My Mercure hotel offers breakfast from 6AM to 11AM on Sunday! How cool is that! I could wake up late and still enjoying my brunch! ╰(*´︶`*)╯♡
The dining area was facing the pool (on the 4th floor) and the pool was facing the Kuta Beach. And yes, Kuta Beach was just across the street! This was a highly recommended hotel, located nearby Poppies Lane (shopping street where you can haggle and shop, and get cheap tattoos) and walking distance to Beachwalk Shopping Centre (a high-end shopping mall in Kuta, with a lot of famous local restaurants including the famous roast duck, Bebek Tepi Sawah). ♡ ～(‘▽^人)
Saturday, 19th May 2018. Drizzling and stop. Drizzling then hot.
Since I need to move around 3 cities today, I decided to booked a car including with the driver, from BaliSanti. I asked around some people to check the price for booking a car+driver for 10 hours, and it wasn’t cheap. The price range between IDR600k to IDR800k. Then I found this BaliSanti webste from Google, and read some good reviews before I decided to contact them via whatsapp and finally paid for IDR480k. The driver name was Bli Alit. He was a patient driver, he drove me around from Ubud to Sanur to Kuta, without any complaints, without trying to sell me to stop and buy something, he even offered to take pictures for me if I needed to. ╰(▔∀▔)╯
But before I’m off for my adventure, I must fill the engine from Alila’s restaurant. And of course, took some selfies too. (☆ω☆)
Today was only cloudy, but no rain at all. Which is good for my best friend’s wedding! ( ´ ▽ ` )
My homestay called HAPPY INN, located just next to Ubud Market. I will recommend this place to friends & family. It was only SGD24 a night, it came with a tasty omelette for breakfast, clean room, wifi, beautiful architecture Balinese house, and a very cute yet naughty host called Ruben. (´♡‿♡`)
I had few hours (from this morning until 11AM) before my friend Sil and the gank picked me up to Alila, the wedding venue of Mar & Rob. So let’s explore some more around the homestay! ヽ(o＾▽＾o)ノ
Ruben the cute host, kept me company while waiting for my pick up.
Touched down Ngurah Rain Bali International Airport around 11:45PM, I immediately went up to the second floor to get a blue bird taxi (the safest taxi in Indonesia). I heard from my friend it would be not easy to get a grab in both Jakarta and Bali airports as they have conflicts going on between online taxi and the locals. By the time I arrived at the second floor, I got caught by 3 mens offered me a ride to my hotel. They are local taxis, the one that could be intimidating and very pushy and will get in trouble with online taxi. As I travelled solo, I had no choice other than follow one of the 3 mens, and got into their taxi to my hotel. He charged me for IDR50k, while grab only IDR 15k. (；⌣̀_⌣́)
I stayed at this hotel called Solaris. A transit hotel 5 minutes ride from the airport where I could stay only for 8 hours and paid only around SGD20. It was reasonable price as I had to make a move early morning and I only need exactly 8 hours. They upgraded my room and gave me a nice welcome drinks. Just nice. (*˘︶˘*).｡.:*♡
Thursday, 17th May 2018. Early morning!
Booked a grab from Solaris (Kuta) to my homestay in Ubud. Last time I checked was IDR 132k, but that morning I paid IDR154. Which is not bad, consider moving to another city and it took us for almost 2 hr. The homestay was not easy to find, but we finally did with a help from Google Map. Oh hail technology!!! ╰(▔∀▔)╯
Arrived Ubud around 10AM, checked in then I started to walk around the hotel. It was still too early for my appointment, too early for my lobster brunch, and was drizzling too. I decided to stop at some cafe nearby the Ubud Market and had my late breakfast; banana tropical smoothie. The rain stopped in 15 minutes and I went off to my first appointment of the day. ٩(｡•́‿•̀｡)۶
This is supposed to be my weekend getaway story. But since I spent most of my time at this resort, so I might give review to this resort instead. So out of 5 frogs, I give this resort 4 frogs!!! 🐸🐸🐸🐸
Why didn’t I give 5 frogs? The last frog is for their improvement! Water sport are not always available (depends on the wind, quite pricey and have minimum persons to go). Very far from anywhere (although they have shuttle to Nagoya). Spa service as expensive as in SG (I wish they have cold tub instead of hot tub!). Fishing deck only for squid–I want fish fishing, not squid-ding?!! ☆ｏ(＞＜；)○
Soetta or Soekarno-Hatta as locals called it. Foreigner would prefer to call it Jakarta Airport. But it’s not even located in the same province as Jakarta. As an engineer who designed one of the system in this huge building, I prefer to call it SHIA which is stands for Soekarno-Hatta International Airport. 🛫
There are several ways to reach SHIA from Jakarta city. Please check my comparison table below; ( ･ω･)☞
inside the brand new train to SHIA Station
But now I’m going to show you how to get a train from Sudirman Baru Train Station to SHIA, as it is the newest and most advanced option. (✧ω✧)
But before that, since I’ve been taking the same journey for the past 7 years or more, I had to put my ‘tourist google’ on to blog about it. Important tips from me when you are taking the northern java train journey; keep your view to your eye-level and above. (」°ロ°)」
The northern railway takes you from Jakarta all the way to Surabaya in about 9 to 12 hours – depends on what train you are taking. Start the journey from Gambir Station, Jakarta, then I went to the east side of the island. Even though we could see on Google map this railway was on the northern beach of Java island unfortunately the train does not run close enough to have the beach view. If you took morning train, I will recommend you to take A and B seats, where you can enjoy the beautiful Mount Slamet or in Java, it means Safe Mountain.
Gambir Station nowadays has improved a lot than before. They have lounge, starbuck, dunkin’ donuts, some local restaurants as well as convenient stores. Even buying tickets is faster with online bookings then we can just print the boarding pass with the booking reference number on the self-ticketing machine at the station, just like we do at the airport. They call the self-ticketing machine as CTM (Cetak Tiket Mandiri). ヽ(°〇°)ﾉ