Wednesday, December 29, 2010

20101208 Indonesia – Bali

The tiring 17.5 hr bus journey started at 12:30pm from Yogya. It was terribly uncomfortable because of the nauseating artificial air refresher in the bus. They had done slightly too hard to please the passengers. It took me a few hours to accommodate with the ordour. A female passenger boarded, I guessed she had overdosed cheap perfume… my nose suffered again.

There was no highway from Yogya to Bali, only 2-lane roads. All the way the bus navigated through green fields, jungles and local villages, and boarded a ferry for an hour. Was so glad to have hotel pickup arranged beforehand, saved my time searching for transportation in the tired mood.

08-Dec was a Hindu festival, many shops were close. I spent my time strolling on the beach and had a long sleep to compensate the sleepless night earlier.

I rented a motorbike (USD 6) and rode to Tanah Lot where a temple was built on an island, everything looked alike as 8 yr ago. The island was accessible in the evening during low tide. There was a cave at the bottom where “holy” spring water flow. I guess that was just a waterhole from the lime stone. Proceeded to Ubud, but under-estimated the distance was so so far away. Ubud seemed to be much more commercialized nowadays. Lots of expensive hotels, restaurants and souvenirs surround the palace. Ubud is famous for quality paintings and sculptures. Of course good stuffs are not cheap.

Went to the pub at night. Drinks were cheap, but the crowds were much less compared to Thailand. As usual, many people volunteered to accompany the lonely hearts… but they were not pushy.

With an acquaintance, I shared renting a car to travel to north Bali. Pretty cheap - USD15/day. First to Lake Beratan, not so impressive. Dense fog enveloped the whole area swiftly after we arrived. The adjacent temple Puraluhur Baratan was small. A few km ahead lied Lake Buyan & Lake Tamblingan. Circumnavigated the mountain roads was not easy in the rain. We headed straight to the north point - Singaraja. Quite disappointed, stayed less than 1/2hr and returning to Kuta. We stopped by Gitgit Waterfall, quite impressive but all of us were partially soaked in the rain.

The next day we covered the southern region. Nusa Dua has good white sand beach but almost exclusive to the luxurious hotels and resorts. We had our lunch at Jimbaran. We chose the lively seafood from the aquarium – clams, crab and a fish (frozen) for the kitchen to prepare grilling. When served, I noticed the crab meat shrunk and was too soft, 4 legs were missing. Obviously it was a dead frozen crab but not the lively creature that I chose. I complained to the waitress but she insisted that she supervised the food preparation.