After coming back to Australia and settling into full-time work after my Sri Lankan surf adventures, I can’t believe over three months has passed since my last overseas trip!

Since I started my new job March I’ve been camping in Preston Beach and Denmark, Western Australia as well as a weekender back to our old home in Melbourne for a quick visit.  I made a promise to get away at least once a month, and so far we have met target 😃 More on that story, later!

 Travel is still in my blood and while I know I have to stay put a while and get things in order, this just gives me options to do more exploring in the future. But, of course I jumped at the opportunity to spend a long weekend (5 nights) in Bali over my birthday, and as an added bonus this time I had some company, the perfect Bali trip companion!

When you tell the hotel it’s your honeymoon…

I must admit that I am not used to having someone else to consider in my travel plans, but being such a cool cucumber, it wasn’t hard to keep the man happy and I think we will have many more shared adventures to come.

Being close to Brendan’s second home having spent months in Canggu over the past few years, he was the perfect local tour guide for my first trip north of Seminyak. I even had the special treat of two nights in an amazing ocean view suite room at the Haven Suites, Berawa Beach, something which I’d never dream of booking if it were left to me!! Waking up the first morning to a freshly decorated porch, the birthday girl had balloons, streamers and even a special t-shirt in her honour.  No-one has ever gone to that much effort for my birthday before, and it makes me feel pretty damn special!

Birthday girl!

The first two days we stayed close to Canggu,  I’d never been north of Seminyak before and was keen to explore.  It is an interesting little village, full of surfers, as well as a wide assortment of funky coffee shops, restaurants and five star hotels.  The Berawa kitchen is a small ‘pop-up’ market where you can chill out to some live tunes while tucking into a delicious dinner from the assortment of food trucks.  We checked out the local watering holes, notably the lawn (the beachside ‘place to be’ which served the best mac and cheese arancini balls) to Old Mans which is your typical surfer bar.
We also took a quick trip down to see the temple at Tanah Merah at sunset, but were greeted by just about every other tourist in Bali.  Being high tide, it wasn’t possible to walk across to the temple itself, but it didn’t stop some from living life on the edge and taking selfies with their back to the ocean, playing russian roulette with the sea’s surging tide.

The crowds braving the rocky “bridge” out to Tanah Lot at High tide.

Our main aim for the trip was to surf; but with my shoulder injury (from Mexico in September!) the conditions didn’t seem quite right.  On the third day, the swell had picked up and that made it even less likely that I’d get my hair wet, but lazing away by the pool wasn’t so bad either.  So taking it in our stride, the change of plans meant we could spend a day riding through the villages north to reach Bali’s cultural capital Ubud.

The impressive rice paddy fields at Tagallalang

Quickly finding ourselves on the open road, the ride up to Ubud was an easy trip.  Although the navigation wasn’t the easiest, we managed to make it there through all the turns onto small back streets and through the villages.  On reaching Ubud, we stopped for a massage before finding some Beef Rendang for lunch, and then navigated in the traffic to take the detour to see the famous rice paddy fields at Tagallalang before returning to Canggu.

For the second time I’ve been to Bali and not surfed, will definitely have to try harder next time 😛  Can’t wait to make it back!

Last sunset in Bali, for now…