I love Bali

Blowin's picture
Blowin started the topic in Thursday, 19 Mar 2015 at 6:55pm

I love Bali.

You wouldn't think that such a thought could be controversial . But it is.
Many people don't love Bali, in fact they proclaim to hate it. Bemoan what it has become, it's lack of purity, it's lost innocence.

Sure, I can see their point. I can't imagine anywhere on Earth that has been transformed as radically as Bali over the last thirty years. From rice paddies and coconut groves to six story discotheques . It's totally unrecognisable in the most built up areas.

But that's not what this post is about. It's about why I LOVE Bali.

I love Bali because ...

- it's still the home of an intense cluster of world class waves. Roping lefts : Uluwatu, freight train right barrels : Sanur, backlit mega tubes : Padang Padang. Rip able reefs, fun beachies. Short , slabby pits and long mellow points. River mouths and bombies. It's got the lot.

- it's still possible to get uncrowded quality waves in 2015 when it seems as though the entire planet has discovered surfing. I was trading crystal clear , rolling right walls with only two other surfers just this morning.

- it's still freaking beautiful. Watching the mist reveal Mt Agung in that unique Bali morning light from a black sand beach as the sun comes up is still special.

- the food is amazing. Walking around town building up a hunger and knowing that at any given time you are within shouting distance of fresh, exotic and delicious meals with enough variety to make your head spin is priceless.

- the Balinese are legends. Friendly, happy and always keen for a joke. Unfailingly polite and welcoming. Healthy, spiritual and decent.

- the Balinese surfers rip their waves and they still own them. A visiting Brazilian would not think twice to drop in on an Aussie local at Kirra. But you won't see the same in Bali. The Balinese surfers are treated with the respect they deserve. Because as everyone knows, if they are not treated with respect there is consequences.

- the water is so warm it's like swimming in silken angels tears.

- telling people that you are going to Bali will often elicit a response along the lines of ......"why would you go to that traffic ridden, noisy shithole ?" And then as you're kicking back with a Bintang watching the sunset over Uluwatu you can imagine them sitting at lights in their car on their way home from work in Perth. Which , for those that have never been , is a noisy , traffic ridden shithole. And this makes me laugh. Which is something I enjoy doing.

- The fruit is incredible.

- despite the millions of tourists, the fast food franchises and the Aussie over familiarity with the joint it's still exotic. The smell of clove cigarettes, the ogo ogos of Nyepi, the Buddhist offerings , monkeys , food and language are all enticingly foreign.

- there is no overreaching nanny state. You want to ride your motorbike with all four of your children and the missus on the back...whilst texting. Go for it.

- you can live like a king on a regular Aussie income. Maybe not such a great benefit for the Balinese themselves though.

- it's close to Oz. Twenty hour plane ride and a shot at developing deep vein thrombosis.....ummm no thanks. It's actually faster to fly to Bali from Perth than it is to drive to Albany. You can fly from Port Hedland in less than two hours.

- you get an opportunity to regularly witness some of the most foolhardy behaviour imaginable on a daily basis. You ever seen a man being doubled on a motorbike through traffic whilst holding a large pane of glass ? What about seeing someone hold a nail between his bare fingers while his mate tries to grind the tip off it ? It's all there folks.

- you can see people making do with not much and making it work. An exhaust system held on with a T Shirt ? An outboard motor attached to a boat with no anchoring system, just held on with a man's brute force ? Why not ? It might not work forever but it'll usually get em over the line.

- the winds can blow offshore for months at a time and when they blow onshore, well , that just makes it offshore somewhere else. It's an island !

- you haven't seen glassy oceanic conditions till you've seen Indonesian sheet glass. It's like an oil slick. And if you're ever near Benoa Harbour that could well be what it is.

- old people are accorded the respect they deserve.

- it's exciting. It's a melting pot of the world. Wide eyed villages from remote Asia, jaded techno princesses from Russia, sleek surfy chicks from Canada , your next door neighbour from Ipswich....it's a party and everyone is invited.

Including YOU. I'll see you there. You can't miss me.

I'll be the sun burnt drunk in a head to toe Bintang ensemble with hair braids and a fresh tattoo of a unicorn across my back . Don't be shy. Come and say hello.

