Tag Archives: bali

Rama Residence Hotels in Bali – Indonesia

Upon arrival at Bali Ngurah Rai International Airport, it’s always a relief to have a pick up and transfer organised prior. But better still, to see your name right up there is something special by staying at the Rama Residence Padma. This is when I can relax knowing I’m being looked after for my next week’s stay in Bali.

Denpasar is Indonesia’s third-busiest international airport and I’d recommend a pick up especially if travelling with a family.

Rama Residence Padma Hotel offers a new experience and a total of 38 rooms with complete facilities – in particular a handy kitchenette, comfy lounge and a heaven-sent dining area.

When travelling with a family, it’s not every night you’d want to eat out and this property is one whereby if you are seeking some solace from the busier surrounding areas and just simply eat in with the children.

Other facilities for guests include a roof-top swimming pool, laundry and a fitness centre in case you need to keep up that fitness regime.

For prices check out the website:  http://ramaresidencepadma.com/

The Asia Spices Restaurant is a partly open-air restaurant that serves various kinds of Asian Cuisine with the beautiful harmony of water which drops onto the fish pond and a nearby small green garden.

Here a typical Indonesian satay cannot be passed by without thinking how good its aroma captures your senses. It’s a tourist friendly restaurant with the typical Balinese hospitality you’d expect from a four-star property.

This delish Restaurant is the buzz place to be when in Padma especially if you’re after a fired up experience of spicy food like me. Having opened within the last couple of years, it’s fresh, still feels new and with its popularity is undoubtedly one to visit regardless of where else you might be staying.

Next stop is Rama Residences at Petitenget; this is a great value property without the nearby upmarket Seminyak price tag.

Although this part of the main-stream Balinese tourist precinct is lesser known than its counterparts of Legian/Padma and Kuta, it’s well priced and a quieter property. You’ll realise this once you’ve checked in and been escorted to your room. My tick of approval is the ability to turn off the air conditioner. These are cooler rooms without the need for it I found, especially if you prefer to go “a la natural” and, if like me you’ll flick it off and enjoy the reasons you’ve come over to Bali in Australia’s winter … to feel warm.

You’ll be met by Lord Ganesha on the way through and that feeling of Zen begins …

Pathway to the rooms show a more private and boutique property whereby there’s space at the front of each individual compartment to lounge around outside on spacious mattresses and deep-seated chairs – allowing you to relax after a hectic day.

The rooms here are spacious and comfortable with enough room for a whole family to fit into one bed! And, the bed is oh so soft … considering this is part of Asia whereby they’re known more so for firmer bedding; you’ve won me over here with your cushiness!

Again, this room type (being a one-bedroom suite) has kitchenette facilities which really is one of my favourite conveniences when travelling. The benefits of maybe paying a bit extra allows you to feel at home and yet be away from home; which in turn also help families with little ones feel they have an almost normal routine.

There’s plenty of storage space and the bathroom has a walk-in shower with an area bigger than my lounge room at home. Lovely bath products too …

Oh yeah, I told you before I love taking photos of doors? No shortage here.

Check out the prices here:  http://www.ramaresidencepetitenget.com/

Next up is Candidasa which is north-east of Denpasar’s airport and about a 1.5 to 2 hour journey depending of the traffic. Cost by taxi can be around A$20.00 one way.

Whether you want shopping, sightseeing, nature activities; such as rice-paddy trekking, cycling, diving, snorkelling and yoga, or just relaxing and daydreaming, they have it all here.

Is it worth the drive up? Sure is – the views are stunningly beautiful along the way. It’s much quieter within this region of Bali and the Rama Candidasa Resort and Spa offer a property which has a few variations of accommodation styles which would suit most budgets for the discerning traveller.

Afternoon tea is served by the poolside Monday to Friday for in-house guests and is a welcome treat after splashing around for a while.

On the foreshore is the freestanding Deluxe Cottage Ocean View style accommodation and trust me, you will not be any closer to the sea than this!

Comfy chairs and an outside table to relax by in the evening with your mates having a few bevvies is the way to go. Simply watch the sunset while vessels slowly cruise on by and that’s how you should be feeling too with a stay here.

GARPU is a lavish yet modest restaurant attached to the Resort and the staff here make you feel like you’re a rock star. And their smiles are a hearty indication of the service you’ll be receiving whilst dining there – either buffet breakfast, lunch or dinner facilities are available.

View from the restaurant in the evening, it’s definitely one place for having a peaceful and relaxing experience in Bali as well as being able to explore the magnificent underwater paradises such as Tulamben, Amed, Padang Bai and Blue Lagoon which are accessible.

