Dolphin Watching

Trip Start Jan 31, 2011
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Trip End Dec 15, 2011


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Flag of Indonesia  , Bali,
Friday, September 2, 2011

06:00 At 5.30 There was a knock on my door, I wasn't expecting such an early wake up call as I'd set my own alarm for 5.50, just a few mins before my 6am pickup. Yes, it was a super early start today for I was going dolphin watching at dawn. The 2 Swiss girls had also booked to go on this trip and we spent 60,000 each on it, but I had heard them return home about an hour earlier from their night out so when I knocked on their door, quite loudly whilst calling to them, they were dead to the world and took some rousing. One of them finally opened the door and quickly decided they weren't coming. (this was their 2nd super late night in a row!) so I left without them.

I walked with the guy who woke me up down to the beach only a few metres away and waited, I grew impatient at this saying in a grumpy, i hate early morning way that why had he bothered to wake me if we weren't leaving now as I had set my alarm for when I'd been told I was getting picked up, so resented the idea that I'd been woken half an hour early just to sit on a wall in the dark waiting
 
I got on a boat with a random couple and we launched off the beach and set off to sea. The sky was starting to turn colourful as the dawn was approaching, and still we headed out to sea with several other boats around as well. Eventually the sun peeked above the horizon and all the while we buzzed around looking for dolphins, and we saw them, 10-15 fins dipping above the water then disappearing, some jumped into the air, diving back in again. As they were spotted some of the overzealous boat drivers (and there were at least 50 little bamboo motorboats out there) went full pelt towards the spot where the dolphins appeared, only for them to disappear again, probably scared away by the sound of 30 speed boats coming toward them. For all the magic of seeing the dolphins it was also spoilt by the number of motorboats going too noisily through the water and of the whooping, clapping locals who then spotted them (locals on holiday because of ramadan). It turned what could be a beautiful thing into a horrible witchhunt really.

After an hour and a half we returned to land having watched both the beauty if the sunrise and the magic of the dolphins.

I had breakfast and read by the pool until just before 12, when a bus would arrive.
 
12:43 I left Lovina today with the 2 swiss girls i went to Lovina with, we hired a private vehicle with the plan to make a few stops on the way at any worthwhile places.

First we stopped at the Harbour where there was a nice monument and also a Chinese temple. The Cleaner asked if I was the two 20 year olds mother. Great. Now I'm not happy, as most people have said I look early/mid twenties. Clearly not to this oaf.

I left in a huff and waited for the girls in the car. 
  
14:30 This next stop was some cool fresh water springs next to the sea, which was entirely filled with locals, and we were quite the centre of attention, with all eyes following us around the pool. I hate being the centre of attention! After a cooling dip in the clear water we had a spot of clearly overpriced foreigner price lunch, it was 4000 to get into the springs, 30000 for the food. It was good though, and now cool and satisfied we continued the drive following the Coastal road which gave us great views of all the black sand and volcanic rocks forming little cliffs into the sea.

There was one final temple we stopped at which had some lovely carvings in it, before we got to Amed, or in fact Jemiluk is where I think we actually got to, but everywhere is so close together round here and all called the same name.

We had a look at the place that claimed it was Budget accomodation in Amed....er....400,000? No thanks! The search continued, and we found Warung Mama Homestay for the cheapest yet of 75,000! Fantastic.
 
Next I booked a diving trip to the USS Liberty Wreck which is just off Tulanben which is an interesting story - it got hit by a Japanese Sub and limped to shore where they could salvage the cargo, but in 1963 Gunung Agung erupted and pushed it into the sea, also splitting it in two, see more here  http://indonesia.greatestdivesites.com/bali/uss_liberty , and some pictures here
 
The homestay is right next to the beach where the sand actually is black with the gargantuan view  of Agung Gunung Volcano towering behind which is really quite breathtaking. I met a German guy called Rupert on the beach when I went out to take some sunset photos, and we hit it off and had some dinner together and chatted until it was time to sleep.

Best: The views around Amed
Worst: the uncertainty and nerves of finding another cheap place to stay
Beautiful: Sunset behind Gunung Agung
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