Scootering back down (and up and down, and up and down again) through the mountains of North Bali was a bit of adventure. Google Maps led us up a road that quickly turned into a narrow, rocky, dirt path vertical incline UP the mountain. When our motorbike was unable to make the climb, we got off and pushed. It's tough enough to lug my giant backpack from baggage claim to the taxi curb, so successfully slogging it up the mountain felt like my greatest physical feat to date. And I've run two marathons and attended a Cross Fit class once. We finally made it to the top and reached the views of the crater lakes. I've never been so relieved to know it was all downhill from there.
After Ubud, we hit the road for a big trip up to the North of Bali.
Within 10 minutes we got a flat tire. Luckily, Bali is the kind of place where you can walk your scooter down the road, mime to the nearest local that you got a flat and for the equivalent of $4 USD he'll whip off his shirt and change it, right then and there.
After a few hours of driving we got to the top of a mountain and encountered a make-shift strawberry field with a road stop restaurant that only sold all things strawberry. We got a strawberry pizza which sounds wrong but may actually have been the best things I ate in Bali.
Loaded up with our bags and surfboards, we looked very out of place driving through the (green, lush and chilly!) mountains of northern Bali. Winding through tiny mountain villages (where I'm pretty sure they don't see many tourists), the locals wave from their windows and little kids run outside yelling "Hallo!" excited to see gringos. It was very much like that scene in Beauty and the Beast ("Bonjour! Bonjour!") but with chicken satay instead of baguettes.
Around Danau Bratan Lake we haggled for beetroot chips at the road side markets and atop the Buyan and Tamblingan crater lakes we dodged road side monkeys.
Once we arrived, we learned Lovina sounds much lovelier than it actually is. However, it was worth it just for the trip through the mountains. And the strawberry pizza.