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udo Saturday, 10 Apr 2021 at 3:08pm

A few insurers opting not to offer International travel ins atm a couple of online Quotes
from those that are for Indonesia - Auspost $165 for month
NiB around $260 for month
Christ knows whats hidden in the Covid fine print...

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Supafreak Friday, 7 May 2021 at 6:35pm

The photo of nusa penida caught my eye as this is batu abba and its where i did a lot of trolling , the land mass in the far distance desert point on Lombok. The currents around here have to be seen to be believed and it gets pretty scary, a few free divers have come unstuck here and down currents have claimed lives . The scenery is spectacular and I never got tired of kicking back waiting for that sound of line peeling off . This bugger tried towing us to deserts 1.5 hour struggle . https://coconuts.co/bali/news/forbes-accused-of-encouraging-modern-day-c... 3-C04-B549-F9-FB-4-BB5-9955-85031-A3-C51-A2

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troppo dichotomy Friday, 7 May 2021 at 7:36pm

Nice foto'z supa!

A old captain from the milk run boats(deserts/scars/supers)told me about a Penida scuba dive where a whirlpool came through and he went from 20meters down to 30meters plus in a matter of seconds and he thought he was dead,only to be ripped back up quickly to the surface in a matter of seconds.

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Supafreak Friday, 7 May 2021 at 7:55pm

Yeah troppo it’s extremely dangerous , looks inviting and many have been caught out some to tell the story others never seen again.

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ringmaster Friday, 7 May 2021 at 11:25pm

You appear to be 'living the dream' as the old cliche goes, Supafreak.

Goodonya!

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Supafreak Saturday, 8 May 2021 at 8:58am

@ringmaster , unfortunately the dream ended xmas 2017 when we moved back to oz , really liked being back for the first year but a bit over it now . The fishing is not as good in penida these days not from lack of fish but for the amount of plastic in the ocean , very sad to witness this . Been talking to expats and locals and they haven’t really seen or know of many with covid but dengue is rampant at the moment.

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freeride76 Saturday, 8 May 2021 at 9:02am

never forget my first trip across to Lembongan.
got caught in whirlpools, huge standing waves in the middle of the strait.

terrifying journey.

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udo Wednesday, 28 Jul 2021 at 8:13am

Beautiful morning on the Bukit
Will be a couple at O.C. today me thinks
https://balibelly.com/pages/uluwatu

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sypkan Wednesday, 28 Jul 2021 at 12:58pm

interesting oz seems to be the only country tight as a fishes proverbial bottom re. repatriation flights

what the hell has happened to australia?

seriously... if they were students en route to oz, they'd have been fights and special quarrantine arrangements and all sorts of largesse...

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sypkan Wednesday, 28 Jul 2021 at 12:59pm

there already has been...

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sypkan Wednesday, 28 Jul 2021 at 1:06pm

plenty of antivaxxers fleeing like rats too

the last lockdown and need to have vaccination proof to travel domestically has certainly changed the dynamic for the canggu set... and the ubud-ers...

apparently there was a lot of talk on the net indo was some kind of anti-vaxxer paradise

I read the other day crew booking flights and returning to europe without even leaving jakarta quarrantine

expensive 8 day look at the jakarta skyline...

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Distracted Wednesday, 28 Jul 2021 at 1:26pm

Very hard to get back to Oz from Bali by the looks. Hard to imagine sending your kid to the US when you’re only a couple hours away from Oz.
https://www.abc.net.au/news/2021-07-28/australians-want-to-flee-coronavi...

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sypkan Wednesday, 28 Jul 2021 at 2:16pm

"More than 640,000 Australians from around the world have returned home since March last year. "

that number keeps getting bigger... but the numbers harder and harder to pin down...

"Earlier this year, hundreds of Australians stuck in India were rescued on mercy flights as the nation's outbreak spun out of control."

I really do not get the oz government's aversion to all things indonesia, it's one of our closest neighbours, and a place many australians have deep connections with. yet this current government appears they just couldn't give a stuff, in so many ways...

"Mr Brazel said he recently contacted the Australian embassy in Jakarta seeking assistance to return home.

