Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Rent & Ride Motorbike In Bali (My Experience)

It's been a while since I rode the motorbike, but that didn't deter me from renting a motorbike - a scooter in fact, during my recent trip to Bali.

Call it an impulse decision, or call it wanting to relieve the teenage days. Or simply call it - cos I was on a holiday.. on an island!

Well, first off the ride wasn't as smooth as I've had expected. Well what to expect - I was rusty after all.

And I have never rode a scooter, and was a lil uncomfortable with the brakes.

But I guess what really complicated things were the heavy traffic in Bali. Especially the area I stayed at Kuta.

There are a lot of cars and other motorbikes too. Traffic - was rather heavy (surprise, surprise!) and you can say - dangerous.

There were times I couldn't brake on time, and for that I went rather slow. Motorbikes were overtaking as well - especially at the crossroads and once the lights turned green and I thought that that was a lil dangerous.

Owh, and I rode all the way from Kuta to Uluwatu. With getting lost and all, it took me over an hour to reach the destination.

I took some time to stop, rest & enjoy the sunset on the way to Uluwatu.
But saying it all, riding the motorbike has its fair share of fun. I could enjoy the view better, and stop along the way . It's through this that I chanced to meet a talented little girl at her mum's food stall. And how I found Lia Cafe Jimbaran - by actually getting lost!

Also, there's just something different about riding the bike on an island holiday.. yes just like in the movies. Haha!

So do I recommend renting a bike in Bali? Well you can. But here's my tips: be careful especially on the busy roads and don't ride too far - unless you are staying for long and has familiarized yourself with Bali's traffic.

I wonder why it's called Teh Tarik. Lol. These are the oils sold along the road. 
Owh, and I was also told not to buy those oils sold at shops along the roads, despite it being convenient. For apparently some are not genuine.

Have fun!

*Got my scooter through the hotel. It's not that cheap after all the additional costs (insurance, if not wrong).

Monday, October 29, 2012

Uluwatu Temple (Pura Luhur Uluwatu)

Visiting Bali cannot be complete without visiting its temples. And amongst the must visit ones is non other than the Uluwatu Temple (aka Pura Luhur Uluwatu).

And it's actually surprising that though I've been to Bali a few times now, it's only in my last trip that I visit here. So this time round, I made a point to visit the Pura Luhur Uluwatu.

The place isn't actually that far from Kuta - though it still took us over an hour to arrive by bike (more on that in another time).

Upon arrival, we were pestered to buy some sarungs - being told by the shopowner that our shorts were... too short (and inappropriate).

But luckily we didn't heed her advice and proceeded to the counter - where they lent us sarungs to cover ourselves.

Simply beautiful views at Pura Luhur Uluwatu!

There was an entry charge - and it 'came' with a tour guide, who guided us to see the cliffs. Ah, the views were stunning, as it was also the sunset time at that moment.

Seeing the sunset, with the view of the wide ocean.

I must say the views are astounding. It's exactly like the views we see in the movies!

But we couldn't enjoy the views long.. as soon, the kecak dance was about to begin. Now the kecak dance that is a repetitive cak-cak-cak is another must watch thing on the island.

And though I've seen this before, but never amidst the beautiful sunset backdrop - and with the moon appearing too.

Everything was simply breathtaking, and I was just soaking in the mood of being in Bali - and at that location and moment.

Truly an evening well spent, and a very pleasant one. Though it could have been better if the 'tour guide' didn't demand for a fixed amount of tip, just for that less than 15 minutes guide.

*Tourists going on their own to watch the Kecak dance are advised to go early, to be on time for the dance performance, and to get better seats. We obviously came a lil 'late' and had to cram up above with other tourists :)

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Mickey Mouse & Friends Meets Voltron (Chogokin King Robo Mickey & Friends)

Are you a fan of Mickey Mouse (and his friends)? And how bout Voltron? Well, some of you in my age group will probably remember that robot and its cartoon series. 

Btw, I'm not so much a Voltron fan, but when I read headers of a toy that has both... well, that got me reading. 

Googled a bit, and it's true. A Voltron set with the Disney characters are being previewed at the Tamashii Nations Toy Fest this weekend!

Mickey Mouse, Donald Duck, Minnie Mouse, Daisy Duck, Goofy and Pluto can be combined and formed as body, hands & legs of the robot Voltron. 

Apparently, the head is Steamboat Willie, which I think is the steamboat that all of them appeared in one of the most memorable Mickey Mouse cartoons for me. 

The figurine will not be out till March (in Japan) and set to be at 13440 Yen (bout 170 USD). Owh wow. Now, if you are a fan, will you get one? 

*This toy reminds me of the Mickey Mouse & friends Transformers toys. 

Friday, October 26, 2012

I'm Playing The Agent Dash Game App

With already so many things to do, I hardly have the time to play games (okay, put that I shouldn't have time for them).

Well in fact, I've never really played much of them even during childhood days..

