Not the first to Indonesia (been to Bandung and Jakarta) but the first in Bali... I guess when the place survives solely on tourist, they are all out to 'chop' you like a carrot head.
Well, one of us wanted to get a travel adapter and we went to a convenience store and it was selling at IDR75,000 which was about SGD8. So he decided it was too pricey and we didn't get it and left. So while walking along Legian street, I spotted the exact same adapter by a random roadside store. Oh, guess what's the price? IDR250,000! Wow! I was so close to introducing profanities from Singapore. Cmon, who sells a crappy looking adapter for freaking SGD27? So when we tried to leave, he held us back and asked us what price we wanted. Eventually the deal was closed at IDR50,000. Really? You give discount of IDR200,000? Lol. Unbelievable.
Also, DO NOT buy the stupid sim card at the airport. Basically they only sell 8GB or 12GB for IDR350,000 and IDR400,000 respectively. That's like paying SGD37 and SGD43 for a simcard that you won't even be able to finish using for 4 days in Bali? Who the hell goes to Bali and requires 8GB data? Seriously?
But, we bought it anyway and shared it among 5 of us. But just a note, apple hotspot only connects up to 3 devices so it means someone has to be offline hahaha.
I would suggest you get your airport transfer to bring you to somewhere else to just get 2GB and it might probably just cost you 1/5 of the price.
Anyway, let's get to the details as usual and I will continue to rant along the way. (hahahahahah)
FLIGHTSince it was just a short ride about 2 hours and 15 minutes flying time over to Bali, we took Jetstar at a really good deal! SGD 179 return tickets! Sweet.
ACCOMMODATIONI wouldn't recommend you this villa for 2 main reasons:
1) Bad location (almost all our drivers for pick up told us they couldn't find us lol)
2) Poorly maintain
The cupboards, bed, private pool, benches and toilet are poorly maintained and the cleanliness of the villa is almost 3/10. We had cockroaches almost everyday and not to mention uncountable mosquitoes, ants and lizards. This villa is pretty ulu, smacked right at the back of bidadari and right infront of some construction site.
Probably I felt really cheated because of the photographs they showed on booking.com. I tried to find them on trip advisor but I couldn't. In any case, skip this accommodation, I think you can find better ones with the same price we got. This is just another poorly maintained airbnb.
Here's what we thought it will look like Villa Meme Seminyak.
And here's what it actually looked like.
In any case, it was just 3 nights so it was bearable, any longer I guess not. Then again, maybe you can judge for yourself if what you see in the video is acceptable for you. But hey, really, in Bali there are so much more hotels/villa available... you know what I mean? Hahahahah.
Oh one more good point? We paid cash upon arrival.
TRANSPORTATIONI thought it would be hard to get around Bali but well, it turns out that getting around Bali was made easy with Grab. For the first day we arrived we didn't rent any car since we probably had only half the day left after we arrive in Bali. So our airbnb host told us that we could actually use grab!
Well, it's actually very cheap and you don't have to be worried about odd number like us (we had 5 pax so technically in Singapore you can't grab a normal sedan but in Bali, you can!) Basically the most expensive trip cost us like IDR60,000 which was about $6.45? So you're talking about $1.30 per person for a 15-20minutes car ride. How awesome is that? And grabbing totally saves your time trying to explain where you want to go.
But here's the thing, ALWAYS pay exact because chances are they will not return you any change. The first time we got on the grab and went to Seminyak Village which was barely IDR10,000 the fellow refused to return us change for a IDR20,000 note, merely brushed off saying it was for the parking. Oh please, you did a drop off, what parking did you have to pay?
So always get small notes ready and prepare the money before you board the car. Well, you can technically see the price before the car comes, so prepare it first.
For the rest of the day we decided to engage 10 hour car service for IDR500,000 and an additional IDR50,000 for pick up at Ubud after our water rafting. I would say the driver is pretty awesome and he even got us Spa Discount (50% discount) and booked the slot for us.
This is our driver's contact, you can just whatsapp him.
For the rest, before we booked packages for the other activities and all came with transportation service so no additional cost and hassle.
