There was a calm air that circulated when I landed in Denpasar. It was an early Sunday morning and that is the perfect time to really wake up with the place; get to know it a little. With Bali being the final destination, it was my let go, let flow time. I was there for a yoga retreat – yoga, sun, beach! When I arrived at the Serenity Eco Guesthouse, I was tooting my own horn thinking I am a genius. The smell of fresh coffee and sea water permeated. Now, if you think that is not sheer happiness, I don’t know what is…
After checking in and settling in what looked like my university dorm room (in a great, nostalgic way), I took a minute stroll to the beach. The sun brings me joy; and, as a friend said it so excellently, “you take in the sun and you radiate it like its rays.” Is that not the most beautiful compliment?
If you’re looking for a tranquil place away from the Bali party scene, this would be ideal. You’d be walking distance away from the Canggu hub; where all the markets, bars and tourists are. I woke up to the sound of birds chirping, the smell of insect repellent and the feeling of sheer happiness. I started every day with a morning Vinyasa session followed by a delicious alkaline breakfast then an hour or two reading by the poolside. Is this not paradise?
The morning I decided that I would be taking an Uber to Ubud, I was practically on cloud 9 humming Samba da Bencao by Bebel Gilberto. If you have seen Eat, Pray, Love you get my vibe. I was going to frolic about those rice fields! My advice to anyone planning a trip to Bali, please spend at least a day in Ubud. I know there is a Monkey Forest that is highly recommended. I got sidetracked in Ubud that I forgot that I was supposed to go there. I walked about 10 km around Ubud, ouch! The rice paddies were luscious and shed that come hither green. Now, I don’t know about cycling around there a la Julia Roberts because the streets are busy and the rice paddy pathways are narrow. Needless to say that I passed out and slept like a log that evening!
Make sure that you enjoy an Arak cocktail. Sip slowly. It goes straight to the knees. Or, head! China has bai jiu, Turkey has raki and Indonesia has arak!
There is also a huge market in Ubud where you could buy anything and everything. Just google search Ubud Market or your taxi driver will know exactly what you are talking about. I didn’t have any hassles getting around as it seemed as though everyone spoke English.
The last day was spent with me walking around the Canggu area and stumbled upon the Love Anchor Daily Bazaar. I found a family owned, locally- and hand-made footwear stall! Do yourself a favour and look up Kenazha Footwear when you’re heading to Canggu. They can even make you a pair if they don’t have your size!
I have never been more calm and at ease in a new place! It could have been the sun salutations, it could have been the vitamin D, or that I didn’t need to worry about plans for the next destination. All I could do was to take it all in; drink it slowly and mindfully..
The Yoga Retreat: I would highly recommend Serenity. I have linked in above or you could have a look here for yoga discounts and specials. You could even choose a surf and yoga retreat! If you can ride or drive, you can hire a scooter or a car hassle free! Everyone is zipping around on scooters!
Tip: English is widely spoken so no need to freak out about that. You can use the UBER app but it is banned in some areas so you would need to walk to a pick up point. Other than that, hostels often have their own transport service.
Food: Do yourself a favour, eat everything! Just eat.
A return trip is definitely on the cards.
Take it nice and slow, x