Fodor's Travel Talk Forums

Fodor's Travel Talk Forums (
-   Asia (
-   -   bali questions ????????? (

stephenmat Aug 2nd, 2008 02:38 PM

bali questions ?????????
im trying to figure from all of your posts and guide books such as intrepid , which places to focus on. will have about 7 days for all. so far it seems like the following are musts, putu and probably stay in seminyak and ubud. some say to spend 3 nights in ubud and i like the idea of hiking for a few hours each day, sounds great. the wild cards are lovina, munduk, mt batur, sideman, candidasa, kintamani , gunung batur. ok am i missing anything ? which are the ones that wow you ? one week to do all so which to keep in and which to toss. i arrive on dec 27 th and will have the week to explore although i would think that i should be around the putu / seminyak area for new years. how could i maximize everything with sticking new years eve between it all. also need to go to java towards the end of the week so would need to be near an airport or a ferry on the western side of bali . . Looking forward to all your responses and your plans to attack this one. thanks...

Gpanda Aug 2nd, 2008 05:48 PM

Reserve Putu for a few days and work with him to arrange activities and sights. Then, you can figure out the other stuff you want to do. I would spend 4 days in Ubud and 3 at Seminyak. Take a look at the Alam Shanti, Alam Indah or the Alam Jiwa in Ubud. All are owned by the same family.

marmot Aug 2nd, 2008 06:57 PM

sm,Guidebooks are always outdated on Indonesia. Iíd suggest you use the web Ė Wikipedia or Lonely Planet have the most up to date information.

Bali is very busy right now. Make your reservations! You can always double up and decide later but at least youíll be covered.

"the wild cards are lovina, munduk, mt batur, sideman, candidasa, kintamani , gunung batur"

You can cover many of these places with Ubud as a base. There are zillions of guides who will lead you on treks. Everyone has a favorite. Mine is Sang Putu Ardana ([email protected]). Heís especially good for trekking and more arduous nature outings.

North Bali, including Lovina, has quiet black sand beaches and some good snorkling and SCUBA. If you do decide to take the ferry to Java this is the jumping off point. I like the Pemutaran area best.

I havenít been to Munduk, but itís of interest, both for scenery and culture.

Mt. Batur is Gunung Batur. A great sunrise trek. Maybe instead of Bromo.

Sideman, Kintamani Ė you can access from Ubud.

Candidasa Ė a definite miss. An idea whose time came and went. Eroded beaches and rundown hostels.

I would only do North Bali and the ferry if youíre doing Bromo. Otherwise Iíd base myself in Seminyak and Ubud. Youíll find enough to do in day trips to fill up the time and then some. South Bali will be expensive so you may want to limit your time there, or as I wrote on your other thread, you may be able to compensate in Java.

Getting to the airport from Ubud is not particularly troublesome. Itís farther of course than south Bali but not a major consideration.

stephenmat Aug 4th, 2008 08:12 PM

great advice , thanks. !!!!! im already booked on a flight from nyc to bali. got a decent price last week. i just checked into flying from nyc to central java via taiwan. cant seem to find anything with china airlines but they do go directly to bali and not the others in java . thats who im booked with so i guess im gonna stick with it. although they do fly from taiwan to jakarta but the price is 200 $ more than i paid for going to bali. and im in jakarta which would mean id have to fly out of there anyway to central java. probably would have to pay a fee for changing it . Also i think there would not be enough time cause i would rather be in bali for new years which would only give me 3 or 4 days to see everything while in java. so i guess the game plan may have to be arrive bali on the 27th. now the hard part... get to ubud on the 27th. stay night . 28th walk around ubud etc. 29th go to sideman, gunung batur and kintamini. overnight ubud. 30th go to munduk and lovina and stay overnight there up there. 31st back to seminyak and stay in the area till jan 3rd which ill catch a flight to yogyin the figuring 3 full days for day trips from yogy to dieng plateau,borobudur, gunung merapi, solo, and prambanan . not sure what the order would be ? and is 3 full days enough for this ? that will put me at jan 6 which i could either fly back to bali , go to lombok or head toward mt bromo via malang? i understand its a 15 hour ride to get there(bromo) so would it be worth it as it would eat up probably 3 days for the trip which i would then have to come back to yogy for a flight out back to bali ? or should i maybe keep driving east to catch a ferry ? whats along the way to see on the way to bromo , stay in malang. i would hate to backtrack back to yogy but maybe there are some different ways to go . am i already doing enough driving and i should go chill out in seminyak for 5 days and hang out and drink ? am i already seeing enough landscape and mt bromo will not look much different from the rest ? if i go to bromo i figure i would go back to bali on the night of the 9th , hang out for a day and leave to nyc on the 11th. would love to hear the comments ? oh yeah im interested in a driver who can also act as a guide, does putu do this ? when do i really need a guide and when can i wing it with just the driver..? hey thanks for taking the time with your suggestions !!!!

