What can I say about Bali? A lot! one of my favorite destination of all time, since it’s the a. closest, most beautiful island to my hometown (Jakarta) and b. Since it’s the closest, it is also, ehem, the cheapest island escape, in a local-term sense. Defeats the purpose, if you visit Bali and stay at the 10 bedroom villa at The Banyan Tree Ungasan Resort though.
For those living in Jakarta, like me, Bali is approximately an hour and a half away by plane. I know friends who are spontaneous or most probably stressed out with the hectic and metropolitan glitzy glamour of Jakarta that they drive up to the airport on a Friday afternoon, leave the car, get a ticket and just fly there for the weekend. I personally haven’t done it. As I’m more of the planner person when it comes to travelling (yes, even as close as Bali). Out of the many trips that I’ve been, I can only remember that it was only once where I just decided that out of the blue (Read: broken hearted) that I would fly to Bali. It turned out pretty okay (Read: amazing!).
There were also times when I went with my best friends and had the best times together. Just chillaxing by the pool, hanging out and going clubbing. It’s funny, and a reminder of how old we’re getting was when we all planned and agreed to go clubbing the first and second night, but couldn’t make it much on the second night because we got so hungover from the first night. Not a good tip for girls-only-trip-between-the-ages-0f-27-and-32. Better to chose one night of fun and clubbing and the rest, just keep it up at bar-hopping (with a decent dinner prior!).
Now, with the girls, our favorite places to hangout are in the Seminyak area, where there a lots of local, good quality clothing shops and plenty of open bars and decent restaurants. Here are our favorite spots:
1. Ku De Ta. Hands down. Best place to watch sunset with a glass of chocolate martini (or beer) with a groovy beach Hed-Kandi-like tunes to dance to. I had dinner there, only once, a long time ago. It was a bit on the pricey side, okay to try, but there are plenty places to eat that are half the price and twice as good.
2. Trattoria, for downright good Italian pizza and pasta. It is located along the busy strip in the Seminyak area. Other restaurants close by are Ultimo and Rumours offering just as good pastas, pizzas and drinks.
3. During the day, we like to go walking down the road for some retail therapy. This could be along Legian all the way up to Seminyak, from small boutique shops to locally known shops like Nico Nico Mare (for bikinis) and Nico Nico Intimo (for panties and the lot), Bamboo Blonde (for short and long beach dresses) and Magali Pascal as well as Body & Soul.
4. Hu’U Bar and Nutmeg Restaurant for some good ol’ clubbing scene. Located just off the Seminyak area, Kerobokan is home to many new restaurants and villas. Hu’U Bar used to have the best lychee martini, but not so much now, I’m afraid.
5. Baccio nightclub. Now, I’m not sure if this club still exists as it is located in the Double Six area in which, sometime last year, it held a huge closing party, with some of Indonesia’s well respected DJs. But, if closed, there’s always Dejavu club nearby to party the night away.
6. Warung Nasi Pedes Ibu Andhika (Mrs Andhika’s hot and spicy rice place)…or something like that when translated. It’s where we went to after we partied the night away and when almost nothing is opened and you’re craving a decent Indonesian meal… with a super spicy chilli combined. I am not a fan of extremely spicy food, so I just ordered some meat and veggie with rice with no chilli. The others ordered with chilli, it was so spicy, call it a hangover cure-Indonesian or Balinese style.
I just remembered that during the trip with the girls, we never really went to the beach. I know, I’m even embarrassed to admit it. I think it was just the case of sleeping in and waking up by almost lunchtime almost everyday, that we missed the beach. Please please try and get some sun while you are in Bali.
And I think I’ve written pretty much about my trip to Bali with the girls. Sorry, no pictures here.. I’ll try and find it, so you’ll get an idea of all the places I mentioned. But on my next blog, I might be blabbing about my time in Bali with my boyfriend. Which was a lot different. It’s more mellow and I can say, I got a pretttttyyy good tan.