Indonesia part 2

After Java and Sumatra, our next stop was Bali. Island well known from tourist bureaus and their leaflets, full of romantic scenery pictures. The first thing that caught my eye though, was architectural contrast. Balinese hindu temples are very picturesque and often located in wonderful places.
Bali - Jedna z wielu świątyń w Ubud
First impression was also that Bali is less crowded than Java. Of course it is only true for the north part of the island, as southern part is…hmm, extremely crowded doesn’t fully describe it. 🙂 In Kuta colorful crowd of tourists from around the world is mixed with locals and it is really hard to bear, unless you like those kind of holidays. Constant questions and offers to buy something hire a scooter or get a massage with happy ending doesn’t help as well. 🙂 Luckily we have found a safe haven from all that in the north. Amed, where we spent x-mass together with our new motorcycle family of Brett, Ben and Stefan, is an oasis of peace with volcanic black sand beaches and great spots to try diving for the first time ever. Lovina, where we celebrated New Year is more town-ish, although still quite place with great food served in local warungs (food stalls and small restaurants).
Nice change to busy Bali is a small Island, just 2h ferry sail away. Nusa Penida is full of gorgeous steep cliffs that touch emerald color of water.
Nusa Penida - Schody + buty motocyklowe = dość męczący spacer
Narrow roads, mostly used by locals and surrounding silence made us very happy after the noise of Bali. Gentleman from Russia, who moved here from Bali half a year ago, told us, that unfortunately it is just a matter of time until big hotel chains “find” the island and change its current form. Coming back we just couldn’t believe that there are two different worlds just so close to each other.
After a few days of not riding our bikes, we were delighted to go to Lombok, which is another island of Indonesian archipelago in eastern direction. Kilometers of sandy beaches is something to be enjoyed in almost every part of the island.
Lombok - kolejne kolorowe zakończenie dnia
Lombok also has a huge volcano, Mt Rinjani (3726 m.a.s.l.) but rainy season in its peak didn’t allow us to get even close to it. From there you can use public ferries and sail to three paradise Gili islands, where you don’t have motor vehicles and diving or snorkeling with sea turtles is available just meters from the beach.
From Lombok we have our first long ferry sail to Sumbawa. It is 7 hours but luckily for us, the sea is not rough and it goes quite easy. Unexpectedly we have found a way, to travel “business class” with Indonesian ferries. 🙂 The highest deck is always designated for crew only, who has lots of space and some tables and chairs, while on decks below huge crowd is gathered on a similar space.
Czas płynąć dalej
First time we didn’t see the “crew only” signs but the guys were so welcoming that each time we did exactly the same – always enjoying the space on the top deck. Sumbawa itself is has much less tourist infrastructure than their western sisters. There are a couple of surf spots with world class brakes. Nobody cares there about a bit of dirt around or no maintenance of the infrastructure for the last 20 years.
Sumbawa - Lakey, czyli kolejny raj dla surferów
There is no night life as well and at 10 pm everybody is long asleep. They come here to surf so when we wake up for breakfast, everybody is already gone surfing. 🙂
Next stage of on Indonesian route is Flores. The island is mainly reached by people who want to visit Komodo National Park and its most famous inhabitants, the dragons.
Rinca - Widoki nie do opisania
You can buy the trip at one of the tourist bureaus, located at the main street of Labuan Bajo. They collect people and create groups up to 10 people (depending on the boat size) to set sail for one, two or three day cruises. We spend two days there and it was truly magnificent. Seeing the dragons in their natural environment, and I don’t mean the lazy few, lying below the rangers kitchen and waiting for the food to fall from the sky, is an amazing experience.
Rinca - Sławny waran
Huge lizard, up to 3 meters long, moving through the forest makes everyone get of its way. Second highlight of the local fauna is snorkeling or diving with manta rays. There is a place where they come…for cleaning. 🙂 Small fishes are eating the parasites out of their skin and we could observe all that from the above. I’m still not sure what touched me more, dragons or the manta rays.
Flores - Ekipa w drodze na plaże
Eastern Flores was a great motorcycle ride, full of curves, great quality asphalt and amazing views. In Labuan Bajo we met Natalie from Canada, who takes the pillion seat on Stefans bike and next 4 days we travel together, enjoying the company and atmosphere.
Bena - FeelTheWorld plus Natalie i Stefan
We are taking another attempt to see the sunrise on Kelimutu volcano. We still remember how all the previous attempts looked like but we decide to try, as who doesn’t do it, doesn’t also have a chance to see one. 🙂 Of course night ride to the summit is finalized with dense cloud that doesn’t let us see anything, not even the colorful lakes just below our feet. 🙂
Last Indonesian ferry sail is the one to be remembered. 14 hours on the rough sea is something we didn’t have much fun of. Top deck, where the crew shares some fried bananas with us (but not all the stomachs were ready to eat 🙂 ), is a perfect place to tie down our hammocks, which compensated the sway of the boat. The bad thing about the deck was, it had no side walls, so every now and then we have been woken up by stormy rain. On top of that there is this strange (but somehow familiar 🙂 ) feeling of lack of control over your legs, when you try to walk over heaving boat.
Relaks na promie zanim zaatakowała choroba morska :(
When we arrive at 2 am, the rain is at its peak and water from the potholes pours into our boots from the top. Luckily we’re able to wake up a very friendly hostel owner, who takes our wet gear for drying and we fall asleep immediately.  While having breakfast, we realized that our roommate Marta is also Polish, and travels the world just by herself. Good vibrations make the time fly but we all know, we will meet somewhere, sooner or later. 🙂
Last country on our Asian trail is Timor Leste. One of the youngest democracies in the world and a country of huge contrasts. On one hand there are very high, even comparably European prices in USD, which is the official currency, and on the other very poor quality you get for it and poverty of people living here. For us the main aim of being here is cleaning our bikes well enough, so they are accepted in Australia. They can’t have even a drop or stain of oil, soil, mud or dust, not even mentioning a dead insect in between your cylinder cooling fins. Tearing our bikes apart, unpacking all the luggage and very detailed cleaning it takes us 5 days of hard work, which we haven’t done for a while. Luckily the effect is positive, as I’m writing it from Australia. Now it’s time to chase the kangaroos…

One Response

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *