My first trip to Karangasem Bali


On this day in 2003, I had just come back from my first trip to Karangasem. Karangasem is the eastern most district in Bali and probably one of the most enjoyable. People go on about the ‘real Bali’, I don’t know what they’re looking for, but certainly Karangasem offers a quieter, more rural scene than in the southern part of Bali.

If I’m totally accurate, I will say that back in 1993 I made a quick trip to Padangbai and then headed straight back to Kuta. I didn’t explore or really appreciate the area as a whole. This time in Bali, that is, after I moved here in 2003, it was all about discovery, not just landing in a tourist place and staying there. My friend Miguel, who had lived in Bali for about 10 years at that point, suggested a road trip out to Jasri, on the SE coast. This was a real eye opener, as it got me out into the less trafficked places and saw a couple of expats living out there in a way more relaxed way.

Miguel moved from Bali recently and its funny because some of the best adventures were inspired by him. On this trip we stayed at Kangkung Cottages in Jasri with Mark Cripp, the Aussie who owns the place. Mark drove us around at night to the pasar malam (night market) in Amlapura and to a bathing spot by the beach. That whole region is begging for adventure and exploration. If you get the chance, do an overnight trip to East Bali and allow yourself the chance to get on local time and relax.

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Our trip ended with a traffic accident, which spoil it for Miguel, but didn’t affect my time.