Arriving into Bali and the predictable chaos of its international airport, I was glad to be whisked away to the tranquillity of Alila Uluwatu, a beautiful clifftop resort on the south coast of the island. My one bedroom villa here was exquisite, bright and airy with a fabulous private pool and gazebo.
In the morning, I walked down the 600 steps to the beach where waves originating from Antarctica crash against the coral reef - a spectacular sight and well worth the 600 steps back up! And in the afternoon I visited the temple of Uluwatu, from where the resort gets it name, before watching the sun set from the cliffs overlooking the famous Uluwatu surf break.
I flew east the following day to Labuanbajo on the remote island of Flores to board Tiger Blue, a traditional timber phinisi and my home for the next three nights. I was welcomed aboard with a glass of champagne and shown to my simple but comfortable cabin, before setting sail to explore the myriad islands of the Komodo Archipelago. Days were largely spent diving and snorkelling on some of the world’s finest reefs, and meeting some of the most varied, colourful marine life imaginable, but there was also time for the occasional land excursion - on one of these, a bush walk across Rinca Island, we were lucky enough to see the famous Komodo Dragon.
Evenings were equally memorable - sunset drinks beside a driftwood fire on empty, pristine, white sand beaches, delicious al fresco dinners on Tiger Blue’s stunning deck…the perfect way to end a perfect day in paradise!
For more information on Bali, view The Ultimate Travel Company's Indonesia holidays.