at many places in Bali the women shuffle the rice seeds from the rice stalks all by hand, but this time I also noticed a small machine was used.  This machine separates the rice seeds from the stalks.

I hope this small machine is making the hard work a bit lighter for the workers because working on the rice fields is still very hard labour!








Temple Ceremony Tumpek Wayang, Canggu, Bali

It’s been a while since my last post on my weblog. Family and friends staying with us in Bali, lots of other things to do, not so much time for photography.

Last Saturday on 20th July the Bali Temple Ceremony Tumpek Wayang took place. Close to my house a big ceremony happened and I did not want to miss it.

The Balinese people looked so beautiful in their traditional clothing. The women made many offerings from fruit and carried them on their heads to the temple.

The ceremony started in front of the temple with praying and people receiving blessings from the priest. After that they all went inside the temple for more sacred ceremonial activities. When all this was finished they came out of the temple and later on the street in front of the temple the gamelan musicians started to play and the Barong dance performance started, followed by other dance performances.

I left after the dance performance of the Balinese girls.  It is always great to see how they dance, so graceful. They all looked stunningly beautiful and colorful.

I’m glad I made some time to enjoy this ceremony.

Click on to read about the meaning of the Balinese Temple Ceremony

If you want to know more about the Barong dance check out the following website


The women bring the offerings to the temple


The offerings, all made by hand, look beautiful


The men are going into the temple


All the people are praying and receive blessings from the priest…


and also the children


After the ceremony the gamalan starts…


for the Barong dance


Before the beautiful Balinese girls start to dance they have to go to the temple first…


to pray and receive the blessing from the priest.

‘Pure’ Bali

On the 15th of each month my photography friends and I will place at least one photo based on a pre-selected theme on our Stoer Photographers facebook page. All Stoer photographers will use the same theme but will visualize it from their own perspective.

For this month the theme is ‘Pure’

Every day I see ‘Pure’ things in Bali.  In Canggu the place where I live you still see many rice paddies. Two weeks ago I saw the farmers planted the bibit (young rice plants) in the earth, all by hand.  They worked very hard, with their feet in the mud. At the end of the day all the bibit are planted.

Every day I passed the rice field on my motorbike. I can see the rice plants growing.

Today I had to stop to make a photo of this beautiful rice paddy…


Bibit (young rice plants)


Planted all by hand…


working hard in the mud



The work is done…


Two weeks later a beautiful rice paddy

Motel Mexicola

Last year when I drove through Jl. Kayujati in Petitenget/Seminyak I saw workers making a very colourful building. Pillars with colourful decorations, all made by hand. It was hard to see more when the building was not finish yet but I knew this building would be very colourful, different and well designed.

Unfortunately I was not in Bali when Motel Mexicola opened his doors. I heard the opening party was great!

Motel Mexicola will in the end be a collection of Mexican restaurants. I’ve been to Motel Mexicola a few times and I was right. The whole setup is amazingly colourful. For the building and interior they use bright Mexican colours and interior designs. It really felt as if I was in Mexico.

In the front of Motel Mexicola there is a terrace. If you go inside you will find a big patio and verandas with booths, all in Mexican style.

The two indoor restaurants are not finish yet but already look stunning, will be even better when they are finished.

For lunch they serve different kind of tacos. The taco’s are not so big so better order a few with different kind of toppings, they are all delicious. For the evening Motel Mexicola offers a different menu.

I can’t wait for the new restaurants in Motel Mexicola to open…

Motel Mexico
Jalan Kayajati No. 9X
Petitenget Beach Seminyak
Denpasar 80361

Facebook Motel Mexicola


Great terrace and bar in front of Motel Mexicola


Staff busy decorating the picture of a Mexican legend


A big patio inside Motel Mexicola …


… with Mexican details


The verandas are great even when it rains


Beautiful art work and Mexican tiles


A booth with Mexican pictures and paintings


One of the bars in Motel Mexicola


The new restaurant, not finish yet but look already stunning…