My Dragonfly Experience in Bali
Bali has long been on my travel destination list. In January of 2019 I finally made the journey. Bali is an island and province of Indonesia. The island of Bali is home to the majority of the Hindu population of Indonesia, with about 84% of the population being Hindu. Bali is a popular destination for travellers looking for tranquility, beaches and yoga. However, I think most people will be surprised by the hustle and bustle of the main city of Denpasar and the crazy busy atmosphere. Of course once you are off the beaten path you will find tranquility, beaches and yoga, but I loved the friendly people, the shopping and the beautiful moss covered temples.
I flew in to the main city of Denpasar, and was immediately hit by the hot, humid air when we stepped off the plane.
For the first half of my trip I was spending almost a week in Ubud. (I'll tell you about the second half of my trip in another post!) I had arranged pick up at the airport through my hotel, (I am past figuring out buses and public transport after a flight) and was whisked away to the wonderful town of Ubud. Located inland about 30 miles from the airport, Ubud is the cultural centre of Bali. Ubud is a shoppers paradise, so of course I loved it. I was on the hunt for scarves and sarongs, but all of the handicrafts, jewelry, and artwork are incredible.
As is my preference I stayed at a hotel outside of the busy town centre.
The Kayon is owned by Balinese and is very much a luxurious Balinese hotel with wonderful hospitality, a great jungle location and one of the most amazing spa massages I have ever experienced.
The food was incredible, the staff called us by name every time we set foot in the restaurant, you felt special when you were there.
How many hotels have you stayed at where the general manager, the guest services manager and a few other staff see you to your car, thank you with a small gift for good luck and wave goodbye as you leave! Such an amazing place.
But really what you want to know about is the scarves right? My first stop was the market in Ubud.
The market is jam packed with goods and in front every other booth is a burning offering to the gods for luck, giving the market an overwhelming smell of incense. That I did not like I am afraid, but the choice of goods was amazing! I had to pull myself away from the jewelry vendors to start my scarf search. I had lots of fun choosing the sarongs and negotiating with the lovely ladies at the market.
Bargaining is always a part of the market experience and something I am still working on improving. I want to be nice but I also don’t want to get taken advantage of either. A smile and eye contact goes a long way, as does keeping in mind that the vendors are making a living and a dollar or two makes more difference to their lives than to mine.
The favourite scarves I brought home from Bali are definitely the cotton Batik. I came upon the shop one day and fell in love with the beautiful, indigo blue scarves. Handmade locally in the traditional Balinese way. Hearing the store owner, Kadek talk about what it means to keep the traditions alive, what it means to the local economy and the villages. I love it when I find scarves with a story.
After shopping the village I was always a hot mess, Bali is hot and humid. My routine was to go back to the hotel for a lovely swim in the gorgeous pool overlooking the jungle. The pool was an infinity pool, complete with statues and little fountains. It was heavenly.
One day I was languishing in the cool water and I pulled myself up to glance over the edge of the pool and down in to the jungle (I was always looking for monkeys), imagine my surprise when a huge cloud of dragonflies rose up and filled the air right there in front of me!! It was like a scene from a Julia Roberts movie. I took it as a sign that I was in the right place at the moment, that I was where I was meant to be, doing what I was meant to be doing. I can't wait to start planning the Wanderlust Scarves Travel adventure to Bali! Sign up for my newsletter to be sure to be in the loop for all my upcoming adventures.
Enjoy a few more photos from my Bali trip.
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