ITINERARYSo I basically just spilt 1 main activity for a day and completed mainly the 3 activities that we set out to complete. Watersports, river rafting and the hike! Here's the main gist of where to eat, see and play!
Bali Sea Turtle SocietyAddress: Jl. Raya Kuta No.1, Kuta, Kabupaten Badung, Bali 80361, Indonesia
Price Range: Free
Highlights: Releasing of baby turtles to the sea
Credits to website
This was something interesting that I found out while planning for the trip but unfortunately we didn't managed to head to Kuta to try. Basically, you need to check out their Facebook Page to see if they have any turtles to release back into the sea. It's free, based on first come first serve so you have to go queue up to get a turtle. You could try your luck if you're heading to Bali. I guess it'd be really amazing to see these tiny turtles crawl back to mother nature.
Tanjung Benoa Water SportsPrice Range: Depending on operator you choose
Base on this website that we booked our water sports activities from, there are 2 main operators, Benoa Tirta Harum Water Sports and Aditya Water Sports. With Aditya (the one we went for) being the more affordable from with packages ranging from IDR250,000 to IDR570,000 (SGD27 to SGD 62) while Tirta packages are on the high side ranging from IDR480,000 to IDR950,000 (SGD52 to SGD102)
The activities offered are almost similar so we decided to just go with the more affordable range and took package 14.
Credits to website
Here, let me share with you my experience taking up this affordable package.
I barely could see anything. The water was pretty muddy and we didn't stay in the water more than 15 minutes. Well, they drop you in the 'middle' of the open sea, throw you a container with a long string so you can hold on and not get swept away by the waves and there you're all on your own to snorkel and look at muddy water and try and spot some fishes. WELL, to be fair, I saw zebra looking fishes and that's-about-it. My first time, not a very good experience though but good trial.
Basically you lie on this really big plate looking alike float, and at 1 point of time there has to be 2 person on it to balance out the float. The speedboat will take you out to the sea, and make a few rounds and then you get lifted up in the air for like 15 seconds and down you go. So repeat this motion for 2 times, that's what they meant by 2 fly. This one? Not-too-bad.
Probably the best activity out of the list. A guide will be with you and he will ride you out to the open sea and tadah, you take over the 'wheel'. You might want to bring along your sunglasses to block the water from splashing all over your face cause that's what happened to me and I could barely open my eyes. But my guide was nice enough to give me his hahahahaha. So I could see where the hell I was going. This one? Awesome!
The first ride we took was this, pretty okay it was a good view of the open sea and the beach. You have a choice to tell the fellow that you DO NOT want to capsize and they won't do it. Pretty decent 'ride' to have a good view.
Supposedly what to be the most awaiting activity but it wasn't really that awesome. We didn't do the single parasailing, ours were doubles and just tied to the speedboat and fly up, and come down. But I must say the view up there was awesome. Like this 2nd to Jet Ski.
Turtle Island Tour (Total scam I feel)
Note that when you take the turtle island tour you are FORCED to make a DONATION of IDR20,000. I have no idea why do they want to call it DONATION when it's made mandatory. They should just freaking call it entrance fee. In any case, I don't really recommend you to go because it's a waste of time and even though it's just mere SGD2 for the entrance fee but given a choice again, I wouldn't go. The animals are either chained up, or got their mouths taped with scotch tape just so tourist can take photographs with them. Anyway, the 'salesman' that sold us the package when we arrived told us that it's DONATIONS, and did not mention it's mandatory. The so called island is about 10 minutes boat ride from the water sports location, so upon arrival the first thing they do is to get you to donate, and because we didn't bring any money, the 'guide' on the island issued us an receipt and the fellow that operates the boat to get us back will make sure he takes the IDR20,000 from each and every one of us. So much for saying DONATIONS. Totally bullshit. *roll eyes*
Side note, the website states very clearly they provide you towels - do not believe them. We didn't get any towels and the toilets are pretty dirty. Take a quick rinse and just go home and have a properly shower. Hahahahahhaa.
