First time in Bali
I didn’t know what to expect on my first trip to Bali. I had read that Kuta was the party central of Bali, I imagined sleepless nights in the hotel room, rowdy people in the streets. But this was not the case even though our accommodation which had booked through STA Travel was right in the centre of Kuta.
Going through customs at Ngurah Rai International Airport took about two hours. The immigration officer stamped our passports and asked no questions, it was a breeze compared to the what we had experienced in Hong Kong where the immigration officer asked a number of questions and kept us waiting.
For our Transport around Bali, we hired a driver who took us from the Airport and then drove us around Bali, to various places each day. We could have also used Go-Jek and Grab or hired a scooter, but we were afraid to try this. (Next time I should try)
I think the best is to buy a sim card something we didn’t do, the hotel had WiFi, but it was very weak most of the time. Our driver very kindly allowed us to use his WiFi, I don’t know if other drivers do this but this was a welcomed, extra perk he provided us.
Places we visited
Pura Tirta Empul
Tegallalang Rice Terraces
Pura Tanah Lot
Pura Ulun Danu
Jatiliwih Rice Terraces
GWK Cultural Village
Pura Luhur Uluwatu
Padang Padang Beach
We stayed at the Rani Hotel and Spa in Kuta, a convenient location for us, we could easily walk around Kuta, and surrounding areas.
We drove to Teganugun Waterfall in Ubud. We got there around 10.30 since a popular it was already packed with people wanting to take pictures of the waterfall. The was was no chance of taking a photo with no one in the background, but still it was great that we could go inside the water, but not under the waterfall. Next, we drove to Pura Tirta Empul, or Holy Water Temple here you can take a sacred bath in the water, for some reason I hesitated to do so. (Next time I am in Bali I will definitely be ready.) Tegallalang Rice Terraces was also one the places we stopped at, it is really beautiful, you can have lunch at one the restaurants overlooking the terraces or you can also have a bit of an adventure and ride the Bali Swing. Lumbung Sari House of Luwak Coffee was quite an interesting place to visit and this was our last stop of the day. We spent about two hours at each place and the drive between the places was a bit long.
Our driver picked us up from our Hotel at 9 am and we went to Pura Tanah Lot, it is also one the most popular temples in Bali. The Temple really has a great view, only specific people are allowed inside the temple.
We then drove to Pura Ulun Danu, on Lake Beratan, this temple is said to be one of the most beautiful temples in Bali. We spent a about an hour here, and managed to get some beautiful pictures of the temple and the Lake.
Our last stop of the day was Jatiluwih Rice Terraces, a UNESCO WORLD HERITAGE SITE even though the temperature had slightly decreased by the time we got here it was still beautiful to see these famous Rice Terraces and see for ourselves why it is called “Jatiluwih” which translates to “Really Special” .
On day 3 our driver was not available so decided to spend the day exploring Kuta, relaxing by the hotel pool and later getting foot massages by the ladies at the Spa just outside the hotel.
Our Driver was back, so we drove Garuda Wisnu Kencana Cultural Park (GWK), It is one of Bali’s most Iconic Landmarks. The Main attraction is the massive statue of Vishnu which is said to be the tallest monumental statue in the world. The centre is very large and we had to walk quite a bit to get to the Big Statue, there was still some construction/renovation at the statue.
After immersing ourselves in Balinese and Indonesian Culture at GWK, we headed to Uluwatu Temple or Pura Luhur Uluwatu , which is on a cliff overlooking the sea. We were a bit apprehensive about entering the temple area as we had seen a few monkeys at the entrance and also there is an announcement every few minutes warning people to beware of their belongings. Even so one we saw a monkey snatching one guys cellphone, at that we went back to the car left our bags and cameras and asked our driver to accompany us into the Temple. Nevertheless we enjoyed we still marveled at the beauty of the temple.
We later drove to Padang Padang Beach a more secluded beach than Kuta. Our driver then recommended dinner at a Jimbraan Beach Restaurant but when we saw the prices on the menu, we decided to have drinks only and watch the Sunset.
Our flight back to Hong Kong was in the afternoon, we didn’t know what was the best time to be at the airport. So we decided to check out early left our bags with the concierge So we walked to the beach and lazed around for short while. I felt like the trip was very short I certainly needed more time although we tried our best to visit as many places as we could.