Colorado Traveling Ducks Arrive in Sydney, Australia

Another long overnight flight and we are now on our tour bus in Sydney, Australia.   Here we are at the famous Bondi Beach.

Bondi Beach

We love beaches and this is a great one.   Right in the city of Sydney.

Ducks on Bondi Beach

Isn’t this great sand.   Behind us you can see some surfers and a view of Sydney.  Of course we like this fellow.

Our new friend

Ducks and seagulls are friends here.   We believe he is standing on one foot.  We didn’t pose with our new friend, but he sees us.  Soapy’s mom loves beaches.

Soapy’s mom on Bondi Beach

She is ready to stay here and enjoy the beach, but not today.   We ducks found a great place to sit.

Ducks ready to ride

We are ready to ride.   We love beaches, too.   But, back to the bus and a short ride.   We are going to Mrs. Macquarie’s chair.

Information about Mrs. Macquaries Chair

This sign explains the chair.

Ducks on Mrs. Macquarie’s chair

This chair is a little big for the Colorado Traveling Ducks, but we love looking out at the water.  So, let’s leave the chair and walk to the water.

From chair walking to water

Isn’t this beautiful?   We love it.   Let’s go to the railing and the famous Sydney Harbor.

A great view of Sydney Harbor

On the left is a cruise ship.  The ships dock right here in Circular Quay.   Then the Sydney Opera House and the Sydney Harbor Bridge.   This is a perfect view of Sydney Harbor.  But, back to the bus and we are going to Darling Harbor.

Getting on boat for lunch and harbor cruise

Let’s follow Stephanie and get on this boat.   We will have lunch here and enjoy a short harbor cruise.   Lunch was delicious, and now it is time for dessert.

Dessert time

Everything was fabulous, and we loved dessert.  Sitting on deck, we enjoy our harbor cruise.

Ducks on deck

You can see it is not very crowded so we can walk around and see everything.

We love seeing our tracks on the water.

The back of the boat has the least wind, so it is safer for small rubber ducks.   We love to look back and see our trail on the water.   The weather is perfect and we really enjoyed everything we saw today in Sydney.   We want to tell you we were here in early November.   So much has changed since then.   When we were in Australia, we saw no evidence of the horrible fires that would burn so much of the country.   And, of course, none of us had even heard of Coronavirus.   We are so grateful that we went on this trip before our world changed so much.

Ubud Village Hotel at Monkey Forest, Bali, Indonesia with Colorado Traveling Ducks

Before we head to the airport for our next destination, let’s look around our hotel.   Ubud Village Hotel at Monkey Forest calms visitors as we relax and enjoy the beauty around us.   From the main street, Jalan Monkey Forest Road, we enter our resort.

Entrance to our home in Ubud

You see there are many motorcycles, and our hotel has a parking, drop off, area for tourist convenience.

Arrangement of flowers

Beautiful flowers in the lobby makes us feel welcome.   Straight ahead, we noticed this small pool.

First small pool

A pool here gives us a tropical feeling and exotic atmosphere.

Hand carved wooden chairs and table

Small shops and a gym border each side of pool, while hand carved chairs and table allow us to sip a beverage and enjoy the atmosphere.   Continuing toward the back of the resort, we follow the path.

Path through hotel to restaurant and pool

Our room is last room on left.   Tropical view from our room.  Soapy and his mom are a floor above us, while they enjoy a higher view of lush vegetation.   Breakfast is served in this main restaurant.

Dining facing main pool

Dining and looking at the main pool.

Serene pool

The pool is uncovered and there is a snack bar at the far end.   Everythying is very convenient, located together, but with the illusion of space and solitude.   This bar and smaller restaurant, where we had our dinner the first evening, looks out to the street.

Looking toward main shopping street

We would love to go shopping or to the Monkey Forest, but we need to get on our bus now.   Heading to the airport and our next country.

Bali’s Taman Ayun Temple with Colorado Traveling Ducks

Let’s visit Taman Ayun Temple.

Taman Ayun Temple

Built in 1634, Taman Ayun Temple was a main temple of the Mengwi Kingdom, which survived until 1891.   According to Lonely Planet, this is a spacious place to wander around, away from crowds.   And we agree.   To enter this Hindu temple complex, your legs must be covered.

Must be covered to enter

A few of our group, including our guide, were wearing shorts.   The temple provides complimentary sarongs for men and women so we could all enter.   Properly attired, we climb the stairs and pass through this gate.

