TRAVEL & LIFESTYLE
10 Reasons to visit Bali
Mount Agung beyond the tulip fields, photo by @anaaan17
Written by Felicity Bone for Own Villa
Indonesia’s free-spirited volcanic gem remains a fascinating destination to discover: steeped in spiritualism and natural wonders, with an impressive array of cafes, restaurants, markets, and independent stores to compliment many tastes. Bali can be a place of enchanting excursions, creative finds and complete freedom; but like everything, you must be hopeful and have direction. For this reason, we have composed a list of ten things we believe to be Bali’s finest attributes, hopefully inspiring a new generation of continent-crossing adventurers on their travels to this magical island.
- Let the pace of Bali sweep you away.
If you surrender to the slow pace of Bali life, it could be a holiday that changes your perception of time entirely. According to us, this can only be a good thing; we all sometimes want the ability to travel both in body and mind, and if this is your current craving, Bali is the perfect place to influence an entire mental shift.
2. Be inspired by the creative energy.
Due to the island’s bohemian heyday, many creative individuals from all over the world have chosen Bali to host their ideas. An international imagination combined with freedom, abundant natural materials, and highly skilled locals, has resulted in an array of interesting projects: watch wood carvers, jewelers, and glass blowers (see Finding Arts and Authenticity in Bali); feast on local chocolate and coffee in beautifully designed cafes; or enjoy some retail therapy amongst the many independent brands producing and selling in Bali.
Own Villa interior design, photo by Own Villa
Balinese artist studio, photo by Own Villa
3. Adventures amongst nature are easy to come by
Jump on a scooter (or hire an inexpensive driver for the day) and let the islands expansive rice terraces, cascading waterfalls, impressive waves, and beautiful coastlines, bring you back to nature. If you like an early morning, join a hike up to the top of Mount Batur for a spectacular sunrise over the lakes below; if you marvel at the transcendent underwater world, take a trip to Nusa Penida to swim with the Manta Rays; or if you prefer a slower pace, bathe in the pool of a waterfall and feel the sublime power of Mother Nature.
One of Bali’s many waterfalls, photo by @rafael_moura
View from Mount Batur, photo by Own Villa
Balinese road trip, photo by @viajaentusofa
“Bali is the perfect place to live a novelty life. Adventurous yet luxurious, with a barefoot bohemian elegance, and a feeling of freedom amongst nature.”
4. Enjoy the sun-soaked tropical produce.
Bali’s subtropical climate lends itself perfectly to many interesting and nutrient-rich flavours. Fresh fruits are the most delicious way to start the day: sweet Nanas Madu (Honey Pineapples), sour Mangosteen, and vibrant Dragon Fruit, are just a few worth trying. Strong coffee and creamy chocolate from the Northern regions of the island offer the perfect afternoon pick-me-up, plus mind-blowing chilli and savoury peanuts garnish many flavourful Indonesian plates. It is also worth noting that some commonly-used local ingredients carry many health benefits: for example, charcoal tablets for an unsettled stomach, seaweed for clear skin, and turmeric-based health tonic (Jamu), to reduce inflammation in the body.
5. If you like spice, this is a cuisine to experience.
Not the most commonly recognized Asian cuisine, but full of spices and delicious flavour combinations, it is absolutely worth experiencing traditional Indonesian food whilst in Bali. Some of our personal recommendations include Ikan Pepes (a spicy fish curry wrapped in banana leaf and grilled), Chicken Sate with peanut sauce (chargrilled chicken skewers served with a creamy sauce made from peanuts), and Babi Kecap (a slow-cooked pork stew in a rich, yet sweet, traditional Balinese sauce).
6. The sub-tropical climate is truly magnificent.
Once seeing the island in all its green glory, you understand the occasional heavy rain is one of the most important contributors to this beauty. From within an Own Villa eco-structure, hear the relaxing sound of rain on the alang-alang thatched roofs, or the gentle breeze move the palms outside. The Balinese climate is crucial to its beauty – fast-flowing waterfalls, awe-inspiring waves, and breathtaking sunsets that fill the entire sky. You have to live it to understand it, but even a melancholic grey sky can bring joy on this island.
Bali’s vibrant landscape, photo by @eyesofanomad
7. A photographer’s dream.
Bali has become one of the most “Instagrammable” locations in the world, but regardless of how many flock to shoot the Bali swing, selfie with the monkeys, or queue to stand between Lempuyang temple gates, there are still so many enigmatic angles to capture. Colourful patterned fabrics, carvings and textures; sunrises and sunsets that reflect onto the ocean; exuberant locals with a dynamic culture and beautiful smiles. If you have a creative inclination behind the lens, Bali will set it free.
Local children playing, photo by Own Villa
Young girl weaving Ikat fabric, photo by Own Villa
8. Experience living “jungle style” for a little while.
Recycled woods, natural fibres, and hand-built structures, all surrounded by lush subtropical greenery; Bali is the perfect place to live a novelty life. Adventurous yet luxurious, with a barefoot bohemian elegance, and a feeling of freedom amongst nature. It is difficult to replicate the same architecture, interior design, and decoration in other parts of the world; therefore, it is also difficult to recreate the same magic that emanates from this desirable island.
Enjoying a coffee Bali style, photo by @maya_gypsy
Own Villa’s eco-design interiors, photo by @yannanszhou
9. The perfect place to try something new and relinquish to fear.
Not only a wonderful way to connect to like-minded people, but with professionals convening here from all over the world, Bali is the place to pick up a new hobby. Practice yoga, surf, paddle-board, cook, build, paint, sculpt, meditate: the list is endless! And we all know, there is no greater feeling than being brave and trying something new for the first time with a group of adventure-loving strangers.
10. Known as “The Island of the Gods” for good reason.
Alongside the culinary delights and rich culture, Bali is steeped in spiritualism and acts as a mental salvation for many. Do yoga alongside the rice fields, meditate with well-practiced gurus, and break away from the monotony of everyday life. Of course, you can also feel the spirituality of the island without being akin to yoga and meditation. Sacred spaces are intentionally located in areas of outstanding natural beauty, therefore enjoy a clifftop view of the sunset at Tanah Lot temple, or venture out to the Bali’s “mother temple”, Besakih, with a breath-taking backdrop of the volcano. “People are inherently religious or spiritual”, and Bali can guide you to many significant angles of spirituality.
Balinese Hindu blessing ceremony, photo by Own Villa
An island blatantly visible through the tainted eyes of social media, we truly hope to have inspired you to experience the side of Bali that suits you best. Take a step off the well-trodden path and adopt the patient Balinese pace, and you will surely profit from what this diverse island has to offer.
At Own Villa we hope to provide the perfect haven for travellers’ keen on exploring the island with a curious mind. If you are staying with us at this present moment, be sure to ask if you are in need of recommendations; and if you are hoping to stay with us in the future, we look forward to welcoming you at Own Villa soon.
Pink sunset skies at Own Villa, photo by Own Villa