utopia & mount phousi

So today is our last day in Luang Prabang and we’re all slightly gutted. It’s definitely time to move on as we’ve explored every inch of this city, but we have loved the relaxed, rural vibes that it has to offer so much that we can’t help feel a little bit of sadness!

On Thursday we decided we were going to have a chilled out day as very soon we’ll be shovelling elephant poop and building schools for a week! However, after a coffee me and Aggie decided we had enough energy to climb Mount Phousi in 34 degree heat at 1pm in the afternoon. What a mistake that was! After paying 20,000 kip and climbing the hundreds of white zig zag steps to the top (with around 6 pit stops on the way) we finally made it to the top! The views from the top were absolutely breathtaking – there were 360 degree views of the whole of Luang Prabang surrounding a beautiful golden temple. We sat in the shade trying to recover and cool off for around 20 minutes taking in the scenery, although I could have sat there all day!

That evening we all fancied going out for drinks. Since being out here we have only had alcohol 3 evenings, so thought we’d splash a bit of cash and go for some cocktails! The evening before we had bumped into 3 friends we had made from the Halong Bay party cruise who recommended going to Utopia – the most popular bar for tourists in Luang Prabang. So around 8pm we headed down, and we’re pleasantly surprised! It was an outdoor bar with all the tables low to the ground with cushions and day beds surrounding them. The only light was by candles and lanterns hanging from trees, and we decided to sit in the games area with our cosmopolitans, bikini martini’s and pina coladas playing bullshit & go fish!

By the toilets we bumped into two English guys who turned out to be from Bournemouth and Salisbury! The guy from Salisbury, called Roy, turned out to work in a chip shop called Mani’s which is our go to location for food after a night out in chapel. Mani’s in Laos, it’s a small world! They came and joined us to play a few card games, along with two Austrian guys who spent the whole evening boasting about how they were having an 100$ elephant ride for free and a 400$ meal for free as they were the best cinematographers in Austria. You can be the best cinematographer with the most amount of money in the world, but riding an elephant which has been beaten and held in captivity just because it as free still makes you a douche!

In Laos the curfew for bars and clubs is 11.30pm due to the early morning starts for locals who get up at 7am to go and give offerings to monks on the street. As we all left promptly at the time the bar closed, we met a bunch of French and Australian guys who told us that there is one place that is allowed to be open and serve alcohol after 11.30 – the bowling! Turns out this is the go to place after drinking at a bar, as after hopping in a cheap tuk tuk with 5 others we had just bumped into we arrived to a packed hall. We split into teams – holly and chloe vs aggie & chrispian (an Australian) vs 2 French guys vs solo me. However I was not at a disadvantage, as after 1 strike and a spare I ended up coming second! Alcohol definitely improves my bowling technique, and we ended up having one of the funniest nights of the trip so far! Luang Prabang has got to be one of the most beautiful places on the planet and I am sure to come back here one day.

I am player one!

 

Luang Prabang

27/3/17

After 2 nights of recovering from the scary bus ride and the side effects of our malaria tablets in a small hotel, we set off on our treck to our new hostel! On our 25 minute walk we saw an infant school where boys and girls were separated in the playground at their break time, although they still managed to sneak through the gate to play. We arrived at Sa Sa Laos at 1pm – a small hostel which focuses on being eco friendly. We’re staying in a small wooden 6 bed shack with thatched roof, toilet and shower. We’re sharing with 2 other boys, but they seem scared of us as they don’t talk! Outside is covered in green banana trees, shrubs and flowers covering the garden with tables and chairs hidden in between. There are also 2 verandas with lazy chairs and comfy cushions looking over the river where the views are incredible! Although the local kareoke bar ruins the ambience slightly.

After a traditional laos herbal massage, which definitely smelt better than it felt, we headed down to the night market in the centre of Luang Prabang with our new friend Erin from Germany. He showed us all the good places to go for food, which ended up being a smoothie stall which made the best mango and passion fruit smoothie I’d ever tasted and a buffet stall down a side alley full of traditional Laos vegetarian food. It was delicious and cost us only 30,000 kip altogether –  £3! The markets were beautiful and sold everything from wooden phone speakers, to handmade notebooks and silver necklaces. Think we’re going shopping again tonight to purchase a few goodies! While wandering around the market we met 2 different people we had met on the Halong Bay cruise a few days before, it’s such a small world!

