WEDDING & LIFSTYLE: Bali On The Quiet
Text & Photos by Chia Ming Chien
Munduk – Puri Lumbung Cottages
High up in the hills, surrounded by vast paddy fields, clove plantations and mountainous peaks, Puri Lumbung is more than a hotel; it is an eco-tourism project dedicated to the discovery, conservation and enhancement of the unspoilt area around Munduk. The villagers – particularly the staff of Puri Lumbung – have an affinity for the beauty and peacefulness of their natural surroundings; and this is reflected in every aspect of this resort. Tranquility and privacy are qualities cherished here.
(To read on, click: Bali On The Quiet PDF)
FHM: Private Parts
When you absolutely have to holiday like a rock star, but don’t have the mega millions to do so. Text & Photos by Chia Ming Chien
This may well be your private paradise, as a few lucky couples have come to discover. Bintan’s Mutiara Beach Guesthouse is less than a year old, and it’s sequestered among 38 acres of coconut trees fronting expansive white beaches. And what’s best: There are just three wooden chalets – comfortably spaced apart so no one can hear you holler.
Mutiara doesn’t get crowded even when full; chances are you’ll have the whole place to yourself. Not a whole lot of people have heard of Trikora beach, up on the northeast coast of Bintan, an hour’s drive away from the main tourist strip. Here’s the stripped-down au naturel basics of Mutiara – and privacy in the open.
The water is crystal clear and Trikora’s bay is the only spot on the Bintan coast where it’s still possible to swim at low tide. The sand is fine, soft and runs deserted for miles. A barbeque by sunset on the beach is a house specialty. The staff, friendly and discrete, will be happy to make a bonfire for you… and that’ll be pretty much the last you’ll see of them as dusk descends and the night sky opens to perform her magic.
(To read on, click: FHM_Private Parts PDF)
TIGER TALES: Surfers’ Paradise
From well-kept secrets to wave rider’s “nirvana”, the Mentawai Islands have come a long way since surf nut Rick Cameron’s arrival 15 years ago, and as Chia Ming Chien finds out, so has Cameron. Text & Photos by Chia Ming Chien
In the present age of easy flights and mingling cultures, it has become increasingly difficult for travellers to uncover hidden gems. Even so, almost from the moment that he arrived in West Sumatra in 1993, Rick Cameron knew he had found something special.
Twelve years earler at 32 years old, Cameron and a group of surf addicts had headed off in search of the perfect wave. They set sail from Fremantle, Australia on board his home-built yacht, the 54ft “Electric Lamb”.
Between them they had “about 200 dollars, ice boxes, anchors and a dinghy donated by friends, “but it was enough to bankroll their trip as far as Indonesia.” As it turned out, the thousands of islands that make up this surf-rich country were as far as they needed to go.
(To read on, click: TIGER TALES – Surfer’s Paradise)
MANDALA MAGAZINE: Surf’s Up in Padang
Want to learn how to surf? Chia Ming Chien may just have found the perfect place. Text & Photos by Chia Ming Chien
Indonesia has some of the best surfing waves in the world and Asian surfers are now among the best at mastering the waves which stretch around Indonesia’s vast coastline. Problem is, if you’re a complete novice, where can you learn to surf? Ideally, you need a place free from danger and embarassment, as well as a patient instructor to help you master the art.
Sky Chia faced a similar dilemma. The 17-year old Singaporean lives in surf-obsessed Australia and she had always wanted to learn. Yet finding suitable “learner waves” proved a real challenge. Coral surf breaks are common here, but can be painful when you get dumped. Beach breaks are much safer, but since they are harder to come by, they can become the most crowded part of the beach.
(To read on, click: MANDALA – Surf’s Up PDF)