|| Eco-tourism in Bali
NATIONAL PARK HEADQUARTERS/BALI WEST NATIONAL PARK
Want to explore a conserved area of Bali? Then check out the National Park Headquarters of the West Bali National Park, just a few minutes from Gilimanuk Harbor. An area of over 750 square kilometers in the western tip of Bali has been set aside as a conservation area, and includes open savannas, rainforests, mangrove swamps, coral reefs and Pulau Menjangan (Deer Island), a small island off the north coast of Bali. The park is a haven for a wide range of animals and birds, especially the endangered Bali Starling. Pulau Menjangan, home to the rare Java Deer, can also be visited by boat. Its virgin beaches are good for diving and snorkeling. It is also known for its beautiful coral reefs and as the best site for fishing. If you wish to enter the park, you will need to get a park permit from the office.
BILOK SIDAN AND PLAGA VILLAGE
Located in the Badung regency, the village marks the border between Badung and Bedugul. It is currently being developed as an eco-tourism destination because of its breathtaking views of vegetable and orange gardens in the cool mountain air.
EKA KARYA BOTANICAL GARDENS IN BEDUGUL, TABANAN
Here is another perfect retreat: Eka Karya Botanical Gardens in Bedugul, the highland retreat 1,400 meters above sea level. Lush pine forests freshen air. The Bedugul Gardens are popular for their quality of fruits, vegetables and flowers. Established in 1959, these gardens cover over 120 hectares on the slopes of Gunung Pohon (Tree Mountain). The gardens contain a huge collection of trees, nearly 500 varieties of orchid and are rich in birdlife. As a centre for the study of local plants, the gardens also boast a herbarium and library.
A visit to the waterfall at Gitgit should be on every visitor's itinerary. It is about nine kilometers to the south of Singaraja. Although the winding road is steep and you have to walk the last part, it is largely accessible by car or motorbike. The path can be considered in two halves. The first part is a stepped concrete path bordered by trees and shrubs on one side and a myriad of colourful shops on the other. Halfway along, the scenery changes and on both sides you can see coffee and clove trees. It is a refreshing experience to walk in this quiet area where the birds take turns to sing. The air is cool and gradually gets colder as you approach the waterfall. A short distance from the waterfall, the fine water spray is very refreshing, and sometimes the atmosphere becomes misty. The waterfall is sixty meters high and almost completely covers the rockface. If your camera is able, try taking some long exposure photographs.
Tirta Gangga - a water garden - is just a few minutes drive (six kilometers) from the capital of Karangasem. The garden covers an area of 1.2 hectares (about four acres) and contains a series of pools fed by a natural spring. It is a place of beauty and solitude. The spring provides a large amount water, which is first lead into a reservoir, from where it is split into two. A third channel goes to provide drinking water for the town of Amlapura while the rest goes through an underground pipe and emerges into an upper swimming pool through the mouth of a raksasa (a demon) who watches the bathers from the corner of the pool. The overflow then goes into a lower swimming pool, then small fish ponds, yet another swimming pool and finally into the adjoining rice fields.
A village where you can see the Balinese crocodile and ancient temple, Pura Ancak, where the great priest Dang Hyang Niratha first set foot on Bali.
Located in Sangeh Village, the six-hectare forest is populated with giant nutmeg trees of up to 40m in height. Hordes of Balinese monkeys that inhabit both the trees and the temple, Pura Bukit Sari, located in the heart of the forest, will greet you as you enter the forest, some of them even daring to get close to you. The monkeys have become well acquainted with human company, but beware - sometimes in their attempts to get food, they will snatch some object in order to trade for food. Be aware that the monkeys are easily attracted by shiny objects, such as cameras, jewelry, wristwatches or glasses - best to leave these things behind or keep them hidden.
BALI ELEPHANT SAFARI PARK
The Bali Elephant Safari Park is home to unique and spectacular Indonesian Elephants. The Park is located in the cool jungle forest of Desa Taro, to the north of Ubud. It offers you the chance to feed and interact with these wonderful creatures in a natural setting. You can also enjoy a leisurely 30-minute elephant safari ride, or just watch the Elephants as they take a bath, ducking themselves in the cool waters of the lake.
BALI BIRD PARK
The Bali Bird Park is located in Singapadu, near Batubulan Gianyar. A cast of hundreds of the worlds rarest and most beautiful birds greet you as you stroll through diverse and rich tropical gardens; highly endangered endemic Bali Starlings, South American Macaws and Australian Cockatoos, African Crowned Cranes and Tanzanian Flamingos are just some of the marvelous sights you will experience. It houses over 1,000 birds. The park breeds endangered species in captivity, including the indigenous Bali Mynah. Its two-hectare tropical garden will surely impress you.
BALI BUTTERFLY PARK
Located on Jl. Batukaru in the Tabanan Regency, this is Indonesia's only butterfly park. It specialises in breeding and preserving various different kinds of butterflies from Bali and all over Indonesia.
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