I am currently in the typical “post holiday blues” phase after an incredible trip in Bali. We have all felt that deep urge to want to return to that sacred place of holiday mode, well I am certainly feeling that right now. Oh the struggle is real.
I recently returned from an amazing holiday to Bali and am very confident in saying it won’t be the last time I visit there. It was sheer bliss and I loved every second of being thrown into my idea of pure heavenly joy. I admit to you all, I am totally in love with Bali.
Amongst some of the reasons I chose to visit Bali, specifically the Ubud area, was the great wealth of like-minded people and general way of life. Reading up on this area I just knew by all the vibes being thrown my way that I had to visit and be surrounded by life that truly fits my mind-set. Friendly locals, fresh tropical fruit, vegan restaurants, spiritual healing, holistic health, yoga, meditation, massages, and a relaxed pace of life. Oh go on then. I guess the only problem with all of the above is it makes me want to live in a place that provides all of that on my doorstep. It was so refreshing to be able to walk to a shop to get organic vegetables, hop on a scooter for five minutes and collect a mass amount of locally fresh ripe fruit, and be in walking distance of deliciously healthy wholesome vegan food at super restaurants, whilst all the locals would smile and say hello as I passed by.
Why I Love Bali
Life + Culture – So I was only there for a couple of weeks which doesn’t give the full spectrum of life in a country, however what I did see in this time was beautiful. The people are so welcoming, they always have a smile. It is amazing how much culture and tradition they still continue to do, such as leaving out gifts to the gods every day. Wayan, the owner of our villa, would visit every day to place many favours at different statues and areas around the garden and villa, whilst wearing the traditional clothing of a Balinese sarong and scarf. Also, it was amazing to see so many men and women wearing the traditional Balinese clothing. It was refreshing to see a culture still following their tradition. And then there was the vast amount of temples and communities. Wow!! The architecture was just unreal, so much detail in the buildings, it is simply amazing, me and the husband were absolutely dazzled by the work that has gone into all of these beautiful temples and homes.
The Locals – The Balinese were so friendly and welcoming it brought so much love and joy to the whole experience. Most would smile and say hello which was so warming to the soul, and there was a clear vibe in the air that made you feel truly part of the community and not an unwelcomed stranger.
Like-Minded People – In the Ubud area there are so many folks who have a passion for the beauty of life. It was a breath of fresh air to see so many mums carrying their babies in a baby carrier, I felt like part of the tribe rather than being the odd one out amongst all the prams back home. There are so many vegans, yogis, spiritual healers, those with a love for holistic health, travel and meditation, and simply those people who just “get it” with regards to the simple beauty of natural living.
The Fruit – Oh my gosh! So so SO much glorious fresh ripe local fruit. I was in heaven. Being a vegan, and one that likes to eat fruit for breakfast and lunch, I knew I would be in paradise in Bali, well I was not disappointed. Just a five minute scooter ride from my villa I could get an amazing selection of fruit from a local shop. So much to choose from, however I was allll over the papaya, dragon fruit, mango and bananas. With the occasional mangosteens and pineapples. Not forgetting the mighty coconut, I was so excited to FINALLY experience fresh coconut water, and I certainly enjoyed a daily coconut sipping on a straw full of coconut water goodness. Delicious! I also got to try a jackfruit for the first time, which was humongous, and got to enjoy the whole fruit over the holiday (of course not in one meal), with the help of my little assistant. I did try salak (snake fruit) but wasn’t too fussed, and did try a durian but wasn’t keen which I was really gutted about as I had heard so many great things and really wanted to like it, but I will try it again in case I simply had picked a mediocre one. My favourites were the juicy papayas and dragon fruit, the sweet mango, deliciously creamy tiny bananas, incredible coconut water, and the mighty jackfruit. I shall be back to demolish more!
