We had a smooth 224nm trip from Bawean to Banya Wedang Bay on the NW end of Bali. Other than a short stint of 10kn on the nose with a steep chop due to current, we had smooth motoring for the journey. Crossing the Bali Sea, we were treated to whales surfacing and pods of dolphins playing allowing Heather to tick of a couple more items from her bucket list!
The anchorage is in a beautifully protected bay surrounded by high-end resorts tucked in behind trees. We were anchored of the gorgeous Menjangan Dynasty Resort which offers an eco-firendly, glamping experience. We planned a two-week stopover to arrange visa extensions.
|We are here!|
Heather and Charlie 'jumped ship' and parked at a resort complete with a bed that doesn't rock, hot shower and foo foo drinks! Being weekend, we arranged to all go sight-seeing. Heather organized a driver who picked us all up and took us on tour!
Our driver Nyoman (balidriverhire
) was fabulous. Between Nyoman and Heather, an itinerary was organized and we explored northern Bali visiting temples (watch out for the monkeys) and waterfalls, took in the beautiful vistas with terraced rice paddies and even sampled Kopi Lukaw. This is coffee made from partly-digested coffee cherries eaten and defecated by the Asian palm civet! (a little bitter - I've had better coffee ...)
|Monkeying around at the monkey temple|
|Hiking to Gitgit Falls|
|View from the ridge above Danau Buyan|
The main reason for our stopover in Bali was to extend our 60 days visas for another month. It was quite the convoluted process, which involved three visits to Immigration in Lovina. We managed to extend this to four visits by not knowing exactly what documents we would require to make the application. So the process went:
Visit 1: Pick up forms to complete
Visit 2: Drop off forms, interview with Immigration agent (because we were traveling by yacht)
Visit 3: Finger prints, photographs and payment
Visit 4: Pick up passport duly stamped with extension
Definitely room for some efficiency gains. With a public holiday thrown in for good measure, the whole process took us a week.
|Nyoman and Budi aboard Popeye|
With all the running backwards and forth, we became good pals with Nyoman. He had never been aboard a yacht so we invited him and his wife, Budi, for a visit. Budi is an absolute hoot. They brought traditional Balinese cakes for us to try. Wonderfully exotic, sublime colours, some wrapped in banana leaves, they were also fabulously tasty.
Budi was thrilled to be on a yacht. She thought it looked just like a hotel - although she has never stayed in a hotel but imagines this is what it is like. Such a different world. We are constantly humbled by the generosity of the Indonesian people who have so very little yet will open their homes and hearts to us.
| Beautiful Ria - Nyoman and Budi's daughter|
Following our next visit to Immigration, Nyoman and his daughter, Ria, took us to Aling-Aling Falls. Peaceful, meditative, awe-inspiring. We could have stayed all day. Such a beautiful place. After the touring, we were invited to Nyoman and Budi's for dinner. A wonderful meal of traditional Balinese food, many stories told and a friendship cemented.
|Stunning colours of the foliage|
|Budi and Ria preparing dinner|
|Ria cooking satays|
|Dinner - Balinese style - on the floor and eating with our fingers!|
|The view from Budi's kitchen|
Being anchored off the Menjangan Dynasty Resort, we have popped in a few times for dinner and to use the wifi. The F&B Manager, Kama kindly offered to drive us into Lovina for one of our visa visits. He took us to a produce market and to a fabulous warung, serving babi gulang - suckling pig! Again, the food was fabulous. Following this was a tour of Popeye. Kama took great delight in waving to his staff on shore!
|Produce market in Lovina|
|Kama aboard Popeye - straight out of GQ!|
With all this activity and excitement, let us not forget Heather and Charlie. They are living it up in a fancy resort - upgraded themselves to a cabin on the beach and have been spending their days drinking foo foo drinks, snorkeling, beach lounging, pool lounging, and spa treatments. Sadly, it is time to go. We all bundled into Nyoman's car for the long trip to Denpasar Airport. Never let it be said we do not fill that unforgiving moment - we visited the Ulundanu Temple and ate yet another fabulous meal at a warung along the way!
Heather and Charlie are like-minded souls and spend a great deal of their lives traveling. When we invited them to join us, there were a few things we did not fully appreciate Although they are extremely well traveled, they have never been outside first-world, English speaking countries and they have never sailed. Oh my! Not only did they sail across the South China, Java and Bali Seas, notching up over 700nm aboard Popeye, they did night watches and landed on remote islands where we were the only 'bula'. They slept in the homes of locals; caught speed boats in the dark down malarial, crocodile-infested rivers; ate all kinds of strange foods; coped with sanitary conditions well below what we are used to; navigated the mandi bath and squat toilet with aplomb ... and all without a grumble or complaint. We loved sharing adventures with you both and look forward to many more in the future.
|Obligatory selfie spot|
More exploring was on the agenda with the next trip to Lovina Immigration. Nyoman took us to the multi level falls above the Gitgit Falls.
|beautiful but questionably safe bridge|
|ten degrees cooler here due to waterfall mist|
|meditative spot - lots of spirits here, we are told|
With our visa extensions in hand, it was time to do a little boat maintenance. We changed the oil and oil filter, fuel filters, cleaned the traps, unblocked the cockpit drain (it is amazing just how much hair a couple of almost bald guys can shed. It could not possible be the girls!) packed the 370 litres of fuel we have in jerry cans into the lazerettes and lockers ensuring they are securely tied down, cleaned the topsides and made some water.
|Cockpit - exploded view!|
With all our jobs done and a few days of leisure stretching out in front of us, we did what any sensible person would and checked ourselves into the Menjangan Dynasty Resort
for a couple of nights of five-star glamping. This also gave us a chance to catch up on the 'blog, Facebook, etc.. Ah, the rigors of travel by yacht.
|Really? This is a tent?|
|Looking out from the tent|
|We could keep an eye on Popeye from the pool|
|Pasir Putih, or 'white sand'|
Great post! Noticed I have been getting the location posts again after a week or so without them. Great to see you are on the move again.ReplyDelete