“Travel makes one modest. You see what a tiny place you occupy in the world.” – Gustav Flaubert.
So, after planning nearly for two weeks, me and my four other friends finally booked a return ticket to Bali, Indonesia. And the best part was that, the tickets were non-refundable 😛 😛 , i.e no more backing off at the last moment and ruin the complete plan.
I planned and made a itinerary for our trip two weeks before our date of departure which was on 12 Sep 2018. We booked tickets with AirAsia, so we had some serious luggage weight constraints 😛
So, finally our day of departure came and we all were filled with excitement and thrill.
Listening to ZNMD songs in shower, imagining ourself there doing crazy stuff, and finally to pull out a great Bachelor trip.
** D Day **
After completing our office, we booked a cab to the airport , all of us were mostly busy downloading offline songs for our long flight journey in the cab, and yes taking random photos. After reaching IGI airport, we checked in and got our boarding passes. There we realise that we have made a huge mistake, we had not packed a single packet of Indian snacks(like Bhujia, etc) with us. The dude whom we had assigned this task completely forgot. So, now we are 5 people out of which 4 were vegetarians were heading to a country whose sea-food is world famous and that too without any Indian Food.
But, still we were all happy 😛
Tips and Hacks :
1.) If vegetarian, do carry lot of Indian snacks with you.
2.) Usually Air-Asia economy class ticket allows only 7 kg of baggage, but still they allow little buffer (mine was 7.6 kg but they allowed)
3.) Always asks if they can give you a window seat, you’ll surely get one.
4.) Currency Exchange : Always take minimal amount of Cash with you. Currency in Indonesia is IDR (1 INR ~ 200 IDR ). We exchanged INR for USD in India , and exchanged those Dollars with IDR in Indonesia. Finally, we got a exchange rate of 1 INR to 186 IDR.
But, we later found out that, we could get a rate of 1 INR to 196 IDR, if we would have used our International Debit card.
** Day 1 – KL Airport, Malaysia ( 12.5 hours layover 😛 ) **
So, after 4.5 hour long flight we reached Kaula Lampur, Malaysia. We had a 12.5 hour layover there which is quite long, but thanks to the Wi-fi and public accommodation facilities at airport , time passed.
Tips and Hacks :
1.) Access public Wi-fi there.
2.) There are lot of public spaces with good charging sockets and ports.
3.) If you are vegetarian, there are very less food options, but still you can find French Fries at KFC and MacDonalds.
** Day 2 – Reached Denpaser, Bali **
Finally, we reached Denpaser (Capital of state Bali), after taking a 3.5 hour flight from KL, Malaysia. The flight was fairly comfortable. We reached there almost at mid-night. We had already booked our Airbnb villa in Seminyak region, our Host arranged us a Driver to pick us from the Airport. The Driver charged us around 2.5 lakh IDR for the complete car. Airport was way better than our expectation with all the modern facilities.
Our driver was nice, he helped us to get Mobile sim-card on the way to our Villa. Don’t buy simcard from Airport, they are way more expensive as compared to the local market. You can get a sim with 7 to 8 GB of internet data at a cost of around 1 lakh IDR.
So, after getting them we finally reached our Villa located in Seminayek region.
Link to our Villa.
Note : If you are planning to book a stay using Airbnb, please use my referral , you’ll get instant discount of approx. 2200 INR on your booking. Cheers 🙂
Our Villa was really nice, with all the modern facilities plus a Private Pool 🙂 to chill and relax.
Tips and Hacks :
1.) According to me, these are the places that one can visit in Denpaser . Reference point is the Airport :
–> KUTA : main party hub, with good beaches, cafe’s and pubs. If you want to enjoy good night life this place will not disappoint you.
–> SEMINAYEK : Further north of Kuta. Little less crowded, have wonderful resorts. Beaches are good here, good cafe’s and pub. You should try surfing here if it’s in your bucket list.
–> CANGUU : Further north of Seminayek, Cafe’s and food are considered best here. Very less crowded and peaceful. It’s a good place, if you want to slow down time and relax for some days.
