A small section of beautiful Asia but a big part of my life.

I was so sad to leave Asia, the culture, the food and the people. It is extremely easy and cheap to travel Asia which enabled me to experience more than I ever thought I would in such a short space of time. I learned so much of the history and way of life of each and every place I visited and saw so many different sides to each country:

I witnessed the hardship, learned of horrific pasts, I took in the beauty of the natural surroundings from simple rice paddies to active volcanoes. I partied with other travellers and locals in up and coming areas. I lazed on beautiful beaches, swam in waterfalls and trekked through muddy forrests. I tasted the most amazing local dishes and even learned to cook some of them. The list goes on and on and as much as I enjoy writing and sharing this travel blog I could never fit on paper the amount of wonderful memories I have and will cherish forever.

Bangkok, Chiang Mai, Pai, Siem Reap, Phnom Penh, Sihanoukville, Koh Rong, Kuala Lumpur, Singapore, Lombok, Gilli Tarawangan, Ubud, Kuta and Sanur – a small section of beautiful Asia but a big part of my life.

How fortunate I am that the next part of my adventure is only about to begin. Australia here I come….

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Last Nights in Asia

So 1 last night in Bali ended up being 5 nights! On arrival at my hostel, Rumah Kayla in Kuta I met a girl called Kati from Germany and we set off to explore the streets of Kuta. It was exactly what people had warned me about. The busy streets were lined with McDonalds, KFC, bars, nightclubs and high street designer shops. And I must add, I once again resisted the familiar signs. In fact I am now at a point where I would certainly not choose a burger over a Nasi Goreng (a fried rice, chicken, satay and crackers dish).

We paid our respects at the memorial where the 2002 Bali bombing occurred at a nightclub which killed 202 people of all nationalities and a further 240 people were injured.

Next to this spot is a club called Sky Garden which is a huge nightclub and where we spent what was supposed to be my only night in Kuta.

Kuta also has an amazing beach, with golden sand as far as you can see. It is extremely busy with tourists and surfers. I was very keen to try surfing and Kati offered to teach me the following day. I was so excited at the offer that I booked another night in Kuta. The following day we arrived at the beach and I began to watch the many surfers in action; bad idea! Seeing them being tossed about by the powerful waves instantly put me off the idea of learning to surf. I love the thrill of being scared of something and then the proudness and sense of achievement once I have completed the challenge, and so I was really disappointed with myself for not giving it a try, but there is one thing that I am not confident with and that is the sea. I love to swim in a nice calm sea, kayak and snorkel far out at sea but add strong waves into that and I am way out of my comfort zone. Instead I spent the day relaxing on the beach whilst Kati did some surfing. Whilst we were both sunbathing the strangest thing happened – about 15 people were standing behind us and when we sat up to see what was happening they all flocked around us and started posing for photographs! We didn’t even have time to object. They were so excited about having their photo taken with us but I felt like an animal in a zoo and also a bit exposed considering I was in my bikini. I am not sure what nationaility they were but being photographed by them became an ongoing thing throughout the day.

That night I was going to book a flight to New Zealand for the following day. New Zealand was another country that was not in my original plan but speaking with other travellers I really wanted to climb the glaciers. Unfortunately the sensible Charmaine reared it’s ugly head and I decided that going over budget by another (most probably) £1,000 was not wise, especially for the sake of just 10 days! I decided to leave New Zealand this time but I will certainly be saving hard so that I can travel New Zealand from north to south in the near future.

As I was not flying to New Zealand I wanted to see more of Indonesia so I booked a bus to take me to Sanur. When I arrived I had that instant feeling that I wasn’t going to like it but I was there so decided to do my usual getting lost whilst exploring. I didn’t see much, just a standard beach a few run down shops and some western bars. There was no culture and it was very quiet. Luckily, back at The Big Pineapple Hostel I met a guy called Sam from Australia and we decided to head back to Kuta together the next day. I had paid for 2 nights at a price £9 per night but I was so keen to leave I didn’t worry about losing 1 nights payment.

I spent 2 more nights in Kuta. Relaxing by the hostel pool, reading, watching movies and partying at Sky Garden and Bounty. I wanted to make the most of the cheap prices of Asia before heading to expensive Australia so I had a massage/body scrub, and bought some new clothes.

I booked my flight to Cairns at a price of £250 which was quite reasonable considering I had booked it for the next day.

So for now, it’s goodbye Asia, hello Australia!

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