We recently spent a weekend in Bali, staying down in Nusa Dua.
Highlight of the trip? Hands down the diving at Manta Point and at Crystal Bay in Nusa Penida. While we were cautiously optimistic of spotting some mantas at Manta Point, we did not dare to get our hopes too up, given our relatively dismal luck diving on recent trips. But the moment we plunged into the waters, we saw dozens of these enormous creatures gracefully swooping beneath us. It was glorious. We also spotted dozens of blue spotted stingrays on that same dive. There might have been macro creatures to gawk at, but our attentions were fixated on the mantas.
It was macro heaven though, at Crystal Bay. We swam in and out of startlingly cold thermoclines, but saw so much: a squid, flounders, a wobbegone shark, hairy crabs, decorator crabs, two leatherback turtles, and schools and schools of colourful fish. I kind of regretted not having brought my underwater camera along (it’d seemed like too much work to lug all that gear along for just two dives).
We also spent one day signed up to tour the major attractions of Bali – Ulun Danu Beratan Temple on the shores of Lake Bratan, Jatiluwih Rice Terraces, and Tanah Lot Temple. To be honest, while the rice paddies were gorgeous to look at, we were very underwhelmed with the temples. They took forever to get to – our visits to the three sites took up the entire day, and we spent more time on the road than walking around the temples. To start with, we couldn’t even go into the temples themselves, so there wasn’t much to do except snap a few pictures. That said, I was grateful for the long cart ride, because I’d come down with a bad case of food poisoning the day before, and so felt pretty much out of it the whole day.
Still, food poisoning notwithstanding, we had a lovely short respite in Bali, and are very much looking forward to returning during Mola Mola season to see those astounding sun fishes!