I was looking through the stash of photographs I have on my lap top - its running out of space. And I found pictures of my Bali Trip in the summer of 2013.
My trip to Bali has been my most MEMORABLE trip so far. Bali is unlike any other place i've visited. In the past, the countries i've travelled to in Asia are pretty urban and cosmopolitan. Visiting Bali was one of the best decisions ever, and i'd do it again in a heartbeat (well with minor changes in certain accommodation decisions!)
The trip to Bali was a rather spontaneous trip with my girl Sheryl, she got us a driver (its near impossible to travel through bali without a driver) and since we were both on a budget, we stayed at a place really up North - The Hamsa Resort - a deal we got off groupon.
We were having a 4 day trip in Bali, it was both our first time visiting bali, and our first time travelling together. Being 2 very clueless teenage girls, we had no clue what we were doing, and did not have too much of a concrete plan. Instead of deciding on which attractions we would like to visit and THEN decide on a place to stay, we only jumped on the deal.
Since most of the touristy attractions in Bali are located further South, in the Ubud Area, it took us a 2-3 hour drive to get there. So we planned our days to minimise traveling as much as possible.
Somethings i'd do better if I get the chance to visit Bali again include:
Living further down South
The resort we lived in was decent, it came with a spa, free breakfast (which were really good! The indonesians can really COOK) and, free morning yoga sessions. However, I wouldn't recommend anyone living in the resort for more than one night. For the reason that it is too far off from the "city" area in the South. One night is sufficient to visit the attractions in the North.
It was also a sort of a bummer that our driver couldn't speak really good english. There was some sort of a miscommunication with charges and that resulted in a small argument on the last day. Thankfully, sheryl had a friend who was fluent in Bahasa (?) and that helped us sort things out.
Checking up attractions, planning and then Staying for a longer time!
I can still remember the sights and sounds, the places we visited (ok no all of it, and especially not their names but you get my drift), the experience and my emotions. Growing up in a small cosmopolitan city like Singapore, you do not get the opportunity to connect with nature, much less climb waterfalls and visit lakes. It is always nice to get out and go some where more rural, where the sun rises at 5am and sets at 6pm. Though this gave us an initial culture shock of how things were closed by 6 and the lack of street lamps mean evening drives were mildly creepy.
I wished we stayed in bali for a longer time, or did a little more planning. But since it was sort of both our virgin experience traveling to a different country with no prior knowledge, I say it was a great experience and we learned a fair bit about travel planning.
We met a couple who were backpacking for 9 days through bali! We were so envious.
I encourage EVERYONE to visit Bali if you're ever in South East Asia - or even if you're living in the region (apart from Indonesians?? I believe locals know better places to visit - PLEASE SHARE). It would be better if you're not on a budget - it means you can purchase all the interesting paintings and souvenirs and spend more on food!! But that doesn't mean its impossible to enjoy Bali on a budget. If 2 young, clueless girls with a small amount of savings can have lovely memories in Bali, so can you!
More pictures of the places we visited coming up in the next few posts :)