It tickles when a Balinese Hindu holy man dabs your skin with wet brush bristles and his assistant places rice grains on your forehead. Standing in the volcanic rock area below Pura Tanah Lot, the holy man delivers a blessing and places a plumeria behind your ear.
With a flower in my hair and a rice cluster on my forehead, I felt sufficiently blessed and blissed out in Bali. I was ready to watch an island sunset at the sacred seaside complex built in the 16th century to honor the Balinese gods of the ocean.
Seeing the silhouetted temple against a molten orange sunset is reason enough to see Tanah Lot, but the visit seems even more special having been approved by a Hindu holy man. Rice blessings are available at the rock base of the temple island for a small donation, which goes to maintaining the temple site. While it may seem like a holy assembly line while you wait for your turn, it is worth it.