–> UBUD : the cultural rich place, located in center of Bali, here you’ll find good artistic cafe’s , beautiful Rice fields, small art & handicraft shops, etc. If you want to buy souvenirs this is the best place.
–> NUSA LEMBONGAN : Nusa Lembongan is an island located southeast of Bali, Indonesia. It is part of a group of three islands that make up the Nusa Penida district, of which it is the most famous.
–> NUSA PENIDA : Nusa Penida is an island southeast of Indonesia’s island Bali and a district of Klungkung Regency that includes the neighbouring small island of Nusa Lembongan.
2.) If you want to explore Bali smoothly , do rent motor bikes there. They are cheap & affordable. Avg. price is around 50k – 65k per day. Petrol is very cheap there.
** Day 3 – Surfing **
We pre-booked our surfing package from AirBNB (link) at a very reasonable cost of around 750 INR per person for a 3 hour session which included Photos and a training session.
” Surfing at Kuta beach – it was hell of a day !!! ”
After surfing we witnessed an awesome Sunset , and after that we packed our stuff and headed to Potato head club for enjoying night-life. The club was good but was little expensive. I would suggest you to try some other local pubs.
** Day 4 – Tanah Lot temple and just roaming 🙂 **
Next day early morning we took our bikes and head to Tanah Lot temple. Tanah Lot is a rock formation off the Indonesian island of Bali. It is home to the ancient Hindu pilgrimage temple Pura Tanah Lot, a popular tourist and cultural icon for photography.
The temple was very peaceful and pretty. Visiting this place early morning was a very good decision as it was very less crowded and that time.
After that, we went for lunch and found out a small yet beautiful cafe called “Puttu Cafe”.
The vibes and food was really nice here. You should definitely check this place out.
Tips and Hacks :
1.) Come here early morning to avoid rush and crowd.
2.) There are many good souvenir shops outside the temple.
** Day 5 – Scuba Dive 🙂 **
I was really excited for this day as scuba dive was in my bucket list for a long time. After talking/chatting with many dive schools we finally booked our dive with :
Bali diving Academy at Lembongan (a small adjacent island near Bali).
Our guides Kate and Daniel were really awesome and helped us a lot to understand the workflow of scuba diving. It was a 3.5 hour program, which included a pool session (1 hour) and then the dive in Ocean (1.5 hour). It was truly a magical experience which we all enjoyed a lot. I would definitely suggest to try scuba dive if your are in Indonesia because the water here is very clean and warm making it ideal place for fishes and coral reefs.
After the session, we headed back to Kuta via fast ferry , and booked a GRAB cab to Ubud which was our next stop.
Tips and Hacks :
1.) Bargain a lot before booking your scuba dive program. You can exclude lunch / transportation for a very less price. We paid around 10 lakh IDR for one person which is a very good price.
2.) Ride sharing apps like GRAB and Go-Jek are very cheap.
** Day 6 – Ubud – trek to Mount Batur – a volcano 🙂 **
It took us around 2 hours to reach Ubud, a town known for its culture and coffee plantation. But I was a adventure freak, and I read somewhere that Indonesia is home to a number of volcanos out of which one named “Mount Batur” was very near to Ubud. So, we booked a local tour guide from Ubud which costed us around 3 lakh IDR per-person which included following items :
1. Pick up from our hotel at 2:30 AM in morning.
3. A Guide till we reach summit
4. Drop off at our Hotel back.
So, this was trek was unique because it was all done in night so that by the time you summit sunrise has not yet started. So that you can enjoy a wonderful Sunrise from a Volcano.
I would rate the trek – a moderate level trek. It will take around 2.5 – 3 hours to reach the summit.
” sunrise was a beauty at Mount Batur “
After completing the trek and reaching our AirBnb at morning we rented a GRAB to visit Ulun Danu Beratan temple , yeah it’s the famous temple which we see on tourism outlets for Bali tourism. But before that, on the way there were many coffee plantations and me being a coffee lover was not in the mood to miss those.
So, our driver willingly waited for us till we visited one of the coffee plantation. The guide showed us how the famous Luwak Coffee ( it’s the world most expensive coffee ) is prepared from Luwak animal.
