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<font color='#736AFF'>This isn't really a "planned trip" as such, but as per a request from Diving Dude in the bar in Lochaline on Friday night I just thought I'd share some information about the holiday that Gavin and I will be going on in May (and you will see how we can afford another holiday!!).  Who knows though, if anyone is interested it could be a YD trip to Bali!!! Classy!

First thing to say is that we have no concerns re: our safety going to Bali:

1. This is our fourth visit to Bali (the first one being our honeymoon in 1999).
2. Bali is one of the friendliest, safest, most spiritual places I have ever visited.
3. Since the bombing there will obviously be heightened security to prevent any repetition of last year's tragedy.
4. We are at least as likely (if not more likely) to encounter "difficulties" with terrorist attacks in the UK

We are going 24.5.03 to 7.6.03 (2 weeks) and flying with Garuda Indonesia direct from London (Gatwick) to Bali (Denpasar).

We paid about £380 for our flights although a recent check on the Garuda website http://www.garuda-indonesia.co.uk/home.html shows that they are currently offering a special offer price with flights at £362 return.  If anyone feels rich enough I would highly recommend the Premium Economy seats (at about £600 return).  That said, Garuda's economy seats do well in seat dimension comparisons with other airlines http://www.airlinequality.com/Product/seat_intro.htm .

As for accommodation, we are staying at Flashbacks bungalows in Sanur http://www.flashbacks-chb.com/   The bungalows are owned by a fantastic Australian couple - Pete & Jan.  They moved from Oz to Bali a few years back, bought some land and built a house for themselves and their family, three bungalows around a swimming pool and a coffee house/restaurant at the front.  The staff there are friendly, attentive and very helpful.

Pictures of the bungalows can be seen on their website.  They are clean, comfortable, have air-conditioning, TV and own fridge and prices are currently - wait for it ......

£15 per bungalow (based on twin share ie. £7.50 per person!) and INCLUDES breakfast.
The cost is £13 if a bungalow is in single occupancy

There are also rooms for rent in the house - £7.50 each for a twin or £6.80 single (again - inclusive of breakfast).

The diving good (not the best in the world, but the water is hot (c.28 degrees), the viz is good and there is plenty to see - ask Gavin about his first Manta experience).  Incidentally, this is another good reason to go to Bali since the fishermen are likely to resort back to cyanide or explosive fishing techniques if there are insufficient divers visiting.  We dive with Crystal Divers http://www.crystal-divers.com/english-html/english-frameset.htm .  The dive centre is owned by a couple of Danish women who are great fun and are now great friends of ours.  The centre is well run and your every need will be catered for (one possible exception is NITROX fills - although I think they were looking into this when we were there last).  One of the boat boys will take your kit down to the boat, kit up for you, help you in and out of the boat, lunch (if out on a day trip) will be provided, as will soft drinks and water and then someone will carry your gear back to the dive centre and rinse it for you all ready to do the same again tomorrow!

Anyway, all of the above is a way of illustrating how you can have a holiday to an exotic tropical island for less than £500 for two weeks (flights, accom' & breakfast - although obviously not diving).

By the way, no, I'm not on commission!

Hope that provides some food for thought.

Fi
 

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Fi,

this looks great, as you said a really cheap holiday with only the cost of the diving to find and your dinner and drink! I'm going to e-mail them for this years prices.

Cheers
John
 

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<font color='#000F22'>John - that is this year's prices.

If you wanna go some time give me or Fi a shout and we can assist in arranging diving - we can always get a very good discount  - and stuff like transport and accomodation.
 

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Hi Gav,
Sorry to hear about your misfortune up in Mull - hope everything is now mended!! When I read Fi's post she said the £500 didn't include diving so I thought I'd e-mail the centre to get the costs of dive packages for this year. When I get their mail I'll copy it over.

Cheers

John
 

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<font color='#000F22'>Ah gotcha ...

If you say that Mr Gavin from Scotland sent you they should knock off another 10%.

Diving with Crystal usually costs about $60 US a day including food and drinks.

If you bought 5 or more days that would go down quite a bit.
 

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Well, at least I managed to get the links off Fi... You soft, southern, English nanacy bar... Hang on, I'm English too,,,

Darn.

Well, you did have 3 pints prior to promising me the links.

Oh well, fingers crossed Mr & Mrs Drifty will be joining you (Assuming you don't mind and I get the top-stonker job in Weegie-ville)

Nice place
 
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