This time last year Mr P and I were revelling in paradise.
Falling in love with Bali.
Flicking back through our holiday snaps this morning confirmed for me the value of buying experiences (over possessions). We have oodles of memories and special moments to relive. It doesn’t take much to transport me back to steamy jungle walks, lunch overlooking a distant volcano, colourful roadside fruit stands and the relentless wide, white Balinese smiles.
We stayed at Bali Blue Karma: a slice of Shangri-La dovetailed into the proximity of the beach, restaurant and retail zones of Seminyak.
We fancied ourselves an adventure discovering the lesser-known, uncommercialised side of Bali. With Bali Blue Karma as our base, most days we hired a driver and guide to take us into some of the more remote and rural areas in the north, to recommend where we should eat and help us navigate through the considerable list of sightseeing options.
Bali relies heavily on tourism, so there were temples, turtle farms, toucans, elephants, volcanoes, sunrise dinners, monkey forests and local artists on the list. We loved seeing the local village ceremonies and letting the beautiful Balinese people show us their Bali.
We didn’t go completely off the grid. I suspect our experience was mid-way between the “commercial shop-and-drink-until-you-drop” holiday made famous by younger Aussies and the full “yoga-and-raw-food-cycling-through-the-rice-paddies” described by Elizabeth Gilbert in Eat. Pray. Love.
It was perfect for us. The cliches were balanced by the unexpected adventures and we always had our gorgeous villa to retreat to at the end of the day.