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Each island or region of Indonesian has it's own variation of coffee. In Bali it's Bali Coffee, in Lombok and the Gili Islands it's Lombok Coffee, and of course on Java it's Java Coffee. Try and get it right, as the locals can be quick to correct you. Imported european style coffee is available in some places, but it's much more expensive.
Most coffee in Indonesia is served with fine coffee granuals still in the mixutre in the cup. This soon settles leaving a lovely brew.
Accommodation in Yogyakarta
Clean and pleasant hotel with friendly uniformed staff. There are a selection of room types, all with bathroom, ceiling fan, power, furniture and basic breakfast. You pay more for hot water, a wash basin and AC. We were able to checkout at 13:30, rather than noon by asking nicely. There seems to be permanent security on site. The friendly travel agent who hangs around the reception was excellent, and his day trips and savings for the nearby temples were genuine. Rooms from IRP95,000 including tax and breakfast.
Getting to and from Yogyakarta
Pangandaran – the easiest, quickest and most expensive way to get to Pangandaran is via bemo mini-bus. Expect to pay about IRP180,000 for a door-to-door service. Night buses get to Pangandaran at about 5am and normally stop at the PT Lotus Wisata travel agents, who are very helpful. It can be a bit inconvenient this early in the morning though.
Things to do in Ubud
- Gunung Kawi -
- Elephant Cave - Washing your face from the the hindu/buddist fountain allegedly gives your soul long life. Watch out for the friendly, informative and hard bargaining holy men. Its a long walk, reasonable bicycle ride or short scooter ride from Ubud.
- Bali Bird Park & Reptile Park - Both parks offer chances to see Comodo dragons. The bird park is run by a European and is very well kept. The reptile park is not so swish, but you do get the chance to hold several big lizards. Both parks are expensive (US$10 each). The parks are opposite each other, about 10kms from Ubud. Rent a scooter or get a taxi.
Accommodation in Ubu
Accommodation is spread across Ubud and it's neighboring towns.
Just southeast of Ubud centre.
t: 0361 975355
Very friendly family run homestay. 3 rooms set around a pleasant garden. Close to a bemo drop off point. Ensuite bathrooms, ceiling fan, power, and a great breakfast included. Cheap and cheerful. IRP60,000.
Senggigi is not really worth a stop if you have been to the Gili islands. The beaches are quite pleasant, and surfing off the reef is good, but there are lots of pestering touts.
Accommodation in Senggigi
t: 0370 605599
Cheap and cheerful hotel rooms. Rooms with sea views are more expensive so look at a few. Rooms have basic decor and furniture, walls fans and power. Basic breakfast and towels included. Rooms IRP75,000 including tax and breakfast.
t: 0370 693237
Overpriced and scruffy rooms, but with great access to the beach and some rooms have sea views. They have a great restaurant overlooking the beach.
There are a few western orientated restaurant/bars situated near the northern end of the town, around the surfing area of the beach. The southern end, near the forest and swimming part of the beach, is more traditional and sees more Indonesian visitors. There is a small white sand beach accessible by boat on the edge of the park.
Pangandaran, and the surrounding area, suffered damaged from the 2006 tsunami. Whilst major effort has been made to repair the town there are many buildings and roadside areas still showing signs of damage. In particular there are many fairly new buildings with windows blown out and crippled roofs. Don’t let this put you off, the town is lovely, the beach great, and the area free of hassle and touts. Bargains can be had with accommodation.
Pangandaran has excellent surfing potential. The surfing area is signed. The locals are friendly and helpful, and there are plenty of waves to go around.
Travel agents and information
PT Lotus Wisata
tel: 0266 639635
Jl Bulak Laut
Very helpful and knowledgeable travel agents. You may find yourself dropped here by bemo mini-buses, especially overnight buses that arrive early in the morning. I have had several dealings with the them and they proved excellent in all cases. They can arrange and advise on everything to do in Pangandaran and onward travel. Note: as with all travel agents you will pay a commission if you book bus tickets through this travel agent. Walk to the bus station to arrange cheaper onward travel.
Food and drink in Pangandaran
The Bamboo cafe offers good food which is also available for take away if you want to relax in your guesthouse room.
Accommodation in Pangandaran
Foreign tourist accommodation is at the northern end of the beach, opposite the surfing section of the beach. The more western style restaurant/bars are also here. The southern end of the beach, near the swimming zone, caters more for Indonesian visitors.
Jl Pamugaran, Pananjung, Pangandaran
t: 0265 639641
Just along the lane from Mini-Tiga which is signposted from the beach road.
A tranquil area, this guesthouse has a little garden and is run by a very friendly and helpful family, although they speak limited English, it’s not a problem. Lovely and clean rooms with balconies, small views of the area, en-suite bathrooms with cold showers, TV, furniture, wall fans and AC. The internal walls are a little thin though so conversation can sometimes be heard. Downstairs they have large suites with 2 bedrooms and communal areas. Towels are provided, and hot water and coffee and tea are regularly left on the balconies. The family do laundry on site. Rooms are IRP80,000. AC is IRP20,000 more.
Getting to and from Pangandaran
The bus station is about 1km outside of town. All big buses stop at the bus station. Bemo mini-buses generally go into town.
There are lots of cyclo (rickshaws) in Pangandaran, and you can easily get a ride to the bus station, or take a 30 minute walk. The PT Lotus Wisata travel agents can arrange bemo connections to the bus station.
