Bali and Gili Islands, Indonesia

I just came back from vacations in Bali and Gili Islands. It was a wonderful holiday ! I first arrive at the airport and decided to head straight to Kuta Beach. On my way out of the airport, many taxi drivers were waiting for us, I paid 75 000Rp ( 7 u.s dollars ) to get to Kuta. Arrived in Kuta, I went walking around poppies line 1 and 2 to find a hotel and then I went straight to the beach to look at the surfers riding the waves. I rented a board to some local guys on the beach 3 $/hour and went in the waves. My last surfing session was in the Maldives 3 years ago, so it was difficult for me to get back on a surf board. I did the mistake of taking a short board for advance and never stood up on my board the first day ! Second I started with the very long board to get my balance back and there I was, surfing the waves of Kuta Beach on a fantastic morning!

Check out my video of Bali !!

I rented a motorbike and went to Ubud to visit the Rice terraces. It took me 2 hours to get there. The route is not difficult but there is so many traffic, but the advantage with a motorbike, you can skip most of it. For the international driving license thing when driving a motorbike, it exists. They do ask you if they see you riding a motorbike and you are a foreigner. The funny thing, I asked a local and he told me that some of them don’t even have a driving license. Anyways, I got arrested one time by them, and I showed my Driving license from home but he did not accept it. After talking with him, trying to explain him that it was also an international license, he got tired and let me go. The police are checking the license only in Kuta Beach, because I never had any problems anywhere else.

After a couple of days, I met my friends from Koh Phangan in Legian.  We had so much fun in Seminyak, it becomes very interesting in the night time, solo artists singing in the bars and people dancing or relaxing on the beach.  The wind is fresh, people are so nice, I think till my travels, Balinese people are the best, always kind, laughing and helpful, they really enjoyed your company and this you can feel it.

Since a long time, I wanted to go to a water park,  but unfortunately for me, areas I live in don’t have those kind of thing.  They have a really cool water park in Kuta Beach call the   ” Waterbom ” They have nice rides, but nothing so scary except maybe the Climax.  We had a lot of fun in the slides and the pools.  We met many people from Australia, for them it is more than cheap to come in Bali for vacations.  Lucky people !!

Five days were left to my vacations, so I decided to go to the Gili Islands with my two friends from France.  We took a speed boat to get there and that is where the vacation really started.  Once you get there you can feel the island mode again, in Bali was nice but still, too crowded and noisy.  Gili Trawangan party and diving video coming soon !!

Check out the video of Gili Islands !!

El Salvador 2008

I took my backpack and went to El Salvador with some friends.  I went from Utila, and crossed all the way to the coast to go and learn how to surf in El Tunco.  The waves were perfect for beginners but still I rented an advanced board, wich means it took me a week to be able to stand on my board.  I was pound and crushed by the waves everyday, but still always stand back up and went for more.  The locals are very good surfers and always ready to give you some tip.  Apart from Surfing there is plenty of things to do around.  The local food is call Papousa, it is a sort of Baliadas or Tacos with met and sauce.  Very basic but it fill you in for a dollar.  There currency is the American dollar.  I learned how to play guitar in the streets of El Salvador.  The capital is San Salvador where you can find plenty of shopping center with Fast Food chains all around, cinemas and many popular American shops.  The shopping center is the perfect place to meet nice girls from San Salvador.

 

I crossed the border from Honduras with El poy.  The main crossings into El Salvador are at El Poy and El Amatillo; there is a third crossing south of Marcala, but because of a longstanding border dispute, there is no Salvadoran immigration post there. There’s no one to stop you, either, but entering here is technically illegal and you can be fined if your status is discovered.

To travels around Salvador you will need to take the chicken buses.  They are old yellow school buses repainted with many colors, and all equipped with a good surround system.  Make sure you have some change when you get in, a ride can cost you as less as 5 cents for 10 Km.  Check my Gallery for more pictures on those buses.  The main places to see in Salvador are La libertad ( where there is also very good places to surf) El Tunco ( where I started surfing ) Santa Anna,San Miguel ( Volcanos ) and La Union if you planned continuing your trip to Nicaragua crossing the border there.

The language spoken is Spanish but many people speak English as well.  I miss surfing in Salvador, this was one of my first backpack trip ever, and I enjoyed it so much.