Bali is one of those magical places that you can visit again and again without getting bored. Marc Dass of Soulscape Asia shares with us his favourite spots.
1. Tanah Lot
Backdropped by impossibly blue skies and surrounded by the sea, this temple sits a short distance from the beach and you can cross over to the entrance during low tide. Sunsets are stunning here and nearby restaurants offer viewpoints and scrumptious seafood to soak in the atmosphere. There is a natural spout in the temple, which is said to have holy water. Temple priests there may sprinkle the water on your forehead as a blessing.
2. Monkey Temple
It’s monkey see monkey do at this temple. It’s home to troops of long tailed macaques and these primates have a lot of attitude. Tourists are more afraid of them, and rightfully so, as they will grab at any food or bottles from the unsuspecting traveler. I would avoid carrying bananas or food openly, especially if you are with small children. If you are lucky, you can catch a glimpse of them swimming in the ponds at the temple grounds. When it’s raining, it’s not uncommon to see them being at home, jumping in the water.
A congregation spot for yogis; as well as a blend of cheap backpacker hostels and five star hotels, juice bars, and hipster cafes. Ubud is the arts and wellness capital of the island. Head to Alchemy, Bali’s first raw vegan cafe for a smoothie bowl and shop the supermarket for heath supplements and locally sourced superfoods. Art galleries tucked away hold canvasses waiting to adorn your walls and markets have intricate mango wood carvings and driftwood-inspired furniture for that home remodel you’ve been planning.
4. Sebatu Temple
The spiritual tapestry of Bali weaves its way into every aspect of its culture and daily life. Visit the Sebatu Temple, a sacred place for purification rites by the local Balinese. The magical grounds hold a natural spring which flows through the temple and into bathing pools and fish-filled ponds. A small token goes a long way with your spiritual journey here so cleanse away.
With easy drift dives for recreational divers and wreck dive options for the more advanced, diving is a great way to explore Bali’s treasure trove of marine life. The island plays migratory home between July and October to the iconic Sun fish which resembles a giant disc the size of a car with big beady eyes. If you are not certified, fret not – you can do a Padi Discover Scuba Course in one day and do a day trip with a dive instructor.
6. Jamu Workshop
Go for a culinary class and learn to make the Indonesian herbal drink, Jamu. Made with a mix of leaves, rice, and herbs, the drink helps reduces aches, fatigue, and colds, as well as increases appetite and some say male vitality. Yummy.
From boutique fashion stores to homeware, shopping in Bali can be pleasant without the hustle. Some notable districts to get some retail therapy are Seminyak for great jewellery and independent fashion labels. Petitenget close and further north is stocked with unique homeware and artisanal jewellery stores. Batu Belig is off the beaten track and its stores are just as intriguing and eclectic. Head to Naughty Nuri’s Warung & Grill for the famous BBQ pork ribs and Martinis when you’re done.
8. Rice Terraces
Rice is a staple in Asia but do you even know how it’s grown and harvested? Well, you can visit the many rice terraces in Bali to find out. Tegallalang Rice Terraces is a beautiful and lush terrace set in a valley; you can grab fresh coconuts there as well. Another option is Jatiluwih Rice Terrace which is located 700m above sea level and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Sunsets there are great for photos and to watch farmers tilling the land.
You can’t leave Bali without trying a yoga class. Your Eat Pray Love sojourn would be incomplete without a mindful movement session. Head to one of the many yoga studios and shalas; it’s a great way to meet fellow travelers and locals. Try the Power of Now Oasis in Sanur and check out its bamboo architecture, or Radiantly Alive in Ubud for a modern eco experience.
10. Bali Festivals
There are three large festivals to celebrate the many wonderful things about Bali. The Ubud Writers Festival started after the Bali bombing as a means of healing the community, and is now a leading event of literature and the arts that takes place every October.
If you live to eat, then head down to The Ubud Food festival. The culinary adventure held in May celebrates Indonesian cuisine and innovation. Do a masterclass or workshop and explore raw food fine-dining, understand food sustainability, and learn about preparing food as your medicine.
The Bali Spirit Festival (pictured above) undoubtedly embodies the essential elements of Balinese culture. The week-long event in March is a melting pot of Yoga, music, and spirituality for both the uninitiated and seasoned yoga practitioners alike. Eat delicious healthy food, move your body at the classes, and expect a spiritual awakening with an open-minded community of global yogis.
SIX WANTS TO SEND YOU & A FRIEND TO BORACAY!
Fancy the idea of lazing on the gorgeous white beaches of Boracay? Then here’s an Instagram contest you’d want to get in on. From now till February 2017, tag “@scentbysix” to your holiday snaps and include the hashtag “#wishSIXwashere” on Instagram.
At the end of the contest period, all holiday snaps bearing the hashtag #wishSIXwashere will stand a chance to win a pair of air tickets to Boracay.
1. Follow @scentbysix on Instagram. 2. Tag @scentbysix and use the hashtag #wishSIXwashere in your holiday photos. 3. Tag the friend you want to take with you to Boracay!
Of course, you have to be residing in Singapore to qualify for the prize and terms and conditions will apply with regards to travelling dates.
So start tagging your holiday snaps now! Make sure your Instagram account is set of Public so we can see it!
08 Jun 2017