During February it’s a rainy season in Bali. This means that you can have 3 sunshine days straight in a row but you can also have some days when it’s raining most of the time. In addition some days it rains for 30 minutes which in turn is followed by 30 minutes of scorching sun :). In short during this time of the year (rainy season is roughly from November to March) everything can happen and you have to be prepared. Luckily we understood right in the beginning that proper raincoats are a must so we bought two of them from a local store and they have been loyal friends of ours :). Don’t misunderstand me, majority of the time the weather is still beautiful and honestly these rains are quite often very refreshing since otherwise it would just get too hot in here. The graph below maybe a bit too over-exaggerated but I can imagine it can be quite burning to be here in July-Aug.
It’s just the fact that rain can literally come out of nowhere in minutes. And trust me, it’s not a very pleasant feeling to drive with a scooter when you’re soaking wet. Just today when we decided to go on a bit longer trip to Ubud the heavens opened up while we were just starting out trip and it basically hasn’t stopped since. Ubud itself seemed to be quite nice place with many beautiful temples, surrounding rice fields and honestly thousands and thousands of handicrafts and souvenir shops. If you plan to go souvenir shopping then Ubud is definitely the place to go and check out. You can see some clips of it in the 7th video of Bali.
Oh, I also ate one the best kebab’s I ever had anywhere! To be honest it was not an authentic kebab as such but nevertheless it was really really tasty! Definitely going to get a few of them when I see this place again 🙂
Sending warm degrees to everyone who is feeling cold at the moment :)!
Our intention was to have a quiet day – to look around in Sanur area and visit the Tegenungan waterfall – but it turned out to be quite an interesting adventure. I’ve read from different forums that police here, as in most of the places in SE Asia, can be quite corrupt but now we have the experience firsthand. As in other countries we have traveled if you want to use a scooter without any issues you must have an A-category and an international driving license. Well, I have neither of them to be honest and most likely that is the case with most of the tourists here. Anyways we were stopped in a police checkpoint at a 4-lane highway near Sanur beach. It seemed that they were focusing on scooter drivers. They wanted my license and asked me to come along to a nearby parking lot. There was a police car parked in the middle of it and when we got there the policeman kindly asked me to step a bit further from all the other people and presented my with a choice – either I pay now 500.000 or they will take it to the court and there it could be 1 million rupiah. The case seemed to be that I didn’t have international driving license since he even didn’t look at the categories. My answer was that I don’t have 500.000 and I opened my wallet where I had 300k (I have some extra money stored in another place just in case). Seeing that he instantly replied ok-ok, 300k is fine and took it from me. I actually didn’t have any time to say anything during all that. A second later he pointed me back to my scooter without even writing out a fine or giving me any piece of paper or proof. The only reply was a pointing hand towards the road. At least in Thailand you got a written ticket. It was in Thai, but still something :). So in conclusion the thing to learn from here is to have visible in your wallet maybe only a 100k so they could quickly lighten your wallet and everyone could continue their day :).
When we got to the waterfall (which by the way is really beautiful, you can see it later from the 5th video of Bali) it started to rain and in within half an hour it turned out to be a true tropical thunderstorm. It was pouring down so hard that it was difficult to see, the wind was blowing rapidly and thunder and lightning were not to be missed also. Since it was basically impossible to drive with this weather we just waited it out under a roof of nearby cafe and when we finally set to the road there just were no roads anymore. Everything had turned into rivers and lakes with water reaching more than a knee-depth in some places. So we were actually blocked out from the first road we wanted to go but luckily we followed a local guy who knew another way from higher ground. It was quite an experience, we had never seen a rain like that. It seemed that even for the locals it was more like a rear occasion, not a sight for every day. Here’s an outtake from one the videos we made:
But hey, that’s tropical climate for you. You have to be prepared for a scorching sun at one moment and a total downpour just minutes later. At least during the rainy season 🙂
All the best!
Although we had already been to the peninsula where Phuket aquarium is located in the beginning of our trip to Phuket, that time we didn’t visit the aquarium itself. Now we fixed that. And I’m glad we did since for a 180 baht entrance fee it has a lot to offer. A huge number of fish (one of the biggest I’ve ever seen included) and other sea creatures can be find inside numerous tanks. I also made a video about a lot of them so you can have a better look when I finish the next and most likely the last video of Phuket.
Aquarium had also a lot of written and video information about the sea life in Thailand and Andaman sea. Although as mentioned before a lot of damage has been done but at least in there it seemed that they are now starting to really work towards a better future – in order these hundreds of species of coral and fish would be there also in 100 years.
During our trip we also discovered a picturesque small waterfall called Ton Ao Yon (picture seen above). It’s located in rather remote area and there’s only one small road leading to it, hence we were the only ones there. What I really liked about it was that it’s located in the middle of dense jungle with a lot of trees and other plants covering the area. It was just like “the waterfall” when someone asks you to close your eyes and try to imagine a beautiful tropical waterfall. It also had many pools in it so we just couldn’t skip the opportunity to go for a little swim. At that point it just started raining which made the experience even more memorable. Once again I highly recommend a visit when you’re in Phuket.
Shortly after our visit to the waterfall the rain started coming down like I’ve only seen once here in Bangkok. We had raincoats so at least the upper body was relatively dry but otherwise it was soaking wet. The biggest difference compared to Estonia for example is that when it rains there and you get wet then most likely you will be cold also. But here, even if it’s a massive downpour, there’s still about 30 degrees so you don’t have to worry about that. Driving a scooter with this kind of weather was also quite interesting :). In lower places there were rivers and lakes where the road used to be and in some cases you even had to put your feet up since the water was so high. Of course you have to be extra careful since wet roads are much more slippery and the visibility is also quite bad. But we were cautious and drove slowly :).
Btw we have tried a lot of different exotic fruits here but none we’re really any good at least by our tastes. But now we found the passion fruit which is really good and healthy! Luckily we have a small fruit market about a minute drive from us where you can get a beautiful pineapple, several passion fruits, a bunch of bananas or something similar for only 20 baht. I wish there would be something like that back home also… 🙂