Balangan, Indonesia

2 Jul

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Balangan (and Uluwatu and Jimboran too)
  • We took a van taxi that was arranged by Suji Guest House to Sea View Bungalows in Balangan. Sea View is a beautiful and small resort looking place with an amazing pool, big, clean rooms that included fresh towels and overlooked the ocean from atop a cliff.
  • When we arrived it was later in the afternoon so we hung out at the pool and then rented scooters to visit Uluwatu Temple. Unfortunately they only had 2 scooters available when we needed 3 but fortunately the guy who rented them to us was willing to take Clegger to the temple on the back of his. He was no Jamsy, but a good stand in date.
  • Uluwatu Temple is located on a cliff overlooking the ocean and we arrived just as the sun was setting. After snapping a few quick pictures we bought tickets to see the traditional Kecak fire dance which is dance, theatre and fire all mixed together.
  • We had dinner and Bintangs at Sea View and then headed over to the edge of the cliff to watch and listen to the powerful waves crash into the shore below and have an ‘epic dart’ – well 3/5 of us had epic darts, 2 of us did not. I’ll leave the guessing to you.
  • In the morning we took our rented scooters (we now had 3 so Clegger no longer needed her date) on a beach hop tour of the area and went to:
    • Padang Padang, a tiny sandy beach with unbelievably crystal clear turquoise water and little stalls set up selling beach dresses and sarongs
    • Single Fin restaurant where we had delicious food.  Their pesto salad is the most unreal salad I’ve ever had, yes Jules and Han, more amazing than the Rich Man Salad at Milestones. To boot, the restaurant has an insanely incredible view from which you can watch really experienced surfers do their thing.
    • Bingin, where didn’t actually go because at first we couldn’t find it and when we finally did we were told by several locals as well as tourists that it was a rock beach. We opted for the sandy likes of Dreamland.
    • Dreamland was a small beach located just in front of a huge resort. We had to park our motorbikes aboce on a cliff and walk down to the small beach below. The waves here were huge – JJ tried to surf but the waves were so incredibly powerful that the waters were out of our capabilities. Ladies, this is no beach for a strapless bikini top if you plan to go in the water, 100% you will flash anyone swimming near you.
  • After our motorbike beach tour we planned to have dinner in Jimboran, a resort town about 40 minutes from Balangan that’s popular amongst honeymooners and well-to-do folks. We went to Blue Ocean Seafood Restaurant where you choose your live seafood from the tank and eat on the beach. Heather, Jonny and JJ were Team Seafood and went in on what is described as a 2 person meal on the menu but was definitely enough for 3 people. Tal and I had burgers  which were pretty bad but the non-seafood options were extremely limited. From what we heard the seafood was pretty incredible. JJ ended up buying me a corn of cob from a beach vendor to make up for my terrible meal…and then one for himself.
  • During dinner on the beach we were serenaded by a local band of 4 that played a number of classic songs. When we asked if we could make a request we were amazed they knew Michel Telo’s Ai Se Eu Te Pego, the most popular song by far in South America while we were there.
  • The ride home left me feeling queasy so I went right to the room to lie down but while I was up there, the others ran into a friend of a friend from Toronto who had just arrived with his girlfriend to stay at the same hotel (Conrad’s friend), again proving it’s a small world after all.

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