Through gate

This is a meru, or multitiered shrine.

Meru. A multitiered shrine

Very elegant.  And a large temple.

Temple

We are instructed to go around this building to see the moat and more of the complex.

Around temple to moat

Very nice.   As we walk, we ducks admire the foliage.

Nice flowers

Aren’t these interesting blossoms?  And another view.

Temple complex

Notice that there are not many tourists here.   Time to wander, take photos and enjoy the serenity.

Shrines

This complex is surrounded by a moat.  This is now part of subak, a complex rice-field irrigation system.   The masonry is beautiful.

Covered area. Great stone work

This covered area is available for gatherings.   We love this.

Interesting statue

With the water we enjoy the stone fish.  You can guess what this was used for.

Area for cock fights

The figures show this to be the arena for cock fights.   Isn’t this a pretty fountain?

Fountain

We like it.    But everybody knows ducks love water.   Leaving Taman Ayun Temple complex, we discovered a modern use for the extensive moat system.

Fishing in the moat

Fishing on a warm afternoon seems to be a pastime enjoyed all over the world.   We recommend that you visit this temple when you are in Bali.   Beautiful and away from the crowds.

Bali’s Museum Puri Lukisan with the Colorado Traveling Ducks

Let’s visit Bali’s oldest art museum.

Museum Puri Lukisan

We walk through the ornate entrance and receive our entrance ticket from our guide.

Puri Lukisan Art Museum

This places beautiful.

Puri Lukian

Lovely, lush landscaping and such nice stairs and pathways.

Puri Lukisan

At the top of the first set of stairs we stop to admire this arbor and bridge over the lake.

Puri Lukisan

We follow a path along the water and fountain.  Puri Lukisan museum consists of four main exhibit buildings.  We will only show some art from one, the South Building.

South building

This building displays primarily new acquisitions and temporary exhibits.

sculpture

This was an interesting sculpture.  But this.

Colorful

We like colorful work.   This is rather timely for late October and early November.

Spirits of the Forest

Titled Spirits of the Forest by Satya Cipta, 2019.   This one reminds us of island life.   *676*

Pretty

Remember, Bali is one of several thousand islands that comprise Indonesia.   That is all we are showing  you.   On display is a letter written to the Bali government from then, Attorney General, Robert Kennedy.   Mr. Kennedy thanked the government of Bali for hospitality and honors bestowed upon him and his wife during an official visit.   We really want you to visit Bali and experience this art museum.

Water lilies

After more exploring, we leave the exhibit and walk toward the pond.   Aren’t these water lilies fabulous?  Now we go down the stairs and get on our tour bus.   When in Bali, spend a little time here.  We think you will like it.  We did.

Goa Gajah or Elephant Cave in Bali with Colorado Traveling Ducks

Elephant Cave?  OK, our moms said no elephants here, so let’s see what is here.

Entering Goa Gajah or Elephant Cave

Walking past the shops, we are told that this was built in the 9th century and served as a sanctuary.

Path with steps down

Quite a long downward path with steps.   But pretty.

Pretty foliage as we descend to cave

We love the colors of the plants.   From the path, we have a good view of the area.

Looking down on complex

Stones are piled after being recovered in the area.  Pavilions for meeting and prayer.   We later read that these fountains were for women bathing.

Fountain of Youth

Someone told us these waters were to have fountain of youth properties, so everyone went to get some of that water.   Soapy’s mom is getting water to remain youthful now.   This is the entrance to the cave.

Entrance to Elephant Cave

Wow.   The carvings in the stone are so elaborate and detailed.   Inside the cave we looked at the alcoves for offerings.

Alcove for offering

Very nice, but we don’t know the real significance of these items.

Offering

There were about 8-10 alcoves.   All was very interesting.  Exiting the cave, we admired these items.

Part of religious retreat

This is a very quiet area and we were told may people come here to meditate.   The pavilion provides a place for prayer.

Pavilion

We could spend more time here, wandering in this peaceful area.   There are very few other tourists here now, so it is a pleasant location for meditating or thinking.   However, it is time to walk back up that path with steps.

After cave shopping opportunities

And a little time for shopping.   We have been fortunate in Bali.  Most of the temples were not crowded during our visit.   People are fine, but some quiet, peaceful time is nice on a long trip also.   We are very happy in Bali.

