Island life

So the first week of my travels has been completely jam-packed, hence my delay in updating my blog – sorry! 

Our unexpected stop-over:

It’s safe to say our journey to Bali wasn’t exactly straight forward! And I thought packing would be my biggest challenge!!

After we said our emotional goodbyes to our parents, we were off! Everything was going as planned.. Up until it came to trying to land in Doha! The pilot began the descent a total of three times, with each one resulting in him pulling back up and changing course. Eventually we were informed we would have to land in Bahrain and wait there due to poor weather in Doha. By the time we did make it to Doha we had missed our flight connection and so were put up in a hotel until the next flight which was at 3.15am. We finally touched down in Bali at 5.30pm local time, a full 13 hours after we had been scheduled to arrive there.  

Living the Contiki dream:

Thankfully, our first week in Bali has more than made up for our difficulty in getting here. We booked onto the Bali Island Hopper tour with a company called Contiki, which took us to Gili Trawangan and Lombok – you should definitely look them up if you’re thinking of travelling, they run tours all over the world! We made some amazing friends on the tour, who we hope to catch up with again on our travels! 

Main tour highlights were:

  • Everything about Gili T! 

I fell in love with this little island. It has absolutely no motorised transport so we hired bikes to get around or rode in cidamos (little horse-drawn carts). Everything about the island was vibrant and colourful, from the turquoise blue seas, to the striking sunsets over the beaches. Even the horses were dressed up in brightly coloured accessories, like headdresses and ankle bracelets. 

  • Snorkelling with turtles in Gili. 

The whole group went out snorkelling on our second day. The clarity of the water meant that there was so much to see, and being able to swim with turtles was definitely a highlight! 

  • Trying the Indonesian food. 

I am a massive foody, so getting to try the local cuisine was great. My favourite dishes were their famous beef randang, chicken satay, and a Balinese style chilli con carne! All the restaurants we went to in both Gili and Lombok were amazing. One in particular being in Gili, called Casa Vintage, where we ate whilst sat on cushions on the beach around a small hand-made wooden table with a bonfire and lanterns. 

  • Surfing in Sengiggi. 

This place is famous for its waves. With most of the group being beginners, it was great to have our own instructors and by the end of the day everyone managed to stand up – me included to my surprise! 

  • Massages in Lombok. 

You’re unlikely to believe me when I tell you that I was able to have an hour full body massage and an hour foot massage for under £15! Their cheap price was in no way a reflection of the quality of the massages though, which were amazing!!

We never wanted this tour to end or to say goodbye to the wonderful people we’d met. 

Now the tour is over we are back in mainland Bali for another week and are currently staying in Seminyak. In a couple of days we will be travelling to Ubud, which is further inland. I’ll let you know how I get on in these places soon!

Bye for now!

Jess

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