Saturday, 11 January 2014

Bali - Part 1

I was pretty blessed in 2013 to be able to enjoy 2 getaways. 
Once, was earlier in the year to Genting, Malaysia.
Another one, to Bali, Indonesia!

This trip was decided quite last minute. After my exams on the 5th dec, Eug and I had been discussing whether we should go on a holiday trip. We considered Taiwan, Bali and even Singapore lol. But in the end, we went ahead with Bali because I don't really like cold weather that is happening in Taipei now. Booked our tickets with Tiger Airways, then decided on a loft for our 4 days 3 nights accommodation. Then we were left waiting for the 23th to arrive.


Eug told me it is mandatory to take pictures with the sunrays on the plane, and so I did. Haha.

Then with him 

Fast forward, we were super excited and eager to be on our way to Bali. Unfortunately, the first day was wasted with delayed flight, bad weather and long taxi queue in Bali. We were expecting ourselves to arrive at the airport around 3pm, but we only left the customs around 4.30pm. With the long waiting line for a taxi, we only managed to reach our hotel at around 730pm when the trip to our hotel was just about 30mins to an hour max?

Anyway, for those heading to Bali, do remember not to get cheated by drivers that approached you. They took chances and approached the tourists offering exorbitant prices. Example for our trip, it costs us about 200000 Rupiah (est SGD 20.80) to our hotel in Nusa Dua but those drivers offered us US$50-US$80 (est SGD 60-100). I felt these people are really out to cheat the tourists so if you don't wish to get cheated, please do your homework. At the starting line of the taxi queue, there is a board that shows the prices to your destinations. Of course, there would be some slight price difference depending on your exact location but comparing the slight difference (20000 Rupiah for my case) to the unreasonable prices offered by those drivers, we are not losing a lot.

Highlight of first day/night:
Swiss-BelHotel Segara

Hotel Address :
Jalan Pura Segara
Sawangan, Nusa Dua Selatan
Bali 80363
Nusa Dua , Indonesia 

Tel    : (62-361) 870 8888
Fax   : (62-361) 777921 

So about 8pm, we finally settled down in our hotel room. The loft is not exactly very big BUT we are quite satisfied with it. It gave us a cosy feeling and most importantly, it is clean. However, the only problem with the room is the weak WIFI on the second floor where the bed was situated at. We had a range of TV channels from HBO to 娱家戏剧台 (Chinese Entertainment Channel) and we had fun enjoying movies from channels to channels.

Second level

Few minutes after we entered the room, we were served with a plate of fruits. Good room service!

Our view from the balcony. Pretty right?

Other parts of the hotel.

Cafe Laguna - Where we had our free breakfast here everyday from a range of Westernized breakfast to Asian-type breakfast. They served dinner as well but never had a chance to try out their menu. This cafe has both indoor and outdoor sections.

Can enjoy a range of beverages from alcohol to coffee and tea. Btw, their Bintan beer is pretty cheap and I personally like it way better than Tiger.

The other side of the hotel

There is absolutely NO WAY for you to get out of the hotel premises by foot. Trust me, it will be a super long walk to and fro. Plus, it is pretty scary to walk as it will be trees and bushes around the area. Best is still hop on a taxi and reach your destination safely. Be safe than sorry! The hotel only provides shuttle buses to the nearby Geger Beach (more of it soon) and as well as the tourist mall - Bali Connection. We didn't visit Bali Connection during our stay because we were told that we could always go out to the nearby supermarket-alike called Hardy's Nusa Dua Plaza. The items catered are pretty much the same in both places but cheaper over at Hardy's. The only disadvantage is you have to pay for the taxi fare to Hardy's.

The goodies that we bought at Hardy's. We bought too much and had to bring those small snacks back to SG with us.

Oh, this is what you will see when you step out of the hotel's premises. I didn't lie. It's just a long distance down filled with trees and bushes at both sides.

Thankfully, we did that and that was how we met our driver whom we sticked with for the next 4 days. A nice and friendly man named Dona. He drove us to places around Bali and introduced us to places that was not in our itinerary at all. He has at least 20 years of experience and he is the leader of his team of drivers. What's more, he can converse in simple English and he can always help tourists to converse in Balinese with the locals. The prices of his services depends on whether it's a half-day or full-day tour. So far, for full-day tour around Bali, he charged us 500000 Rupiah (est SGD 52) and for half-day tour, it costs us max 350000 Rupiah (est SGD 36.40).

For exact charges, you have to call him and discuss further. For more information on how to approach him, do email me or drop a comment below.

 I really recommend his services to those traveling to Bali soon!

That's all for now. Do return for more updates on Bali :)

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