Ubud, Bali, Indonesia Welcomes the Colorado Traveling Ducks

Bali, Indonesia is beautiful.  From the airport we drove through amazing mountain and jungle scenery.   We are staying at Ubud Village Hotel at Monkey Forest.   In the morning we needed to explore.   Out the front entrance of our resort and a right turn.   Shortly we arrive at the Monkey Forest entrance.

Entrance to Monkey Forest

Yes, that is a monkey on the roof.  Just inside the monkey forest is a statue.

Monkeys on statue

And this statue has a monkey on the head.   And monkeys nearby.   We like monkeys, but there are a lot of them.   The road coming into Ubud passes in front of the monkey forest.

Road near entrance to Monkey Forest

The vegetation is beautiful and tropical.   It seems like there are many motorcycles.   This is a different statue.

Stone monkey on stone turtle. Zeb and Soapy on stone turtle head

Turtles have a significance to the local people, and here is a stone monkey sitting on the turtle.   And, two famous Colorado Traveling Ducks, sitting on the turtle head.   We have seen a few dogs on the street.

We like this

We love this sign.   Free veterinary care for street dogs.   Isn’t that great?  We have places to go with our group this morning, so we wander back toward the hotel.

Our street and shopping

Shopping is available everywhere.  As the day progresses, we see so many motorcycles.

Motorcycles for transportation

They are convenient to rent and so much easier to drive than cars.   We think this is a nice way to see Bali.   We did make some purchases, but no food.  Different people on the street warned us to be careful as the monkeys will take what they want.   We made sure nothing was poking out of our shopping bags.

Many monkey statues here

And so many great statues of monkey near the monkey forest.   A few blocks from the monkey forest we did not see any more monkeys.   Bali is Indonesia’s main tourist destination.   Located 8 degrees south of the equator, Bali has a wonderful climate all year.   Ubud, the city we are visiting, is known as the cultural center and magnet for artists.

Motorcycles and shop

This store offers an unusual variety of items.   While walking we entered some stores and made some purchases.   Snake skin change purses, wooden monkeys and bowls, a statue of Ganesha, a Hindu god, a little jewelry, and our favorite.   Reusable bamboo drinking straws.   We had never seen the bamboo straws before.   Always something new to see.

Shopping choices

Another interesting shop.   But this store, across from our hotel, had to be our favorite.

Our Bali relative

Our relative from Bali is ready to take us to the pool or beach.   Unfortunately, mom says we are on a tour and have places to go.   But we enjoyed meeting a fellow rubber duck.   We already like Bali, and our town of Ubud.   We’re eager to see more of Bali.

Damneon Saduak Floating Market in Bangkok with Colorado Traveling Ducks

Time for another boat ride on the canals.

Ready to get on next boat

This time we are going to Damneon Saduak Floating Market in Bangkok.   We love boats and markets.

Riding down the canal

The canals and rivers are used as highways and we love it.

After shopping, a rest to look at canal

At the market we did a little shopping, mom purchased packages of spices.   As we have mentioned, Bangkok gets hot.   We stopped for a Diet Coke and watched the activity on the canal.   But wait.

Monitor lizard

What is this?   Oh, a monitor lizard.   Our guide said they are common here.   Well, he is not common in Colorado.   But I like to see him–from a distance.   A little more shopping.

Beautiful coffee table

This wooden coffee table is beautiful.   As you can guess, we did not buy it.   How to get it to Colorado??   The dresses are very nice also.   There are so many beautiful things here.

Canal activity

It is nice to be able to shop and watch the canal activity.   And see more shopping across the canal.   We bought a few souvenirs and more scarves.   Still very hot, so time for another Diet Coke.

Trying to keep cool

Guess we are not the only ones that are hot.   This Pomeranian dog has the best place in the market.   When we finished our refreshments, the dog was out of the cooler and relaxing on the floor by his humans.   So no problem.

Canal activity

Sitting with our beverages, we enjoyed the canal activity.   Things here are so close together and so busy.   But it is relaxing and enjoyable also.

Selling from boat

Back on the bus, our guide has a little surprise for us.

Back on bus. Going back to our hotel

These little bananas are so sweet and the bottle of water is perfectly chilled.   Another great experience in Bangkok.   We loved our time in Bangkok, but we must go to our rooms, pack, and get ready for our next destination.

Maeklong Railway Market in Thailand with Colorado Traveling Ducks

On the bus this morning.  Our first stop will be Maeklong Railway Market about 60 km from Bangkok.

Morning traffic in Bangkok. Motorcycles, cars, trucks and buses.

