A newly-engaged couple who planned to get married in Bali are having second thoughts – after becoming stuck on the popular holiday island as Mount Agung roared to life.
When Perth woman Carly Hamence, 30, flew into Bali to celebrate her birthday with fiance Leigh Maher, 33, she didn’t expect their cheeky mini-getaway would be extended indefinitely.
The couple told Daily Mail Australia they have been advised they could be stuck on the island for another week and a half – and will have to fly home via Singapore – a grueling 17-hour flight.
Perth couple Carly Hamence and Leigh Maher, both pictured, are stuck in Bali after Mount Agung started erupting – grounding flights
The couple have been told they won’t be able to leave the island for more than a week
They have moved to budget accommodation – but say in Legian the air is clear
‘I did lots of research before we came and everyone seemed to think the volcano wasn’t going to erupt,’ Ms Hamence said.
‘Now people are saying we could be stuck here until Christmas – I really hope that doesn’t happen.’
The couple, who became engaged during a trip to Bali in May were considering getting married there.
‘We are obviously having second thoughts about that now,’ she said.
The couple have moved to a budget resort for the next week and a half – with financial pressures high among tourists.
‘You have schoolies here who don’t have enough money for an extended stay,’ she said.
‘I have had to spend some of my savings for the wedding and my partner is self-employed so he is seriously stressed about not being able to get to work.
The couple said they have met other Australians who are also trapped – they hope they will be home in time for Christmas
‘My bosses have been really great – they understand there isn’t anything I can do now,’ she said.
Ms Hamence said the ‘vibe’ in Legian isn’t the same as it was back in May.
‘The store holders are stressed because there aren’t as many tourists, they are concerned about their families and they don’t know what will happen,’ she said.
‘The locals said it has been very quiet since September.’
The young woman revealed the air is clear in Legian – and said ‘you wouldn’t know anything was going on’ as it was still beautiful.
An estimated 150,000 tourists are trapped on the Indonesian resort island as the volatile mountain spews volcanic debris and ash almost 10 kilometres into the air
‘Lava is coming out of the volcano, there’s definitely enough to cause trouble. This can get much worse, you can’t outrun this,’ an expert said
An estimated 150,000 tourists are trapped on the Indonesian resort island as the volatile mountain spews volcanic debris and ash almost 10 kilometres into the air.
Volcanologist Dr Janine Krippner warned that Bali’s Mount Agung eruption would be ‘like shaking up a bottle of Coke and then taking the lid off.’
‘Lava is coming out of the volcano, there’s definitely enough to cause trouble. This can get much worse, you can’t outrun this.’
The couple, who became engaged during a trip to Bali in May were considering getting married there
Gede Suantika warned after a large tremor on Tuesday an observatory post near the volcano’s summit could be evacuated as the mountain entered a critical phase.
‘Small eruptions have been happening continuously but there’s still the possibility of a bigger, explosive eruption,’ said Mr Suantika.
‘Activity remains high and we are still on the highest alert level.’
Tens of thousands have already fled their homes around the volcano, which last erupted in 1963, killing around 1,600 people.
The couple were planning on a short stay to celebrate Ms Hamence’s birthday and look at wedding venues