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Old 12-02-2010, 03:44 AM   #1
Vince_WA OP
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Two day road ride thru Bali ...

With a friend getting married in Bali last weekend I extended my stay there by a couple of days and planned to hire a bike and go for a ride around the island. For 100,000R per day (about $17AU) including insurance you can pick up a Honda 250cc Tiger - automatic scooters are half that price. The 250 was recommended based on the distance and route I was planning to take, and I'm glad I did get something that had the power to overtake the tour buses on the steep inclines.

I got my Tiger from Bali Kencana Bike Hire on Sunset Road Kuta (0361) 797 8634, and they looked after me well - including a quick oil change before I headed off. Here's the team at Kencana...


I had a rough plan of heading straight north from Seminyak and making for Singaraja on the north coast, then returning via the east coast. Getting out of the metro area was a small challenge, until roadsigns to Singaraja started to appear. Riding in Bali certainly isn't as frenetic as North Vietnam, but all the scooters still jostle to the front of the traffic. Once you get into the groove it's easy to go with the flow.

A few local ladies walking up to a roadside foodstall signalled good food (so I hoped), so I pulled over for a bite...


This stall was on the border between a built up area and some rice paddies ...


And the satay sticks were delicious ...


Gratuitious pic of my hired Tiger. From what I understand, 250cc is the largest engine capacity allowed in Bali, but I did see a couple of full dress Harley's clunking around Kuta ...


Heading north the ground started to rise, and clouds could be seen stretching across the top of the mountains. The jungle was very green - in stark contrast to dry Perth ...


Unlike north Vietnam, the road system in Bali is in quite good condition ...


Approaching Pacung (I think) the clouds opened up and dumped everything they had. I took the opportunity to pull off the road and grab a cup of Balinese coffee at this coffee stop/strawberry farm near the crest of the mountain road ...


It was bucketing down - even locals were pulling off the road and looking for shelter ...


Still, the rest gave me a chance to look over my map ...


A snap from the lookout, once the rain had passed. Well actually the rain hadn't passed, it had just turned to surface water that was running across the road in torrents in places ....


When the locals jumped back on their scooters and pushed on, I took that as my cue to do the same. The dry spell didn't last for long at all, with the sky turning black from the clouds, and the road at time disappearing into the darkness (and this was around midday) ...


I'd felt a bit like a dofus taking my jacket with me to Bali, but I was grateful I had it with me in the rain. With that said I was still drenched to the skin as I'd left the rain layer back in Perth ...


With a bald front tyre my descent down the northern side of the mountain, along it's twisty turns and switchbacks was slow and considered, as coming off wasn't an option today. When the sun finally broke thru and shone down on Singaraja on the coast that was like a beacon to aim for ....


Riding into Singaraja a young guy on a scooter - Arya - offered to lead me to his uncle's beach bungalows in Lovina - a few km west along the coast. Soaked to the skin I followed Arya thru a maze of backroads until we made it to the bungalows and met his uncle - Gede....


Gede fixed me up with a dry shirt (I'd left almost all my gear back at my hotel in Seminyak), and once I'd set out my gear to dry, we shared a few Bintang's on the deck of his bungalows, overlooking the water ....


Gede and I chatted for hours - about life in Bali, life in Australia, whatever crossed our minds. The Bintang probably helped that (and the relaxing massage on the beach that afternoon).

The land mass in the distance in this pic is Java. The fishing boat is Gede's - fishing has been in his family for generations, but he's branched out into running the bungalows as fishing has progressively become less profitable ...


Dinner tonight was fresh bbq'ed swordfish - caught by Gede's brother earlier that day, along with fresh snapper.

The following morning required an 05:15am start (and a strong Balinese coffee and banana fritters) - a perfect beginning for a couple of hours dolphin watching and snorkelling just off the coast ...


Once again, the dolphin-watching and snorkelling is diversification to help meet costs (and with two sons, two daughters, and ten grandchildren on his hands, Gede did have a cost or two to meet .. )


I think this is my favourite (non-motorbike) photo ...


Arya (left) and Gede (right). If you're ever in Bali do yourself a favour and look these guys up. They are genuine, honest, and great fun to chat with. Ph 0362 41526, www.gedehomestay.com.


After a few hours of dolphin-watching & snorkelling, and then a delicious pineapple pancake and more Balinese coffee, Arya led me out of the maze that Singaraja is, and onto the coastal road. It wasn't too long before I'd tired of the flat ground, so seeing a sign pointing to the extinct volcano that Kintamani is, I headed back into the mountains. In this pic locals are drying out cloves on the side of the road (as the fog started to shroud the road as I climbed higher up the mountain) ...


Kintamani in the distance ...


Low in rupiah I had a quick check of the map in Batur to double-check I'd be able to get back to Seminyak before running out of fuel or money ...


Stopping for fuel, the heavens opened up for the second day running. At least the roads south of here weren't as steep and twisty as yesterday - making the wet roads more manageable and relaxing to ride on ...


Stopping again in Bangli for a quick map check, I opted to go find some minor roads and make my way SE towards the coast ...


This is somewhere between Bangli and Semarapura (I think ...)


A quick stop in Semarapura to admire the large Hindu sculpture ...


A better view of the roundabout ....


And from Semarapura it was out to GelGel, and then back along the coastal road (which was undergoing extensive roadworks - so a good excuse to get up on the footpegs and put those offroad skills to use), before tackling the madness of riding thru Kuta (at times it was easier and safer to ride along the footpaths than stick to the road), before a well deserved bite at a local restaurant in Seminyak ....


And that's my quick, two day ride in Bali. If you're ever in Bali on holiday - plan to spend a few extra days and hire a bike there - and make sure you get out beyond the city limits
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Old 12-02-2010, 05:03 AM   #2
DANNOj
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Brilliant Vince! Nice ride and write-up.

The food shots are making me hungry! Mmmmm.....

Cheers,
Dan
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Old 12-02-2010, 05:13 AM   #3
vk6yjs
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Good one Vince

I gota get on board with you and them o/seas trips!!!

Cheers

Jay

250cc hey? So you recon my TTR250 would be a BIG bike over there?
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Old 12-02-2010, 11:37 AM   #4
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Old 12-02-2010, 12:23 PM   #5
theo teblung
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Location: between cilegon,banten - semarang,Indonesia
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as far as i know, honda tiger is 200cc,
and in indonesia ,TTR 225 have a "brother" named scorpio 225,
thanks for comin bali bro ...
i'll wait you to ride together next time,
indonesia is a great country for ride.
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Old 12-02-2010, 11:15 PM   #6
Gdiddy
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Laugh Grreat Ride report Vince!

Was wondering how you were going..Nice photos and report Vince..
I'm getting itchy feet again!! Gary
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Old 12-03-2010, 12:25 AM   #7
Bumpy ahead
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An exciting trip Vince! You should ride more Indonesian's island and discover the hidden heaven. Nice photos and reports.
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Old 12-03-2010, 04:22 AM   #8
4eyes
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Thumb I l o v e bali

Bintang and bikinis on Kuta beach, nasi gorang, pisang gorang and satay.
Sun, fun, friends, and love ones.

I have been twice, and hope I can return someday.

My best friend has a Harley in Jakarta, from what I understand, the "tax" is substantial but it can be done.
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