Lombok and Bali 5 Oct - 24 Nov

This post brings us up to date on the first phase of our amazing cruise so far.  Apologies to those who have been relying on this blog to follow our progress.  A combination of internet access and laptop charging issues have meant that blog posts have been not as current as we would have hoped.  We have now fixed the charging issue so hopefully good internet access will allow us to keep this up to date when we restart our cruise in February.  We also post regularly to my Facebook page so you can seek us out on Facebook.

Sunset at Gili Gede taken from Donetes

Donetes Cruise 2017

Indonesia Central - Eastern Portion

Indonesia Central Western Portion

Gili Lawang Anchorages
Having departed Moyo Island at 6:20am and travelled 54 NM we arrived at Gili Lawang at 4pm.  The light was fading and the heavy cloud coverage didn't help so we could not see the reef that circled our preferred anchorage. After several attempts and nearly striking the reef we headed across the passage and anchored in a slightly rolly anchorage on the northern shore of Lombok Island.

After a relatively comfortable night we awoke to a stunning view with the sun rising in the east over the ocean and the moon setting over the foothills of Mount Rinjani.

Calm Waters Departing Gili Lawang

Relaxing in the Cafe/Bar at \Medana Bay Marina

A second consecutive 6:20am departure saw us travel the 38NM to Medana Bay on the north-west corner of Lombok in six hours
Linda had developed quite a taste for Bintang

Medana Bay Welcoming Committee

Our First Sunset in the Very Calm and Pleasant Medana Bay Marina

In the calm tranquillity of the first marina we had come to in Indonesia it dawned on us that we had been travelling for over two months and it was time for us to start holidaying.  This meant that we would need to abandon our plan to reach Langkawi in Malaysia by Christmas and find an alternative location to leave our boat when we returned to Perth for Christmas.  While we had spent several days in Kupang and in Kalabahi and had looked around both locations we now had a chance to take our time to enjoy the delights of Lombok.

Green Crops fields in Lombok

More Delightful Smiling (and cheeky) Faces

Calm Waters of Medana Bay

Floating dock at Sengiggi

At Sengiggi Harbour

400 Year Old Mosque and Site of Killings by Dutch

Sendang Gile and Tiu Kelep Waterfall

Linda Enjoying  a Chilly and Windy Dip

Steve with Fallen Rain-forest Log

The road from Medana Bay to the Lombok capital of Mataram travelled along the Monkey Forest Road where hundreds of monkeys came to the road for food due to the scarce foraging in the forest.

Ancient Hindu Temple near Mataram

Healing Waters will cure a broken heart and regrow hair according to the guide

Orchid growing on tree at Hindu Temple built in 1600s

We heard of a music festival in Tanjung nearby to Medana Bay.  Our driver took us to what turned out to be a talent contest with widely ranging musical skills on display.  One of the Masters of Ceremony was a friend of our driver who arranged for Linda and I and two friends to be called up on stage and be interviewed on our travels and impressions of Lombok.

Relaxing off the back of the boat

At the recently built Islamic Centre in Mataram

Linda making friends again

Dome of the Islamic Centre with Mount Agung on Bali visible in the Background Immediately behind the tip of the Dome

We were asked to dress appropriately to enter the Mosque, here beside the large drum which is used for emergencies and as a call to prayer before loudspeakers.

The main hall in the Centre was huge.  Men pray on the floor,
women on the first floor and other visitors on the second floor

After a morning visit to the Islamic Centre an extravagant seafood lunch beckoned in Sengiggi

This photo was taken from Gili Air and shows a squall that blew boats and their moorings ashore at nearby Medana Bay
 We spent five days at the famous Gili Islands nearby to Medana Bay.  We stayed the five days as Steve completed a scuba dive course however the weather was very blustery as a result of a super typhoon over Japan and strong lows west of Perth combining to drive strong winds up the Lombok straight.  The boat was bucking so badly that a mooring line tethering us to a mooring wore through at the point where it went through the toe rail on our boat.  Luckily I had anticipated this and had three lines attached just in case.

Steve on his Open Water Scuba dive Course on Gili Air

Steve and Linda relaxing on Gili Air at the end of Steve's Dive Course

Mount Rinjani from Gili Air

Back at Medana Bay

Linda during a walk along the beach at Medana Bay with our boat in the background

Boats at Medanda Bay

Weird Looking Fish under our boat

Local Fishermen up to their necks in water casting their lines into the deep channel at the entrance to Medana Bay

After returning to Medana Bay Linda returned to Perth for a week to tend to some investment property issues and see her daughters and grand-daughter.

Linda boards the fast boat to Bali

Very Calm Conditions preceding start of the wet season

Steve lost several kilos in the first few months of the trip.  Despite putting some back on while 'holidaying' in Lombok and Bali it was necessary to put extra holes in his belt to hold his pants up.

Steve with Peter and Eva from Sweden snorkelling on Gili Trawang

Bachelor's Breakfast of Banana Pancakes on the day that Steve went to Mataran to obtain his visa extension.

Music and Dinner in Sengiggi with couples from Sweden and the Netherlands while Linda was in Perth

Steve's bachelor dinner

More views of Medana Bay

Working on the Mooring Lines at Medana Bay
 On Linda's return from Perth we decided to head to the southern Gili islands of Lombok and then on to Bali with a plan to circumnavigate Bali and then return to Medana Bay where we would leave our boat for Christmas.

Linda at the helm as we depart Medana Bay.  Our host Peter Cranfield and his family were delightful people and very helpful.  We were very disappointed not to return to Medana Bay due to the early onset of the wet season monsoon and the early return to Perth.  Hopefully we call in there again on our way north in February.
 We departed Medana Bay a 6:30am on 5 Nov heading for Gili Gede.  With no wind we motored the 38 NM.

On arrival at Marina Del Rey we were struck by the first, highly unexpected, squall of the summer.  42 knot winds had some boats breaking from their mooring positions as we secured our boat in teeming rain.

Local villager and child on Gili Gede

Steve on walk in Gili Gede

Linda and Steve kayaking in front of Kokomo Resort on Gili Gede.  9 km kayak trip this day.
Stunning sunset at Marina Del Rey, Gili Gede

Our dinghy on the beach at Palmyra Bungalow Resort opposite Marina Del Rey

On another daily walk

Shopping during 12 km walk

Relaxing at sunset

More storm clouds gathering

On the beach after kayaking to a nearby snorkelling spot at Gili Gede

Bye-bye Donetes for two months as we depart for a few days in Bali and then home.

We had a very pleasant night at Kokomo Resort on Gili Gede before heading to Bali.

Eating at Kokomo

The morning view from our room at Kokomo Resort with Mount Rinjani on the skyline

Linda taking a picture of me taking a picture of her taking a picture of..........

Storm clouds gather as we prepare to depart for Bali

At our Hotel in Kuta (Bali)

Steve making friends

Been there, done that, got the Bintang Singlet!

After a very nice four days in Bali we flew back to Perth the day before the airport closed due to Mount Agung erupting.

From 1 August to 5 Nov we travelled 2,669 nautical miles, crossed the Timor Sea and definitely extended our sailing horizons.  We met some beautiful people along the way and our experience has left us looking forward to more.   Two truisms we have been left understanding as a result of our experiences and those of many of the cruisers we met are: the perfect boat is the one that gets you on the water, and the most important part of the whole experience is deciding to do it.

Our blog will return in February with hopefully more great experiences to relay.

With love and gratitude to my courageous and beautiful wife and life partner, Linda.

Just cause I love this photo

The Most Dangerous Lie has a Grain of Truth haha


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