Health & Wellness – There is such an array of places to visit to nourish the mind, body and spirit. Massages, reiki, breath work, meditation, Ayurvedic treatments, spiritual healers, sound therapy, yoga, and so much more! I enjoyed four massages at a great place within walking distance of the villa and visited an Ayurvedic doctor with regards to some issues which I will discuss at a later date. I just love the wealth of knowledge and passion for holistic health in this area of Bali.
The Vegan Restaurants – My oh my. I was so excited to be visiting somewhere that I would actually have a choice on what to eat when dining out rather than just ordering an uninspiring salad or potatoes. The Ubud area definitely had an amazing variety for vegans! We didn’t eat out every day as we would enjoy the amazing fruit at our villa during the day and made some meals in the evening, however we got to enjoy some fantastic meals. Another aspect I loved about some of the restaurants was the traditional seating set up where you sit on a cushion on the floor at a lowered table, this arrangement is perfect for a toddler and so family friendly, it made meal times so much more enjoyable and relaxing. Sophia loved to be able to sit or stand at the table and fully get involved with eating her meal.
The Seeds of Life
I fell in love with this place the first time we stopped by just to have a drink. I love their whole ethos on health with a big focus on Chinese medicine and holistic health focusing on nutritious herbs and plants for tonics, teas and elixirs. We enjoyed a variety of these drinks and then noticed the food. Ooohhhhh. So we returned another time for drinks and noticed the food looked heavenly again, so that evening we returned for food. I ordered the SOL bowl and a veggie wrap, both were divine. The restaurant is a raw vegan place and I was truly satisfied after enjoying those two meals for dinner, both so fresh, crunchy and full of flavour. Just do it.
Such a beautiful location. We went in the evening when it was dark and the place was beautifully lit set amongst the greenery and trees. We were sat at a traditional table on the floor and enjoyed three courses of delicious vegan food. They made the most amazing dish with purple sweet potatoes!! I am drooling just thinking about them.
A Japanese Korean inspired vegan restaurant which I was very excited about as I love these styles of food. There is a great mix of teas, elixirs, smoothies, raw and cooked food. I highly recommend this place!
Absolutely amazing! I felt relaxed like I was at their home eating their food, which to be honest is kind of what you are doing. This is such a little gem set in the community of a Balinese family who run a vegan restaurant that provides Balinese food. We ordered quite a few dishes to devour, and we certainly enjoyed them. There was a few too many fried foods for my liking but I wasn’t bothered as the overall feast was incredible. We couldn’t believe how much we had ordered and how little the bill was for the whole meal. For cheap vegan Balinese food this is a must.
I loved the fact that there was a vegan restaurant within a ten minute walk of our villa…if only that was the case back home. For more cheap vegan Balinese food this is another must. Be prepared for the fact that the amazing wife and husband team only make one meal but don’t let this put you off as you are eating delicious food made with love. Their star player is a nasi campur and soup. Both nourishing, warming and delicious food.
This is a super place that is passionate about health and wellness from deep within. They offer raw vegan food and holistic treatments to truly nourish the mind, body and soul. We didn’t get the chance to eat here but I did buy organic vegetables to take out for cooking dinners at the villa, and sampled a few kombuchas which were really good. The only time we actually sat in was for a drink on the day we were leaving whilst being super chilled on a big lounge chair that allowed me to stretch my legs out, relax and breastfeed little one to sleep whilst enjoying a coconut drink. I had the amazing opportunity of meeting Byron, the spa manager of Alchemy Holistic, and we had such an inspiring conversation. It was such a wonderful experience to meet another fellow Brit who has now moved over to Ubud with his family to enjoy the beauty of Bali. If you are ever in the area be sure to pop by to Alchemy and enjoy the deliciously fresh food and say hi to Byron! On another note, I may have some very exciting news to share with you after the incredible conversation with Byron, but for now it is all a secret.
There is so much more I could mention but this blog will become an epic piece, so for now I will leave the rest as a mystery waiting for others to explore and experience. I had such an amazing time, both for a getaway experience and for nourishing my soul. I shall certainly be back to sip on more coconuts!