Traveling outside of Sydney has been an amazing experience, especially since I have done very little of it before I went abroad. For our spring break, my roommates and I went to Bali, Indonesia. Preparing for a trip like this was difficult; to save money we only checked one suitcase for our flight. We had to bring clothes for 11 days because there was no washing machine, so staying under the baggage weight for my carry on was a process in itself.
Bali is a very cool place, but it is by no means a pristine island anymore. It is very crowed, very polluted, and difficult to get around. The tap water is not safe to drink, so we had to stock up on bottle water and purifying pills to prevent any major issues on our trip.
While we were there, we tried to stay very busy and do as many activities as possible. One of my personal favorites was going to the monkey forest, where we got to see them up close and feed a few. The monkeys are very tricky, multiple times we saw them sneak up behind people and take food right out of their bags. We saw some rice terraces, went to some local shows, and one of the oldest temples on the island. We were lucky to be staying right next to a very nice family who happened to run a shuttle company for tourists.
They recommended that before we left, we had to hike up Mount Batur (an active volcano) to watch the sunrise. It is undoubtedly the highlight of my semester. We woke up at 1:00am and drove 2 hours to the base of the mountain and around 4:00am we started going up. It was the most difficult hike I’ve ever done, but the reward was unbelievably worth it. Around 6:00am we arrived at the top of the volcano and got to watch the sunrise over the island of Bali.
Just as the sun was coming up and people were eating some snacks taking in the view, monkeys appeared out of nowhere and started stealing everyone’s food! I almost had to fight one off to keep my PB&J, but I managed to get some great pictures out of it.
For anyone looking to do any kind of traveling, my biggest advice is to plan extensively. You can always cancel plans if need be, but it is hard to think of things to do on the fly with little knowledge.