28/3/17

After an early night last night we were up at 7 the next morning to head for Kuang Si waterfall. We went to the end of the little track at the end of our road and managed to haggle with a TukTuk driver to take us there for 180,000 kip, which was such a fun drive! Me and Chlo were at the back so had to hang on for dear life to make sure that we didn’t fly off the back. The waterfall was at the top of a hill which our tuk tuk struggled up, however the views from the top were incredible! You could see over the whole of Luang Prabang – the river, the quaint buildings and the mountains surrounding it.

We arrived at Kuang Si waterfall by 9am to try and miss all the crowds, and it was totally worth it! We paid 20,000 kip to get in, which I didn’t mind paying as most of it goes towards the bear conservation. They had 4 adult bears and 3 baby bears which they had saved from captivity and poaching – Laos bears are virtually extinct in the wild now and most that are still alive are kept in tiny cages which they don’t even fit into!

The waterfall did not fail to impress, it may even be our favourite yet! We passed 3 smaller waterfalls with crystal clear blue water, and after crossing a few little bridges we made it to the main one which was breathtaking. Swimming was not allowed which made the views & pictures look even more amazing and tranquil. After deciding to try and head to the top of the waterfall we set off on the right hand side along a jungle path. 20 minutes later we bumped into a group of tree surgeons who told us we had gone completely off route and were in the middle of nowhere! We headed back down the path we came, dodging some slow worms, and me and holly decided we’d go for a swim in the smaller waterfalls down the bottom instead.

At 1.30 our time with the tuk tuk driver was up so we headed back to Sa Sa Laos. Well we thought that was where we were heading, until we got dropped off a 40minute drive from our hostel! It was apparently the normal location you get dropped off from, and he quoted us an extra 50,000 to take us back to our hostel, but after refusing to pay full price for the tuk tuk ride until he took us back to our hostel he grumpily got back in and took us to where he was supposed to. Girl Power!

At the market that night Aggie he a bbq’ed fish and we all stuck to our usual 15,000 kip buffet. We made a few purchases at the night market and headed back for an early night. Waterfalls are knackering!

 

Our Laos VIP Experience

We thought our 5.30am start in a nice comfy bed in a 3 star hotel in Hanoi was bad yesterday morning, little did we know what we were in for later on that evening.

After another scary taxi ride (everyone drives like nutters our here!) we finally made it to the airport at 7.30am. We checked in our bags and went to go through security, where I was stopped and taken to a small room full of armed guards and men in suits. I honestly thought I was going to be arrested! Turns out it was just my phone charger pack where for some reason it has to be in my hand luggage not my hold luggage. Don’t quite get the different and why but hey ho!

We landed safely in Vientiane after our shortest ever flight this trip of 50 minutes. The heat hit us as soon as we got off the plane, it is so much hotter than it was in Hanoi! However it’s a much nicer heat than in Bali – a dry heat instead of the humid heat which leaves you feeling faint and sweaty at any hour of the day! After hopping in a taxi outside the airport we headed for North Terminal Bus Station on the outskirts of the city. It was a huge warehouse with a ticket booth spanning one wall and a few small food shops surrounding it. We arrived at 1pm and went straight to buy our 18$ tickets for the VIP sleeper bus to take us up to Luang Prabang, which wasn’t until 8.30pm that evening! That left us with 7 hours to kill, with only a few plastic seats, packets of beige food and some dodgy fans to keep us company.

To pass our time we played cards, read books, watched movies and listened to music. When the time came to go to the toilet for the first time (which we had to pay 2000 kip for) we were not prepared for what we had ahead of us! On the way into the toilet there was a toilet roll dispenser, so after grabbing some paper we headed for the cubical. Inside was a toilet seat on the ground with ridges along the sides, and a bucket next to it filled with water and a pot. Turns out in Laos public toilets you have to squat and manually flush it away yourself! They also don’t seem to believe in soap here, so our hand sanitisers are coming in very handy.

We finally boarded our VIP bus at 8pm. On the way in we got checked off and handed a sick bag which filled us with confidence for the journey! The bus was lined with bunk beds which were slightly larger than a single bed. In each bunk were 2 bright pink Hello Kitty pillows and 2 fluffy rubber duck blankets with a small aircon fan. Me and Aggie shared one bottom bunk while Holly and Chloe shared another, we just about fit and even I couldn’t fully stretch my legs out! We set off at 8.30pm, and after a quick wee stop an hour in (where we all had to squat in a bush) I finally fell asleep. I woke half way through the journey to the bus stopping abruptly and saw flashing lights outside – an identical VIP sleeper bus had crashed into a small van of people and there were people being given CPR on the side of the road! This filled me with confidence and after that, my window popping out of the frame when I rolled over so I could fall out, and someone throwing up on a bunk nearby the rest of the journey was sleepless.

