I’d never visited Bali before now. Ever seen the movie Eat Love Pray? Go watch it, if it doesnt sell Bali to you, I dont know what will, oh wait maybe my blog photos will?
I was absolutely stunned at the beauty of Bali, I have visited India many a time & I thought it would be very similair. I was wrong. India will be for another blog post but for now let me tell you about Bali!
Arrived in Bali around 9am local time. Make sure you keep $25 US or AUS on you or local currency as you have to pay for your Visa upon arrival.
Now when I was in Australia the heat was lovely after I had climatised, but I wasn’t ready for the heat here!
I checked out of the airport and the first thing was catching a cab to the hotel. Landed in Denpaser which is down south and Ubud is around an hour by cab up north.
On average – If your visiting Ubud from Denpaser – It should cost you no more than RUPIAHS 250,000 which is around $25 AUD – I learnt this later after being charged twice the amount. ( It’s all a learning curve I tell myself ) One thing which is great about Asia is that there isn’t really hostels as such, its more of a b&b style place called homestays. It was great to stay at Nick’s Homestay which was based right in the middle of Ubud – walking distance to everywhere from here.
Its based on JL Hanoman which is in the main district. The Monkey Forest is walking distance from here. I visited the following day after settling in & it was lovely to see monkeys in their natural environment – although it can be a little scary so beware of the cheeky ones!
The other tour we booked was the Sunrise trek up Mount Batur. Having never done a trek before, I thought this was so difficult and it’s the most physically challenging task I have ever completed so far. We were picked up from the home stay around 2am and started the trek after light breakfast at around 3:30am. We reached the peak of Mount Batur at 5:30am – I struggled! But we got up in time for sunrise and that was the main thing. The views at the top were stunning! I also fed a mountain monkey thanks to the great guide I had helping me. That in itself for me was well worth the massive trek up. My legs ached for days after though & I was amazed when walking back down, at what I had trekked up in pitch black.
The restaurants are just gorgeous and have such style to them – and the food is just LUSH! I ate so much here as it was so cheap and so good! If your on a budget ( I was meant to be ) you can get local food around RUPIAHS 15,000 which is around $1.50 AUD but on average I spent around R 25,000 – 40,000 for meals just cause they taste so good! Its coconut heaven so i just had to try the coconut smoothies, shakes everything! I’d recommend Aathman which was on JL Hanoman- local foods such as Gado Gado normally cost anything from R 15,000 to R 50,000 ( Generally seafood and meats around R 40-50,000)
You MUST try local dish Gado Gado ( vegetarian dish ) – It’s just to die for & Black Rice pudding served up with Coconut and banana slices. Bali is the place for you if you love banana or coconut or both!
Nicks Homestay cost around $10 AUD per night. Hell of a lot cheaper than $30 a night in aus – but even then you can still find cheaper accomodation dependng on your preferences!
My stay in Ubud mainly consisted of eating lots and shopping! If you love silver jewellery like I do, take plenty of money with you – it’s HEAVEN for this type of shopping and you can hit the markets if you love a bit of bartering – You will notice generally local stores will try and charge you full whack and then some! They are real friendly and barter with them with lots of laughs and jokes and it works wonders – Barter with them with annoyance is a no-no!
Don’t be fooled by the local ‘supermarkets’ – alot of them try and charge you alot for goods such as drinks and toiletries. On one occasion we went to a local shop and purchased water, snacks, shampoo and wash & the man at the till started ringing up the goods and then resorted to a calculator – he charged us around R250,000 for these goods which is WAY too much! ( We learnt this later, again another learning curve in asia) Always ask for a receipt even if shopping for food! You will notice some stores have a ‘ if you don’t get a receipt, please ring this number’ so I would imagine it’s a common thing.
Here’s some of my favrioute shots from in & around Ubud, Bali.