From Yogyakarta: Public transport buses require at least one change, and are not reliable. Direct bemo mini-buses cost IRP180,000 and run during the day and night. They arrive in Pangandaran at around 5am when some guesthouses will be open to meet you. Expect to pay for that nights accommodation though.
To Jakarta: Direct buses leave the bus station at 8am, and 3pm everyday. The journey takes about 8 hours, arriving in Jakarta at around 4pm and 7am respectively. Tickets cost IRP60,000 on an executive AC bus, less for non-AC. The PT Lotus Wisata sell tickets for the same bus (including transfer to the bus station) for IRP125,000. It’s cheaper to walk, or get a ride with a cyclo, to the bus station, and then by the ticket onboard the bus.
Getting to and from Lombok
Perama run regular buses and boats between Lombok, the Gili Islands and Bali. There own boats are the quickest option to and from Bali (IRP250,000 from Sengiggi or Gili to Kuta) , but their buses also connect with the large ferry which is much cheaper option (IRP 100,000 from Sengigi to Kuta). Other operators run similar services.
Things to do in Kuta
Despite it's popularity Kuta has few sights or activities.
- Surfing is the primary activity. The waves are great, although crowded in high season (May - September). The wet season (Oct - April) sees high winds, but there are still some, sometimes messy, waves to be had.
- The temple of Ulu Watu is a short drive away. The temple is perched on the cliff edge, with the crashing waves below. Buy bananas there to feed the fairly friendly monkeys. It's a good place to see th Kecak dance, but Ubud is better. Hire a moped or ask at travel agents about car (and driver) rental.
Accommodation in Kuta
Accommodation is cheap and plentiful in Kuta.
An excellent hotel offering classy budget accommodation. A recommended place to get over jet lag if you have just landed. There is a pool, restaurant (breakfast is included), a small shop, DVD player rental, laundry, bicycle and moped rental. Off Poppies Gang I, 3 minutes from the beach and all of the other traveler facilities. Prices from IRP95,000.
Getting around Kuta
There are plenty of taxis in the Kuta area. Blue Bird taxis are very good.
You can rent a moped for IRP35,000 per day. A jeep costs INR80,000 You can charter a car and driver for around IRP200,000 for a half day of exploring.
Getting to and from Kuta
There are lots of bemo (mini-buses) traveling around Bali. All travel agents display prices and can easily arrange this for you.
To and from the Airport
The airport is close to Kuta. A taxi to the airport costs IRP28,000. A pre-paid taxi from the airport costs IRP45,000.
The best way to view Gunung Bromo is by jeep, particularly at sunrise from the viewing point.
The towns around Gunung Bromo
Cemoro Lawang is the most popular, and the best town to stay in to visit the Guning Bromo area. Situated on the lip of the Tengger crater and right at the start of the walk to Bromo. The views are incredible. There are several good hotels and eateries, the locals are friendly and knowledgeable, and there are few touts. It's a scenic 1 hour mini-bus ride away from Probolinggo.
Accommodation in Cemoro Lawang
The Gili Islands are three small, beautiful islands of the northwest coast of Lombok, Indonesia. The islands of Gili Trawangan , Gili Meno and Gili Air are all free of traffic and police. The atmosphere is laid back.
- Gili Trawangan
- Gil Meno
- Gili Air
Getting to and from the Gili Islands
There are several different companies offering transport to the Gili Islands. As always, the more you spend the quicker and easier the trip is.
Perama run their own boat from Padang Bai, Bali to each of the Gili Islands. The trip costs IRP200,000 and takes around 4 hours. Their boat is comfortable, although a little noisy. They cook an evening meal onboard. Drinks are also available. Perama also provide transport around the island with their bus network, and provide good connections from Kuta, Ubud, Sanur, Candadisa and Lovina with their boat.
Bluewater Safaris run a fast boat everyday to the Gili Islands. Takes 2 hours and costs. IRP595,000.
The south of the island has the ferry jetty, and small boats carrying passengers from the ferrys also land on this southern beach. Most of the traditional village life is centered around the jetty; with a few eateries, money changer and travel agent.
The northern side of the island has accommodation and restaurants, with views of sunrises and sunsets. The eastern side has some of the best accommodation and restaurants, including most of the more recent development and the best snorkeling reef. The western side has seen better days as the accommodation is run-down and the reef looks as if it has been removed in places, probably to provide building materials before development was properly managed.
Accommodation on Gili Air
The east coast has the best snorkeling, swimming beach and the best of the restaurants. Also the liveliest area during the low season.
t: 0370 635365
Very nice cottages set amongst a beautiful garden, a little way back from the beach. Coconuts is run by Kamil & Elaine who have very high standards. Cottages have king size beds, mosquito nets, ensuite bathrooms with hot showers, porches, hammocks, power, ceiling fans, towels are included. Their Frangipani garden restaurant is great in a lovely setting. Water bottle refills avaialble. Everything is spik-and-span. Check out is 10am. Cottages are IRP125,000 per night, with AC is IRP200,000. Breakfast included.
Just east of Legend Island on the northern shore.
2 very nice, new chalets with ensuite bathrooms, nice furniture, porches, power, cooling fans and fixed mosquito nets. Towels and breakfast are provided. The owner Danny is very friendly and helpful and makes a great breakfast. IRP100,000 per night (IRP80,000 in low season).