BALINESE GETAWAY #2: KITCHEN HANDS REUNION
As serendipity seems to be a serious part of my trip, I realise that Clémentine, my friend from Te Anau, will be in Bali at the same time as me. She’s having a stopover in Bali before going back to France. I’m more than thrilled to see her again, considering that I’d cried like a baby when she left Te Anau last January.
We’re going to spend a whole week together and we both are terribly excited to see as much as we can of the Island of Gods.
We meet again our driver Wayan, who’s driving us from Padang Bai to Amed. Wayan doesn’t speak English very well, but he’s always smiling. His car smells like rice and flower offerings.
STOP IN CANDIDASA
On the way, he makes a stop in Candidasa for we can see and stroll around the lagoon. It’s populated by gigantic and colourful dragonflies.
The reason why I wanted to visit Amed in the first place, is because I heard it’s the town for snorkelling and scuba diving. Apparently, the water is crystal clear here and populated by loads of tropical fish. It’s a kind of fishermen’s village who’s slowly turning into a scuba divers’ den. Here’s a more traditional Bali, away from the tourist’s crowds from the south. In fact, what we call Amed is a succession of tiny villages on the coastline and one of them is actually called Amed.
When we arrive at the Bali Sari Homestay, we can’t wait to go snorkelling. The lady at the front desk advises us to go to Jemeluk Bay, one of the best snorkelling place. We rent some masks, fins, and snorkel –they are way more expensive here than on the Gili Islands- and here we go underwater, baby!
I have to admit that since I discovered the thrills of snorkelling on the Gilli islands, I feel like I could actually go snorkel every day for the rest of my life. We found out that Amed is a perfect spot to witness the underwater jewels, for its sea beds, are amongst the most beautiful ones in the world. That’s the reason why scuba diving clubs are sprouting like mushrooms here. Scarlet corals, blue starfish, tons of rainbow-like- fish, and even a small temple on the sea bottom are making our eyes wide open. A local boy is guiding us through the corals, he lives here in Amed and goes snorkel every day after work. I used to call him my future husband with Clémentine, for besides being obviously cute, he’s clearly living in heaven.
Clémentine and I are craving for more. On the following morning, we book a car trip until the Japanese shipwreck. It’s hard to find any information about this shipwreck, no one seems to be able to guarantee its history or origin. So, apparently, this shipwreck is qualified as a Japanese one only because they’ve found Japanese-like toilets inside (yeah, this story feels a little bit wobbly isn’t it?) Whatever the story, this site is reachable by both snorkelling and scuba diving. The drivers tell us in which direction is the shipwreck and we start to snorkel. I get a little bit lost, going way too much in the north direction, following some nice fish but I finally find it, really close to the shore. That’s pure bliss, seeing a shipwreck. It’s between 5 and 12 meters deep, so it’s really easy to see it from the surface, for the water is also super clear.
At that moment, I’m still regretting that my camera isn’t waterproof. I wish I could have gotten some pictures of it. Well, definitely I feel like a fish in the water while snorkelling. Can’t wait to go scuba diving.
YEH MAMPEH WATERFALLS
Our beloved driver Wayan came again from Padang Bai this morning. He wanted to drive us until our next stop, Lovina, north of Bali Island. I feel a little bit bad and confused, that’s a long drive for him just to pick us up and then to drive us up north! He says he doesn’t care, for he likes to drive, he likes us and it’s good money (obviously…)
On our way to Lovina, we stop at the Yeh Mampeh Waterfalls, and Wayan advises us to discover these waterfalls in the middle of the jungle. This is insane. We’re following this path in the jungle, with these huge trees and flowers, not meeting many tourists but loads of locals driving scooters (which is definitely a good omen.) I fall in love with the place. Eastern Bali is such a natural wonder!
Lucky for us, we brought our swimsuits, and act like the Tahiti Shower Gel commercial under the waterfall, and the sensation is truly exhilarating! Apparently, this is one the highest waterfall of Bali (but I can’t seem to find how high it is.)
On the way, we meet a gigantic beautiful tree that we hug with passion. I’m smitten. This is the Bali I was expecting to experience, and it seems I found it on the East Coast!
LET’S GO THERE! :
CANDIDASA LAGOON, Candidasa
BALI SARI HOMESTAY, Jl. Raya Amed,Amed
YEH MAMPEH WATERFALLS, entre Amed et Lovina
JAPANESE SHIPWRECK, Amed