Traveling to Bali was probably one of my most spontaneous journeys so far. It was a Saturday party night out with friends from University when one of them asked me if I’d like to make holidays with her. A question I never need to be asked twice and only a few weeks later we found ourselves in the airplane heading towards a destination that has been on my “ToTravel” list for quite a while: Bali!
Bali’s mystical and spiritual charisma
Overall, I am not a very spiritual or esoteric person, but in Bali I could definitely feel some kind of these spirits. Ever since the movie “Eat, pray, love”, the Balinese rice terraces can be pictured in our imagination as especially inspiring and peaceful wonders of nature. Still I can promise seeing them in real life is a totally new feeling.
When simply looking at them, not able to figure out the terrace’s beginning or end, time seems to stand still and I could truly feel life being taking at a slower pace.
A powerful one that we are missing in Europe, where everyone is hustling to do more, achieve better and develop faster. Just for the rice field’s spirit’s sake, I do not regret traveling Bali during the raining season. Especially all the moist, rain and fog added so much beauty to the rice terraces – which the pictures of the Tegalalang rice field (close to Ubud) can only indicate.
The special vibe of Ubud
My personal accommodation reco in Ubud: Pertiwi Bisma I. Very romantically located in the middle of rice terraces and rain forests.
My most favorite place in Bali is Ubud. Even though it is already pretty touristy as well, its location surrounded by rice terraces, monkey forests, coffee plantations and rain forests adds a special spirituality and peacefulness to the little town. In the city centre and main road you find many shops of trendy surf brands, souvenir and market booths, international restaurants and cool bars. My recommendation is to choose an accommodation a little outside to also benefit from the quietness and beautiful nature of Ubud.
And for nice dinner I suggest to go to Lotus Café. From the outside it may not promise too much but it has a very charming atmosphere in the “inside”, containing eating places while sitting on the floor, a little pond and occasionally traditional Balinese live music and dancing shows.
Activities for every taste
There are endless options of how to spend the time on Bali, reaching from surfing, temple visits, volcano hiking, hot spring bathing, diving or simply relaxing on the beach.
Unfortunately we did not have enough time to see all beautiful places, visit all sights or try all activities ourselves, but is there ever “enough time” when traveling?
By two very unfortunate influences our net travel time on Bali was even cut shorter. On one hand we did not get around to do some outdoor discovery trips due to pouring rainy weather (which was totally unexpected during raining season^^) and on the other hand we were pretty much knocked out for almost two days because of taking pills for malaria prophylaxis (a hell of story that deserves a special post for itself at some point).
However, we still made the best of our stay and can happily look back at dozens of special, funny and happy moments during the following activities:
- Surfing @ Kuta
- Sunrise hike on Mt. Batur
- Visit temple Uluwatu (& the monkeys)
- Trekking to Sekumpul waterfall
- Taste the Luwak coffee
In fact there are endless opportunities for every taste and type of traveler. If you are looking for beautiful beaches with white sand, turquoise water and nice snorkeling spots do not miss out to visit Gili Islands.
For myself I am sure it was not my last time on Bali!