Bali & Lombok Experience

Ancient temples swallowed by the jungle, rice paddies, local markets, stunning beaches, fiery cuisine, smoking incense at the feet of a golden Buddha, and the friendliest locals around.

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Bali & Lombok Experience

Postby rcampol » Fri Jan 14, 2011 7:57 pm

I just booked this trip for September and was wondering if anyone out there has been on this trip?

Robyn
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Re: Bali & Lombok Experience

Postby mrj1983 » Mon Apr 18, 2011 4:55 am

Hi Robyn,

I'm considering to do the Bali and Lombok trips in October. The only thing that makes me hesitate is that they're not guaranteed yet.
Have you booked your flights already, hoping that enough people will book the same trip so that it takes place? Or are you waiting until GAP guarantees the trip, which could mean that air fares have gone through the roof?

Cheers,
Jan
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Re: Bali & Lombok Experience

Postby rcampol » Tue Apr 26, 2011 7:35 pm

My September 11th departure is still not guaranteed, so I have not booked flights. I have noticed that the cost of the flights has increased dramatically since I booked the trip...getting a bit worried.

Robyn
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Re: Bali & Lombok Experience

Postby mrj1983 » Sun May 01, 2011 2:21 pm

That's why I've done it the other way 'round: booked my flights already for a relatively low price and will book the trip later. If GAP cancels it I can still discover the islands individually. Apparently English is widely spoken on Bali and Lombok, so that shouldn't be a problem...

Jan
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Re: Bali & Lombok Experience

Postby alima95 » Sat Jun 16, 2012 9:31 pm

Hello,

NEVER G Adventures Bali and Lombok Tour

I would like to provide some description about Bali-Lombok Tour by this company,
which was a complete rip-off!
In terms of money that we have paid and the conditions that were provided.

Terrible hazardaous conditions, unethical behaviour of the guide, and visible signs of corruption made this tour disgusting and a wate of time/money.

Would like to warn everyone not to be hooked on this trick!
Dont add profit margin to the company.

Read a full review with pictures here:

http://www.facebook.com/GAdventuresBaliLombokTour

Regards,
Anna
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Re: Bali & Lombok Experience

Postby JackyM » Sun Jun 17, 2012 4:15 pm

I would like to share another side to this trip. I was on the same trip with Anna and clearly our expectations and experiences were very different. Our guide was fantastic and had the patience of a saint! I don't know what "corruption" or "hazardous" conditions she is referring to, I saw no such thing.

Basically 4 people on the trip did not read the pre tour information and expected European standard hotels, and because they were not up to their expectations they made their feelings very clear and brought the whole group down with them (with constant complaining and rudeness to all)

Despite this the rest of us had a great time. We loved the trip, the local people were wonderful as was our guide. My only complaint about the whole trip was those 4 people! I hope you never have to travel with them - so for that reason alone I recommend booking with G :lol:

This is my advice to you as clearly you can see 2 very different sides to the same trip and I am not assuming your view would be the same as mine:

