|Fishermen waiting for that last catch of the day|
Mention Bali and folks are thinking of partying at Bounty, surfing the mystical seas off sandy white shores, sipping wine in Seminyak, dining in the many lush resorts on cliffsides, romantic getaways in Ubud and possibly hooking up with surfers for some 'what happens in Bali stays in Bali' action.
I've been moving about on my many trips and over the last weekend i hit the surfer beach colony at Bingin Beach about 40 minutes away from the Denpasar airport. Yes, i have the surfing prowess of a pregnant camel but this was more for Project Coconut (more to be revealed soon) then to actual ride any waves.
|A nice mix of folks, young kids, local fishermen and surf bunnies.|
Bingin Beach is a charmer. Lets cut to the chase, it just for those who want to get away from the frantic madness of traffic and tourists in Kuta and the pretentiousness of Seminyak. You're here just to surf and take in the sun on a beach that is no frills but is magic nontheless. You're here if you just want to spend time away from people, read that book in a cosy surfer shack, eat fried noodles and chug down cold beers in a little 'warung' that over looks the startling blue Indian Ocean.
You're here to experience the magic that is a sparkling expanse of liquid diamonds that is the ocea spread out in front of you, the same ocean that greets you in all its deep azure majesty in the mornings and transforms into a velvety blackness that crashes onto the rocky shores in the still of the night, a calming lullaby as you drift away to have a Bintang with Morpheus of the Endless.
|It the mid afternoon the sea's an expanse of glittering silver. The surf is crashing onto |
the hard rocks while some hardy surfers and swimmers brave the heat
When you take your time exploring there's always something to see. You appreciate the intricasies of your surroundings - buildings, architecture, the sounds of the chirping birds that greet you at dawn, smell of the sea and that fresh cup of Bali coffee in front of you, the little trails and paths that lead away to potential mini adventures.
Thats what i found here. I just took my time and wandered around the beach and the surrounding neighborhood of Bingin beach. I dont get that in Kuta and Seminyak. What you see there is what you get. Folks out for a good time. Folks content to entertain their own thoughts. Wandering around the lesser developed spots in any country can only leave you with a sense of discovery.
Unless its you harshly discovering how good Thai plastic surgeries are on what you thought was a woman sitting on your lap in downtown Bangkok. (um.. this happened to a friend of mine Girlfriend of Chindi. Serious)
The Nyoman and Nyoman Cafe, the furthest cafe on the side of the surfer colony
|Another stall further up from Nyoman (i forget to jot down the name)|
The warungs are also a great place to just chill and read (BUT be careful of the monkeys who have a tendency to grab your spectacles or stuff) DONT leave shit lying around.
They are many warungs on the colony and its also a great place to meet folks and chat if you're the more socialble type. The surfers are more laid back and unassuming. Many of the local expats also hang out in Bingin to surf or just to hang out by the beach as a getaway from the main towns.
|Part of Bingin beach. Walking further ahead takes you to the Klapa dining complex|
A lone fishermen surveying for catch
This walk itself should be enjoyed as during the low tide in the afternoon and evening, the sea weed covered rocks gel beaitufully with the rocks and coral and white sandy beaches. Some fishermen scour the shallow waters for small fish while you pass huge boulders and rocks as the surf reaches out to you with white frothy fingers.
|The public area of the Klapa beach|
I then hit the beach above and made my way to the Klapa dining complex which sits on the old Wonderland piece of land. Its about a 15 minute slow walk along the beach and is a more busy touristy crowd ie loud Chinese tourists, loud local kids, fat white dude and his slim little local girlfriend in her string bikini lounging by the pool etc.
The beach is a public area but you need to pay RP100,000(approx usd10) to get into Klapa which can be redeemed for food and drinks inside. Sorta cover charge. oh btw, GO NOW - there's a San Miguel promotion that gets you about 7 beers for your RP100,000! Yes, i was one happy camper...
|Part of the outdoor dining area and infinity pool at Kelapa|
If you're on an extended stay at Bingin you could hit Klapa for a couple of hours for a change of environment if you needed to. The beers were a lot cheaper during that promotion! I'll put up another post on Klapa in the near future.
|Sunset from Bingin Beach|
I head back to Bingin as the sun sets as the tide's moving in fast and I dont want to get cut off when the sea reclaims the sandy beach i had passed through just under 2 hours earlier. Buzzing from the beer, its a magic walk back. The blue skies and ocean are now tinged gold with the setting sun. the rocks and seaweed glistening in the the dusk and the need to sit down and enjoy the moment is only hastened by the rising tide. I head back to the shack, buzzing from the beer. The cold shower will wash off the sticky salty layer on my skin and Mick Foley's latest Countdown to Lockdown sits patiently for me in my backpack as night descends on Bingin.
|The full moon over the ocean|
|Surfers waiting for the perfect wave at dawn|
|One of the yoga joints at Bingin. The other was the Mu Lodge.|
|The Doorway to Neptune's Kingdom. Or Aquaman's. or The Submariner's.|
The hidden entrance to a small resort that was hidden between trees.
|Some of the smaller paths leading to the a bunch of yoga retreats nearby.|
|The steep paths at the surfer colony and a sausage on legs|
|Along one of the paths i stumbled on this guy breeding cockerels for cock fighting tournaments|
|I just walked into one of the upper market resorts on the cliff side- I think this is the Temple Lodge's infinity pool.|
|An unfinished chalet on the surfer colony|
This was a perfect 3 day 2 night trip. ALone time, a good book, a constant soundtrack of the ocean and birds. The expanse of night sky spottend by star light and the lamps from fishing boats. Great for those days when your gas tank for work is empty, you've just broken up with that asshole/crazy stalker ex., want to take some surfing lessons OR you just want to check out sculpted tanned surfer dudes and babes in all their bikini-ed glory (the women i mean. No Speedo wearing men here).
Anyone want to make a trip here let me know. I'll hook you up with some contacts folks. Have a great weekend ahead!