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Back to Balikpapan

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large_5550_14685874792900.jpgMy morning walk around Samarinda.
Due to the previous days’ early starts I woke up naturally early as well. I didn’t want to eat too early, so walked down to the waterfront and tried to take a shared boat service across the river. The boatman said there wasn’t any as it was too early. He said he would take me to the old mosque (my went across diagonally and I got dropped off at a jetty that took me there, after walking through some stilted houses.

From there, I walked along the road to where I’d be able to take a boat back to near my hotel. It was a short wait for the right boat to come along and a number of use took the crossing.

Breakfast at the hotel was reasonably good. I rested in my room to kill some time as I didn’t want to get to Balikpapan [Balikpapan-travel-guide-861133] too early.large_5550_14685874857621.jpgGetting dropped off a the old mosque.Around 1030 I checked out and ordered a taxi to the Kangaroo shuttle terminal for their service to Balikpapan city (rather than airport).

The terminal ticket office was bursting at the seams and I could only be taken three vehicles later but that wasn’t too bad as they have a departure every 10 minutes. They load up 10 minutes beforehand so I was actually on board in no time. Unfortunately, the vehicle had been parked for a very long time and it was very hot inside. The aircon cooled the air down but the surfaces remained scorching for a long time.

It was the same 2h30 to Balikpapan airport and another 30 minutes to town. I took an angkot partway to the Ibis and walked the remainder. It was nearly three by the time I sat myself down for lunch at the hotel restaurant.

For some people the Ibis, is a low-grade hotel.large_5550_14685874995966.jpgThe old mosque.For me it is a treat! This particular one was even better as it was attached to the Novotel and guests can use the fitness and pool areas. I did some laps and lay in my nice big bed for a rest.

When it cooled down a little, I took a walk to the west to have a look a the mosque (from the outside) and then to Kemala beach. The beach would have been nice enough but there was too much litter. The oil tankers offshore didn’t add to it but Singapore’s east coast beaches with a lot more tankers somehow looks more appealing.

Around town, there are more signs of wealth than in say Samarinda. The sidewalks are in good shape, there are nice eateries, shops sell plenty of things that aren’t just basic essentials.

I found an eating area overlooking the sea and had a simple meal of capcay and rice. It was nice to have a bit of atmosphere for a change.


Posted by alexchan 17:00 Archived in Indonesia

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