Scootin' in Bali... a Beautiful Place to Get Lost!

It’s June 21st and we are in Bali. It’s a funny story how we ended up here. We kept hearing people talk about how great Bali is while we were traveling throughout Australia. As we sat in the airport in Cairns waiting for our flight to Uluru, we had 30 minutes of internet use and figured why not use that time searching for flights to Bali. Within 30 minutes we had searched, found and purchased our tickets to Bali. It was as simple as that and Bali became a destination on our route! While in New Zealand we emailed our fellow travel friends and they made some wonderful suggestions for things to do in Indonesia. We will come back to Indonesia in a moment.

In our last post we were summing up our amazing trip through New Zealand. We left Queenstown on June 12th and made a six-hour road trip back to Christchurch. It was easy to pass the time with scenery like this:

We made it to Christchurch around 4:30 p.m. and we thought to ourselves “Now what are we going to do?” Our flight was not scheduled to leave until 6:50 a.m. on June 13th.  It was a Friday night so we did what any other couple would do and made it a dinner and movie night.  We know it’s cheesy but you still have to go on dates while traveling the world. We found a mall and figured we could pass a few hours wandering around the shops. Wrong! This mall closed at 6:00 pm on a Friday night! What type of mall is that? Luckily the movie theater was open late. We saw a 9:30 p.m. showing of Prometheus. Although the movie wasn’t that great it did pass a few hours.

We finished up our date night by sitting in the ACE rental car parking lot while drinking our last few beers. Romantic! We parted ways with our rental car at 2:00 a.m., brushed our teeth in the parking lot (hygiene is important on the road) and hopped in a taxi for a lift to the airport. After several more hours of waiting, pulling an all-nighter and a layover in Brisbane we were finally on our flight to Bali!

We filled out our arrival card and took special note of the warning. Wow, they don’t mess around in Indonesia.

Our first 4 days were spent in Legian Beach, Seminyak, Bali. The streets were filled with the familiar sounds of scooters and overcrowded with vendors selling anything and everything. We lost count of the times Leanne was asked to buy a sarong. What a change from the serene mountains of New Zealand. The weather was warm and we enjoyed finding our way around our new home for the next few days.

Seeing all the scooters made us really miss our scooter back home, tucked away snuggly in our storage unit.

Of course, we had to rent a scooter to experience what scootin’ in Bali is all about. It was less than $4 a day to rent one so we were even more excited. We were passed on the left, right, honked at, stared at, smiled at, got lost, found our way, got lost again and we loved every second of it. All of that scootin’ in Colorado really helped Josh maneuver through the madness.  There are a couple of videos under our “Videos” tab as well if you’d like to take a look at those.

We filled up our tank at petrol “stations” located on almost every street corner. Who knew that vodka bottles could be recycled this way? Gas, believe it or not, is only a $1.75 a gallon!

Bali is known as the “Island of a thousand temples." Since Josh was such a pro on the scooter, we rode for over 10 hours one day and checked out the following temples:

Pura Luhur Temple (Ulu Watu)
Pura Luhur is a Balinese Sea Temple at Uluwatu on Bali. It was built in the 11th century. It is one of the most spectacular temples sitting atop the cliffs overlooking the surf at Ulu Watu.
Upon entering, we were required to cover our legs with a sarong. Leanne was able to use the one she purchased on the beach the day before while Josh had to borrow one from the temple. Who says a man can’t look sexy in a long skirt? What do you think…is purple Josh’s color or what?

Ulu Watu was unbelievably beautiful and there were monkeys everywhere!

Tanah Lot Temple
From there we rode for several hours in search of the next temple, Tanah Lot. We stopped and asked for directions and each time the person pointed in a different direction. We got lost, really, really lost and gave up hope on finding Tanah Lot. We took the next left and guess what? We saw a sign for Tanah Lot. Imagine that! Now, we were in a race against the sunset, as Tanah Lot is known for beautiful sunsets. Unfortunately, we missed the sunset by 5 minutes but we were still able to capture some amazing pictures:

We hired a driver to take us to Lovina, a town 4 hours north of Legian Beach. The drive was unbelievable!

Our home for the next 5 days was a quiet place with 4 guesthouses. Our place was huge! Crazy what $25 can get you in Bali.

On our first night we invited Stewart, a nice man from the U.K. and fellow scooterer to join us for dinner. We made friends with our waiter and enjoyed a great night of music, beers and good company.

On the agenda for the next few days was more scootin’ and exploring. Lovina is known for dolphin watching so we had to experience it for ourselves. We headed out on a wooden boat at 5:30 am to watch the sunrise and chase dolphins. It was quite the experience with over 30 boats cashing dolphins. One boat would spot some dolphins and all 29 other boats would race to where they were pointing. We laughed a lot, made new friends and captured some beautiful pictures.

After a rest, we hopped on the scooter and headed to Bali’s largest Buddhist monastery. Once again, sarongs were required for entry. Josh worked that green sarong!

And the day wouldn’t be complete without a dip in the Banjar Hot Springs. We are not going to lie; we were a little apprehensive upon arrival. It only cost 50 cents per person and the murky, greenish water wasn’t the most inviting. After a few moments we went for it and were pleasantly surprised!

We are happy to report that it’s been days since our dip in the hot springs and so far we do not have any illnesses to report!

We spent the next day hiking around and checking out three breathtaking waterfalls.

# 1 - GitGit Waterfall – the most famous waterfall in Bali

#2 – Twin Falls

#3 -  Multi-Tier Falls

That night, we enjoyed a wonderful dinner with our neighbor and new friend, Bonnie. She is from Perth and visiting Bali for 6 months! Bonnie wrote us the sweetest note and said, “I always believe that people come into our lives for a reason – who knows what that reason is, but I will remember you both”. Bonnie, you are exactly right and we will always remember you too!

We are loving how affordable it is in Bali. Our lunches are under $7 total and dinners are not much more. Check out some of the amazing meals we have enjoyed. – most of them around $3-$5.

Now we are packing up our bags again and making our way to the Gili Islands under the recommendation of several people. We will be picked up at 4:00 am tomorrow morning. Yikes, that’s an early start! Guess we should try to get a little sleep.

We look forward to catching up again and send all of our family and friends well wishes.

Thanks for following!

Leanne & Josh