I’ve just landed in Denpasar from Cairns, I go through security & after collecting my suitcase I see a few desks to exchange money, I change a few euros. I must add the Revolut works very well here. It’s a bit complicated to get the hang of this currency, one feels like a millionaire with all these zeroes. The rupiah is very devalued, therefore 1€ is around 15.000, or how they refer to it 15K, K means 000. I made myself a list to have it clear in my head as I am not good with numbers.
Before the exchange desk there are a couple of stands where they sell SIM cards, some include calls others just internet. I bought one just with internet for 16€ & it lasted a few weeks, the truth is that there is wifi everywhere that is why it goes a long way. I suggest buying it to be able to check the maps whilst exploring & be in touch.
The exit of the airport is a beautiful big red gate, there my driver Arsana from balinettour.com, is waiting. A friend recommended him to me & I also do to you nomads, as he is very reliable, punctual, very nice & happy to answer the thousands of questions that I have for him, to the point he got the nickname Google Bali.
I arrive at Green Tara, a eco-hippie farm with a great vibe. It’s low season so I have it all to myself. It’s a shame the yoga teacher is also on holidays, so the Shala, which is how the call any yoga studio, is also empty.
I need some time for myself, to read & write before Virginia arrives & we set off exploring. Made, the guy in charge of the place makes a lovey vegan breakfast of banana pancake & fruit, I love it so much that I have it every day.
The supermarket is very close by, but as there’re many hills Made kindly takes me on his bike. Pepito is how the call it, funny if you’re Spanish.
One morning I adventure to visit Pantai Pandawa beach, located in the south & quite close to home. Some big arches give access to the beach, there’s an entrance fee of 15.000 (1,08€), I walk & see the wall has five grottos where five big statues of the pandawa heroes are, they give name to the beach & guard it.
The clouds are quite low & look very full, I swim, sit to read, it’s peaceful & so beautiful, even in a grey day like this.
All of a sudden my instinct tells me, time to put things away, I go to where the little shops & local cafes are when it starts to pour down, two very kind ladies invite me to take shelter, I am very thankful as for more than an hour it rained cats & dogs. I am here siting down reading & next to me I have a durian fruit, you must remember it from Macau, how lucky am I? Its scent is keeping me company!
I’d like to recommend you a very useful app called Gojeck, if you don’t hire a moped it’s like Uber with scooters, very cheap & they take cash. They tend to wear a yellow tabard with the name of the app.
Today Virginia arrives, Arsana picks her from the airport & takes her to Seminyak, for the same fee, 250K. Next morning I join her in her hotel & we go for breakfast. All the cafes & restaurants are very cool, their decorations, plants, staff … all of it as a whole makes it difficult to decide which one to choose.
Seminyak is a very busy city with shops, restaurants & very touristic, even in low season. It’s practical as a base to do some tours or visits from.
One of its streets leads to the Seminyak beach, to the part known as La Plancha, for a local restaurant in the area. The place is ideal to go & watch the sunset, if fact anywhere west of the island is.
We go for a walk, the lifesaver doesn’t allow us to swim, so we just cool down a bit.
Sunset time is getting closer so everyone congregates in front of La Plancha that has many colourful umbrellas & beanbags on the sand. Behind the restaurant there’s the Flea Market, open daily till seven in the evening. Today they put all away much quicker as the rain has come back.
Everyone here is very kind & lovely, they are very well prepared for tourists, I will tell you more stories that made our visit very enjoyable & easy.
Meanwhile I’d like to remind you of a book I’ve already told you about, “Eat, pray, love” by Elizabeth Gilbert, you can’t deny, it’s perfect for this post. The movie, that I liked very much, as well. After living in Rome & learning meditation in India, Elizabeth takes off to this side of the world. A romance where the protagonist sets out on a personal journey searching for inner self. An ideal novel to read on the plane & maybe, follow her steps?