And also, give EXACT cash to the 'salesman' because I didn't and he didn't return me a change of IDR50,000. He basically just quietly took my money and pretended like nothing happened.
Overall, for the price we paid versus the activities we tried, I guess it's acceptable. If you don't mind paying more for the expensive one (which I am not sure what is the difference) you could go ahead.
Bali Sobek - Ayung River RaftingPrice: USD55 per person
Pitstop for a break that you can grab beverages at IDR30,000 each lol. There are chips too but I guess you can just skip them.
Food was good, especially the mee goreng!
Totally enjoyed this activity! Facilities were good and the buffet spread provided at the end of the rafting was also good. Not a wide variety but decent quality. Fresh towel, plastic bag for your wet clothes and even the showers are way cleaner than the water sports provider. Totally recommend this Sobek Rafting!
Anyway you can pay in IDR currency but it will be based on the USD exchange rate on the day you arrive. Don't worry, here, they will return you change down to the coins. Hahahhahahaa.
Address: Sebatu, Tegallalang, Gianyar, Bali 80561, Indonesia
Opening Hours: 0800 to 1900
Price Range: Free Entrance
Highlights: A place for coffee lovers
Our driver brought us to this place after our rafting session. Nothing much except to learn about how the coffee beans are made and they will give you a tray of coffee/tea complimentary.
Just enjoy the scenery and free coffee. If you have nothing to do you could drop by, else just skip this place.
Karspa SpaAddress: Jl. Bangkiang Sidem, Keliki, Tegallalang Gianyar, Kabupaten Gianyar, Bali 80571, Indonesia
Opening Hours: 0900 to 1900
Price Range: IDR100,000 to IDR1,100,000 (SGD10 ~ SGD118)
This was a spa that initially we wanted to visit after our river rafting but we did not manage to secure a booking. When I emailed them on 3 May to book for 12 May, they were already fully booked and the next slot they had available was on 16 May. Seems like this place is really good. So if you're keen to go do make your reservations at least 2 weeks prior to your departure date to avoid disappointment!
Bali Orchid SpaAddress: Jl. By Pass Ngurah Rani No 108 Suwung - Kauh - Kuta Bali - Indonesia
Opening Hours: 0900 to 2300
Price Range: http://baliorchidspa.com/bali-orchid-spa-package-menu/
This was the spa that we went on the last day prior to departure after our Mount Batur Hike as recommended by our driver who managed to get 50% discount for our 2 hours package.
I would say it was a decent Balinese Traditional massage at a good price of USD35 at about IDR465,500 (SGD50), the original price is about IDR924,000. If you're heading there on your own, you might not get the price but if you decide to use the same driver as we did, get him to get offers for you.
And it seems like if you do a booking online gives you some slight discount.
Mount Batur Sunrise TrekkingPrice: IDR550,000 (excludes IDR200,000 for transport)
1 banana spread bread, 1 toasted bread, 1 oatmeal bread, 2 hard boiled eggs, 2 bananas and a passionfruit (I think)
Here's our guide beside me.
Definitely one of the best activity for me in Bali. Hiked up 2 hours and down 2 hours with an really experienced guide and a good breakfast spread on the top while waiting for sunrise. Totally worth every penny paid. It's not gonna be easy so those who don't exercise you might need to mentally prepare yourself. There's 2 routes to take to hike up, the easier but longer way or the harder but shorter way. So we decided to take the shorter route and hiked all the way up by stepping on rocks coated red and came down the easier way and completed everything from 0400 in the morning and back down at about 0900? Can't remember exactly the timing we arrived back at the starting point.
I wouldn't have made it without the guide holding on to my hands and pulling me up the rocks while hiking upwards. It's pitch dark when you start at about 0400 in the morning and you barely can see anything until it's 0600. Oh, you can request for hiking sticks by the way!
Credits to my best friend for introducing us to this tour!
Address: Jalan Legian 61 Kuta, Bali - Indonesia
Sky Garden Entertaiment Complex
Super affordable and good buffet that I think you should all go and a bonus, it comes with free flow of alcohol! And the alcohol range is pretty decent! You could pick when to go as they have different theme for everyday.