Shortly after finally falling asleep, we arrived in Luang Prabang at 6.30am. Never have I been so glad to get off a bus! We set off on our scenic walk to the hotel which took around 30 minutes, dumped our bags, and headed for a cafe nearby where we grabbed iced coffee’s and milkshakes. We checked out the Mekong River a 5 minute walk away from our hotel, and after finally checking into our hotel we showered and went straight to bed! A shower, clean sheets and a comfy bed has never felt so good. We are starting to really appreciate the little things in life since being out here, especially a washing machine!

We have just been out for a small dinner and are planning on having an early night due to lack of sleep last night, and hiring some bikes to explore the city tomorrow. At least I don’t have to worry about falling out a window tonight!

Freedom Island

This morning I got woken up before my alarm, by a huge seabird sat on the rail outside our cabin window. Not the nicest wake up I’ve ever had, but I’m in Halong Bay so what do I expect!

After a breakfast of toast and jam, and checking that Chloe had survived the night (which she had just about) we said goodbye to everyone on the main boat and jumped on another boat headed for Freedom Island. It was a small island in the bay next to Halong, which we had all to ourselves! On the way there we past lots of small floating villages. It surprised me how developed they were – they even had dogs on board! There were also lots of small untouched beaches and coves which looked picturesque, and we stopped off at one where the boys on board went cliff jumping. The girls weren’t allowed because apparently we’re not strong enough to climb to the top!

We were on the island by 1 and checked into our ‘basic bungalow with fan’ and they weren’t joking about the basic part! We feel like real travellers now and are ready to see what the hostels will have to offer, and hoping the damp towels aren’t a regular. The island was beautiful – it was a beach in between two islets with tree’s and bushes surrounding the main building. There were hammocks hanging from palm trees where we spent a lot of time listening to music and reading, and the most stunning views of the bay. After a few card games on the beach with our Canadian friends we headed out on some kayaks to explore the other islets. On our way to grab the boats we encountered some random people who had kayaked to our island, who also ended up being Canadian! They were called Muke, Spenny, Ian and Stewart and they headed out kayaking with us. Me and Aggie found a private beach on an islet which was covered in shells, and everyone else later joined us where we stayed for around 2 hours. They were all very nice at first but ended up being quite rude, cocky and know it all’s so we made an excuse and left to go back to the island for a shower and some more card games!

After dinner we sat and played wink murder with our new tour leader, who was absolutely hilarious! Just before the boys were going to cliff dive, he shouted ‘is there anything you want to say to your mother, nobody has never died yet, but the first could be you!’ which doesn’t sound funny but in with his accent and mannerisms he made it very funny. We’d played volleyball earlier on in the evening too with him and the bartender, who got very involved and competitive, they were so much fun! He had the best sense of humour without even trying. Vietnamese people have been so friendly to us bar a few and it’s been so nice!

At 11.30 we headed to bed, as we were still recovering from the night before! We shared a room with the only other girl on the island called Hannah who was 20 and from NYC. She was so lovely and I’m sure we will all keep in touch with her! Our bungalow room had 3 bunk beds and I was on the bottom bunk by the window, which was a mistake. At 1.30am I heard noises at the window, which turned out to be Casper from Denmark at the window trying to get in through it shouting ‘hello pretty I love you!’ Which I later found out was a dare. I’ve never had such a scary wake up before but it was absolutely hilarious as he was quiet as a mouse when sober! The 3 danish guys, the tour leader and the bartender stayed up most of the night playing loud music, playing beer pong and doing dares and although it was annoying as we were trying to sleep, it was so funny to listen to. Later on in the evening, Casper came back to the window to say goodnight before passing out in the hammock outside our dorm, his head is going to hurt in the morning!

Halong Bay

After an unexpected 1am fire alarm at our hotel, I was exhausted with only 5 hours sleep. The chocolate and banana pancake from the restaurant downstairs seemed to perk me up though before our 3.5 hour bus journey to Halong Bay! We met our tour guide Han in the lobby, who really needed to lighten up! He paused for 5-10 seconds after every sentence and never smiled, but at least it provided some entertainment for the trip. After boarding our tiny shuttle bus, with no seat belts, I ended up sat next to a man from Brazil called Ricardo. We chatted most of the way about his travels around South America and the Olympics – he attended 8 different sports! I’ve decided when I’m home I am going to learn a language as most people here have English as a second language; the Danish, Egyptians and Brazilians. Think I will learn Spanish!

