Well I promised you a post about this very special experience and there we go.
I did some reseach before I came to the island, and found out, that a scooter is a good idea to choose, but also saw the pictures of the roads that led to the main attractions on the western part of the island. Also, all, and I mean all of the blogs I digged into said one thing: don’t drive on your own unless you really, really, have great scooter riding skills. I would rate my skill as good, but still was more than happy when my host provided me the option of getting a scooter driver who would show me around.
What you see on the picture is one of the cheap, 50kW scooters you can hire all around Bali. It is no offroad bike. It is not too massive. It’s a nice way to ride between villages and towns or on the main roads in Bali. In my opinion, it is no ride I would choose for a road, that is extremely rocky, steep, has holes, loose ground or even steps.
But: they use them for these roads. And some super motivated tourists too. You can quickly recognize many of them with scratches and wounds on their shins and knees. The ride was extremely bumpy, I was so busy in holding on to the scooter that I didn’t even had time to take a picture of what they call a road. And I was too happy not to ride alone, first, because I would get lost as usual, and second, because I didn’t want to be one of the many accidents that happen. It was still a hell of a ride, my ass hurt after 4hrs of riding, I got a sunburn on my shoulders and tighs and was too happy to finally fall down from it in the evening and took a walk in order to move my legs again. And ahm, yes I was a bit worried when my driver told me “Many accidents. Two weeks ago, Dutch guest.” Did this mean a Dutch person had an accident driving or he had an accident with a Dutch guest?? We will never find out.
So in my opinion the few Euros of hiring a driver including the scooter and the gas for the West Tour is definititely worth it, as long as you don’t want to to getr any injuries because you crash with it. You could see in the tourist’s eyes, that they also didn’t have fun while they tried to fight the steep, rocky roads. It seemed like hard work in the burning heat… And hey, we were super slow, and I had an experienced local as driwer – the others I saw, were a looooot slower for the same distance.
For the other parts of the island, I can highly recommend getting one on your own als long as you know how to drive on the left side – and the local special procedures like honking before every turn or corner are easy to learn. It costs just a few Euros per day and is great fun, as well as you can see a lot more in a more convenient way than walking or with a bicycle.