- This is Indonesia, not Europe. Hotels will be different - bathrooms are not the same standard (not that I had a problem with any of them, it depends on your expectations).
- The trip style is standard, not comfort. If you want 5* this is not the trip for you
- Lombok is a bit more basic - it is Bali 20 years ago. There is a hint for you right there! Assume Lombok is more basic than standard (some of the bathrooms at one of the home stays had drop loos, we had a sit down loo but you used a bucket of water to flush) - if this is not for you then stick to just Bali, but it would be a shame to miss Lombok.
- Gili is paradise, but its not Maldives 5*. Our hotel and room was lovely (with a pool) but its the island that is paradise. We went to Gili Air, there are no 5* hotels on Gili Air. You will need to pay about $2.5 for a horse and cart to take you and your bags to the hotel from the port. Its not a lot of money - refusing to pay the cart driver because you are upset that its not included in the tour is disrespectful! If you dont want to pay, walk!
- There is a limited supply of fresh water on Gili so be prepared for slightly salty water from the shower and taps. It was fine, but clearly some people had a problem with this (hint, its mentioned in the pre tour dossier)
- G Adventures call them self the "adventure people" - if you are not up for adventure, stick to a 5* all inclusive resort within your comfort zone!
- This is Indonesia (yes I am aware I repeated that bit of advice) - there will be spiders! Not likely in the room (if they are, ask someone to remove it, problem solved). An orb spider up in the ceiling that doesnt move for 24 hours is not a massive deal. If you think it is, Lombok is not for you!
- If you have travelled with G on a basic or standard trip before and have an open mind, and want a local experience on a relaxed and varied itinerary then this is a good trip for you
- There is likely to be a tip kitty on this trip - about $10 per week. It means your guide takes care of tipping local people so you dont need to worry about finding small change. It is optional but it is customary to tip in Indonesia and you should expect to tip if you use the services of local people. Again tipping is mentioned in the trip information.
- Most importantly - READ THE PRE TOUR INFORMATION! This will give you what you need to know and you can make an informed decision if its the right trip for you. If it doesn't sound like your thing then I wish you a great holiday on another tour (with or without G Adventures, but this was my 5th and certainly not my last tour), but please don't go on a tour that isn't to your taste and then spend the whole time complaining about it. Our CEO did everything he could to help - but because he couldn't offer a full refund nothing was good enough.

Also G Adventures is all about giving back to the local people. On the way to Ubud you visit a foundation for disabled people. You have lunch (its included in your itinerary) and if you want you can buy some of their crafts (a few of us bought paintings, they were very talented). Certain people (I don't think I need to explain who) did not want to be there on their holiday and felt this was inappropriate. If you do not believe in giving back, like them, then maybe G Adventures isn't the company for you.

With regards to the queries below about booking the tour, I booked last August both flight and trip. Flights will go up a lot and you will be limited on times if you wait too long. I found the trip booked up within a few months before the departure date and was full, as was the trip before. I am not sure if September is peak season but I am sure you will be fine. If it doesn't guarantee I am sure you could find another option. (I would like to caveat this is just my opinion and I dont want to be held responsible if you book the trip and it doesn't go ahead :wink: )

I am sorry that your forum conversation has been used in this way to "debate" this particular trip but I didn't want you to only see one side of the story and be completely put off by one person's experience. Obviously I cannot tell you if you would have the same great experience as me - only you will know that.

Bali is a fantastic place, it changed me and I hope it does the same for you. Enjoy 8)
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Re: Bali & Lombok Experience

Postby JackyM » Mon Jun 18, 2012 3:15 am

Hi All

In the cold light of day it is obvious I wrote my response with emotion rather than constructive advice. So if you don't mind I would like to "revise" my response, which I hope will help.

As with everything, travel is about expectations (personally I thought the pyramids are a bit small!). If you set your expectations from the start you should be fine, which ever trip you are on.

Yes a few people were dissatisfied but on the whole the rest of us (and those from the 2 previous trips as I got to meet some of them) were very happy - I caveat this is a generalisation, I didn't speak to everyone about everything.

- Read the pre tour information so you know what to expect. A few of the hotels don't have hot water (Bali is mostly hot, so I found it refreshing but you might think otherwise), the water in Gili is "brackish". Personally I didn't have a problem showering or brushing my teeth in this water
- The trip style is standard. Standard is not the same everywhere you travel and it certainly isn't the same to your home country. Be mindful of this
- Lombok is Bali 20 years ago. The hotels are more basic but you get the real local experience. If like me you prefer the local experience to a hot shower and flushing toilet then great, if you prefer 5* luxury then Lombok is not for you (but that would be a shame, it's an amazing experience)
- If you have allergies or phobias consider carefully your trip style and destination, but I am sure you already know that! I saw 3 orb spiders on this trip, 1 at the hotel (not in the room) and 2 next to an outdoor restaurant. I saw 1 cockroach in a restaurant toilet. I thought that was pretty good actually, but again its about expectations.
- Tipping is optional but customary. You will likely pay a tip kitty of about $10 per week - the guide gave the money to passengers to give to the locals on our behalf so I saw with my own eyes it gets to them. A log is kept so if you didn't do an activity you don't pay the tip. I think it makes it easier than finding small change every day for local guides and drivers
- This is Indonesia - go with an open mind and an open heart and you will love the country and its people.
- Personally I always booked my tour and flights together and not had a problem, but it is never a guarantee (well, sometimes it is). As long as September is still tourist season you should be fine - our trip was full as was the previous 2, and there are other similar tours. If you are unsure book your flights with room either side with a back up option tour if possible. You dont have to stay in Sanur after (in fact most people didn't) - taxi's are cheap and easy - just budget accordingly. You may even be able to get something last minute whilst on your tour in case you change your mind about where to stay
- If you want to read "Eat, Pray, Love" whilst in Bali, start reading before you go. I have only just got to the Bali part since returning a week ago! :lol:

