Hi guys, here it is, my Bali blog. I have been waiting so long to share this with you. I decided to split it into 2 parts because, how could I possibly squeeze in 2 weeks of Bali into a blog without boring your asses half way through? I’ll have to leave you with a cliff hanger I guess? Hmm… So, grab a cuppa and some biccies, get comfy and enjoy some Bali bliss….
Touch down in Bali
Flying over 7000 miles has never been more satisfying. When I stepped off that plane and felt the heat on my skin, I instantly felt the excitement kick in. Get me to the pool. ASAP! We hadn’t arranged a lift so we haggled with a taxi driver. Turns out that taxi was a very expensive one. So, if you’re heading to Bali don’t pay the taxi 1,200,000 RPH as you will get ripped off. You should be paying around 400,000 RPH. While Max was slightly annoyed I explained that we would have paid more for a taxi back home to travel that distance and the driver will probably go home happy after having a good day. (Let’s pretend he doesn’t charge that much everyday).
The drive to our hotel was like something out of a story book. Watching the locals go about their daily lives, seeing the market stalls, the hustle and bustle and then the twists and turns through the jungle, not to mention the hills the driver struggled to drive up to get to the resort. I couldn’t help smile at the things surrounding me. We finally arrived at the Alam Ubud Culture Residences. We were greeted by the friendliest staff with a refreshing drink, complete with a flower on top. The lobby was set on a veranda overlooking the infinity pool and jungle.We got shown to our villa by one of the lovely staff. On our way down I asked if there was any wild animals in the jungle and his response was.. wait for it… squirrels! Squirrels? Max and I could not stop laughing. I was expecting monkeys or snakes, but only squirrels apparently. Anyway, our villa was immaculate. The bedroom was huge with a four poster bed that was SO comfy. Our bathroom was also huge, with the bath overlooking the terrace and jungle outside. There were panoramic windows on one side of the room by our bed, over looking our terrace and the jungle. The terrace was complete with a bed outside for you to enjoy the sounds of the natural gorge and all the jungle creatures. Squirrels and all.
We spent our first day relaxing by the beautiful infinity pool. It was well needed after our long journey. (A whole 21 hours, including our 3 hour drive from the Valleys to London). We pretty much did the same on our second day but ventured into Ubud’s town centre in the evening. Our hotel provided a free shuttle throughout the day so that was a plus.
Ubud is the cultural heart of Bali so the busyness was expected. The streets were packed with tourists. Walking around was a small task as the sidewalks are tiny, so it’s either bump into the next tourist or get run over by a scooter. Getting run over by a scooter being more likely. But, don’t let that put you off as the centre is so worth it, even if it’s just to experience the food. The streets are packed with restaurants and quirky shops. Not to mention the temples.
Ubud has a lot to offer. It’s known for its cultural centre yes, but it also has many temples, waterfalls and rice paddies. We hired a driver to take us around for the day and it was such an adventure. On our journey I spoke with Wyan, our driver about Balinese culture and their beliefs. A lot of the conversation was about Hinduism as this is the most practiced religion in Bali. He spoke on how everyone cares for one another and not one person goes without. Imagine a world where everyone had the same outlook on life?
While in Bali we intended on hiking Mount Batur, but due to the imposing threat of Mount Agung erupting there were no hikes being organised. This made for some interesting conversation with Wyan. In 1963, Mount Agung erupted killing over a thousand people because they refused to leave their home village. Wyan was scared that the animals would leave the mountain. If that happened he knew the volcano would erupt, but there was no fear, only sadness for the future outcome of the beautiful, ancient temples that surrounded the mountain. Little did we know that a few days later it would be reported that the animals did in fact leave the mountain.
Our first stop was Tegenungan Waterfall. The walk down was so breath taking. Actually no the walk back up was breath taking- literally. But, once we got to the waterfall we were blessed with an amazing view which totally made the exercise worth while. The sound of the watering thundering down and spray of the waterfall was captivating. I was completely in my element. Next up was the Pura Tirta Emple Temple. There’s not enough words to explain how moving this place was. To see the people drinking from the spouts of holy water and completing rituals gave me goosebumps.
You could honestly feel the positive aura walking around the temple. I felt so privileged to be able to witness such holiness. Not being particularly religious myself, I definitely felt very drawn to this beautiful place.
As the day was drawing to an end, we arrived at our last destination- Tegallalang Rice Terrace. A vast green valley of rice terraces sprawling down one hillside and up to another. As we walked across the terrace the sun was lowering in the sky which made for some great photo opportunities. We also did the typical tourist snap and tried out the traditional woven hats.
While the sun started to set over the valley rays of light shone through the palm trees and flickered reflections across the water in the rice terraces. It was the perfect time of day to see such a vast amount of beauty. Definitely put this place on your list on things to do in Ubud.
Our last day spent with cheeky monkeys
For our last day in Ubud we decided to go to The Sacred Monkey Forest. We were pretty stoked to get to see some monkeys up close. Little did I know I’d spend the day getting my hair pulled, chased and slapped by a monkey. It all adds to the adventure I suppose and it definitely makes for a good story. If you do plan on going to the Monkey Forest just be careful as they are wild and they can be unpredictable. Emphasis on unpredictable. After getting all our bananas stolen by monkeys…twice, we decided to hit the markets of Ubud. We got to the market as they were starting to close but we still got some awesome bits. If you love sculptures and art then Ubud market is for you.
Surfs up in Seminyak
While in Seminyak we aimed to mainly chill, well I did anyway, Max mostly surfed. We headed straight to Seminyak beach where I sunbathed and read my book. The surf was calling so Max went to catch some waves. Later on we walked along the beach as the sun started to set then cosied up on the bean bags at La Plancha. I loved everything about this place. Listening to the relaxed R&B music as you lay on the beanbags surrounded by colourful umbrellas, hearing the the waves crashing meters away while taking in the amazing sunset with a delicious cocktail in hand. Peace.
The next morning I wanted to go to this place I found on Instagram for breakfast. The place was called KYND. Everything on the menu is plant based, vegan friendly and friggin’ delicious. I absolutely loved it and the staff were super friendly and KYND! Check them out on instagram @kyndcommunity
You can also get these super yummy smoothie bowls which you may have seen on Instagram. Here’s one taken from @kyndcommunity’s insta-
After breakfast we spent the day at the beach again. Pretty much repeating what we did yesterday, except we headed home early to go for an evening meal at La Laguna in Canggu. Wow! This place was unreal. A beach front cafe with a gypsy, chic decor. As you walk along the fairy lit path you pass several wagons, the first one being a tarot reading wagon. Every single table, door and post was decorated with hand painted flowers. My only wish was that I visited in the day light but, it did make for a little romantic meal with Max.
Next stop- Gili Trawangan
With it’s white sandy beaches, crystal clear water and a tree house to sleep. Gili T really was the perfect get away…
Check back soon to read part 2 of my Bali adventure 🙂
Peace and joy <3