At around 1pm we boarded our boat – it was wooden with sections painted white and had 2 decks with multicoloured bunting draped around the top. Chloe and Holly had a cabin on the top deck and me and Aggie had a cute little cabin in the bottom, with two single beds and our own bathroom. It was basic but the views out the window made up for it! Shortly after boarding we had a huge lunch of squid, prawns, fish, chicken and rice. We sat near a couple from California, who had been teaching English in Thailand for 6 months, and were the friendliest people we have met yet. Also on our boat were 4 girls who were a similar age to us from the Netherlands, 3 men from Egypt, 3 guys from Denmark, 2 guys from Canada and a woman from NYC. It was so nice socialising with so many people from different ages and backgrounds, and we all got on so well!

After lunch we headed out on kayaks around Halong Bay, which is definitely my favourite place we have been since travelling. The views are breathtaking and it all feels so surreal, especially seeming Top Gear was filmed here, I will definitely have to come back one day! The bay was silent bar a few birds of prey circling and calling – all you could hear was the sea, birds, and wind. It felt like paradise! After getting back on the boat and a happy hour Sangria, we all jumped off the boat to cool down and got ready for dinner which ended up being stew, chicken and prawns. The food here is delicious and I have definitely got some recipes I want to try when I’m home! The couple from California got all of the boat staff doing tequila shots with salt and lemon which seemed to make them lighten up, and soon after the barmen, cleaners and captain were doing the Macarena! After dinner me and Holly went and sat on the back of the boat and watched the sunset over the beautiful islets of Halong Bay.

After a few hours of sitting on the top deck chatting with all the new friends we had made, I wandered downstairs to find Chloe and Aggie sat on a little boat moored to the side of our boat with all the staff and the captain on board. I joined them and they handed me a shot of their homemade rice wine, which after shouting MOI HA BAH (one two three) we had to cheers and shot it! They then handed us some of the food they were eating for their meal, which were live cockles and some kind of seaweed/vegetables. I later found out that Chloe had 10 shots of their homemade rice wine (which I’m pretty sure has vodka in) and 10 live cockles, which ended up in Holly carrying her up the stairs to bed where she was very sick and was passed out by 9am. I thought my 6 shots & 6 cockles were bad! The captain also took me down to his cabin where he taught me how to drive the ship, and I feel like a professional after my half an hour tutorial! He offered for me to stay there with him, but I kindly declined. During the whole day the 3 Danish guys hardly spoke a word, yet when they had consumed some alcohol they were a new person, Casper provided the evening entertainment with his dancing, while Nicoli pretended to be Spider-Man which nearly ended up in him flying off the boat!

Going to bed that night was so surreal! Drawing the curtains looking out over the green islets with birds circling and the sea washing up against their shores felt like a dream. I didn’t think that anywhere on early could be more beautiful, but I’ll have to save that thought until the end of my travels! It definitely all won’t sink in until I’m back to reality at home.

 

Vietnam🇻🇳

Leaving Malaysia this morning was bitter sweet. I’ve loved experiencing my first proper foreign city; the rainbow of lights, the towering buildings, and bustle of life. But it’s not quite like the rural countryside & tranquil beaches of Bali, so I was looking forward to starting our next adventure!

After a 5.30 start, we were in a taxi heading for the airport by 6.30. However, our taxi driver didn’t quite catch on to our sleepy tired state, and decided to speak rapid English at us all the way to the airport. He asked us to write a little comment in his passenger book about who we were and what we thought of his driving – a comment from the day before read ‘A former rally driver in previous life’ which filled us with confidence!

A monsoon and a guided tour of the side of a Malaysian highway later, we arrived at the airport 2 hours before our flight. We had to self check in our bags, which turned out to be the most stressful moment of travelling so far! Why can they not just employ man power over technology which never works? Kuala Lumpar Airport filled us with confidence when we went through security 1, which was a small conveyor belt where we were allowed to take through water… After this, self check in, and immigration we finally got to the departure lounge with 15minutes to grab some food after our early arrival! Luckily the second security at the gate made us get rid of our water, but this also meant nobody had water on the plane…

We arrived in Hanoi slightly delayed after an easy pleasant flight. After grabbing some money we were greeted by a man at a desk who organised us a taxi which turned out to be a brand new Mercedes 4 by 4 – the most stylish transport we’ll see out here! Driving through Vietnam was just like my first night in Bali, a reality shock! It was so different to the countries we’ve already visited, with the buildings looking like they had been chucked up with any material that could be found and no planning at all. They were all painted in an array of colours though which brought them to life; blues, reds and yellows. In between the blocks were many tree’s and foliage which make the city not seem so harsh, and softened the environment. The streets were liittered with mopeds flying around like they do in Bali, however at least here they wear helmets here!