But all they offered him was a phone number for a local travel agent."

that sure seems like a poor return on that high rise embassy monstrosity in jakarta....

to quote tom waits...

"what is he (they) doing in there?"

(not the first time that thought has crossed my mind re. that building)

https://m.

https://www.abc.net.au/news/2021-07-28/australians-want-to-flee-coronavi...

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Supafreak Friday, 30 Jul 2021 at 3:05pm
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udo Tuesday, 14 Sep 2021 at 12:47pm
stunet's picture
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stunet Tuesday, 14 Sep 2021 at 12:59pm

Read two articles on it but couldn't find how they define "backpacker". Curious how they're gonna enforce it, if at all.

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Blowin Tuesday, 14 Sep 2021 at 2:40pm

Remember Bali?

Sigh.

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lucky-al Tuesday, 14 Sep 2021 at 3:28pm

remember nusa tenggara? saya mimpi bagus!

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sypkan Tuesday, 14 Sep 2021 at 3:45pm

"Read two articles on it but couldn't find how they define "backpacker". Curious how they're gonna enforce it, if at all."

maybe they'll use one of those old kantor imigrasi pictures with a dirty hippy on it to shows who's not allowed in...

I imagine it would be easy to enforce by checking accomodation bookings etc. they are kind of already doing that now. there's talk of 3 bubbles, one at nusa dua, i think ubud, and somewhere else, maybe jimbaran...

it seems the first tourist trips to bali won't be feral surf missions, they'll be quite different, for high end tourists that barely leave their compound, good for some...

which is kinda funny, because there's a heap of crew chomping at the bit with dodgy visas ready to roll

be interesting to see if both get to go

might be a nice opportunity for some high end hotel nusa dua action...

I actually think bali has planned to squeeze the ferals out for a while, so much high end stuff there now, and also the proliferation of villas with oz prices for 'digital nomads' ...plonked, permanent, with not much nomadding going on... definitely a different class of crew inhabiting those parts these days

the ferals overstaying visas, and living on the streets, in airports, and even busking / begging for a living through the pandemic probably didn't help...

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lucky-al Tuesday, 14 Sep 2021 at 3:30pm

A fun video went up on the Merdeka House YouTube channel the other day, got a touch of Mad Wax about it. That's what got me dreaming.

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Supafreak Tuesday, 14 Sep 2021 at 3:39pm

@sypkan , I think the 3rd “ green zone “ is sanur , a friend left Sydney today Bali bound via Jakarta , she’s been semi retired there , living in sanur for last 5 years, came back to oz to see dying mother , got to say goodbye, lucky it was in nsw not qld. Came to Australia fully vaccinated with AZ . Was very excited to be going back and escape Australia.

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Blowin Tuesday, 14 Sep 2021 at 3:50pm
sypkan wrote:

"Read two articles on it but couldn't find how they define "backpacker". Curious how they're gonna enforce it, if at all."

maybe they'll use one of those old kantor imigrasi pictures with a dirty hippy on it to shows who's not allowed in...

I imagine it would be easy to enforce by checking accomodation bookings etc. they are kind of already doing that now. there's talk of 3 bubbles, one at nusa dua, i think ubud, and somewhere else, maybe jimbaran...

it seems the first tourist trips to bali won't be feral surf missions, they'll be quite different, for high end tourists that barely leave their compound, good for some...

which is kinda funny, because there's a heap of crew chomping at the bit with dodgy visas ready to roll

be interesting to see if both get to go

might be a nice opportunity for some high end hotel nusa dua action...

I actually think bali has planned to squeeze the ferals out for a while, so much high end stuff there now, and also the proliferation of villas with oz prices for 'digital nomads' ...plonked, permanent, with not much nomadding going on... definitely a different class of crew inhabiting those parts these days

the ferals overstaying visas, and living on the streets, in airports, and even busking / begging for a living through the pandemic probably didn't help...

Ahhh…..thinking back only a few years when Agung was acting up and everyone bailed from Bali. We jumped on a plane and stayed at the Grand Hyatt Nusa Dua for about $40 per night. Only people in the whole hotel. The manager gave my missus regular gifts as thanks for staying. Empty line ups.

