Our second day in Amed didn’t go to plan. I get a lot of migraines but usually only 1 every few years that has me in hospital after I get sick of alternating between ‘talking to the toilet’ as Noah puts it and groaning in bed for a day. As Murphey’s law would have it, the first time on our holiday that we are 4 hours from the nearest hospital is when one of these migraines hit. While I lay in bed, Colin took the kids swimming and out to lunch with their new Canadian friends. They had a lovely lunch on a seaside hilltop overlooking the north coast of Bali. That night we enjoyed one of Life at Amed’s special dishes – nutella jaffles. Unfortunately not as nice as they sound but the kids enjoyed themselves.
The following morning we packed up our gear, had one final swim and jumped into the car to head back down south. We decided to drive the long way back over the mountains to Lake Batur to show the kids a volcano. Since this would mean getting back into the south of Bali around 5pm we predetermined that we would either go to Ubud to stay at Nick’s or head back to the Sanur Paradise Plaza Suites so we weren’t dragging the kids around the streets of Bali looking for a place to stay. If only we had of stuck to that decision… but I’ll get to that later. The road from Amed west is flat, quiet and at times you can even get up to 80km/hr. Inland there was heavy rain so we couldn’t see Mt Agung as we drove but the coast was very pretty. When we drove this road 10 years ago it was on a sunny day – viewing the mountain in the distance was a highlight. But at least this time we didn’t have to bribe any policeman! An hour out of Lovina we decided to take the first road up the range to Mt Batur and have lunch inside the volcano, rather than at Lovina. Heading up the range to Mt Batur was one of the steepest ranges we’ve driven on, with so many corners that Noah ended up a bit car sick. We hit heavy rain which made the drive interesting but by the time we got to the top we were driving in the clouds above the rain. The view back towards the coast, as well as out over the volcanoes was amazing.
Noah and Hayley enjoyed sticking their hands out of the windows to feel the clouds. We even stopped a couple of times to stand in the clouds. A big treat, and the kids were very amazed to discover that clouds are wet.
Pulling up in Batur we found a restaurant just past the turn to Ubud that had an amazing view of the volcano. The rain lifted just long enough for us to look at the volcano while we ate. The food was average and over priced, but the experience and view made it worth while.
Eating inside an old volcanic crater while looking out on a new volcano was the highlight of the drive for Noah.
It started to pour just before we had to get back in the car so we all ended up drenched and driving half naked. Thankfully no cops pulled us over to ask questions as to why. We really didn’t want to have to explain the story of how the funny tourists ended up driving half nude.
The road down from the volcano was much easier. Hayley fell asleep so we decided to not stop at Ubud and keep going to Kuta to see if we could find a place to stay… which was exactly what we said we wouldn’t do. By the time we got to Kuta the kids were overtired and sick of the car. We tried a few places but they were either too expensive or booked out so we decided to head back to Sanur and try there. After dragging the kids around two places in Sanur we gave up and went back to Little Pond for our last two nights in Bali. We so should have stuck to our original plan as that last two hours spoilt the trip. Anyway, our last two nights at Little Pond were great. We went back to some familiar restaurants, went shopping, got conned into attending a hotel sales pitch deal (which we got out of by taking the Ipod’s away and telling the kids ‘You know how we always ask you to be quiet and good… well this time we want you to run around crazy so we can leave here’ ) and eventually made our way to the airport to head back to Malaysia.