Enjoying Nature At Sangeh Monkey Forest
This week, Patti from P.A. Moed invited us to show the nature surrounds us. For this challenge, I will show the nature I enjoyed recently at Sangeh Monkey Forest, still from the island of Gods.
As we knew that monkey is one of the sacred animals in Hinduism. In Bali, normally, monkeys are commonly found in many temples, particularly the ones situated closed to the forest. Beside Monkey Forest in Ubud, I visited another one in Sangeh. Unlike the one in Ubud, Sangeh Monkey Forest is smaller and just occupied by around 600 monkeys, which are divided into three different clusters. With its fourteen hectares of real forest, Sangeh provides chances for visitors to play around with the monkeys living there. The fee entrance is Rp. 15,000.00 (around 1 USD) for the locals and Rp.30,000.00 (2 USD) for international visitors. Additionally, the forest is also known as the first monkey forest which was introduced to tourism in Bali.
Once I entered the area, I was welcomed by the monkey big statue, proudly stood at the enter point of the forest. I did not have to walk for long. Once I entered the area, I was immediately spoiled by the freshness of the nature what mother earth could give. The tall green trees gave relaxing smell when I walked between them. A guide came closer, and I noticed that each visitor there was accompanied with at least one guide. The guide told me that it is to maintain the security and comfort while walking in the forest. Right in the middle of forest, there is a temple called Bukit Sari was built in 17th century by the Kingdom of Mengwi. Today, the temple is protected and taken care by the people of Sangeh. When we arrived at the temple, some groups of monkey came closer.
“Don’t be afraid,” the guide told me. “You will see that this forest is different with monkey forest in Ubud. This forest is purposed to build the interaction bridge between human beings and the monkeys. You even could play with them here. Look”
I saw a girl playing with one monkey, shake their hands as they introduced themselves. I agreed that the monkeys here are friendlier and nicer compared to Ubud Monkey Forest. Some people took some photos with the monkeys on their shoulders. While some had the monkeys sitting on their head and walked around with them. But I did not take those chance.
When people visited Sangeh Monkey forest, still according to the guide, beside praying at the temple, nature was one of the reasons. It is home for some variety of plants and other animals, comprising different species of birds, mammals, reptiles, amphibians, etc. Beside the pala trees, other trees are found within the forest, such as mahogany and guava. Most of trees here are more than hundred years old. The one that attracts visitors the most is Lanang Wadong tree that has special shape on its trunk, resembling the female genitalia while in the middle of the hole, it looks like a male genitalia. The tree is situated in front of the front yard and purposed as a small shrine. One that I like the most from the forest is it also accommodates the needs of visitors to walk around by providing pathways, made it easier to walk from one place to another without being afraid of getting lost.
And of course, the beauty of nature also attracts photographers to do the pre-wedding photo shoot. So, when you visit this forest, you probably will meet some couples with traditional Bali wedding gowns walking around the forest.
As I mentioned at my previous posts, there was no public transport within the island. The best way to explore Bali is renting the motorbike or car. This forest was included in my tour list when I visited Jati Luwih Rice Fields Terrace. So, when you are in Ubud and planning to have some trips passing this area, do not miss the chance to enjoy nature at Sangeh Monkey Forest.