Archivo de la etiqueta: BIGTRAVEL

The Sacred Monkey Forest, Bali

An afternoon at Ubud, Bali, can became as funny and salvage as this!

These are the photos of our experience with the little monkeys of The Sacred Monkey Forest. The place that inspired the house of “King Lui” in The Jungle Book, the Disney version.

If you are planning to travel to Bali you may also be interested in this posts:

How to plan a BIGTRAVEL – Accommodation in South Asia and Australia

Planning a big travel is not an easy issue as you may imagine.  We didn’t have a year or a couple to travel but just a month and a have, 56 days to be precise. And we weren’t rich (we still aren’t) so we haven’t enough time, nor money to do and see everything we’d like to do and see. But, the fact was that we could do and see a lot of things if we plan it well! And this is what this post is about: planing it well to enjoy it as much as possible!

 

big travel golosina map
Big travel map, planning where to go

Choosing places:

The first thing was to start canceling places from our wishlist to remain with the ones we could afford. We wanted to see something at  South-East Asia and of course something in Australia (since we’d been living in the country for 8 months without moving outside Sydney cause we were just working and saving for this big travel). But we were dreaming about visiting also New Zeland, Tazmania, Philipins… and a loooooong list.

At the end we decided the places trying to match the calendar and the cheapest flights. The best airlines we found there to match theses two things were Air Asia and Tiger. And so we took this destines at the end: Bali, North of Thailand, Cambodia and some spots in Australia as Melbourne, Adelaide, Ayers Rock (Uluru) and Cairns. We know we could have seen much more with more time or money, but we don’t regret at all our decision.

 

Accommodation:

Once we had the places and the flights we had to look for where to sleep. And this isn’t easy at all. The destinations were so big (as Thailand) and we have never been there. So we used different online tools as tripadvisor (the best to know other guests opinion), laterooms.com (this one has been always useful to find the cheapest places everywhere), booking (few times)… to find places and know the point of view from other people. We even spoke with some friends in Australia that have been traveling or living in these countries.

But even if you try to organize it as well as possible, during a big travel things will change and not all the choices will come as the best ones. So, these were our accomodations, why we chose them at first, how we felt when we where there and what we think about them now:

Bali: Rumah Capungh in Ubud
  • Why?  We’ve heard that Ubud was the most artistic and authentic place to be in the isle and we saw that it was in the center so we though it could be easier to move from there to evere place in Bali. One friend reccomend us this houses in the middle of the rice fields cause he lived there for a couple of months.
  • How was been there? The place was a dream and we felt like queen and king. But even if we rent a motorbike it wasn’t easy to move around and we hadn’t as much beach time as we had thought.
  • Now? We still think it was the perfect place for what we did but if we go back we’ll have a couple of days there and then move to other place near the beach or maybe better to another island (Bali is so crowded and confusing)
  • Web: http://www.vacationhomesbali.com/
Thailand: Lannathai Guest House in Chang Mai
  • Now? We know now that we could have found a better (and more or less same price) place, Chang Mai was fall of hostels and more and maybe we could have found a place just there at our arrival.
  • How was been there? Just ok, not the best but neither bad.
  • Why? We found it on laterooms.com and thought it was really cheap and near the city center.
  • Web: http://www.lannathaiguesthouse.net/
Cambodia: Angkoriana Hotel in Siem Reap
  • Why? We though it was cheap and really good seeing it online.
  • How was been there? It really was cheap and amazing! Huge room with huge beds, nice swimming pool, good restaurant, massage at the pool… and it was easy to move around with all the tuk tuk waiting for us at the hotel front door.
  • Now? We’d go back to the same place!
  • Web:  http://angkorianahotel.com/
Melbourn: Nomads Hostel
  • Why? Cheaper (bit not cheap… in Australia everything is expensive!) and near the center.
  • How was been there? The hostel is cool, clean and with a really good ambient. Near the city center by walk.
  • Now? It’s ok, we didn’t find a better place for a night at Melbourne.
  • Web: Nomads Hostel
Adelaide: friend’s house
  • Why? It’s so goood to have friends over the World!!!
  • How was been there? Like beeing at home for a couple of days. Our friends were Italian-Australian and they made us feel like in Fulvio’s country town.
Ayers Rock: YHA Backpackers
  • Why?  There is only one place where you can stay in Ayers Rock, it’s an accommodation complex with 3 choices: hotel (the most expensive), hostel (a little bit cheaper in shared rooms) and camping (cheaper but you need a campervan or a tent).
  • How was been there? The hostel was an authentic “dessert” place, with all this red sands all over around. We shared a room with two girls we didn’t see. We cooked our own food in the funny community kitchen and it was ok for visiting the Uluru which was our goal in this destination.
  • Now? No more choices so ok!
  • Web: YHA Ayers Rock
Cairns: Nomads Esplanade Hostel
  • Why? We just found it online and it was “cheap” (for Australian prices).
  • How was been there? Horrible! It seems cool and hippie. So dirty!!
  • Now? We feel lucky for being there just for a couple of nights 😦
  • Web: http://nomadsesplanade.com.au/

Agnkor Wat by bike

We stayed in Siem Reap for four days. It was the rainy season but we weren’t so unlike (we just have one fun anecdote about it that we’ll tell you on another post). So we could enjoy the place by walk, by yuk-tuk, and by bike!

The second day we visited Agnkor Wat temples (yeah, the ones with the big heads and the trees going into the stone that appear in Lara Croft film) we made it by bike. It was hot and we finished exhausted but experience was amazing and the photos as well.

If you don’t believe it, look for yourself!

How to save for travel and adventures

One of the things that stop more people deciding to travel is money. But the idea that only rich people can travel is wrong. We believe that if you want you can, it’s just not as easy… but nothing great is easy!

Today we’d like to share with you a new idea to save money for big dreams and travels. We found it online last year and we are doing it during 2014. We hope we’ll save enough for a new BIG TRAVEL soon!

Do you know the 52 weeks money challenge? Well, we started it on January 1st but after a couple of weeks we realize it would be really challenging at the end of the year. So now, taking this great idea from the blog “pocket your dollars” we are going to do the opposite.

So, in spite of: Saving increasing amounts each week. Start with $1 during week one. Then, increase your savings by $1 each subsequent week. That means in week 37 you save $37 and on week 52 you sock away $52. Which is the “52 weeks money challenge idea”.

We are doing this: on the first week set aside $52. Then next week, we decrease the amount and save by a buck and set aside $51. On week 37 we’ll save $16 and on week 52 we’ll save a whopping $1. Why? On the blog they have a perfect explanation that we share:

  • Immediate results. After four weeks you’ll have an extra $202. Under the rules of the other challenge you would have saved a measly $10. In fact, it’d take you until week 20 to save $200+ under the other system. After 4 weeks of doing this the PYD way, you’ll have something real and valuable to show for your efforts. Don’t believe that immediate results matter? We do!
  • Get the heavy lifting done. If $202 seems like a lot of money to save in January, then trust it, it’d be an impossible amount for you in December. Let’s do the hard work right now, when our motivation is highest. Then, come next Christmastime we only need to find an extra $10 in our budget. Nice!
saving excel
Excel example for 52 weeks saving
(We are doing it with euros no dollars, but the idea remain the same.)

They even recommend not to save it in a jar… but we love this romantic idea, so at the moment we are still doing it that way. Maybe when the amount is bigger we’ll deposit it in the bank!

Good luck with your savings travellers!!