Not a swimmer? Neither am I. But, that doesn’t mean I don’t enjoy kicking back my heels and simply enjoying the sound of waves and watching the day pass by … ho hum …

Check out the prices: http://www.ramacandidasahotel.com/

Well I suppose it’s time to take a walk and find a money changer … The township is not far away and most nights a market can be located along the way in the evenings.

The natural serenity here being set amongst mountains, rice fields and the ocean offers ultimate peace and tranquillity which can be realised once away from the hustle and bustle of the more touristy areas of Bali.

Well one of the best ways to make your way around Bali is with your bestie and childhood neighbour Kerrie and her special man Ian by hiring scooters. Candidasa is far more civilised than Kuta and surrounds and you’ll find some interesting places along the way when hooning around here – much quieter too.

*However, check your insurance policy before taking one and ensure you’re covered for the type/size of bike you’re taking out.

You might even find a street seller offering a hot Balinese coffee along the scenic escapement for a quick stop whilst en route to Ahmed.

Maginificent views whilst enjoying our cuppa and figured out that we we’ve not seen each other for over ten years. But then again, some people choose to live in Western Australia! I guess a trip to Bali on occasion is the way to catch up huh?

Another one of our stops included that of an orphanage whereby we were greeted by some of the loveliest youngsters we had the pleasure of meeting. We were impressed by their manners and engagement with us as foreigners.

If you have the opportunity to bring some educational items or clothes then I highly recommend you visit a similar organisation or school and help out if you can.

Well like most good things they must come to an end and it’ll be another year before we head back to Bali and enjoy the hospitality and smiley faces of the Balinese people.

Legian and Kuta Hotels in Bali – Indonesia

Along the beach front from Seminyak to Legian and Kuta it’s walkable and some might think Seminyak is somewhat more upmarket, however it certainly seemed to have ‘grown up’ since I was last there.

A stay at the Jayakarta Hotel is situated in lush gardens and located right on Legian Beach.

This Bali hotel is also within walking distance to shopping and entertainment areas.

While offering peace and tranquillity, the grounds are perfectly manicured.

Even though the beach is at the ‘back gate’, it’s always handy to have a clean safe pool for families with small youngsters.

Beach area is a lot cleaner and seems to have a greater presence of security these days.

Undoubtedly, Frank is ready and willing to show us non surfers how it’s done … Have a drink while you’re having your dreadlocks done too?

Beach areas are never short on snacks!

Bali has no shortage of temples, monasteries, monuments and historical landmarks, all of which are dotted around the island.

Kuta Paradiso Hotel is also few minutes walking distance from Kuta Beach, the local arts market, restaurants, night clubs, shops and close to the famous Waterbom Bali Water Park, Discovery Shopping Mall, Matahari and Kuta-Square shopping centres.

Secluded with your own bathing area, the accommodation is fantastic for couples wanting their own privacy. A separate kitchenette with a dining and lounge area is totally separate to the bedroom and its outlook is over the pool.

Quiet accommodation in the heart of Kuta, who’d have thought …

Breakfast, my favourite meal of the day starts off with some local delicacies including rice parcels.

Yum, healthy and tasty – can’t ask for any more than these to be added into a meal during the day.

And with a rooftop view just adds to the tranquil setting of the area.

Well Kuta and Legian have been interesting to visit after so many years, but next stop is Labuan Bajo in the Flores region of Indonesia.

Benoa, Bali – Indonesia

It’s never been easier for Australians to visit Bali, Indonesia as the visa fee of about USD35.00 has been made exempt by the government until further notice for tourists within a 30 day stay and single entry. As it’s airport specific for international travellers please check www.visalink.com.au for updated information. At the time of writing this Denpasar Ngurah Rai Airport was also exempt.

So life’s a beach and I’m heading off to one of the best areas in Bali and that’s Tanjung Benoa, Nusa Dua.

A little quieter than some other areas of Bali, but that suits me these days …

If going to Tanjung Benoa it’s located 15 kilometres from (Ngurah Rai) Denpasar International Airport and about A$10-20 taxi ride.

The new Mandara Toll Road if coming in from the main areas of Bali helps significantly in easing of the traffic conditions and makes a faster trip. IDR11,000 is equivalent to AUD1.11 on today’s exchange rate.

Freeway heading to Tanjung Benoa; like so many other beachside destinations in Bali, it used to be a fishing village and an old dock. The development of the peninsula has been momentous over the years as most of the shore-side properties are now hotels, resorts and water sports operators.