Lots of morning traffic, but we are amazed at the number of motorcycles and how well, motorcycles, cars, trucks and buses all easily share the road.   I, Zeb the Duck, never saw an accident and no signs of road rage.  Maeklong Market is located on a narrow street, but a train passes through the market 8 times every day.   Here we are.

Train going through market

There really is a train going right through the market.  On the left, you can see an awning is folded back so the train can pass.

Train leaving market

Another view of the train as it leaves the market.  The train station is near the market.  The train travels from Bangkok to this market and back to Bangkok.   The one way train ride takes about one hour, driving takes about 90 minutes.

Train gone. Business are usual now.

Here humans can purchase food wrapped and ready to take for lunch.  You may notice the awnings are now covering the train tracks.   The sun in tropical Bangkok is very hot, so shade is needed.   Also notice how very close the train tracks are to the shops.

Fresh meat available here

Fresh meat is ready to purchase and cook.   I, Zeb the Duck, am happy to help, but nobody seems to want my advice.

Probably alive

Some of the food is still alive.   That is really fresh.

Fresh fish

Fresh fish is always the best.   A nice selection here.

Probably squid

I think this is squid, but I’m not really sure.   Looking down the train tracks.

Train tracks very close to items for sale.

Remember, 8 times every day, displays are moved off the train tracks and awnings are folded back to let the train pass.   Then everything is replaced for easier shopping.   We were only here at the market about 30 minutes, but there is much to see and purchase.   We also saw souvenirs and household items.   Mom purchased some silk scarves.   Leaving the market, the next street looks just like any city in Thailand.

Just another town in Thailand. Almost.

We thought it was great seeing a train go through the market.   Not something I saw before.  We hope you see the train market also.

Afternoon Boat ride on Bangkok’s Canals with Colorado Traveling Ducks

Bangkok is a large city and very busy.  The population of Bangkok is 9.7 million people.   Of course that means much traffic.   The canals are used for transportation also, so let’s take a boat ride on the canal.  Our hotel is on the Chao Phraya River and we get on a boat like this one.

Just like our boat

People here really live on the edge of the river.

 

Shrines to Buddha are everywhere.

Buddhist shrines always near

All people are able to get to one easily on foot.   The afternoons are hot here and these dogs are taking advantage of some shade for an afternoon nap.

Dogs. Lounging on a hot afternoon

We are amazed how close to the river these buildings are located.

Buildings on the river bank

A wall separates building from water.   The flowering bush is beautiful.

Tropical flowering bush

Here we see a boat dock.

Use boat dock. Not garages

No need for garages on the river.  We think this is a local market.

Local market

What do you think?  Along this part of the river, we saw several more elaborate temple complexes.

Shrines along the river

Not much river traffic today.   But here is a boat similar to ours.

Boat approaching us

The river is wide and we love traveling by boat.

Canal as highway

So soon?  We are returning to the hotel area.

Returning to hotel area

We ducks were on this boat trip and loved it.   But we didn’t sit on the edge and pose for photos.   We like the river but did not want to fall in and swim home.  We really enjoyed our hour or so on the Chao Phraya River and canals.

Bangkok’s Marble Temple with Colorado Traveling Ducks

Now we are going to Wat Benchamabophit.   Also known as the Marble Temple.

Marble Temple

Designed in 1899, the Marble Temple uses traditional Thai symmetry with European and Chinese design influences.  Inside the Buddha is displayed with a beautiful illuminated blue background.

Buddha

Again the workmanship is extraordinary.   We noticed that Buddha seems to have very long fingers.

Long fingers

The ashes of King Chulalongkorn are buried beneath the statue.   This is not a single temple, but an entire complex.

Marble temple complex

We wandered around the temple and entered various buildings.  We were especially captivated by the singhas, or guards, these marble lions.

Lion

Several people stop at various shrines.

Man at shrine

This Buddha was a little different.

Buddha

The sign explains that this Buddha is Burmese style.

Style of Burma

All doors and windows are very ornate.

Ornate window

So much work and so much beauty in all the temples.   Walking over this bridge can lead us to or away from the Marble Temple complex.

Marble temple complex

Between the Marble Temple and our bus, we did enjoy seeing this sculpture.

Interesting sculpture

We are not sure if it has special significance, but we liked it.   The Marble Temple is constructed from carrara marble imported from Italy.   We hope you will visit some of Thailand’s Buddhist temples.   They are extremely ornate, beautiful and very peaceful.   We are glad we visited some of them.