Views for days and swimming with Rays

Sunday, 28 May 2017

After tiring ourselves out on main land Bali we headed to the breathtaking island Nusa Penida, an hours boat ride east of Sanur. The dunk kids had a lil nap on the journey to recover from Ubud...

Totally unspoilt and oozing with natural beauty, in my opinion Nusa Penida is a must see if you ever visit Bali. Although there is no denying that mainland Bali has loads going for it, Nusa Penida is how I would imagine Bali was before the tourist industry exploded - rural, quiet and full of Balinese charm.

We stayed in traditional style bungalows close to the port called Jatti bungalows - they were amazing and I can't recommend Jackie's accommodation enough, she was so helpful, so interesting to chat too and did loads for the local community!

Jackie recommended a little restaurant on the sea front called Penida Colada which quickly became our fav spot to chill, eat and drink cocktails (especially drink cocktails - they were insane). Our first night at Penida Colada was particularly special as a guy called Tony rocked up with the guy who owned it and sung and played guitar - he had such a great voice and the drunker we got the more we put in requests and joined in on the singing (poor Tony). We even had a very emotional group rendition of Eminem's Stan. The pictures below are of when me and Jaz took a romantic sunset walk together before dinner and their insane dragon fruit daiquiris!

As we only had two nights on the island we wanted to cram in as much as poss and decided to hire a car and some bikes for our entire day to enable us to see all the sights it had to offer. Our first stops were Broken Beach and Angel Billabong. I believe the boys riding on the bikes (along what is known as broken road) didn't have the most comfortable journey - the road is exactly that... Broken. With that said it was totally worth it as the views were stunning, like nothing I had ever witnessed before. We walked along the nature made bridge across Broken Beach and marvelled at the ocean crashing against the shore. After getting v hot and sweaty we thought we would cool off in Angel Billabong, a natural infinity pool, however when watching a man getting bashed against the rocks and almost swept out to sea we decided against it.

We then went too kelingking beach lookout - after seeing this famous lookout a dozen times on Instagram I was excited to finally see it for myself. Although we didn't trek down to the beach, as it was supposedly not very safe and took forever, it was still one of the most beautiful view points ever!

Our final stop was Crystal Bay (which we had in fact already visited on our first day)...

A lovely beach for chilling and swimming in the ocean. This time round though I was a tad more excited to visit Crystal Bay as we were heading out on a boat to try and swim with mantarays! The guys who ran the tour explained to us that we would be lucky to see any as we were going out quite late in the day and there was less of a chance of them being about. Disheartened we all decided we may as well give it ago and take our chance. Luckily for us we managed to see and swim with 5 baby mantas - it was beyond magical and an experience I will never forget. Although it was probably the choppiest snorkel ever it was still incredible to be able to see and swim with this giant, magnificent creature.

Very high on life we watched a beautiful sunset on the beach before heading back to Penida Collada that night for more cocktails! Sadly they couldn't fit us all in for dinner so we ended up at another place that was quite frankly... shit. I advise always using trip advisor or recommendations in situations like this.

Heavy hearted but ready for a party we left Nusa Penida the next morning for the Gili islands... See next post...

Elly x

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