This was my 5th G trip and I intend to do many more. If you have any specific questions I would be happy to answer them.

Happy travels
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Re: Bali & Lombok Experience

Postby Praha335Ci » Wed Jun 20, 2012 10:41 pm

What was the predominant age group and nationality on that tour?
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Re: Bali & Lombok Experience

Postby JackyM » Thu Jun 21, 2012 8:26 am

It was a very varied age group from early 20's to mid 60's (about half in 20's & 30's)- this is a very easy tour from a physical perspective. We had about 8 different nationalities (although randomly most people lived in the UK, USA or Canada) - nearly half were Brits but I don't know if that is a typical representation. It was a really nice mix of people.

I recommend posting on the departures forum nearer to departure to possibly connect with your fellow travellers - I have done this a few times and its nice to build a rapport, as well as ask those all important questions (what are you taking etc)

Hope that helps!
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Re: Bali & Lombok Experience

Postby sophbl » Wed Jan 02, 2013 7:22 pm

I did this tour last June and I had a really really nice time. Really hassle free if your a solo traveller and not that confident about going in alone. I had a nice group and was really glad I did it. My main criticisms of it are that you spend a lot of time travelling (but thats the same with any tour) and not that time walking around the streets which look so interesting from the window of the bus. The comments above mention sub standard accomodation and admittedly a couple of places were a little iffy but some were also great. By iffy I just mean not what you would get in Europe but thats to be expected really. Same with insects, no matter how clean the rooms are sometimes they are just going to get in. Personally if you wanted a more luxury trip I would do the Bali tour without the Lombok one and then go myself to the Gili Islands. The Lombok week is the one with the least glamour, especially the ferry! However I still enjoyed the tour in total.
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Re: Bali & Lombok Experience

Postby sophbl » Wed Jan 02, 2013 7:44 pm

heres some of my photos if your want to have a look at the places we visited.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/sb4lynn/se ... 002462780/

http://www.flickr.com/photos/sb4lynn/se ... 307694430/
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Re: Bali & Lombok Experience

Postby chichamus » Sat Jun 29, 2013 2:02 pm

How unfortunate that you didn't read the pre-trip notes before booking your GAdventure trip. Your local travel agent could recommend a resort if you want all the bells and whistles of western travel accommodation. Gadventures is a wonderful travel company for travellers who want to experience another country at the front line. I have never had a bad experience in the 8 trips I have taken with G and have met wonderful people in and from many countries. Poor you.

quote="alima95"]
alima95 wrote:Hello,

NEVER G Adventures Bali and Lombok Tour

I would like to provide some description about Bali-Lombok Tour by this company,
which was a complete rip-off!
In terms of money that we have paid and the conditions that were provided.

Terrible hazardaous conditions, unethical behaviour of the guide, and visible signs of corruption made this tour disgusting and a wate of time/money.

Would like to warn everyone not to be hooked on this trick!
Dont add profit margin to the company.

Read a full review with pictures here:

http://www.facebook.com/GAdventuresBaliLombokTour

Regards,
Anna
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Re: Bali & Lombok Experience

Postby sabcat » Sat Jul 20, 2013 12:40 pm

wow your photos look amazing!

sophbl wrote:heres some of my photos if your want to have a look at the places we visited.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/sb4lynn/se ... 002462780/

http://www.flickr.com/photos/sb4lynn/se ... 307694430/
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