Asia | South East Asia | Indonesia | Nusa Tenggara | Bali – Tulamben
Transfer to Tulamben. I didn’t care for the driver. There was a lot of miscommunication or some kind of weird subtext that made me feel like somehow my behaviour was egregiously inappropriate and I didn’t know why. He thought I was supposed to leave a different time and to go to Amed, not Tulamben. He kept saying he was tired and what a long drive it was.
We stopped at Tirtta Ganga whi I was not very impressed with considering the descriptions I’d heard. I think I may’ve confused it with Banjar. I didn’t take many pics because people use the pools to bathe in and I thought it would be rude to snap photos of naked Indonesians.
Drove through Amed, which is set very high on cliffs with black sand beach down below. And no people anywhere. Nyoman picked a random inn to drop me off at. Not. After some steadfast map pointing I got him to drop me off in Tulamben where I splurged for 1 night on the Mimpi Resort. Gorgeous!!! I can’t say enough good things about it. Upscale hotel but in the balinese style. I had an unbelievable room with a garden, an outdoor living room and there was a loft. The bathroom had an outdoor shower which was glorious. The grounds were extremely lush. They have an outdoor restaurant overlooking the water. A pool at the edge of a small cliff overlooks the beach too. The 4th wall of the pool was built into the rock ledge, giving the illusion that the pool water will cascade out onto the beach. There were only about 10 guests in residence. Mimpi also has a dive center.
The beach itself is nothing special. A skirt of deep black pebbles. The water is deep blue and offers fantastic snorkelling. There’s not much in the way of coral reefs but lots of fish anyway. Tiny blue or yellow neons, angelfish, parrotfish in brown and bubble gum pink. There are the black and white and yellow striped ones I’ve seen all over the Bahamas. By the wreck there’s more of these, blue starfish, swarms of sardines. The wreck is submerged deeply so you see more if you dive it rather than snorkel it. 1/2 hour in and the strap of my mask broke! I had to go all the way back for a new one and then swam back to the wreck. Even the swim to and fro offers a lot to see.
My back and backs of my legs got very sunburned. Took a shower, took a walk. Tulamben offers few bungalow accomodations, all of which have dive centers and there are a handful of restaurants. So bizarre to see women helping the divers by carrying tanks on their heads up and down the beach. Some of the restaurants are on the cliffs overlooking the water. There are few warungs.
I went to Bali Koral Villas (owned by Ketut’s brother-in-law) for an early dinner. It’s next to Mimpi, also on the water. I ate chicken with sweet sauce and enjoyed the view. I met what I’m assuming is a retired Kuta Cowboy who was there with his 2 kids, visiting his parents while his wife works in Japan. He’s concerned that his children don’t know enough about Balinese culture and only speak Japanese. He’d had his visa ready to marry an Australian girl, but her father got freaked out and forbid the marriage. Then he met his current wife when she visited Bali for a vacation. He asked me if I wanted to go to his village to see his family’s chickens.
Then I went to Mimpi’s restaurant for a beer and dessert and enjoyed the view from that angle. Fried ice cream — dee-lish! Met a semi-retired couple from TO. Chatted with them at dinner. Retired to the splendor of my lovely lovely room. Even upscale hotels in Bali don’t have t.v. sets. I revelled in my surroundings with a book. So relieved to come here and not hear constant chicken clucking. It was ironic that a cock crowed when I pulled onto the property but that’s been the extent of it.