KTM Resort, Batam

It has been such a long time that I been to Batam. So for M’s big 50, decided to bring her over there for a day of pampering and relaxation. Unfortunately due to a packed weekend schedule, we could not stay overnight and has to be contend with just a day trip.

After looking at the options available, we decided on KTM Resort for a 150 minutes of scrub and massage. Plus hopefully nuaing around the swimming pool and even out the tan lines.

Our first stop after reaching the resort was therefore the Spa Village. To reach there, we have to walk by this nice little row of partially sheltered walkway. Each shelter comes with a large hammock and 2 deck chairs in between. In front is the sea and behind is the pool and a lagoon.DSC_0488

The massage room comes with its own jacuzzi bath tubDSC_0474

And some with single or 2 or 3 beds. The best thing is all the rooms face the sea. And no air con. The room is cooled by fan and the sea breeze.DSC_0478

The therapist are no young ladies but ladies in their mid forties which mean they are more experience. Indonesian massage is more gentle and soothing and relax unlike the type I usually get in Singapore which is more teh sports massage type.

Unfortunately after lunch, it started to rain and because we had no room to check in, we were stucked. The therapist allowed us to take shelter in one of the massage room and we laze around until the sun came out DSC_0486

We went to the pool but barely 10 minutes later it started to rain again and so we ended up in the restaurant until our departure back to Sekupang Ferry Terminal. What a bummer!

The resort looks pretty clean.  The rooms on top of the hill look great. There are water sports available. But other than that, it can be quite boring with just 1 restaurant and nothing much else.DSC_0480

Uniquely Bali – Head Strong

Balinese women are head strong, err I mean  strong with their head. They can carry practically anything on their head as these few photos show

This street vendor has some t-shirts on her head
This one has knife, scabbards and all sort of killing objects

This lady is carrying canangsari 
This one has 3!

Fruits are commonly transported on top of the head

Like this street vendor
These ladies going to the temple
Bananas!
Look no hands!

Uniquely Bali – Flowers

Balinese are very religious. Everywhere, there are temples, shrines and unique little trays of flower offering. These cute little flower trays called canangsari (I hope I got that right) are placed as offering to the spirits and for blessing. Hence they can be found everywhere.
Stack of canangsari for sale
A vendor at the market in Ubud
On car dashboard
Another one on a vehicle but this one on the outside
On a sidewalk
On a hotel table
A bigger version in a hotel lobby
Another one in the hotel we stayed at

Makan Bali – Seafood

This one is not so much about good food but about seafood in Bali. Bali, being an island surrounded by the sea, should have plenty of seafood right? Well, yes there is Jimbaran Beach which has a whole cluster of seafood restaurants. Naturally when we said we wanted to eat seafood, our driver cum guide brought us there.
The nice but so dark beach restaurant
The atmosphere was fantastic. We sat on the beach on beautiful wooden chairs. There was a band of roving musicians moving from table to table. There was also traditional Balinese dancers. Great for a romantic night dinner until we saw the price of the seafood.

It was super ex by our standard. Coming from a place where a lobster can cost close to a $100.00, when I said expensive I mean it is really expensive. After looking through the menu which was basically just a list of seafood items with prices on a per kg basis, we settled for the set menu for 2 which looks the most reasonably priced.

This is a platter of seafood – 4 Tiger prawns which seems very small, 5 squids, 6 mussels and 1 fish. Plus of course the kangkong and 2 beer and a tiny plate of fruit. All that for RP800,000 excluding tax which came up to about S$110.00.
Not satisfied, we went to Kuta Beach on another evening and this time we went to this very atas looking place.

Bali seems to serve seafood in only 1 way ie barbecue and the restaurant had a similar menu to what we ate at Jimbaran but for a quarter of the price. We ordered the mix combo which was again 4 Tiger prawns, 4 squids, 6 mussels and 1 fish plus a tiny plate of fruit. No drinks included.

Fish and mussel
Prawn and squid

We threw in 2 beers, a soup and a desert of chendol and the bill came to RP400,000 or thereabout, about half of what we paid for earlier and we got the beach, nice comfortable sofa seat in a gazebo overlooking the sea with candle light of course.

The lesson we learnt was never to be led by the tour guide. Do our own research first and choose only those place we have heard good review of otherwise be prepared to be butchered!

Beautiful Bali – Kuta Beach

On the 3rd day after the race, we moved from Sanur to Kuta and finally got a chance to walk the world renowed Kuta beach. But our first impression was marred by the rubbish and trash all over the sands. And the locals were lying among all the filth like it didn’t exist. And there were a lot – the local and the trash.
But walking further down the beach, he beach fronting the many hotels had been cordoned off and was impeccably clean. I wondered how Singaporean would make of this if part of our East Coast Park is cordoned off for tourists?
Then the sun set and it was spectacular. No wonder all the hotels had build gazebos, pavilions, dining area to face the sea to take advantage of the view. We ate in one of these place on our last night there and it was indeed very beautiful and romantic.