After checking into our hotel where we’re sharing a quaint family quad room together, we all napped for 2 hours to recover from the flight, after which we did some quick washing and headed out for dinner. Traffic in Vietnam is crazy! There are no pedestrian crossings or lights, so as soon as you see a gap you have to run for it hoping that nothing will hit you. We luckily had a hotel staff member who helped us across the road, and we then headed to a Vietnamese restaurant down a little side street nearby. Me and Holly had vegetable noodles and Chloe and Aggie had prawns with rice on a balcony overlooking the street. Lanterns and fairy lights were draped in the trees which made it look magical!

We’re now tucked up in bed about to have an early night due to our 7am start tomorrow, as we’re off on a 2 night boat trip around Halong Bay. The weather forecast is thunder and rain, but hoping we may just escape it out in the ocean!

 

Kuala Lumpar II

Our last day in Malaysia! We decided we’d head for the Batu Caves as they are a top tourist destination if you’re in Kuala Lumpar. We hopped back on the overland tram and after some confusion at KL Sentral, we got on the right train to the Batu Caves. We sat in a women only carriage, which I later found out on Wikipedia was due to groping –

“Groping in crowded commuter trains has been a problem in Asia: according to a survey conducted by Tokyo Metropolitan Police and East Japan Railway Company, two-thirds of female passengers in their 20s and 30s reported that they had been groped on trains, and the majority had been victimized frequently.”

When we arrived at the Batu caves, we were completely underwhelmed! The whole place had been adapted to suit tourists – there were stalls everywhere, people around every corner trying to sell you an anklet or bangle. They had painted the walls to make them look more appealing, which for us it had done the complete opposite! The caves themselves were impressive, which after climbing the 250 steps to find were a welcoming view! There were lots of monkeys running around which were being fed nuts in plastic bags by tourists, and were sadly eating the plastic too. How do people not have the common sense to take the nuts out the bags? The view from the top was beautiful and made it worth the visit, and after walking back down the 250 steps to the bottom we hopped on a train just before a monsoon hit! However the monsoon was still over KL when we got off the train at Imbi and we ended up having to run to the hotel in it – which me and Aggie rocked in our waterproofs!

After room service and chocolate with a packed bag, we’re getting our stuff ready for our flight tomorrow. Vietnam here we come!

Kuala Lumpar I

8:30 – Woke up to Holly’s Taylor Swift alarm, again. Still so tired from our flight the day before, even though I slept 80% of it. We were worried seeming it was a Malaysian airlines flight and our morning had been filled with thunderstorms, however after going through security 3 times and blue skies apprearing we felt pretty safe! Our bags were first off the conveyor belt at the airport too, just to add to the lucky journey.

9.30 – Had continental breakfast of fruit & pastries after fighting past the vultures piling their plates full of food which they ended up leaving. I’ll never understand that. The whole point in a buffet is you can go back and have more?

10:00 – Set off to the overground tram called MyRapid, Imbi, and bought our tickets. It only cost us 2 ringgit each so was nothing compared to our 150 ringgit taxi from the airport the night before! Inside it was just like the tube, but ran on a track above the ground which gave us amazing views of the city.

10:30 – Arrived at the Petronas Towers. I have never felt so daunted by a building, it was huge! We walked into a shopping mall between them which turned out to be full of designer shops; Gucci, Pravda, Dior, Tiffany. We decided that the shops may be slightly over our buget, so ended up in a coffee shop which ended up having the tastiest coffee we’d ever tasted!

3:00 – Attempted to go into the gardens to get some pictures of the towers, but ended up being caught in a monsoon. The thunder was deafening and so we sat outside under a shelter waiting for the rain to ease. A Malay man came over and sat with us, and started telling us about his life, job and political views. It became a bit intense very quickly, especially when it came onto the topic of Donald Trump, but he did come out with one quote which has stuck with me –

“All humans are like roses. There are white ones, yellow ones and red ones. But we are all family, all roses”

6:00 – Went for dinner at an Italian called Limoncello overlooking the Petronas gardens.

