I had the opportunity to interview two of our past “Best Dive Job in The World” contest winners, Kenzo Kiren (2011 winner) and Marlies Tumolo (2012 winner) about their 7 month’s “Zero to Hero” – PADI scuba diving internships program in Bali So, get out from all those traveling paper work, course list, and all the prep hanging above your head and scroll down.
Find out how Marlies & Kenzo made the best of their time here in Bali…
1. Expect a Cultural Adventure. Sampling the culture is something Marlies looked forward to on her free time. “There are so many things to see in Bali; the colorful ceremonies and rice paddies are breathtaking, the culture is rich,” She explained. “My suggestion is to take time and explore when you are not diving, and you will never be disappointed!” Check out the rice field photo Kenzo took when he was on his way heading for a dive trip in Tulamben.
2. Expect a Revolution (in Traffic Attitude)
“Get a scooter (motorbike) and explore!” as Kenzo stated the best way to explore Bali. You can also rent a car if you’re going with a group of people, or rent a bicycle if you can’t ride a motorbike. But motorbike is surely the most popular for daily transportation needs. The revolutionary thing about riding motorbike in Bali is that the traffic situation is unlike any other places in the world. You have to be prepared for things you’ve never experienced before. The road could change into something of a wild wild west situation with motorbike riders roam the streets like cowboys. Police checks are a bit of a routine, so please prepare yourself with an international driver’s license so you won’t be having any trouble. And don’t forget that in Bali, we ride on the left side.
3. Expect Amazing Dive Trips
Bali has a lot of great sites to dive in. Nusa Penida to see Mola-mola, Tulamben with its USAT Liberty Wreck, Seraya, Kubu, Menjangan, the list can get very long with each sites has different great dive spots. As for Marlies, Seraya is her favorite. “Seraya is a hidden treasure.There is so much life in a place that seems like it would be void of any,” she recalled. While Kenzo adores the USAT Liberty Wreck spot in Tulamben.
4. Expect an all-in-Entertainment in a single location.
“KUTA KUTA KUTA!!”as Kenzo explained his favorite entertainment spot in Bali. “I also like a good night on the town (Kuta) and sky garden always calls my name!!! So many good memories.” Meanwhile Marlies described Kuta as “perfect for dancing until your legs feel like jelly.” And even if you’re not a hard core party type, there’s Ubud for those who prefer a totally different atmosphere of tranquility.
5. Expect to form memories that last a lifetime!
“Many of my favorite memories in Bali took place at the Blue Season BBQ’s on Sunday nights. Sitting in circles having drinks and playing music, karaoke contests, a late night dip in the pool, the Hardy’s challenge, and many many snorkel tests.I was surrounded by all my friends and the love was palpable.Perfect memories,” said Marlies. Kenzo recalled his best memories are the relationships and friendships he made from people all over the world who shared the passion for diving and travelling. “I loved the chats with Jon and Tom. Of course the diving, being out on the boats everyday and those long but beautiful drives to Tulamben were #1 moments for me.”
6. Finally – It might just be better than you expected!
People have tons of different stories about Bali, and you may come up with experiences of your own naturally, nothing prepares you for the whirlwind of culture, noises, aromas and people that you will meet. Travel books certainly don’t do this island any justice in my eyes. You just have got to show up and live it for yourself.
So there you go – 6 things you can expect when on a diving internship. Of course when you are here, you will see the list expand as you explore.
My recommendation – check those travel stories you’ve heard and read. Your experience may just supersede your expectation!