Jim and Theresa and family's Bali sojourn

> I have three children , a son 17 and two daughters 15 and 12.
> we went to legian and stayed at really nice place, but it was too
> for a family of five at $175 aus a night,nice place but. the girls were a
> bit overwhelmed by the attention from all of the guys and legian/kuta is a
> bit of a tourist trap so we hired a driver and went to the other side of
> island to Lovina,(230,00rup for the driver one way with two stops first
> at the road side monkey forest on the way (take your own bananas the
> rip you off) and the second at Lake Brattan) we stayed two nights at the
> Celuk Agung which is between Anturan and Kalibukbuk, it was a reasonably
> nice place large and comfortable, huge pool, the main problem was that it
> was almost empty and lacked a bit of atmosphere. it cost me
> for two rooms including breakfast. the staff were friendly and the grounds
> were nice, we had to walk through the rice paddy to get to the beach. the
> sunsets were pretty spectacular though!. interesting note, the pool was in
> full sun all day and was hot and we were there in october!
> while we were there we went for a walk down the beach and found a place
> called the Villa Agung, (240,000rup/night for two fan cooled
> rooms(adjoining) includ breakfast, it was so cheap, yet clean and
> comfortable,it had a pool, was asolutely right on the beach and the food
> really nice)this place is listed on the forum and met one of the
> owners Sandy, she is a wonderfully lovely lady and the staff were so
> friendly, we were invited into the village by the staff one night for a
> dance festival at the temple. we were the only westerners there and every
> one made us feel so welcome, the balineese love to gamble by the way, i
> think the only reason they have a ceremony at the temple is so they can
> together and gamble. my son won 40,000rup on a game called bolar which was
> fun.Sandy is an expat english/rhodesian/american, really interesting lady!
> we went on a morning sunrise trip to see the dlophins in a traditional
> outrigger fishing boat that cost 100,000rup and was worth every cent. we
> went into singaraja shopping at the true balinese market one day, not a
> tourist in sight (boy that was interesting!) and we did a trip to the
> buddist temple in the hills and one of the hot springs. All of the tourist
> attractions (temples, waterfalls, blah,blah,blah) have stalls each side of
> the road as you walk to the entrance.
> Lovina was a really nice place, made more so by Sandy and the staff at
> Villa Agung check it out on the net.i have the web address if you can't
> it.
> We then went to Amed on the north east end of the island, we stayed in a
> place called the Pondok Vienna for four nights. this place is right on the
> water and the amed region is really worth seeing. there are few tourists,
> the snorkelling is great and there are very few hawkers. the accomodation
> was the top floor of a two storey bungalow in a large airconditioned room
> with a king bed, double bed and one extra bed, it has a balcony
> the bay and the cost was $100us a night this included breakfast and
> and the food was really good i had the grilled prawns twice. there are a
> of nice places to stay at Amed and i would highly recommend it, if you are
> going to jimbaran bay for the seafood and sunset,consider Amed.We
> sat on the waters edge at amed each day having our breakfast lunch and
> dinner.
> We then went from Amed to Ubud via Candidassa, (200,00rup for the driver)
> nice placeCandidassa, but there is no beach and more hawkers.
> Ubud was good, we stared at Ketut's place, lots of other places to stay
> good shopping, went white water rafting, highly recommend (shop around for
> price we got about 20% off the regular sobek price through our
> We then went to Sanur (80,000rup for a driver)and met up with Sandy again
> (she was down to meet her other half Gus who was flying in from the
> we stayed at the Trophy Pub. old but clean and a short stroll to the
> it has a small pool and it cost us 250,000night for two air con rooms
> including breakfast.
> That's about it for tonight, we did heaps of things, went to heaps of
> and had a great time. getting around is really easy, we went for 19 days
> the only accom i booked before leaving aust.was the first three nights.
 and them more from Theresa..

This is Teresa Jim's wife. We arrived in Kuta/Legian not knowing what =
to expect. Our accom. was wonderful but the moment we set foot on the =
streets it was full on with "You buy lady, good price"! You try to be =
pleasant but it does get the better of you after awhile. Be extra aware =
if you have blond haired teenage daughters the Bali boys do find them a =
total delight and your daughters will possibly get a little annoyed with =
all the unnecessary attention. At the end of the day, I guess it is all =
part of the fun of the Bali experience. Bali in my opinion was a good =
'Cultural Experience' but it wasn't what I expected it to be, however, =
we did have a really enjoyable holiday. We enjoyed Lovina after the =
hussle and bussle of Kuta (but we ended up going back to Kuta/Legian to =
do our final shopping, and do not feel a bit guilty about bargaining. I =
would go half price and add on a tiny amount, and stick with your offer =
if it's too high they will let you walk off, if it's not and you do walk =
off, they will sell it for that price. Repeat DONT feel guilty, a lot =
of the time they have added on to the price. (aparently there is a =
price for the tourist, a price for the ex pat, and a price for the =

Lovina was good but we were a bit spoilt at Sandy's place because at the =
moment there are not a lot of traveller's in Bali because of the =
American bombings. The staff & Sandy really did make us feel special, =
she encouraged us to walk through rice fields and venture into the local =
village. We went to a local Bali dance where my teenage son & I got up =
and danced next to this tiny pretty little Bali lady. Sandy & I went =
into Singaraga & spent two wonderful hours in a beauty salon where I had =
a body scrub & facial for about $16Aus. She took us to a local market =
which was a cultural experience in it's own. Our children felt really =
safe & happy at Villa Agung. The beach is black course sand & =
unfortunately in certin places littered with plastic bags & bottles etc. =
which was disappointing to see. Apparently 40yrs ago the local people =
use to use banana leaves for plates & cups and use to throw them on the =
ground where they would decompose. Now, plastic bags & bottles are used =
and unfortunately they throw them on the ground and they do not =
decompose. If you look past all that you can see a lot of beauty. =
Anyway back to Lovina Jim and I use to walk along the beach at Sunset =
and it really was lovely. You would walk past all the local village =
huts, and the Balinese people are really friendly. Word of advice if =
you don't want a massage say NO not maybe, they think maybe is a sort of =
YES! & they won't forget you. Please say HI to Sandy & staff from us =
if you do stay there.

We also loved Amed. It is quite. The beach is black fine sand & really =
clean. They are more environmently minded in Amed. We stayed at a =
place for $100 Aus a night which included B'fast & Dinner. The food was =
delicious! Outside our room was some fabulous snorkelling. The coral =
is still lovely in parts & the fish are just beautiful. We rented our =
gear off one of the boys on the beach, who was lovely and not really =
pushy. We totally enjoyed our stay at Amed & that is where I would head =
back to if we went back to Bali in the near future (and of course at =
Sandy's)! Didn't go to the places where you are staying so can't =
comment on those areas. We did go white water rafting at Ubud. We =
totally enjoyed the whole experience and the food afterwards was some of =
the best we had in Bali (watch out for the hawkers at the end of the =
trip on your way back up the 300 steps, some of them do not take NO for =
an answer).

We drank lots of fresh fruit juice & fresh fruit along with other food =
and although we all suffered from a queezy tummy from time to time we =
had no major problems. Just remember to buy your water & a few basic =
rules which you are told by anybody who has been to Bali and you should =
have a fun holiday. Enjoy every moment of it, the people are friendly, =
the food is lovely, and the scenery once you get out of the Kuta /Legian =
area is diverse & different. Have a great time & let us know if you =
enjoyed it.