Credits to website
Rumah Makan Babi Guling Karya ReboAddress: Jl. Toyaning No.1, Kedonganan, Kuta, Kabupaten Badung, Bali 80361, Indonesia
Price: IDR50,000 per plate
Highlight: A plate of pork and more pork
In Bali you need to eat Babi Guling! Basically a plate of pork pork and more pork. It's kind of spicy so be mentally prepared if you're not in for spicy food. I'm a spice lover so this was awesome for me. But the skin was tad too tough, so I skipped out on that.
Potato Head Beach ClubAddress: Seminyak, Jl. Petitenget No.51B, Kerobokan Kelod, Kuta Utara, Kabupaten Badung, Bali 80361, Indonesia
Price: SGD36~ (Averaged)
Highlight: The beach view (but should go in the day)
2 burgers and Seafood Pasta
Lobster Roll which was good, but really small portion.
Ribs, and small portion too.
This is definitely not the cheapest place to go but the view and ambience is just awesome. Well, you pay for the security, view and ambience I guess. The food is not too bad, we liked all the dishes we ordered and the bill came up to about SGD180 for 5 mains and 4 beverages. Probably the most expensive meal in the entire trip.
Bebek Joni RestaurantAddress: Jl. Raya Goa Gajah, Peliatan, Ubud, Kabupaten Gianyar, Bali 80582, Indonesia
Price: SGD11~ for a plate of Bebek
Highlight: Crispy Duck
View of a rice paddy field with some 'dirty duck' which is actually just crispy fried duck, it was quite awesome. The meal came with rice and the per plate if I didn't remember wrongly is about IDR105,000 (SGD11) per plate.
Oh, this place is in Ubud, so we had this right after river rafting.
Warung Sunset Chef YudiAddress: Jl. Sunset Road, Legian, Kuta, Kabupaten Badung, Bali, Indonesia
Highlight: Pork Ribs
This was another place that our driver recommended us when we ran out of ideas on where to eat. If my memory hasn't failed me, 1kg of pork ribs as pictured cost us about SGD26 which was pretty decent. But don't have too high hopes for the ribs, to me it was just mediocre but for the price? I would say can try.
We had a garden seat to enjoy our ribs but well, garden = a lot of insects and mosquitoes so I don't know if that's a good or bad to you.
Kampeong Seafood JimbaranAddress:
Highlight: Seafood and the Sunset View
The view is indeed magnificent and so was the beach but the price of the seafood wasn't something that we were prepared for. It comes in packages for 2 or 4 and the prices goes from SGD100 onwards. Since it was our last stop before heading to the airport and being low on cash, we decided not to swipe our cards unnecessarily. We skipped out on the seafood and ordered western food which was the worst decision ever because the western food was a take-away from another restaurant hence it took 1 freaking hour to be served.
Not to mention the food was horrible and we each had to pay an average of SGD18~20 for that meal before heading to the airport.
So unless you're willing to splurge on the seafood here, then I'd recommend you to come else, the sunset would probably be the same, somewhere else.
Uluwatu TempleAddress: Pecatu, South Kuta, Badung Regency, Bali, Indonesia
Highlight: Kecak Performance
Admission: IDR30,000 per pax
We were pretty late when we reached the temple so didn't manage to walk around much except to walk up a little and catch the breathtaking view of the sea waves. And since you're here you should just grab a ticket for Kecak Performance that would last an hour from 1800 to 1900 for IDR100,000 per pax. You should take the slip of paper to read the story and what are they acting about else you won't be able to understand.
I shall not spoil the show here, but its actually worth the watch near to the middle of the show.
Well, leaving the place was horrible so it's best to get yourself a driver there cause getting a ride there will be extremely tough.
EXPENSESAir ticket: SGD 179
Accommodation: SGD 87~
Transport: SGD 170~ (Includes airport transfers and daily car booking)
Watersports: SGD 63~
Water Rafting: SGD 78~
Mount Batur Hike: SGD 83~
Total: SGD 660
Excludes food, shopping and travel insurance