stephenmat Aug 4th, 2008 08:20 PM

i could also fly to java on jan 2nd and come back to bali a day earlier at the end of the trip to get 2 days instead of 1 for rest and relaxation in bali. hope that makes sense !!!!!

marmot Aug 4th, 2008 10:38 PM

Whoa, stephen! Howabout some paragraphs? :)

So you're flying Taipei to Denpasar. You cannot fly non-stop from Yogyakarta or Solo to Taipei. You can fly non-stop from Surabaya (airport nearest Bromo) to Taipei on Evergreen on Tuesday and Saturday, BR232.

"i guess the game plan may have to be arrive bali on the 27th. now the hard part... get to ubud on the 27th. stay night . 28th walk around ubud etc. 29th go to sideman, gunung batur and kintamini. overnight ubud. 30th go to munduk and lovina and stay overnight there up there. "

I think you're all right here until you get to the Lovina part. Maybe too much driving.

"im figuring 3 full days for day trips from yogy to dieng plateau,borobudur, gunung merapi, solo, and prambanan . not sure what the order would be ? and is 3 full days enough for this ? "
It depends on how much depth you want to go into. I'd stay two nights at Borobudur, even if it meant short-changing solo and the town of Yogya. Prambanan is just a few hours. Dieng Plateau is a whole day. You can access Merapi from the Borobudur area.

Re Bromo:
Bromo is a real outdoors adventure destination. Excellent for photography. It's not just one mountain but a group of mountains all of which are geologically active. My only caveat, however, would be that you'll probably get rain in December. You can avoid the long drive by flying from Yogya or Solo to Surabaya. You can also fly from Surabaya to Denpasar. You DON'T want to drive both ways from Yogya to Bromo.

Looking at the whole picture I'd recommend:
Arrive + chill in Seminyak until New Years
Fly to Yogya Spend 3 nights at Borobudur.
See Yogya city and Prambanan on your way to and from airport
Fly to Surabaya
Do Bromo, two nights
Fly to Denpasar
Finish up in Ubud. If you get bored, you can go back to the beach, but I think you'll like Central Bali a lot.

stephenmat Aug 5th, 2008 06:35 PM

hey thanks marmot for all your help, it is appreciated. planning the trip is half the fun . sorry about the paragraph problem , i stink at the computer but i think i fixed it... ok , ive read your suggestions. good ideas. i guess i would rather get started with central bali come back for a couple of beach days around new years then go to central java , fly to bromo area then wrap it up with more beach days at the end in bali. i guess the part i need help with is the first few days. what do you think of the following.......

dec 27 - arrive bali and transfer to ubud.
overnight ubud
dec 28- walk around ubud
overnight ubud
dec 29 - drive to sideman , gunung batur and kintamini
overnight in one of these areas ??????????????????? is this a better idea????????????????????????
AM to sightsee mentioned above whatever was missed.

scenerio #1
PM drive to lovina not sure how long it will take ????????????
overnight lovina
dec 30 -
AM lovina
PM drive to munduk
overnight munduk
Dec 31
AM munduk
PM drive to seminyak

scenerio #2
PM drive to ubud
overnight ubud
Dec 30 -walk around ubud
overnight ubud
dec 31- drive to seminyak

ok those are the problem areas that i need help with?????????????????????????????????????????????? ?????????????

continuing along......
dec 31 seminyak
overnight getting drunk in seminyak
jan 1 - seminyak
overnight seminyak
jan 2- flight to yogy(need to check times)
do some sightseeing and shopping
overnight borobudor as you suggested (i thought you had mentioned yogy would be a better place to stay, more action)?????????????????????? although pleasant is sometimes better than action ??????????????????????
jan 3 - central java sightsee
overnight borobudor
Jan 4 - central java sightsee
overnight borobudor
jan 5- central java sightsee .................................... this gives me 3 full days to see borobudor, prambanam, yogy,solo,dieng plateau. Can you tell me what would go together on the 3 days and how it would look ?????????????????? also should i stay in one other town such as staying in dieng plateau area since its the farthest away or just stay as you said in borobudor and work it from there????????????????
Jan 5-
PM transfer to Mt Bromo by air (need to check the times)
overnight bromo
Jan 6 sightsee bromo
overnight bromo
Jan 7
AM bromo and drive to Surabaya
PM flight to denpasar (have to check the times) and transfer to seminyak
jan 8 seminyak
jan 9 seminyak
jan 10 seminyak
i could travel anywhere depending on the weather conditions for the 8, 9 and 10th or just beach it which doesn't sound bad...
jan 11 homebound.......