7:00 – So. We decided we would go to a sky bar which looked over the Petronas towers, and headed for the hotel which it was above. We then saw shuttles heading from the hotel to the sky bar, so tried to follow them to the sky bar. After 30 minutes of walking around the complex of buildings, we ended up back at the reception we started at, so decided to go ask someone. Who told us to head up to the 33rd floor. So we had been walking for half an hour, for nothing. After laughing it off and heading up the escalator, we entered the bar which turned out to be for over 21’s only. We were lucky to get in minutes before security turned up, so ordered cocktails, and admired the Kuala Lumpar skyline at night!

9:00 – Left the SkyBar and admired Holly’s drunk dancing to a light/water show in the lake nearby. On the walk back to the hotel, Aggie managed to walk face first into a hotel sign and set make such a noise that the hotel alarm went off outside!

11:00 – Early night for us seeming we haven’t had alcohol in a month and the cocktails were very strong…

Surfing Bali


Bali attracts people from all different backgrounds wanting to participate in all different activities and explorations. However as an island it is renound for its surfing, so today we thought we’d give it a try! We got a taxi and headed for Kuta Beach which is well known for its good surf. After a few minutes of being there we were approached by a young tall Balinese man, who had the cutest puppy called Molly, and rented 2 boards to us for 200,000 rupee. Turns out Holly and Chloe are naturals – they managed to stand up on the board within the first 10 minutes of being out there! Aggie was also impressive seeming she had never surfed before, and managed to stand up a few times! I stood up and surfed along the wave once… but fell off again very quickly. We managed to surf for 3 hours, getting better as time went on due to the tide going out making it easier to even get out to the waves let alone surf! At around 3pm, a tannoy went off nearby. A little while after lots of locals ran onto the beach with binbags and rakes, and within minutes all the rubbish was off the beach and they all dissapeared. Seems like this is a daliy occurrence, however I have no sympathy as it is their own people chucking rubbish over cliffs that cause the dirty beach. They still don’t quite understand that the tide just brings it all back in! After grabbing some veg from the local supermarket, we cooked some sticky vegetable rice and are now crashed out, burnt and exhausted on the sofa. Early night for us tonight! 

 

Bali West Coast

8:30am – Woke up the earliest we have so far to Holly’s Taylor Swift alarm, as the usual time is 10.30

10:30 – Got picked up by the same lovely driver we had for the waterfall trip & headed to Tanah Lot temple.

11:30 – Arrived at Tanah Lot which was ridiculously hot, we’re convinced it’s the hottest day yet! After walking past another surge of stalls with multiple Balinese woman selling the usual coconuts and tapestries, we entered the carefully pruned gardens looking over the sea. To the right was a smaller temple which jutted out into the sea with a small archway underneath – we preferred this to the main event! To the left was the Tanah Lot temple, which due to it being high tide was in the sea! Apparently at low tide you are able to walk across the sand and enter the temple, but when we saw it, it was just its own little island of green with the ancient temple in the centre.

1:15 – Arrived at Dream beach, which wasn’t quite what we were expecting… We’d envisaged a small quiet white sandy beach, but after paying to enter the area in the taxi we headed down a road which made us feel like we were in the middle of America! The beach was at the end of a huge development programme which multiple hotels & golf courses were being built – got a feeling it won’t be quite as pretty in a few years time! When we finally made it to the beach it was surprisingly empty, with just a few locals splashing in the sea and the odd tourist having their own little photo shoot in the turquoise water. We sunbathed, explored the rock pools and went for a swim, where we got semi drowned every 3 minutes by the huge waves that were washing onto the beach. It was funny to watch the people participating in the photo shoot get smacked over mid shoot by the powerful waves though, and me and Aggs also made friends with a local fisherman who told us his tactics. Multiple foreigners came and asked for photos on our walk back to the taxi, we are genuinely starting to wonder why we’re such celebrities out here!

4:30 – Arrived at Uluwatu temple to watch the sunset. After draping our purple silk sarongs we’d been given around our waist, we walked past the monkeys in the forest and sat on a wall overlooking the temple and the sunset. However, there ended up being no sunset, it was way too cloudy! The view was still beautiful and peaceful without the orange skies, and we had the humour of watching the monkeys drink from stolen water bottles and climb on people’s heads stealing their sunglasses.

7:00 – Currently on our way back to the villa absolutely knackered, Holly’s already asleep! Hoping to get the seafood wok from the amazing Japanese restaurant next door which we’ve fallen in love with, we’re all starving.