Off on the slow boat and a bit of luxury

Trip Start Nov 18, 2009
Trip End Jul 08, 2010

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Flag of Indonesia  , Bali,
Saturday, June 19, 2010


We got up at 6.30am this morning and finished packing before having a quick breakfast. We loaded our backpacks on our backs and walked to town, very slowly as it was really warm, even at 8.30am. We booked in at the Perama office and sat in their waiting room, where young lads who worked there were running about with towels on having been using the Perama toilets for their morning washes. When we arrived there were already 12 staff having a staff meeting, which was quite reassuring?

Our name was called and we loaded our bags into a car and we were driven to the slow boat to Bali, and were dropped off just outside our hotel entrance. When we jokingly mentioned this to one of the staff he said that the slow boat sometimes leaves from different bays depending on tide and wind. We forgave him, as we waited on the beach for the rest of the passengers. When everyone arrived, which was only 14 of us, we got into a small local boat and were taken out to the slow boat which was resplendent in all its glory in the harbour. The boat was old, a bit careworn but was wonderful. It was a two storey boat with a top deck with seats but also an area where there was sand laid down to make a beach for sunbathing.

As we got onto the boat we had a free breakfast of tea, coffee and pancakes. We decided to sit upstairs and catch a bit of sun. The trip was going to take nearly 4 hours to reach Padangbai, after which we had to get the Perama bus to Kuta, Bali and then a taxi to Legian to find our hotel.

The boat trip was superb, wonderful, fantastic and much more. We stayed up top for the whole trip, except when we served fried chicken, stir fried vegetables and rice for our lunch at midday. Tony spotted the only dolphin to show himself and he was a big one. He only stayed at the front of the boat for three or four, whatever they call them, where they swim and dive on the bow wave. By the time Tony shouted dolphin and Helen and two other passengers got up, he had gone. The boat was not travelling fast enough for him.

At the end of the trip we went into Padangbai harbour and disembarked. We walked 100 metres, or so they said (more like another Kilometre) to reach the bus and it was hot, hot, hot. The bus was only half full on the trip along the coast and then inland to Ubud. This was a town that we were deciding whether or not we wanted to spend some time. With the traffic jams we spent an hour slowly travelling through the town and then a half an hour at the Perama office before heading off for Kuta. This time we had a full bus and had two hours travelling.

When we reached Kuta we were unsure which direction we had come into town from and which direction our hotel was in. As it turned out we had gone past the road to our hotel and sat in a traffic jam on a one way system that definitely did not work. It is always good fun though because you pass lots of shops and small workshops slowly enough to get a good look.

Many of the small workshops were carving from stone some huge and intricate statues. We also noticed that even in the smaller towns, many of the traffic islands had massive statues and superb gardens. Almost unbelievable how well they were all maintained, considering the state of garden and park areas in GB.

Eventually we arrived at the Perama office in Kuta, Bali after a tiring but great day of travelling. This so reminded us of our Asia travels and rekindled some old fires. We got out of the bus, went across the road expecting to have trouble finding a proper taxi, and then Helen saw one stuck in the jam and waved it down. Many taxis copy the proper taxis, by being blue in colour and having similar names. Hels had done her research and our taxi was metered and had a named driver and a complaint telephone number, of which we had no need. We arrived at our deluxe hotel at about 4.30pm, just in time for booking in, checking out our room and special personal courtyard with outside sunken bath, and then finding the free cocktail bar! Sheer bliss.

This hotel is so good that every sun bed has its own waterproof cover that the staff put on at night.

We had cocktails, followed by a snack to eat and then back to our room to enjoy a nice bath and an early night. Tiring travelling all that way.
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Fiona on

It's like a different world, escaping into your blog when I'm stuck all day infront of a computer. Not long left - make the most of it, the real world is much less fun!! x

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