On a walk back to the hotel, the exterior of Balique caught my eye - earthy, softly lit and inviting. What sets this gem apart from everything else is the effortless way in which Indonesian elements are blended with retro vintage themes. The palatable items are varied, from a fresh salade nicoise to the local Nasi Goreng. There is no need for air-conditioning as the sky-high ceiling fans circulate the natural breeze of the island. The furnishings are raw yet artfully decorated. Balique stimulates all your senses and one can find me there everyday on trips to Bali, whether it be for tea time or a laid-back lunch.
Visiting a cooking school is a great holiday activity to partake in while in Indonesia. Indonesian cuisine is one of the most underrated cuisines I feel. It is really worth exploring the vast array of dishes and ingredients unique to their culture. There are really some amazing flavours.
There are several dotted around Bali but the most reputable schools are located in Ubud, which is a mountain village, around one hour drive from the airport which is worth visiting.
Away from the hustle and bustle of Kuta, Ubud is still very much alive - with a busy market, monkey forest and temples putting on performances each night. Heading west from the market and taking a right up Jalan Kajeng, you will stumble across authentic restaurants and homestays. Ubud’s crown jewel is it’s amazing location. If you continue along that road, taking the left at a fork, you will find yourself surrounded by rice paddy fields, stretching as far as the eye can see. Great to do in the late evening as the sun sets and then grab dinner on the way back into town.
Jalan Kajeng, Ubud, Bali, Indonesia
Google map: bit.ly/R589ky
We were staying in the Komaneka Bisma and were walking back to our hotel one evening after a lovely meal, we fancied a drink but didn't fancy Cafe des Artistes at the bottom of Jalan Bisma. So we walked on to our hotel along the rice field road. We walked past a shack/bar/music venue. it was full of locals watching a local band playing Nirvana!!! we have never enjoyed drinking warm beer so much in our whole lives. we were welcomed in with opened arms and the invite to dance was one we couldn't resist! it was hot and sweaty but real, we were treated as one of the locals and my wife and I felt safe. It was surreal listening to Indonesian Nirvana in a small shack in a rice field on our honeymoon but it's an evening we'll never forget.
Jalan Bisma, Ubud, Indonesia, right off Jalan Raya Sanggingan, between Cafe des Artistes & between Komaneka Bisma.
Google map: bit.ly/Ud2SYM
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