Timor-Leste - Corals can live above water

East Timor WAS a very violent place. But as of now, it seems to be safe (at least what UN soldiers here told me). Unfortunately, the UN is leaving East Timor by the end of this year, and lots of locals are afraid that the Indonesian underground terrorists come back to fight again against East Timor. So that's why its time to visit it now and not by the end of the year :)

Jump to Diving in East Timor

October 17 - Arriving in Dili, the capital of East Timor

Arrived in Dili today and a taxi driver took me to the first best cheapest guesthouse. It was in the backyard of a indian "something-like-a" restaurant. But surprisingly the room was clean and didnt have any insects.

Dili is a ugly place and the centre is particulary one long main road which ends suddendly, cause fallen rocks covered the road and cut it in two pieces. Then there is a second road along the coast and the beach. The promenade is actually very nice to walk and has lots of small restaurants and places to get a coke.

The most civilized  place i detected in Dili was the shopping mall, which opened this year. There are not much shops yet inside, but at least a food court, 5 Telecom Shops (all from the same provider), two coffee-shops and a few supermarkets. Als,o there is a tourist information in the mall. I went there and worked together with the two ladies on my itinerary for my week here in East Timor. They were helpful and provided me with a bunch of phone numbers and maps etc.

I knew there are two motorbike rental stations in East Timor. But I spent most of the day searching for them. Finally, I found them, but the choices of bikes they had was marginal and my impression was like "do you maybe have another one?" :). The first rental station had one bike - full of scratches and with a missing clutch. The other one had 3 bikes - one streetbike, one 50cc and one 125cc. So i took the 125cc cause I knew from hearing saying about the road conditions in East Timor. The streetbike is here definately in the wrong country. Tomorrow I will start my trip across East Timor.

October 22 - With motorbike on hiking trails...

I came back today from the motorbike tour and it was awesome, but very exhausting! These roads are the worst! Lot parts are sealed, but even under that circumstance, there could be every meter a huge whole in the road, which becomes visible ten meters before. I said hello to a lot of them, but thankfully I didn’t fall. And seriously, some parts of the road were literaly trekking trails where I had to wheel the motorbike beside me! Its like a wonder that the motorbike is still working.. haha!! The distances itself was just about 450 Km - one way, but with these road conditions, being always concentrated to the highest, was the hardest part.

...To Baucau

The overnight-stop I made in Baucau. Its the second "largest" city after Dili and has a about 3 guesthouses in poor condition and one luxury accomodation. So infront of the hotel, i parked my motorbike and one second later a group of small boys stood around me and the vehicle. They asked questions, acted very nervous with an obvious intention to grab anything that is not observed by myself. That was finally the point where my watch got robbed which was in the bag on the motorbike. Well, at least they didnt steal the motorbike...

From capital Dili to Baucau.

Arriving in Baucau.

...to Jaco Island - Where corals exist above water!

Anyway, I spent just one day in Bacau. But somehow I had the strange feeling that white people are either very welcomed and people were very friendly to me, but on the other side, there were a few groups that shouted bad and agressive things to me while I passed them.

My main destination was in east East-Timor in the corner. The name is Tutuala and the island beside is Jaco Island. I met two people from spain there, which were professional photographers and gave me some cool insights in their technics. Tourists are seldom here in east-timor. I guess I saw about 5 of them, since im here! Instead, there are many UN-soldiers everywhere. These guys are driving like mad ones along the streets with their 4wd’s. And on the same day, I was on Jaco Island, there was this group of Portuguese UN soldiers, having their days off. Those guys behave like animals with drinking and shouting – but in a friendly way :)!

Tomorrow I’ll go diving. Im excited, cause East Timor is said to have some of the nicest and widely unexplored dive spots in the world!

n East Timor i saw these houses on several villages along the road. All i knew about the little houses in the picture is, that it is for those people like a church, as they have their own religion.

Impossible to drive here with a motorbike. Had to walk the bike with me all down the hiking trail.

View towards Jaco Island.

Corals above water. Something I have never seen before.

October 25 - Best BBQ ever

While driving back to capital Dili, funny full packed trucks came along.

Unfortunately the UN is leaving East Timor by the end of this year, and lots of locals are afraid that the Indonesian underground terrorists come back to fight again against East Timor.

Very nice also was the beach promenade in Dili, with all these people sitting and eating. Every evening the locals build up their BBQ grills. They sell many different grilled fishes, chicken and porks to anyone. Beside they just serve some kind of yellow rice with a special herb. Mmmhh, it tastes so awesome and I ate so much of it, that there was no millimeter more space in my stomach..:)!!

Diving in East Timor

The diving was great! Those corals are very healthy there and untouched by mass tourists and divers. I put some pics in attachement. Just the dive guide was an idiot! He has chosen a divespot, where we divers all had to walk into the water above sharp stones and corals. As I didn’t have any neoprene (just the dive-shirt, swim shorts and was barefoot), I got probably more scratches that day than anybody else and looked like a street dog with all the scratches! And even these corals there weren’t poisoness, they left back very itchy parts and scratches on my legs and arms. Arrgh, such a stupid, uneducated and useless diveguide :D. I want to go back and punch him !!!

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