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sypkan Tuesday, 14 Sep 2021 at 4:07pm

Im thinking a little more than 40 bucks a night this time...

bali is just going to be weird if it's going the exclusive route, as you know it's normally just a heaving fleshball free for all ... where nouse, and supply and demand determines just about everything...

if big money is lining up to enter, and they restrict and regulate it all..

could end up terribly sterile and boring

for me anyway

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sypkan Tuesday, 14 Sep 2021 at 4:33pm

a bit sad for all the local crew with little warungs etc.

so many have updated their bamboo huts to air-con boxes, chasing that new age of a bit precious backpackers, they're gonna be left high and dry...

whilst the jakarta fatcats and global chains reap the spoils...

again...

geez there's gonna be some derilect buildings getting around, there already is/was...

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indo-dreaming Tuesday, 14 Sep 2021 at 5:48pm

Indo and its media always like to talk about this type of stuff, it wont happen, its impossible to control let alone properly define, a lot of these backpacker types actually have a bit of money these days often mums and dads money they just dont spend a lot of it at a time and try to drag things out as long as they can, they often hire out a whole villa which is fairly cheap when have a few people, hire motorbikes for decent periods then eat local style cheap.

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udo Wednesday, 29 Sep 2021 at 8:13pm

Travel Insurance fine print wording will be interesting.

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seaslug Wednesday, 29 Sep 2021 at 8:23pm

Very interesting Udo, look for the very very small print, the details will be there

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indo-dreaming Thursday, 30 Sep 2021 at 7:15am

Bali opening to UK, USA, Russia & Germany but no mention of Aus or NZ.

"Bali Aims To Open The International Travel Corridor For 4 Countries Next Month

Bali Vice Governor, Tjokorda Oka Artha Ardhana Sukawati (Cok Ace) confirmed that as a response to the latest statement from the central government about the reopening plan on October 2021, Bali provincial government has begun their preparation stages, including choosing several countries that will be welcomed to visit the island once the border reopens in the near future.

“We have selected multiple countries such as Russia, America, Germany and England to start implementing the travel bubble program based on their length of stay in Bali. And visitors from those countries usually spend around 2 weeks on the island.” Cok Ace said on Monday (27/9).

Disclaimer the Bali Sun have had quite a few of these Bali is opening stories and they never happen.

https://thebalisun.com/bali-aims-to-open-the-international-travel-corrid...

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Supafreak Tuesday, 12 Oct 2021 at 6:49am

Bali still won’t attract Chinese , Japanese and Koreans or Australian families with 5 days quarantine . https://coconuts.co/bali/news/quarantine-period-for-foreign-tourists-vis...

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andy-mac Tuesday, 12 Oct 2021 at 7:11am

I would guess that Indonesia will eventually, probably as early as next year end quarantine for arrivals who are fully vaxxed and pass a quick antigen test.
Here's hoping for locals and their businesses, mixed families, and surfers!!

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Supafreak Tuesday, 12 Oct 2021 at 7:14am

@andy - mac , I hope your guess is correct , the cancellations they have already had is surely a wake up call to officials.

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andy-mac Tuesday, 12 Oct 2021 at 7:49am

@Supafreak I hope so as well!!!
I guess for Australians another factor would be quarantine expectations upon their return....

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Supafreak Tuesday, 12 Oct 2021 at 8:03am
andy-mac wrote:

@Supafreak I hope so as well!!!
I guess for Australians another factor would be quarantine expectations upon their return....

I think the 7 day home quarantine will be in effect for awhile and this will also stop families from international travel unless they are prepared to pull their kids from school an extra week .

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udo Friday, 15 Oct 2021 at 5:25am

No International arrivals yesterday at DPS - None scheduled for today.

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udo Friday, 15 Oct 2021 at 3:37pm
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Supafreak Saturday, 16 Oct 2021 at 4:37pm

The epicentre was just a few klms from my wife’s village which got a fair bit of damage , houses collapsed and main temple walls fell down . Wife’s brother said it was strongest one he’s felt for decades . They are already dealing with so much it breaks your heart . https://www.straitstimes.com/asia/se-asia/bali-earthquake-kills-three-in... BD10474-D-914-A-40-E3-BEAE-05-B24-D24-DED0