If you haven’t already, read my post on Tegalalang rice fields I’d suggest you do these two attractions in the same day! We actually got lost on the way to Gunung Kawi temple and ended up in a tiny village however it turned out to be the best mistake and I’d definitely recommend doing in this way in the end anyways! This is where we drove to, I’m not sure where the actual entrance to the temple was but we ended up at the end of a dead end road that petered out into rice fields. At the end of the road was a bunch of guys sat talking who told us we could walk from there to the temple and they would should us the way if we liked. We parked up the bike and followed them through some intricate paths through the rice fields, the ground was very muddy and we weren’t really prepared for this so we took our flip flops off and went barefoot. We were heading down a steep slope and as the rice fields stopped it turned into more jungle-forest territory we slipped, walked, jumped and fell down the slope, we came to a stream and a waterfall pool the guys asked if we wanted to swim but we weren’t prepared for that either so we just stopped to wash some mud off and carried on walking. We walk along another tiny path through some more rice paddies and came out in the temple grounds.
The temple was really amazing, just hidden there in the middle of the forest were huge stone carvings and the vine and greenery crawling all over the place made it look very Tomb Raidery. We wandered around the temple for about half an hour and then walked back to where the guys were waiting for us. We walked back the same way we had come, easier to control yourself going uphill even in muddy situations but also a lot more tiring. When we arrive back to where the bike was parked we stopped to wash off some more mud in the stream and paid the guys 30,000 IDR ($3/£3.80) In retrospect we thought maybe 50,000 may have been better. But they didn’t ask for anything and just smiled and said thank you when we gave them the money. Because we came through the forest we actually never paid the temple entrance fee which would have been 30,000 between us so we lucked in massively! The walk was pretty intense and by the end of it I was very tired very muddy and had a fair few scratches, bruises and bites so I wouldn’t undertake it if you’re not into the whole getting down n dirty kinda thing, but I know for sure if I ever went to the temple again I’d go back the exact same way and get the guys to take us though the forest again, we felt we had an awesome experience and loved the added trekking!
If you want to give this a try, I’ve posted the directions (from Tegalalang rice fields) to where we drove to and found these guys you can drive there and see if you can do the same thing!