Indonesia // Bali //

The Monkey Forest Sanctuary and Nyuhkuning


Ubud’s best-known tourist attraction is its Monkey Forest Sanctuary, which occupies the land between the southern end of Jalan Monkey Forest (fifteen minutes’ walk south from Ubud’s central market) and the northern edge of Nyuhkuning. Although the forest itself is nothing special, the resident monkeys are playful and almost alarmingly tame. Five minutes into the forest, you reach Pura Dalem Agung Padang Tegal, the temple of the dead for the Padang Tegal neighbourhood. Pura dalem are traditionally places of strong magical power and the preserve of evil spirits; in this temple you’ll find half a dozen stone-carved images of the witch-widow Rangda sporting a hideous fanged face, unkempt hair, a metre-long tongue and pendulous breasts.

South from the temple, the track enters the village of Nyuhkuning, a respected centre for woodcarving – you can buy carvings and take inexpensive lessons at several workshops – and site of a few cafés and small hotels.

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