Our next stop after Australia was Bali, Indonesia. We were super excited to explore a culture so different from our own. Bali was somewhere I was always intrigued to visit …and no it wasn’t after watching Eat, Pray, Love..lol. The culture, beautiful temples, and sense of spirituality is what sparked my curiosity. I was born and raised Catholic, but never really practiced it. Now as an adult, I believe there are other ways to live our lives and practice spirituality. For example, through meditation, spiritual energies, wellness techniques, and following beliefs from a variety of religions and cultures. I have been practicing and exploring alternative methods over the past few years, and still have so much to learn and try! Of course, this is a constant learning curve for me as I just begin to scratch the surface of this type of life.
When I arrived in Bali, I knew this was part of my learning curve. I felt the spirituality of the sacred town. The aromas coming from the incense at every door step of each home is a smell I will never forget. The incense is placed in offerings at entrances of all homes, shops, hotels, temples, etc to avoid from negative energies from entering the premise. The commitment these Balinese people have towards their religion – predominantly Hinduism, was inspirational. Within every house hold there is a home for the parents, children and their grandchildren. It continues to pass down generation to generation. And within these walls there is a temple for prayer, where they pray every morning, afternoon and evening. That’s commitment!
Entrance to a traditional Balinese home
Scattered throughout Bali there are beautiful and historic temples, rice fields, and an insane amount of GREENERY. We gawked and drooled at everything we saw – we were in awe. The people were some of the calmest and most laid back people we have ever met. We were also very surprised to see just how many scooters there were whizzing by everywhere, we needed to keep an eye out for our toes!
Green all around us!
Scooter filled parking lots
When leaving Australia, I was definitely worried about what I could eat that was gluten/dairy free , and knew there would be a language barrier to communicate this. Upon arriving I was pleasantly surprised at just how many options there were for me in the traditional Balinese cuisine. I learned that gandum meant wheat, and I threw that word out at every restaurant! Most of the times they understood, but often times they didn’t realize that bottled soy sauce had wheat. The homemade soy sauces are naturally gluten free and no wheat or preservatives added. ( I learned this lesson the hard way with a really bad stomach ache, swelling and a rash forming on my neck and skin) After this episode I started asking for either 1) no soy sauce 2) asking if they have the bottle so I can see ingredients. This helped the remainder of the trip and my tummy was happy 😉
When I arrived to Ubud, I also immediately thought- where will I do my fitness for the next 8 days? It was the first time in a while that I had no gym access, no sidewalks to run and no open park spaces! I was stressed out at first…lol Throughout my time in Bali, I was forced to try new things and dive deep into my mental fitness. This was an adjustment and definitely a learning curve. I mean, I practiced yoga for a long time in Toronto, but it was different here. Having more down time gave me more time to read, write and reflect. This is something I wanted and craved for while back in Toronto running my hectic business for 7 years. So here I was- STILL and re-energizing my mind. By the 3rd day I did some further reflecting and learned that what works best for me is a combination of both physical and mental, I needed both. A good sweat session to release all the endorphins was in store, so we strolled to a nearby Bali Gym that cost only $4 to use!
Local Gym – Massa’s Ftiness Centre
Let me recap where we went while visiting Bali.
- Ubud – Total of 8 days. We covered the following:
- Temples: Elephant Temple, Monkey Temple, Gunungkawi, Tirta Empul
- medicine man
- cooking class
- Purification at Tirta Empul
- Waterfall Tegenungan
- Cekingan Rice Terraces
- Coffee Plantation
- Jimbaran – enjoyed beautiful sunsets on the beach with incredible seafood meals
- Padang Padang Beach
- Uluwatu Temple – on a cliff!
- Nusa Cenengan
- cliff jumps
- delicious meals at our hotel –THE PALMS
- Nusa Lambogan
- More beautiful sunsets, infinity pool, coffee shops, gym
- Nusa Penida day trip – Broken beach and Lelingking beach. WOW! the most incredible views we have ever seen!
We loved mostly everywhere we went, but our highlight was Ubud. More to follow in next blog post!
Until next time!