Thailand, Indonesia, Vietnam · 28 Days · 24 Moments · April 2016


2 May 2016

A night out in Jogjakarta! We decided to dress ourselves in the popular Indonesian batik shirts...Crusty as but the locals loved it! Started off in a hotel and partook in a beer speed drinking competition. Cathal and myself were drawn to compete first...yelvo narrowly gained victory after Cathal's rule confusion...complicated game like!! Proud (I think?) to say I went on to finish second in the tournament and won a free buffet breakfast which we took FULL advantage of!! We indulged in some well deserved McDonald's and the lads went to see a movie, VIP style! I stayed in and watched Liverpool...needless to say I fell asleep!! So Indonesia was over, think it's safe to say we loved every minute of it. A stunning country everybody should try and visit, I cannot recommend it highly enough. We were sad to leave, we won't lie, but it disappeared fairly quickly when we touched down in Manila! Oh and the matching colours incident was purely accidental!!

30 April 2016

So Indonesia comes to an end. Probably the most incredible country I've ever and will ever be to. The scenery, culture, food, the wildlife, the people, this country has it all. We spent our last few days in Jogjakarta. Rented a car and driver and visited Borobudur and Prambanan temples, Kembang Soka waterfall, Chicken Church and Jomblang cave where we were lowered underground into a 50m deep, 25m diameter sinkhole via rope. We then made our way up through the cave system to the end or "Goa Grubog" as the natives would call it. This is where the light shines through the cave roof in spectacular fashion! The fruit Towell has is a mangosteen, very popular in SE's delicious!

29 April 2016

27 April 2016

Waterfall trekking and jumping, moped adventures, too much pizza, fish markets and rotten Bintang😷 in Labuan Bajo. Left LB for the historical Jogjakarta 28/04/16. Cathal and Cherrie left earlier than Kevin and myself, we then met them that evening in Laura's Backpackers. Quiet evening as we had a 5am start. Hired a driver who drove us to one of the largest Hindu temples in Indonesia (Borobudur); 2million rocks taken from local rivers, 53 years to build, 3 renovations, 19 centuries and 3 tiers each telling a different story. Then headed for a refreshing dip in Kembang Soka waterfall...beautiful...before heading to temple #2 (Prambanan).

25 April 2016

Part 3. The evening of our final night some of us went to a small village "Eco village" across from where we docked for the night. We were like celebrities there. Played football and games with the kids, put them on our shoulders, took photos with them (which amazed them), bought them sweets and made lots of animal noises which cracked them up! On our return to the boat we saw numerous flying foxes (Google them!). We all enjoyed a few beers on our final night. Some went swimming with the "bioluminescent phytoplankton" (again google them) absolutely incredible to see, even from outside the water! A good nights sleep was had by all, finally! Day 4 began at 7am as per usual. We visited Komodo and Rinca Island where we saw the massively muscular, man eating, cannibalistic, infectious and venomous Komodo dragons. They can smell up to 7km away, hunt alone yet share their prey, run at 20km/h and live until 50. Scary creatures! We arrived in Labuan Bajo at 5 and DEVOURED a pizza!!
Famine ship part 2. We were all shattered, 2 nights of trying to sleep in choppy waters on leather mattresses 2ft wide, 5ft long and 2" thick began to take its toll. We needed some adrenalin, fast! And fast it came. We stopped off at Manta Point where we snorkeled with numerous, enormous Manta Rays. The highlight of the trip for most of us on the boat. Such intimidating creatures to look at but absolutely harmless. Some of us were also lucky to end up in the middle of a school of fish. We swam there for over an hour. This is advertised on all trips but not guaranteed due to currents, weather and the Manta's location. Luck was on our side big-time! Our next destination was Red beach where the sand is red. Hard to see during daylight but very obvious at dusk. Beautiful snorkeling where some of the guys saw turtles too.
The famine ship part 1. So we went with a company called Komodo Adventure Tours. Started off in Lombok cafe, Bangsal...horrendous start! Boarded the boat about midday and sailed for Sugian island, stopping for a dip on the way. Very choppy waters, mild seasickness but nothing to stop us hardy Irish folk...yet! Lunch and dinner was served on the boat (rice, served with noodles, seasoned with more rice and spiced with rice flavoured chillies, noodles for desert...delicious!). That night we set sail for 12 hours, destined for Moyo island (the waterfall). In the pm we visited Satondia island for swimming and snorkeling. Beautiful coral on display, we were also fortunate to have met the cast of Finding Nemo and our dinner 2nights previous! That night we set sail for 16 hours, docked for a quick breakfast and swim then headed for Manta Point.

22 April 2016

Kuta, Lombok. Stayed in heavenly homestay. Just two night here in order to recover from Rinjani's assault and prep ourself for the 4day 3night "famine ship" that awaited us! A well deserved hot and spicy pizza and a large Bintang on the first night and some freshly caught fish (snapper and parrot fish) grilled in front of us the second night. Rented mopeds and went surfing on Friday morning, that was entertaining! Stopped off in a hilltop restaurant for lunch on the way back, beautiful view of kuta beach. We left for Bangsal harbour the morning of the 23rd where we boarded the famine ship...the rest is history! By the way Bangsal is like "being on hill 16 during a Dublin game...full of scrotes!!" Kevin Towell, 2016

19 April 2016

Rinjani part 2. It last erupted in 2015 and consistently erupts every 4 years. In some of the pics you can see smoke billowing from ground. Cherrie displayed some vibrant colors very elegantly!

18 April 2016

3day 2night camping trek up Mt. Rinjani. Unanimous decision made that it was one of the toughest activities we've ever undertaken, mentally and physically. Sweat, shivers, sunburn, shortness of breath, tears, DOMS, poo-holes, rice, noodles and very little conversation!! We were exhausted and came close to packing it in, although we never admitted it to each other at the time! But getting to the summit of a 3726m volcano and watching the sunrise was worth every second. Words/photos don't do it justice.

16 April 2016

Last few days with Eoin and Louise on Gili T and Gili Air. Sleeping outdoors, mosquitos, Bintang, space bars and incredible sunsets.

15 April 2016

Hostels? Nah 5* resorts and snorkeling with turtles😎 stayed a couple of nights in Oceano resort Gili T to "recharge the batteries"!

13 April 2016

Street food, dancing on bars and beer pong (unbeaten😈)....classic Gili Trawangan

12 April 2016

Gili👌🏻 stayed in good vibes and m hostel, great places and air conditioned. But of course the electricity went so no a/c or fan☀️☀️☀️

10 April 2016

Street food and chilies in Sideman!

9 April 2016

Early start for white water rafting along river Ayung. Sits in a valley with walls 200m High in places. Spectacular waterfalls, fast Rapids and feckin rocks!

8 April 2016

Sneaky naggins!
Sunrise hike up Mt. Batur. Left hostel at 2am, began trek at 4am arrived at peak at 6am sunrise was 6.20. Stayed there had 'breakfast' (2 slices of bread, an egg, a banana). Ventured back down at about 6.45 reached the bottom at 8am. Stopped off in a coffee plantation where we tasted "kopi luwak" (made famous by Jack Nicholson in the bucket list). Made from the gastric juices of the Asian palm civet...rough enough!

7 April 2016

Day 1 Ubud; monkey forest mopeds and rice terraces. Louise had her cigarettes stolen and eaten, cathal was mobbed, Eoin had them climbing his GoPro, cherrie was frog-jumped and I had my water stolen...Kevin escaped!

6 April 2016

5 April 2016

Bitter sweet!

4 April 2016

Denpasar, Bali
Beats first class any day!
Air Asia 12pm flight...the Ryanair of Asia!