M double U

2013 Lombok, Gili & Bali

Lombok

After a good night of sleep and an extensive breakfast we were now ready to continue to our next destination, Lombok. During on of their previous journeys Bart and Yolanda discovered Rinjani Mountain Gardens in the North of Lombok and they wanted to share this place and the tremendous views it offered with us.

We took the speed boat to Sengiggi beach at Lombok after which we were picked up by a taxi driver who brought us to our destination for the next two days. It was a beautiful ride indeed and on arrival we were welcomed and shown our bungalows. Bart and Yolanda had not promised to much so we took the rest of the afternoon to relax and recover from the long journey.

Next day neither myself nor Yolanda did feel very well so we decided to remain at the Rinjani Mountain Gardens whilst Paul, Bart and another young Dutch couple went out on an adventurous trek. From what we have heard afterwards it must have been worthwhile, however not completely without danger….

The highlights of their trip were not not only one, but even two waterfalls, which were visited and with temperatures like this they were just too inviting for swimming, and that is exactly what was done.

At the second waterfall Paul encountered a strong surge pulling him into an underground cave system, fortunately he did nor panic and did the right thing, dive even further, away from the surge and swim back to where it was safe to surface. Needless to say I was not very pleased hearing those stories and in spite of the whole group coming back safely I did not want to think on what could have happened…

By the time they returned to Rinjani Mountain Gardens the heavens had opened and a torrential rain was bashing us. There was no way to stay dry, even plastic bags did not do the trick. It did not lower our spirits though so we just laughed about it and enjoyed our final evening at Lombok at the restaurant.

Gilli Trawangan

The next morning the sun was shining again and after saying goodbye we were brought back to the harbor where we boarded a small wooden boat for our short trip to Gilli Trawangan. We had booked two bungalows at Manta Dive, the same place where I stayed the year before, I must admit it was good to be back at the Gilli’s, even if it was only for a couple of days.

As Paul and myself were fully qualified divers already we could register for diving straight away and Bart decided to do a introductory diving course so we could at least do the last dive together.

Yolanda opted for more relaxing and sunbathing so all of us really enjoyed our stay at the Gilli Trawangan in our own way. Paul, Bart and myself managed to arrange our last dive together and in spite of missing out on my favorite divesite (Deep Turbo), which would have been to deep for Bart we enjoyed a fantastic dive together as a team. After so many years it was fun to finally dive with Paul on one side and Bart on the other side. A very special experience!!!

In order to celebrate our first dive (Not that we needed an excuse for that) we went out during the evening and partied. It was already our last evening at Gilli Trawangan and it was time to go to our last destination of this trip, and what else could that be than Guci Guesthouses in Ubud…

Bali

Our last stop, our second home (At least for Paul and myself ), Guci Guesthouses in Ubud. After our boat-ride from Gilli Trawangan our bus was already waiting to bring us to Guci Gueshouses in Ubud. The bus brought us through well known places but still we enjoyed the ride, it was a sort of homecoming after all.

Nyoman and Daniel welcomed us at Guci Guesthouses and it was great to see the both of them once again. Unfortunately Ulli was not home, whilst we were enjoying our last days in Indonesia and got ready to return to Europe, Ulli, was doing exactly the opposite at the other side of the world. Fortunately we would still have a chance to shortly meet her at the airport, a strange sequence of events indeed…

Even stranger was the fact that our friends Vicky and Adam from the UK had booked a bungalow at Guci Guesthouses at exactly the same time we would be there, an even stranger sequence of events, but it was great to catch up with them about  15000 km away from where we usually meet.

Next day we had planned to do a bike trip from Gunung Agung all the way back to Ubud. First we were picked up and brought to Gunung Agung where we were treated on a lush breakfast buffet. The view, however not new to us remains spectacular every time we see it and maybe because of that the Indonesian style breakfast tasted so well.

We started our cycle tour downhill and enjoyed the stunning scenery surrounding us. The rice fields, the small villages, they all seemed to be so much prettier from this perspective than from the inside of a rental jeep. Our first stop was a coffee plantation where the famous kopie luwar was made. Catpoochino, with other words. Of course we could not miss out on the opportunity to taste this lush coffee variety.

As the main road was avoided we passed through numerous villages and witnessed the daily activities from the villagers. Children enthusiastically waived at us wherever we passed by.

Of course we could not let the opportunity of making a set of pictures in the middle of the flooded rice fields pass by, it was a good laugh after all and most surprisingly all of us kept our feet dry, just…

The tour was over far to quick for our liking as all 6 of us had enjoyed it so much. I am sure that our laughters can still be heard. At the end point we were treated by a sumptuous Indonesian meal. Once back in Ubud we unanimously decided we had deserved some cocktails so we headed to Warung Enak for some infamous Blue Mountains to recap some of the memories of a great cycling trip downhill all the way from Gunung Agung to Ubud.

Next day we already had to say goodbye to Vicky and Adam as they were continuing their trip to the Gilli’s. For us it was already the last day and also our last opportunity to visit Villa Ungull with Daniel to see how progress was going on over there. Things were nicely taking shape although there’s still a lot of work to be done.

With finishing our visit to Villa Ungull it also meant that our trip was almost over. Still there was one important thing to be done, our traditional farewell dinner at Warung Enak. Daniel joined us from the beginning and once all was taken care of at Guci Guesthouses Nyoman was also able to join us. It became, once again, a memorable evening.

After breakfast Nyoman joined us to the airport where we waited for Ulli’s arrival. We still had a cup of coffee together and then it was time to say goodbye. Three long flights lay ahead of us. Denpasar – Jakarta – Dubai – Amsterdam.

No one could have expected that Yolanda, Bart, Paul and myself would travel together with our friends Yus and Sri and explore Java in a totally different way. No one could have expected we would meet Vicky and Adam at Guci Guesthouses, and certainly no one could have expected we would shortly meet Ulli at the airport when she returned from Europe whilst we were ready to fly there.

It had been an amazing holiday. So much fun, so much laughter. Somehow we have the feeling that this might not have been the last time….

Why???    Because !!!