But then, there's the iPad. And while time is limited, but a simple game that requires short learning curve and short playing time kinda change that a bit.

One of the games - most people know is Angry Birds. Then a few (or is it many) popular games later, comes Temple Run.

Well, this is not Temple Run, but a 'copy' of it. However instead of tilting the device, Agent Dash needs fingers to move the agent.

The game is fairly simple - collect as many diamonds, and avoid the blocks on the path by turning left, right, jump or slide. Ah, anyone can play this - and now you know why I do too.

And with points collected, one can purchase additional items like the extra life saver, which comes in handy because this game don't have extra lives for the agent. Meaning if you crash into something, you start back at square one.

That's probably the setback of the game, and maybe the reason I spend not as much time to it as say the Angry Birds.

Owh but I must say the graphics in the game is quite cool - which is one of the main reason how I got into playing this game. There's quite a buzz about that online.

But then I have only seen 3 different scenes so far, and wonder if that's all there is.

Owh and I also like the animated characters that the agent does when winning a level, making it feel a lil more 'interactive'.

In overall, it's worth to download & play this app - during the free time.. and even if it's just for a bit :)

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Istanbul Aku Datang! (Movie Review)

It's been quite a while since I watched a Malay movie. But today, it's an exception. Fellow friends are involved in producing this movie - Istanbul Aku Datang! (Istanbul, Here I Come!), and I've been (one lucky guy to be) invited for their gala premiere night. 

Now, what do I know about Malay films? Not much ever since I went overseas to study. Of course, there were the occasional movies I watched like Puteri Gunung Ledang or some films from KRU. 

But apart from that, I would be rather clueless. Yes, clueless would be the word if you'd ask me to watch a Malay movie. For I don't know what to expect having 'lost touch' with the industry a bit. 

But then again, it's a lil different for this movie - and I'm not as 
clueless. Partly because I've seen the works of the team behind this movie (Red Films) - and their works are pretty neat/ good. Plus, look at that poster that greeted us at the event earlier - I knew it will be something awesome. 

Lisa Surihani, amongst Malaysia's most popular actress at the moment

And true enough, the movie is. In a one liner synopsis - Istanbul Akan Datang is a good urban romantic movie - set in.. Istanbul. 

Now, I'm always on for cool romantic movies - those that are chirpy & fun. And that's all here in this movie. For those who thinks Malay movies are more sombre and conservative, well, this movie will 'shock' you. 

Beto Kusyiary, an accomplished actor with quite a string of movies under his name. 

I love the fact that this movie is trendy, and that shows both in the story line and language. It has good mix of Malay and also (superb) English dialogues by the casts. 

Owh, and the fact that they potrayed Istanbul as this romantic city.. ahh, that's another plus point too. For I have always believed in using the media (eg videos, movies) to promote tourism. And they did it quite alright here. Though I would have preferred if there were even more romantic spots of the city. 

Tomok - popular singer, and now actor. His song for the main theme is superb too!

The storyline is not cliche. It has its twists, though not overly drama. This suits the overall feel of such a romantic comedy movie. The casts (Lisa Surihani, Tomok, Beto Kusyairy, Aizat, Farid Ramlee, and gang) are superb, and acted their roles well. Partly, this is due to the fact that they have had intensive classes & lessons before flying to Turkey.

And of course credits to be given to the director - Bernard Chauly. I've so far only watched 1 of his films/ TV series - Goodbye Boys, but I've heard of him and the Gol & Gincu series he directed. He has the touch to direct shows for the urbanites, and does it again (very well) here. 

Most of all I admire the scriptwriter - Rafidah Abdullah for coming up with such a wonderful story. And to know how to combine fun, comedy, romance.. in a film, and at the same time promote tourism. 

In all, a wonderful "mesti tonton" (must watch) film to those who love such genres movie, doesn't matter your language. Thumbs up!

For those keen to catch the stars, here's the good news - they have a road tour!
*I can't help but to add that - I feel some connection of the Summer Love series we've produced and this movie, in some ways (think promoting tourism through videos) :)

*Fans who wanna get connected - they have a Facebook fanpage too: Istanbul Aku Datang.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

The Best Roasted Chicken Ever - Go Fast Bali!

Before this trip, I never knew that Bali has that much good food - and varied too!

While I've tried the babi guling and the pork ribs.. which were really good, but nothing beats this Go Fast roasted chicken!!

This to me is the best roasted chicken I've tried, and that is coming from a fan of roasted chicken!

Now again thanks to my Bali buddy for introducing this French restaurant. For I wouldn't have guessed even if I pass by here - as it seemed really quiet. But then again, we went in the early evening..

And while they serve pizza too, my friend suggested to just have the roasted chicken.

And in a short while, the plump, juicy and succulent chicken was served. The spices is so well penetrated in the chicken. And it comes with delicious gravy too. All for a perfect roasted chicken meal!

