Just got my free diving level 1 certification! Yay!
Two days before departure:
My biggest plan of the year broke suddenly and I couldn’t be more disappointed. On a beautiful Friday morning, within an hour I decided to go to Bali again with a group of divers who I knew no one before. All paid.
Flight ticket: booked. Hotel: booked.
Bali, here I come, again 🙂 No more hard feelings.
The night before departure: Packing – one of the hardest part of a girl’s trip I think, to decide what to bring and what not to bring.
I only had 7kg of hand carry-on luggage for 7 days ahead. What to bring?
- Shoes/Sandals: 1 pair of running shoes (for lots of walking and trekking day); 1 pair of flip flops
- 1 swimsuit + 1 swimming goggles
- Tops: 2 running tank tops; 4 tank tops; 1 sport bra; 3 normal bra; 1 light scarf and 1 light running jacket
- Bottom: 1 running shorts (just because I don’t have any beach shorts and the running shorts is fast dry); 1 long yoga pants (for trekking day); 2 shorts; 1 mini sport skirt (all of these could be pair with either my running shoes and flip flops); and travel underwears 😉
- Travel towel
- Hi-tech stuff: Canon D30 for underwater shooting, Leica D-lux 6 for normal shooting, cellphone, Kindle paperwhite, chargers for all, earphone
- Dive logbook and diving certification card
- Beauty stuff (all in travel size): deodorant, cleansing oil, shampoo and body shampoo, lip palm, lip stick, etc.
- Personal medical treatments.
I packed all in my large and light backpack. I also packed 1 small trekking backpack and my running belt. I wore the running belt most of the time I moved. It could store my passport and boarding pass, money, earphone.
Breakfast on the go. Morning flight from HCM to Kualar Lumpur.
Lunch at Kualar Lumpur airport. I still had time to grab a coffee for myself.
Then afternoon flight from Kualar Lumpur to Denpasar, Bali.
Arrived at 9pm. Dinner at 10pm. Then 1,5hrs more on bus heading to Tulamben where my new friends and I would spend 3 full days for diving only.
12am. Tulamben here we are.
Tulamben, on the East of Bali island, is a world known site for divers. Along the East side of the island, there are total 17 dive sites from South to North.
We all were too tired for sunrise dive.
8am, 1st dive: Suci place, shore dive.
According to the place we stayed, Matahari Tulamben Resort
2012-2013 Matahari Tulamben Resort started to create a new Divespot just in front of the resort.
Depth 9 to 17 m. Beside the figures of “Buddha”, his mother, the goddess “Dewi Tara”, “Sleeping Ganesha”, you will find different artifacts. In the meantime the place is not only popular for divers. A lot of fishes, net murane, cleaners and critters found a new home and like this place very much. Even Mola Mola and Eagle ray have been there already.
11am, 2nd dive: USS Liberty shipwreck, shore dive – top 10 of best diving sites in the world 🙂 a must-go dive site when you visit Bali as a diver
According to Wikipedia
USAT Liberty was a United States Armycargo ship torpedoed by Japanese submarine I-166 in January 1942 and beached on the island of Bali. She had been built as a Design 1037 ship for the United States Shipping Board in World War I and had served in the United States Navy in that war as animal transport USS Liberty (ID-3461). She was also notable as the first ship constructed at Federal Shipbuilding, Kearny, New Jersey. In 1963 a volcanic eruption moved the ship off the beach, andLiberty ’s wreck is now a popular dive site.
(to be cont.)
… I threw myself out of my comfort zone. For the first time in my life, I traveled alone – trekking to the jungle – completely escaped from the world. Then I soon realized that was the best choice ever I’ve made for myself.
I planned to make this trip nearly a year before departure date, and I planned to go with my almost-marry boyfriend who finally broke up with me for another girl.
With a broken heart, I decided to go alone because this is the thing I need to do for myself – the destination, the journey, the experience. If I keep looking for and waiting for the right companions, I can never make it at all. So that’s it, if you want to do something, move your butt!
Pick up my backpack, book the hostel, make friends, step out of the comfort zone, and enjoy the life!
My 3-day trip is trekking to the jungle, exploring the cave system which one of them is the second largest cave all over the world, climbing through the hills, swimming through the caves, staying away from the world with no phone signal for 3 days… And yet have you found that is the most exciting thing you want to do?
Let me show you
Are you ready? Let’s rock the jungle!
First camp site. This is my bath tub! This first night we slept in the cave, on the hammocks!
Second camp site. This is my bath tub again! This time is way better, I even had a little-natural-water-fall spa. It seems small because it’s pretty far from the place I took this picture. The small water fall is approximately 7m height I guess. There is a huge cave on the left side on the water fall, I will show you below
This is the view when I stood on the rock at the entrance of the cave. The little blue and orange area on the right of the picture is our camp site.
Dinner in the jungle! Yum yum 🙂 We had prok ribs, fried eggs, stir fried vegetables and rice. We also had watermelon and mango as desserts, and home-brewed rice wine!!
Second night in the jungle – we slept under trees. No need electricity. You got the full moon and millions of fireflies like stars. Until now sometimes I am nostalgic about those nights.. Yes I miss them 🙂 no shampoo for 3 days, my hair was dry like straw. It was super hot all the way in and out. My skin was tanned so much more (love it). But despite all the tiredness, sweatness, mosquitoes and insects, etc, whenever swimming through the cave and enjoying the marvelous beauty of nature, I know it’s worth at all!
Entrance to the second largest cave in the world – En cave!
This is the exit way of En cave!
That’s how I started traveling alone in order to make sure this world still has good people and to see the amazing world around me.
I’m sure I am the luckiest girl in the world. In the whole trip, I met the most kind-hearted people you ever wish for when traveling alone, from the tour guide to the porters and others. The day I spent in the city after the tour, I met the couple owners of the pub, and they showed me around the city, invited me their home-made lunch and even brought me to the airport!
You see, when this door closes, definitely another one will open and show you how beautiful this world is!
Back to work and pretty busy because Tet is right at the corner. Everything needs to be done before long holidays. But my mind is still floating somewhere on the beach,
somewhere at the busy harbor at the end of the day
somewhere underwater between corals, fishes, huge jellyfishes, and even scary urchins >.<
I miss the smell of fresh air at early morning
when I was on the boat going to diving spot and the sun was behind
I have been so lucky that I met super kind-hearted people when traveling alone, not just this trip, such as my very nice instructor Melodie, very cute Spanish dive-master Tino (who didn’t have to care about me but he did), very kind apartment owner Viet, very friendly strangers on my journey, all of them made my trip much much more remarkable…
I miss all and each of them, the awesome people, not just the journey. I do hope I could meet them again someday somewhere 🙂
P.S: I’m thinking of buying a Canon D30 or a GoPro 4 Silver. I want to have underwater pictures!!
I just had 4 peaceful days on a very nice island – Phu Quoc, Vietnam.
2/3 of daytime I joined the Open Water Course of scuba diving. And finally certified! Yay! Unfortunately I didn’t have any waterproof camera so no picture of diving 😦
The rest of the day I was just lazy :”)
Since I stayed on the West of the island, so just sunset pictures…
At the harbor, Ham Ninh market
The beach is simply amazing.
Dogs are everywhere, and so cute
Besides few accidents such as got bitten by jelly fishes and sea urchins while scuba diving (and also had seasick and threw up everything on first day of ocean dives, OMG so embarrassed >.<) , the whole trip was completely wonderful 🙂 new friends, new experiences..
Now back to work. Work hard, play hard.