Travel With Bender

Uncovering the best family holidays

Bali, Indonesia

My First Blog Entry: Arrival to Bali

Selamat Siang. 

I love a good sale and when AirAsia have a sale, they have a sale. A flight to Bali for 4 people May 2012 was AUD$409 – This included 20kgs of luggage each. I have had it cheaper and I have also paid a lot more.

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The flight left at 8:00pm and arrived at 11:30pm. It’s a quick flight, which sometimes feels like eternity with children or sometimes goes in a blink. The highlight of this particular journey was a gut wrenching scene on landing. It was like a movie. My daughter who had been asleep, of course had to be woken to get her belt on. She immediately wanted to go to the toilet. Because we were landing she couldn’t. I asked her to please wait, but she got very upset. Her crying was very dramatic as she said please mummy please let me go do wees.

I started to cry with her as the basic human necessity was denied her and I could do nothing for her.

Bali arrival

It was almost midnight she was tired, exhausted and not allowed to go to the toilet. My heart was breaking. Sure enough when we could finally get our belts off she and my jeans were wet.

After that our journey went quite fast. We got a taxi fairly quickly for 70,000 rupiah to the Harris Hotel on Sunset Road. Most times we stay at the Dynasty in South Kuta and that will set you back 50,000. We decided to try this new hotel since it had two full bedrooms and a lounge… Plus it was a one night stay and at $81 for the night, it seemed a bargain.

At the time of writing this AUD$1=9200 rupiah. We are happy to think of 10,000 as AUD$1 for easy translation. So just over $7 for all of us in a taxi is still relatively cheap in my western mindset. The taxi rank is to the right when you walk out of the airport. It is a small window with set pricing. Once you pay the guy your money (and please make sure its exact because they can be very cheeky) a taxi driver will help you with your bags and carry them to your car.

Its also important to note, skip the porters they will ask for quite a large sum to “offer” to help you with your bags. You can get a free trolley yourself and do it. Secondly only change a small amount of money at the airport if you have none, the exchange rate in town will be much better. Oh, and thirdly, don't overstay your welcome. You have 30 days in Bali for USD$25 Visa including your day of arrival, even if it's 11:45pm. We purchased an extended Visa in Canberra via post for $60 each. It was a huge hassel with birth certificates, letters, bank statements, etc. I don't recommend it. Stay for 30, leave, then come back if you like.

First night in Bali

The new Harris hotel is not located in a convenient spot. They offer a shuttle to get you around, but you can not walk out of the hotel and just be somewhere (well not with kids). The hotel itself is lovely though. New and great service. Once the bellboy was taking our bags to the room we quickly noted one suitcase was missing. It was 1am and the staff quickly called the airport taxis, had the bag returned and delivered to our room within ½ an hour.

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The room was great, a family suite with 2 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms & a lounge/kitchen in the middle. Great set up, lots of room. LCD TV. Free Wi-Fi. 24 hour room service delivered Josh & I dinner at 2am – was average.

Pool was clean and the kids loved it. Kids club looked nice, but a bit boring. Swings by the pool, my daughter loved. Breakfast buffet was yummy $6 per adult, kids were free.

Checkout was midday and they had a great transport team who we bartered a fair to Ubud for approx. $21. This is a 1.5 hour car ride through beautiful jungle landscape.

Our driver was very pleasant and the vehicle nice new air-conditioned van. Our new place was still being cleaned so he offered to take us into Ubud for lunch and then to a supermarket for some small supplies. We bought him lunch.

Lunch was at a lovely Bali restaurant Padri Padri. We bought 4 dishes – 2 Nasi Goreng (rice), Mie Goreng & Skewer Kebab – 2 milkshakes, a beer and a coke=$35.

Dinner was prepared by our staff & delivered to our table. 3 dishes – Mie Goreng, Nasi Goreng and a Chicken Curry with rice=$10. They returned to clean the dishes and mess.

After lunch we went to the new supermarket in Ubud, it was pretty pricey for Bali, but still cheaper than my local Coles. We got a whole rockmelon $2, a big bunch of bananas $1, large bottles of water 30 cents.

Finally our driver took us back to our new residence. 6 people came out to help with getting the luggage to our room.

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My jaw dropped when I saw our place. It was stunning.

Our new home for the next month

Bali T House is about 5/10 minutes outside of Ubud. It is suppose to replicate authentic balienes living and be in harmony with local villages. It is AUD$1300 for one month, which works out to be $44 a night, including wifi, breakfast, electricity, water, pool & the most amazing views. You can see the Bali T House Album here.

There are 9 different houses all run by different owners so you can get cheaper ones and more expensive ones. Ours is a 2 bedroom, plus loft (which has a desk for working & mattresses for spare sleeping). It has 2 open air bathrooms - which is so divine, I love showering under the stars & a small kitchen and lounge. Most walls are sliding doors which stay open all day and night, if you prefer. There is no aircon or TV, the days can be warm, but the house is equipped with a number of fans, which will not make the rooms cold, but did make them more comfortable. 

The beds are beautiful king size with netting, ceiling fans and pedestal fans. The whole house has a very Breaking Dawn honeymoon house feel to it, but with a rice paddy out the door instead of beach. 

The pool is cold and a quick dip before bed helped everyone sleep well. Today we even made some new friends at the pool and went and checked out their house, it was just as great as ours. The pool also overlooks the rice fields and has a small kiddies pool too with sun lounges and a little hut.

That first day was very tiring and emotional. I run hot like a werewolf so I was tired, hot and bothered. Today I am much cooler and quite relaxed - maybe I can do three weeks here? Maybe. 

The T Houses offer all sorts of brochures on places that do Free delivery and they also offer drivers to take you into town for about $3 or $4. Which is where we are headed now on our second day here. It's been super relaxing swimming, and lying here writing to you all, but its time to go hit the streets of Ubud

Until my next entry, stay cool!

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Posted by A King's Life on
ooo...we have to check out the Bali T house. That would be a really fun set up.
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