Artículo original aquí publicado el 15/11/2018 en La Vanguardia.com y escrito por Clara De Nadal Trias, periodista digital, coolhunter de moda y viajes y fundadora de Coolhuntinglab.com
Much has been said and written about Bali. The island is in fashion and maybe that’s why, the last two years, we haven’t stopped seeing the same images of the same beaches in the same emblematic places again and again repeated by all the influencers, celebrites of the world including our friends in all social networks especially Instagram. Therefore, here you will find a travel proposal for those who have never been to Bali and for those who, after reading it will want to repeat.
In case you did not know, Bali is the name of both an island and an Indonesian province. The province includes the island of Bali, Nusa Penida, Nusa Lembongan and Nusa Ceningan. It is located in the western part of the small islands of Sonda, along with Java to the west and Lombok to the east. The island is now a popular tourist destination and is known, like Java, for its delicate arts that include dance, sculpture, painting, goldsmithing, leatherwork and a particular musical style, highlighting the Gamelan (Indonesian orchestra that plays court music and accompanies the theatrical performances and public parades, varying the number of instruments according to the uses).
But apart from being a tourist destination, Bali is increasingly a meeting point for fashion, jewelry, footwear, furniture and decoration wholesalers from all over the world who buy on the island to export it to their countries of origin and sell it more expensive. It is also known as “the island of the gods” for its great religious devotion, although many call it “the magic island”, because when you travel there you feel a special energy that makes the imagination fly and ideas flow without the need of psychotropics; reason why lately many young and not so young are leaving everything to live and fulfill their professional dream in, why not, the new island of opportunities.
But it has also became a paradise for couples who come to spend their honeymoon, brave adventure seekers, surfing, yoga and snorkeling lovers; and without a doubt Bali is an unmissable destination for anyone willing to disconnect for a few days while enjoying wonderful beaches, landscapes and discovering a new culture, history, people and their delicious cuisine.
Puesta de sol en Bali (@indijones / Instagram)
Un surfista en Uluwatu (@indijones / Instagram)
The problem is that when you travel to the island of Bali there are too many options to plan your trip. In this case we will not cover them all, but we propose you a route that includes: Denpasar, Bukit, Jimbaran, Seminyak, Ubud, a brief mention of Kuta and Canggu; highlighting in each one, the special places that not everyone knows yet.
Is the capital city and the main center of the Indonesian province of Bali. Nearby are the Pura Blanjong Temple, the Bali Museum and the Pura Jagatnata Hindu Temple, with a white coral sanctuary. Puputan Square is in the center of the city and next to it there is the Taman Werdhi Budaya (also known as Denpasar Arts Center), which is an extensive complex that exhibits local art, cultural events and is also the venue for the Bali Arts Festival that is held every year with traditional music, dance and art.
The island of Bali has too many wonders to discover, so we will not stop much longer in Denpasar except to mention that this city is the first and the last thing you will see on your trip, since in this city is where the Bali-Denpasar Airport is located with more than 20 million passengers per year.
known as “The viewpoint of Bali”, the peninsula of Bukit welcomes all kinds of people in search of that other Bali that does not appear in the travel catalogs. Today, the peninsula is accessed through a single road that connects Kuta and Jimbaran, and reaches Uluwatu through secondary roads. Once there, the most adventurous onces can move around by motorcycle, taxi, or for much less than you can imagine… in private driver. Although difficult access, the Bukit area has some of the best beaches in all of Bali, highlighting: Uluwatu the most famous- and the same one that appears in the well-known documentary made by Albert Falzon “Morning of the Earth”, who in 1973 shot for the posterity the moment in which its waves were crossed for the first time-, and nowadays it is the beach where consecrated surfers and surf lovers take advantage of the quality of their waves.
Do not forget the exquisite Balangan, Bingin, or Suluban beach –a total delight when the tide descends and it is also where the surf championships are held- and finally Padang Padang -located very close to the famous Uluwatu temple which is worth a visit.-
El Kabrón, un espectacular local español de Bukit (El Kabrón)
Accommodation: Experience the authentic Balinese experience in your own private bungalow in Gravity Hotel, and more of the same if you prefer to stay at Toraja Bambu Boutique Hotel but with the difference that your private bungalow here will be fully made of bamboo. Another option is the Suarga Padang Padang hotel for those looking for even a little more Asian luxury. Do not miss: to admire the last waves of the day at Single Fin; to have breakfast in Suka Espresso -if you are a fan of the healthy food-, or Drifters that in addition to healthy restaurant is also a store specialized in surfing. Try the delicious and authentic Indonesian food in Yeye’s, or in any of the small street stalls that you will see located on the sides of the road. Enjoy the sunset at least once and dine after at El Kabrón in its impressive Spanish restaurant specialized in paellas with an infinity pool facing the sea (essential to book a table in advance).
fishing village and tourist area on the south coast of Kuta in Bali. Jimbaran Bay has an extensive beach with calm waters and fish restaurants surrounded by tropical forests. At the north end is the Kedonganan open-air fish market, where colorful boats dock. Do not miss: its beaches and a local fish and seafood BBQ’s in front of the sea where you can choose what you are going to eat and if you are lucky, to discover their famous secret sauce! Specially in this area do not forget to try the culinary experience of the one star Michelin restaurant Cuca that for over 50 euros will delight you with its tasting menu designed by the well-known and successful Canadian chef Kevin Cherkas.
Uno de los platos del Cuca, un restaurante con estrella Michelin (@indijones / Instagram)