Romantic entry into the Sol Beach House Benoa’s reception area, an all-inclusive property with three various packages (starting with Blue, Silver and Gold) which offer guests a rate suitable for their budget. Free WiFi is offered to all who stay with a fabulous daily buffet breakfast.

Rooms are chic and classy with a cool aqua-blue setting which conveys a sense of space and simplicity. All room types have a balcony.

Fine dining at The Amarta Italian Restaurant cannot be bypassed and a real treat – especially if you love pizza!

Beautiful grounds of the resort resemble a lush tropical paradise. Birdlife is abundant here as it’s a newish resort area with pristine white beaches.

Tanjung Beach, even on an overcast windy day, is still relatively calm and seems a safer area for families with youngsters. Fishing takes place when tides are low and it’s relaxing to watch others do some the work …

Service with a smile on Tanjung beach’s private area – for full relaxation and rest, grab a cocktail and snack while admiring the view.

Walk along the beach to see local handicrafts being made first hand.

So it’s time to say bye to Tanjung Benoa and like many others I’m ‘on my bike’ and wishing I could stay longer at the Sol House Benoa …

You can contact me for further information or directly at www.melia.com and look for Sol Hotels and Resorts.

Seminyak, Bali – Indonesia

Off to Bali, I’ve travelled on Garuda Indonesia on a number of occasions and Business Class has taken a new style of its own – even going back years ago there was ample room but take a look below at the new Business Class seating.

Business Class seats in the Airbus A330 can be fully reclined up to 180 degrees.

24 spacious “Super Diamond” seats, in a 1-2-1 configuration giving all guests direct aisle access
• 24.4” width seat reclining into a fully flat bed
• 16” LCD touchscreen in-flight entertainment system
• Restaurant style service with sumptuous meals and a selection of premium beverages
• Personal storage
• USB & power outlet
• 40kg checked baggage allowance
• Priority check in and lounge access

Photo courtesy of Garuda Indonesia.

Before departure at the SkyTeam Lounge, there’s the ability to relax after Immigration and duty free shopping. Here you can just sit and watch over the apron all the airlines coming and going about their routine.

Located on the Terminal 1 departure level at Pier B, the Sydney Lounge offers everything you need to unwind in comfort, do some work or grab a bite before your flight.

Surf boards are permitted, however check with the airline their policy on weight and dimensions for carriage as Bali is a mecca for surfers.

Courtyard by Marriott Bali Seminyak Resort’s double bedroom.

When was the last time you stayed at a Courtyard Marriott? Bet it wasn’t a resort … This property in Seminyak is one of two resorts in Bali and it’s just two years old (the other is located at Nusa Dua).

Incredibly impressed with the very modern, contempory and stylish rooms – mainly two types – Deluxe room (city/street view) and Deluxe Pool View room of which faces in towards the swim-up bar and inffinity pool spilling over into another lower level pool which is quieter and a little less celebratory – all within the complex.

A swim-up bar is all that Aussies want at times without having to leave the property, and just simply enjoy what’s in front of them.  It’s all here …

Breakfast at this hotel is somewhat a wowser! Anyone who orders the usual obligatory eggs and bacon are missing out. I travel to eat the local cuisine, doesn’t matter what time in the day it is …

Change money at your hotel wherever possible – even if it’s a slightly lower rate. There’s a myriad of Money Changers all over Bali, however you may think the exchange rate  given is better, but when you receive back the difference between IDR70,000 and IDR7,000 it’s about A$6.50 on today’s exchange rate. You may not pick up the difference in currency at first sight and it’s easily missed, but at least the major hotels will give you the correct amount owing to you … It’s about the cost of two bottles of beer!

Seminyak Village, not too far away from anything – it’s a modern and fashionable outlet with lots of commercial goodies for sale.

The Junction, not to be missed as it’s one of the busiest cross roads and a fabulous bar.

Before I die … Bit of street art to check out while walking around.

Shopping for signs? Bali’s a treasure trove of fine art, handicrafts, antique and semi-antique furniture, paintings, delicately carved jewellery, wood and stone carvings, masks, woven and dyed fabrics.

Self explanatory …

Can’t say I’ve seen too many black cats in Bali, but this one’s staying close to its owner.

The Library Café in Seminyak is one of my favourites and with my new drink of choice – Affogato to cool down while people watching.

A beach buggy or a short walk from my hotel to the beach area is easily accessible.

And, everyone loves having their favourite seat with a few bevvies waiting for the sun set.

End of the day having a swim and cooling off ready for the next day’s swimming, eating and shopping – generally having a good time with lots of bargains on offer. Make sure you travel over lightly with your luggage because you’ll go home with more than you hoped for, and stall holders are often open till about 11:00 pm at night.