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Bali Hai

Written on: Sunday September 14th, 2008

For many years I have been intruiged about Indonesia: the culture, the geographical differences, the diving, the food and of course the nearly perfect weather for most of the year.  Yesterday I arrived in Bali and am now beginning to get a taste for the country. 

But the most popular part of Bali is nothing like the majority of the country.  When people think Bali, they think Kuta Beach.  It is by far the most popular spot, boasting a myriad of cheap restaurants, street vendors, surfers, and backpacker accommodations. 

After a tip from a fellow traveler, I arrived at the the Senen Beach Hotel, which is located in Legian (slightly North of Kuta), and is about a four minute walk from the sand.  It is a quiet, secluded hostel that caters to backpackers.  I have a private room about 10'x15', with an outdoor bathroom roughly the same size.  (Side note: when I finally build MY place in the tropics, it will definitely have an outdoor bathroom!)  The restaurant is ridiculously cheap, and surprisingly very good.  Twenty four hour access and decent security make this place a backpacker bargain at the price of 50,000 rupiahs...which is roughly equivalent to $5U!

I've been moderately exploring the area.  The traffic is rather intimidating, so thus far, I've been exploring on foot.  There are a lot of dining options that will be more thoroughly appreciated when mom arrives.  For now I've been sticking to the hostel restaurant and small cafes nearby.  Everything is so amazingly cheap here, especially compared to my last to stops of Oz and New Cal.  For example: last night I ate satay chicken, shrimp and tuna, and it cost $2.30. In my restaurant a beer costs $1; a 24oz beer is $1.60.  To rent a scooter for a day is $3, and an hour massage is $6.  So it is quite apparent why there are so many young travellers staying in Bali for such extended periods of time.

One highlight so far was a run on the beach this morning.  I woke up early and began the quiet stroll towards the water.  Arousing my senses along the way was the subtle fragrance of incense and the sight of many tropical flowers.  Even on the beach, it was a delightful contrast to smell the ocean in one breath and incense in the next.  The seven foot waves were crashing nonstop, to the surfers' delight.  And the whole time I was running, all I could think was how much I truly enjoy this.

So this was my first taste of Bali.  Next stop is the island of Sulawesi, where, arguably, the world's best scuba diving can be done.  I am so looking forward to the upcoming week, and only hope that it stands up to my very high expectations.  Ciao for now!

 

From Will and Maria on Sep 17th, 2008

Yo yo your now in hinduland it sound like just my pace the trees are just starting to change here in WI and its cold season but the fish have started to bite again and all is well in the world Im gettin phyced for India and im sendin Ire vibes to you my bro Please try and see some shadow puppet shows and or the ramayana for me no one puts on a show so sacred as the Balanees. Blessed Be and Much love Will

From Jesse on Sep 28th, 2008

Fuck man 220 views, you sure got more friends than I do. Good on ya! They say "ciao" in Bali?