Honestly, I will want to come back here again. But the next time, I'll make sure to have an empty stomach for this! :)

Jalan Raya Semer | Jalan Mertanadi, Canggu, Bali 80327, Indonesia.

Opens 11am - 10pm. This place has delivery too.

Monday, October 22, 2012

I've Scholl!!

Ever heard of bioprint shoes? Or memory cushion or arch support shoes?

If you haven't, well fret not. I just heard bout them recently too. Probably one reason for being such a late learner is because we have never been taught bout how to take care of our feet..

Me, fellow bloggers and friends trying out Scholl. 

But well, all that changed for me last weekend. For in that short 1 hour, I learn bout that - and a lil bit more.

The more being - that many of us have 'problematic' feet like the flat feet which I face.

Well I knew I have flat feet but never knew that it was a problem. And the fact is - it is. By not addressing the issue, this can apparently lead to lower back pain in the long term.

The biomechanics slippers/ sandals. 

But there's a solution - which I found out. Apparently, Scholl has their shoes designed for different problems.. and the 2 recommended technologies for flat feet are the biomechanics & the arch support shoes.

Minus the heavy terms.. simply put, the biomechanics shoes realigns the posture of the feet while the arch support supports the arch of the foot. This is done by having a gel support towards the back of the shoe.

Simple huh. Well for a 100 odd year old company - it is!

Btw apart from work shoes, as you can see above, Scholl also has other types of shoes, sandals &  slippers.. including the new casual Darron range for this Autumn Winter. The blue one is pretty cool - I'd say!

Wearing the Scholl to work today!

But since I'm looking forward to experience the arch support, plus the fact that I'm looking for a new pair of shoes, I've got one pair of work shoes from the Arch support range.

Owh yeah,  I'm so looking forward to have a new experience with them for this will be my 1st time getting such technologically cool shoes! :)

The Scholl shoes I chose was for work - but here, it still fits for a casual wear.

*Btw I'm back to using brown shoes.. well like the sales personal mentioned - it helps to look young-er! Haha!

*After 2 weeks of using the Scholl shoes, my feet feels less tired even after a long day of work.. and need less legs massage :)

Friday, October 19, 2012

Nuri's Pork Ribs (Bali's Most Popular Pork Ribs!!)

Pork ribs. How good can it get? Well.. Nuri's (Naughty Nuri's) pork ribs is owh so good!!

Honestly, I never appreciated eating ribs. What's more pork ribs.

And when introduced to this outlet, all I had wanted was - yea to share the ribs with friends (instead of getting a whole portion to myself).

But my friend insisted: "You got to have one for yourself".

I gave in. After all, this Bali friend of mine is quite a foodie, and his recommendations have been good.

So there we were in a simple and neat restaurant located in Ubud.

The ribs could be seen being cooked/ BBQ right at the front of the restaurant.
Talk about open kitchen concept - they nailed it here.

We went in - and ordered nothing else but what they are most famous for: the pork ribs! (okay, I actually ordered some greens at the side).

And well, as you probably have guessed - the ribs are simply awesome! Tender & succulent meat with tasteful gravy!

Lets say that - it was "heavenly"! I liked the additional spicy gravy that came to it.

Most reviews from other tourists including from Tripadvisor gave high ratings & thumbs up to this place. Some say it's the best pork ribs in Bali, some say in Asia.. and even the world!

Well the same goes to me. It's here that change my perception of ribs, and to a further extent, pork - and how good it can be!

A not to be missed when you are in Bali!

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Bali Most Popular Babi Guling: Ibu Oka!

Babi guling is like the most popular dish in Bali. And Ibu Oka is probably the most popular babi guling restaurant in Bali!!

Well, it is after all made famous by food critic Anthony Bourdain. His recommendation has apparently made this restaurant stand out of the few good ones (I was told by a local buddy).

Anyway, I've always thought of trying the popular babi guling.. and I'm glad that on this trip I did! And all thanks to my buddy who introduced the place.

The restaurant can be easily located at Jalan Suweta - and just opposite the Ubud palace. From afar, you can see the place being crowded with tourists! And soon, we joined them!

Apparently, we were lucky to get seats, without having to wait.

And the food came pretty fast too. The dishes are individually served - but one can order additional stuff like thr fried pork skin (yes, it's sinful - in both senses!).

The pork meat tasted good. The jackfruit accompanying it added some extra touch to it. It also helps that the rice is served warm (unlike many local establishments).

But the best of the lot - the crispy pork skins! And the gravy too. These make the babi guling here special, and very suitable for most tourists (though I'd personally prefer if the food was spicier).

Btw I was also informed that this outlet itself servers up to 8 pigs a day. Owh wow! And there's just another outlet further down the lane.. just in case his gets too crowded!!

Well, I'm glad I have tried this! And as far as it goes, it is so far the best babi guling I've tried!! And it is definitely better than the other one I tried before this - which I'd say is 'beyond compare'.

My advise to those wanting to hang some good babi guling? Eat this! :)