After our first 10 days in Seminyak I don’t mind admitting that I was feeling pretty disappointed and underwhelmed with Bali. Having heard so many wonderful things about it, I just found myself thinking “I don’t get it”
This week however, having moved up to Ubud and got out and about a lot more I am pleased to say that now “I DO get it”. Bali does have a rich diversity and so much to offer, you just have to be in the right places (or in our case, out of the wrong places).
We have hardly stopped this week, we have have been out and about most days, visiting temples, the butterfly farm, waterfalls, the luwak coffee plantation, the volcano and so much more. I admit that had I not been travelling alone with a 7yr old who doesn’t like crowds and noise then I would have probably done a few more things on the adventurous side, but my main priority is to see Cameron smiling and happy every day. He wasn’t happy in Seminyak, he was getting really stressed but this week he has appeared to have loved pretty much every moment and has been engaged in all we have seen and done.
The highlight for him was spending a day at the Five Art Centre just outside of Ubud, where we spent the best part of the day learning batik art and walking away with silk paintings which we were both pretty pleased with. I don’t claim to have an artistic bone in my body and I haven’t really done any ‘proper’ art since I left school 30 years ago! This day was really good for the soul though and both of us agreed we would have gone back for another day if time allowed. I would definitely recommend checking them out if you are staying in the Ubud area. (You can find ‘Five Art Studio’ on both Facebook and Instagram
My biggest piece of advise for anyone travelling to Bali is to find yourself a local driver. We have alternated with two drivers ‘Eka & Putra’ and both have been amazing, taking us to some of the lesser known treasures of the island. I would be happy to pass on their numbers to anyone visiting Bali if you drop me an email, but I won’t publish them publicly. (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Of course this week hasn’t been without a little bit of drama when we got hit by an earthquake earlier in week, it does unnerve you somewhat and there are still reports of Balinese people predicting a tsunami in the near future after dead fish washed up on the beaches (something which apparently happened elsewhere in Indonesia just prior to the 2004 Tsunami)
Who knows what Mother Nature has in store, or when??! but right at this moment I am not prepared to take any risks. For that reason we have decided to cut our trip in Bali short and instead of heading to the coastal resort of Nusa Dua on Monday we are off to Singapore, a place which Cameron and I both previously fell in love with and didn’t want to leave!
First however we have one more stop in Bali, as tomorrow we are leaving our lovely hotel in Ubud (Dwaraka Royal Villas) and moving up to the Mason Elephant Lodge and Sanctuary. My over-riding love of Bali so far has been its people, but maybe after tomorrow it will be its elephants too!