Teaching in Bali
The people are incredibly sympathetic and helpful, the beaches are fantastic, as are the cities I mentioned above. Of course, my new friends also made the time unforgettable. Ultimately, I would recommend to anyone to visit Bali and participate in any of the projects.
My planning for the journey has started quite spontaneously. Eva, with whom I studied with, told me about her upcoming project in Bali and a week later I also applied for Studentsgoabroad. Although the time was relatively short, everything went smoothly. If I had any questions, I could always contact the people at Studentsgoabroad. After the application, a Skype conversation, the visa application and the packing, I finally started on the 05.10.16. Eva and I first flew from Frankfurt to Singapore and then finally arrived in Denpasar where we were picked up directly by our driver who was also sent by the organization. We stayed in the south of Bali, in Ungasang, which is close to Nusa Dua and Jimbaran. We were welcomed by 8 other roommates in our accommodation which was of course very pleasant for the first orientation.
The first day
On the next day, the program coordinators on Bali came and took us to the project. Eva and I helped in a kindergarten and the elementary school. The kindergarten and the elementary school were founded by Susan, a very sympathetic, open-minded woman who has two children herself. In the morning, we were at the kindergarten and helped the women working in the kindergarden with little things. From 11 o'clock onwards we went into the elementary school. Eva and I taught English and German. This meant that we also had to prepare lessons, design examinations and, of course, teach. We had a great time at the school! The kids are great and it was nice to see the teachers being so happy about our help.
But this was only a small part of our trip
Apart from the weekends we also had a lot of free time during the week. We spent a lot time on the beaches. Most beaches were only 15-20 minutes by scooter away from our home. Although the traffic on Bali is something new after some time you master riding the scooter. I learned to ride the scooter first on Bali and have not had any problems. Apart from the beaches, there are also a few nice cafes to visit. Since we, as already mentioned, lived with 8 other people, one was of course never exploring Bali alone. Nevertheless, it was also nice to stay at home, sit together on the terrace and eat 'Nasi Campur', listen to music and chat.
The weekends looked more lively
Most of the time we were on the road and explored other places on Bali. Our first destination was Ubud. Only Eva and I were traveling together this time and spent most of the time eating. The "Clears Cafe" and the "Cafe Pomegranate" are highly to recommend. There, you sit in the middle of a rice field. We were there for the sunset and the atmosphere was fantastic. Also, the Blanco Museum is definitely worth a visit, but the Monkeyforest in my opinion was not worth a visit.
Gili Trawangan, Canggu and Lovina
The weekend after that we were on the road with Paulina, one of our roommates, on Gili Trawangan. The boat trip was quite expensive in comparison to everything else on Bali, but it was worth it. The beach was rather disappointing, because we had seen so many beautiful ones. But to get to know new people and to celebrate and dance in the evening, it is the right place. One of my favorite cities is definitely Canggu. We were there once also over the weekend with the whole flat share. Firstly, we wanted to go to the 'Oldmans' in the evening, but as it is with big groups, everything was a bit chaotic. So we ended up after a long shopping trip and delicious food at the 'Crates Cafe' and 'Betelnut Cafe'. We were at a beach bar at Echo Beach where we had one of many incredible nights. The next day we went to Kuta Beach where we were surfing as usual. Above all, for beginners like me, the beach is very recommendable for surfing. Afterwards we went by foot to the 'Lovina Tattoo studio', where almost everybody one of us got a tattoo. Lastly, there is still Seminyak, this city has a bit similarity to Canggu, but in my opinion is by far not so nice.
The next weekend destination for us was Lovina. This is a place in the north of Bali and therefore for us a three to four hour scooter ride. In the meantime, the wet season had begun, which did make the trip even more crazy regarding the scooter drive. It was worth the exhausting ride though! In contrast to the south, everything is green and thick in the north, it looks beautiful. On the way we visited the Gitgit waterfalls and the hot springs, where it was really pleasant to bathe in the bad weather. In the morning we got up early, since we booked a Delphintour. I do not recommend this. You feel like you're on a hunt! I only felt sorry for the animals because so many boats were chasing them day after day. But what was great was the snorkeling afterwards!
Mount Batur - a highlight
In the meantime we found out that two of Eva's and my friends were also on Bali, so we met the two in Ubud the next weekend. The highlight of the three days was the volcano tour to Mount Batur. For this we got up at 1 o'clock at night and arrived home again only barely 12 hours later. The climb was really hard due to being tired, but it is doable for everybody. And the feeling and the view when you get upstairs are great!
My personal conclusion...
About Bali in general, I can only say that at first it is not the paradise that one might have imagined. It is very dirty and there is a lot of poverty – and everything was just completely different to Europe. Nevertheless, one feels very quickly at home. The people are incredibly sympathetic and helpful, the beaches are fantastic, as are the cities I mentioned above. Of course, my new friends also made the time unforgettable.
Ultimately, I would recommend to anyone to visit Bali and participate in any of the projects.