Tegallalang Rice Terraces, Tirtha Empul & Tegenungan Waterfall!

Saturday August 12th, 2017 

We woke up naturally sometime between 8-9am and slowly got the day going. Nickol and Pauline ordered delivery from a local restaurant and Steph and I ate foods we had bought from the market for breakfast. It was nice to eat in our pjs sitting by the pool with the sun shining down. Ready to go by 11am, we walked from our villa down to the main road to get a taxi. Although we initially just wanted to be dropped off at the rice paddies, we arranged to book a driver for the entire day until 6pm for 550,000 IDR ($55). 


We arrived at the Tegallalang Rice Terraces at 11:45pm and bought admission tickets for 10,000 IDR ($1). As you entered from the top, the view down over the terraces was stunning. I was pleasantly surprised it looked exactly like the photos online and on travel brochures. 


We walked down the steps through the different levels of the terrace and back up the other side. 


There were many forks in the path and no ‘right’ direction to walk in. 


We wandered up and down until 2pm, enjoying the view and stopping often for photos. 


Lucky for us, there were some clouds in the sky that blocked the sun and kept us from breaking a sweat. 


Our driver was waiting for us when we returned to the car, and we piled in to head to the Water Temple, Tirtha Empul. We had a lovely drive through a residential area where people’s backyards were rice fields that were just as, if not more beautiful than the one we had visited. I cannot imagine waking up to that view everyday! We arrived just before 2:30pm and bought admissions tickets for 15,000 IDR ($1.50). There were many people, both locals and tourists, praying and doing the Water Purification Ritual. 


Considering the number of people present, it was relatively quiet and very tranquil. 


We walked around admiring the walls, archways, and buildings done in the traditional Indonesian style. 


Wandering around, we had lost track of time and suddenly realized it was 4pm and we were starving. We asked our driver to take us to any restaurant serving good Indonesian food. He took us to Bebek Joni Restaurant where I ordered a vegetable curry for 65,000 IDR ($6.50). 


Although we noticed more tourists there than locals, the food was very good and we got a table outside with a view out over a rice field. 


After lunch, we went to Tegenungan Waterfall. It was a good thing we ate before hand, as there were 165 steps down to the falls. Climbing back up would have been torture on an empty stomach… I think we may have been slightly jaded by all of the beautiful waterfalls we saw in Thailand, but the Tegenungan falls were only mildly impressive. Although surrounded by lush green foliage, the water itself was brown, which I felt took away from its appeal. 


Further downstream from the falls, people had stacked rocks into little towers upon the rocks in the river bed. It was very charming and my favourite aspect of the site!


On the way back, we drove past Ubud’s Monkey Forest. Our driver asked if we wanted to stop, as it is a popular tourist spot, but we all feel like we’ve seen enough monkeys this trip… 
We arrived back at our villa around 7pm. We didn’t feel like venturing too far for dinner, and decided to try one of the little restaurants along the path in from the main road. We were lured in to a restaurant I now forget the name of by its cute decor and a sign that read “We serve good food, not fast food”. Mistakenly, we took “fast food” to mean McDonald’s or Burger King type food, but the ‘fast’ they were referring to was in terms of speed. We waited over an hour, eventually asking to get it packed to go so we could eat in our pjs at our villa. 


I ordered grilled tempeh with garlic fried vegetables and rice for 40,000 IDR ($4). The tempeh had a thick layer of BBQ sauce and was charred from the grill, which I loved. Apparently, they prepare each dish to order, even chopping the vegetables instead of having them prepped. While the food was good, I’m not sure if the extra love and attention was worth the wait. 


After our late dinner, we hung out at our villa before climbing into our big, comfy beds. 

Budget :

137,500 IDR ($13.75) – my share of taxi for the day 

10,000 IDR ($1) – rice terrace admission

15,000 IDR ($1.50) – water temple admission

80,000 IDR ($8) – lunch

40,000 IDR ($4) – dinner

Total = 282,500 IDR ($28.25)

Running total = $2677.01

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2 thoughts on “Tegallalang Rice Terraces, Tirtha Empul & Tegenungan Waterfall!

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