ok, i think thats it , looking forward to your suggestion's. wish it was 2 flights instead of 3 but i guess it would be too much driving....

stephenmat Aug 5th, 2008 07:00 PM

just checked some air times.

jan 2- bali to yogy
times are 8, 12:50 and 7:55 direct

jan 5- yogy to surabaya
times are 1:35 and it changes planes in bali and arrives in surabaya at 6:30 pm.long day at the airport and around planes. maybe a train for this part ???????????
,if i could do it in India i can do it anywhere .....didnt check any schedules and unfamiliar with the train itself ??????????? any info on this from your experience ????????

Jan 7- surabaya to bali
times are 10:20 am
,6:25 am,5 pm and 7:10 pm

cost for all 3 flights is $ 483 , i guess not too bad if i have to...... what are your thoughts with the train idea and what flight times are you liking, i havent figured it out yet...????????????????? Thanks again for your help !!!!!!! think ill go find info on the train thing.....

marmot Aug 5th, 2008 11:33 PM

steven, You're getting closer.
While you're circling around your final itinerary, I strongly suggest that you make some reservations at the beach in Bali. This is high season and places will be heavily booked.

Mt. Batur area
I don't think it's necessary to overnight. You can cover this area from Ubud. You could also stay in one of the many, many resorts outside of the town of Ubud. This is what I usually do.

North Bali is about 3-4 hours from Central Bali. Of course it depends on where you start. I'd skip this unless you can devote a couple of days in the area. The snorkling/SCUBA sites also involve a boat trip so there's no point to get there and turn around the next day.

New Year's Eve
From what you've said I think you'd better plan on being in South Bali.

Accomodations in Yogya
There is NO action in Yogya, except at the hotels. I'd stay at Borobudur which is at least scenic and spiritual.

You can sightsee in the town of Yogya on your way to and from the airport. Prambanan is in between the airport and town.

Dieng plateau is a day trip and a long drive.

If you want to climb Merapi you can do that from the Borobudur area.
I'd give Solo a miss.

Central Java to Bromo
Lion Air currently flies non-stop from Yogya to Surabaya. This the current flight schedule, but you'll need to reconfirm for December.
IW8560 0600

You certainly don't want to go to Bali to get to Surabaya!

If this doesn't work out, trains are good in Indonesia but getting information on schedules is difficult. Your resort/hotel in Java will help you as will a travel agent in Bali.

You could also take a bus. I believe the nearest town before you actually get onto the mountain itself is Probolinggo.

stephenmat Aug 7th, 2008 05:25 PM

hey thanks for the info.

should i book my inter indonesia flights now or do it when i get there ?

is lion air ok ? and yes they do have that flight mentioned, good info , thanks !!!! should i use them for all my flights or is the other better ?

any comments on the train or is it just to complicated ? your right its hard to get info ? although it could be an experience and be worth it .!!!!!

well everything looks set. the lovina part , maybe ill find some things to do around ubud for a second day and if i get itchy ill take the hike to see lovina for the afternoon. , im not a snorkling guy although i would go fishing !!!!

stephenmat Aug 7th, 2008 06:42 PM

just checked the train info. from yogy to sarabaya is about 6 hrs. something like 35$. has a midnight or i think a day ride. i guess ill wait to see what you have to add about lion air before i make the decision. read a bad post about old planes and a hard landing , kind of made me pause for a second.

stephenmat Aug 7th, 2008 06:44 PM

what was the town called outside of ubud that you liked. think i should stay there ?

marmot Aug 8th, 2008 02:45 AM

Book your flights in advance especially for the days near the holidays.

Lion Air is acceptable. Garuda is the best of the worst in Indononesia. They are ALL somewhat unreliable and frequently delayed. Having said that I can assure you that thousands of people use Lion and the other smaller airlines everyday as it's the only choice if you want to get from A to B. I just can't comment on the safety: It depends on your personal comfort level.

Flying would be a lot faster and a lot less complicated than the train, but the trains are also used by even more thousands of people. Personally I'd fly and spend the saved hours enjoying nature.

There's no particular town or village outside of Ubud that I'd recommend. There are dozens of resorts at all price levels within 20 to 30 minutes of Ubud in all directions. I'd look at Alam Sari, the Waka Group, Komeneka for starters.

All times are GMT -8. The time now is 12:24 PM.