After that, we were given the opportunity to taste many types of free coffee samples which included any flavour of coffee you can think of ranging from mint to vanilla.
” me after seeing so much coffee 🙂 “
So, our next stop was Ulun Danu Beratan temple. It was one of the most photogenic place i have explored with beautiful contrast of landscapes and views.
“beautiful temple of Ulun Danu Beratan”
After visiting the temple we came back to Ubud and head towards Tegenungan waterfall. Scooters are a must in Bali if you want to explore places fast. It was a 1 hour ride to reach this place. It was little crowded but was worth it. The waterfall was gigantic and awesome. The sound and roar of falling water filled us with adrenaline and we couldn’t resist to dive into it.
I would like to mention that Cafe’s and Restaurants in Ubud are truly magical. You can find many small cafe’s which are very economical and beautiful serving delicious cuisines ( though options for vegetarians are quite limited 😛 )
” some cafe’s which caught my eye “
Tips and Hacks :
1.) Do wear good quality shoes because it can be very tough with casual shoes while trekking mount batur.
2.) Do carry jackets and sweater because it is very cold at summit and I made a mistake doing this trek with a single T-shirt and shorts and I was shivering upon reaching the summit.
3.) At Tegenungan waterfall, when you go upstairs you will find different cafe’s just above the waterfall. At first, we thought they will be very expensive because they even had a infinity pool right above the waterfall making it a wonderful location to chill and relax. But to our surprise, all those were very economical and they allowed us to enter the pool by just buying a drink which cost us around a mere 30k IDR (It’s a fantastic deal).
** Day 7 – Nusa Penida **
Ok next day we booked our ferry ticket to Nusa Penida island. Nusa Penida is an island southeast of Indonesia’s island Bali and a district of Klungkung Regency that includes the neighbouring small island of Nusa Lembongan.
As soon as we reached there, we rented scooters for a 65k per day price. We had almost two days in Nusa Penida, so we decided to cover these 3 places :
1. Kelingling Beach : Secluded, white sandy beach with turquoise waters enclosed by a steep cliff & headland. This place is accessible via scooters, the condition of road can be very bad at some points, so do ride carefully. But overall, the road trip to reach this place was awesome. Driving along a hilly road with ocean on one side and forest on the other makes the journey absolutely magical and memorable.
” the place and the roads were truly magical “
2. Atuh Beach : Rustic, isolated cove beneath a sheer cliff face, with a sandy beach & offshore rock formations. It was first hard to find but thanks to the local people who helped us to reach this beautiful beach.
” Atuh beach – a must visit if you are in Nusa Penida “
3. Peguyangan Waterfall : A breathtaking natural waterfall along side a huge cliff which requires you to walk down many steps to reach the bottom which is surrounded a an awesome waterfall and gigantic ocean waves. I like this place out of all, walking down on those stairs was a both terrifying and thrilled experience and the final reward upon reaching at bottom was truly worth it.
” Peguyangan Waterfall, Nusa penida – a truly thrilling place “
** Day 8 – Ulluwatu **
On our final day we decided to relax in our third AirBnb villa. The villa was very good i would say with great facilities. The best part was the breakfast. The locality was also very good. You could access all the services like Groceries, Laundry, petrol within 2 mins.
” Glimpse of our third AirBnb villa “
So, when we think of relaxing what comes in our mind first… “Massage” right.
We then went to Cloudia Massage Center and enjoyed a wonderful massage.
** Day 9 – Day of Departure **
We had our flight early afternoon, so packed our bags and reached airport. Overall, if you ask me, it was hell of a trip. Indonesia surprised me a lot. I mean, the people are very welcoming and kind, plus the natural beauty and vivid landscapes amazes you every time you visit a new place here. Bali, in particular is so vivid. It has blend of everything , good beaches, excellent diving spots, awesome Villas, good night-life, Rice-paddy fields, mountains and volcanos, cultural rich temples, so finding such kind of place which have so many distinct things to explore is truly a gem.
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** the end **