Brit family are spending isolation in an idyllic bamboo house in Bali

British couple reveal they are isolating in an idyllic bamboo house in rural Bali with their toddler twins after buying a one-way ticket when countries began shutting their borders

  • Corinne Pruden, 39, and husband Dave, 49, flew to Bali on March 16 from London
  • Couple, who have twin toddler sons, booked their ticket the morning of flight
  • Family were living in Budapest, where they have a cafe, and planned to go to South America backpacking before US introduced its travel ban
  • Had been staying with family in London but decided to go on an adventure
  • Learn more about how to help people impacted by COVID

A British family-of-four are isolating in an idyllic bamboo hut in Bali after fleeing the UK amid the coronavirus crisis.

Corinne Pruden, 39, and her husband Dave, 49, bought a one-way ticket for them and their twin toddler sons on March 16, flying out that afternoon – eight days before the UK imposed its lockdown.

The couple had been living in Budapest for the last five years, where they ran a cafe, but had let their apartment to go backpacking around South America for six months before the virus hit.

They were staying with their family in the UK for a few days to say their goodbyes when the US imposed its foreign travel ban – meaning their flights were cancelled. 

Corinne Pruden, 39, and her husband Dave, 49, bought a one-way ticket for them and their twin toddler sons to Bali on March 16 and flew out that afternoon

Speaking to Sky News, Dave said they’d planned to go on an ‘adventure’ and felt they were ‘dressed up with no where to go’ – so decided to make last minute alternative arrangements and flew to Denpasar.

‘Our flights were cancelled, our cafe The Goat Herder was closed, and we were facing a lockdown, and we thought, we’ve got an adventure planned, we’ve told the boys, we’ve got to do something, we can’t just let this thing beat us, so we booked a ticket that day and flew to Bali later on that afternoon,’ he said.

Corinne added that staying in the UK long term with their parents ‘wasn’t feasible’, and finding a place to rent in Europe would have been expensive – so they decided on Indonesia.

‘Bali was that option that, minus the healthcare – that was a huge concern – but it gave us the opportunity to stay somewhere for a relatively cheap price, surround the boys with nature, isolate ourselves relatively and just make sure that we stayed as far away from society as possible to give ourselves the chance to survive this thing,’ Corinne said, admitting that their travel insurance was void. 

Corinne added that staying in the UK long term with their parents ‘wasn’t feasible’, and finding a place to rent in Europe would have been expensive – so they decided on Indonesia. Pictured: the rice fields near their accommodation

The couple had been living in Budapest for the last five years, where they run a cafe, but had let their apartment to go backpacking around South America for six months before the virus hit. Pictured: Corinne walking in the rice fields with her two boys

The family had to pack up and travel two hours from the south coast to London Heathrow, dropping off their rental car, all in a very tight timeframe.

Corinne said it was a ‘really strange feeling’ because they family were doing the opposite of what everyone else was doing, with Brits returning home from all over the world.

‘We felt sort of courageous but perhaps being a little bit stupid or naive – it was quite hard to pigeonhole our actions and emotions and it was quite stressful,’ Corinne admitted.

The family spend their days walking among the rice fields, playing in the streams and immersing themselves in nature. Pictured: Dave with the two boys

Writing on Instagram, she said: ‘As we took off from London, and arrived in Brunei for our transfer, we sat for six hours watching flight after flight being cancelled. Finally an empty plane arrived and no more than 20 people, including us, boarded for Denpasar. 

‘Arriving in Bali was such a relief. It had been a stressful decision. We managed to get in with an extendable visa on arrival. Within two days, the visa scheme was cancelled for new arrivals.’ 

She told how they were offered a ‘really, really good’ price for an Airbnb in Ubud, which is located in the middle of rice fields and means they’re ‘totally isolated’. 

Writing on Instagram, Corrine said: ‘There’s very little good news at the moment, so when we were offered to rent this beautiful bamboo house in the middle of rice fields for a fraction of the usual cost, we said yes! Through a small twist of fate, we’ve found ourselves in paradise.’

Corinne told how they were offered a ‘really, really good’ price for an Airbnb in Ubud, which is located in the middle of rice fields and means they’re ‘totally isolated’

They had previously been staying near Denpasar, but found it too busy, before moving to Amed on the northeast coast of Bali. 

The Prudens travelled to Ubud when the village chief of Amed imposed a total three-day lockdown preventing anyone from leaving their homes. 

Corinne said their bamboo home is perfect, adding that they’ve bought an inflatable swimming pool for the garden and receive fruit and vegetable deliveries from a Michelin star restaurant.

The family spend their days walking among the rice fields, playing in the streams and immersing themselves in nature. 

Corrine said: ‘Sitting in our open-air house watching rice farmers go about their every day activities is incredibly soothing’

On a recent Instagram post, Corinne said: ‘Although the island is quiet, with next to no tourists, it still seems relaxed. Many of the shops, restaurants and cafés have closed. 

‘But sitting in our open-air house watching rice farmers go about their every day activities is incredibly soothing. Every evening we are joined by frogs, lizards and even a resident bat. The boys are more part of nature than we ever thought possible. And we have miles of farmers’ tracks, forest and rice fields to explore!’

Corinne said they have explained to their sons, who have been asking what is happening, that lots of people are getting ill, so they have to be careful what they touch. 

Corinne said their bamboo home is perfect, adding that they’ve bought an inflatable swimming pool for the garden and receive fruit and vegetable deliveries from a Michelin star restaurant

She said they feel lucky to be removed from the news of the coronavirus, but receive updates from their family.

‘If we didn’t talk to our family and we didn’t watch the news, we really wouldn’t be aware of anything happening here because we’re so isolated with this house,’ Corinne told Sky News. 

‘Whenever we get in contact with the real world, we see it’s pretty scary.’

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