Never get enough of Bali? Yes. Something new is always up in Bali? Yes. But I wanted to do Bali differently this time. So, this answer must be staying away from Kuta-Legian area as these two areas will be flooded by the tourists, especially during the Independence Day long weekend. The top notch option had come to Ubud area. I’ve been to Ubud two times, but never exactly stayed in Ubud. The main agenda was exploring Ubud and nearby area. All I’d wanted to do in Ubud was trekking and cycling (if these two activities can be done in one time).
After had made the rough plan, then the time to make it for details. I told my friend, “let’s get not too mainstream to get accommodation. I heard people talk about airbnb when they’re looking for an accommodation. Heard people talk about it. It usually offers an unique experience.” My friend said yes.
The website is very easy to navigate. It offers you with hundreds of options based on your needs: like budget, location, etc. After painstaking of searching, we finally made three different accommodations for three nights. One night would be in Tegalalang, one was in Ubud central, and our last night would be spent in Labuan Said area (closed to Padang-Padang beach). We’ve never done things like this. It’s all a trial. We had to be ready for the worst. We found out later in our trip, that our accommodations were super superb and out of the box! Hahahaha.
OK, the first night we spent in Tegalalang area in a place called Banjar Patas. Our accommodation called “Coffee Cottage.” We read the review from the people who’d been there before. Quite interesting. Since the place is “out of nowhere” and it’s not easy to access, we asked the owner, Dek, to pick us up at the airport. He agreed to do that. Bali was in a full traffic on that Saturday. Dek was “trapped” in the traffic jam since in Ubud. He offered us to get taxi if we’re too rush, and he’s gonna pick us in Ubud. We said, No, and decided to wait for Dek. It’s a holiday season, it’s time to slow down and relax. We decided to kill the time in Solaria. My travel buddy decided to have something to eat. I was already full eating porridge at Garuda Lounge in Juanda Airport. Dek showed up at around 12.
Dek greeted us with his nice and friendly smile. Then we headed to his place. He said that his place is about 30 minutes driving from Ubud. Or, if we want to try to walk… It’s gonna take around 10 hours without stopping… Hahaha. Would be lots of fun then.
We’re greeted by Dek’s family: father, mother, and wife.
Really, this place is out of nowhere. Dek only rent one room in the second story. The room faces the paddy field, and it has a nice terrace. It has a semi-open bathroom. The bathroom has a huge window where you can see the cacao plants while you’re soaking in the bathup. Seriously, this is so awesome especially if you want do nothing!!!
All of sudden, I got my menstruation early. And, I did not bring my re-useable menspad either the disposable. And I was so hungry!!! My friend and I then decided to walk around the village to get what we needed. We got some direction from Dek where to get my feminine’s stuff. We changed the direction because we saw three dogs were barking to us and it was so scary. Then we decided to walk to the opposite direction. We finally got the emergency thing that I needed in a small grocery. But geez, we did not see any “warungs” or local restaurants as long as we walked. We finally bought some snacks like wafer and other things – things that I hadn’t for years, lol lol. And they were incredibly cheap!
The snacks were not too bad, and it could “keep me” a little bit full. My friend was a little bit surprise to find out that I did not bring any food (like usual) and ate those craps. Folks, I was hungry! Then I decided to take a nap till almost dinner time. During the dinner time, we went to the compound where there’s a terrace (that’s also supposed to be the living room), the kitchen, and also some houses (later we knew, those houses belong to Dek’s extended family from his father side).
This family served us dinner with stir-fried manisa (they called in peyang), tempeh, and sardine. The most unique one was the family did not cook the rice in the rice cooker, but in the traditional steamer and cooked in the fire-wood – like what my mom did years ago. Really, I had a delicious and huge dinner! Hahahaha. Never ever to eat white rice that much. Dek’s mother got me lots of rice. And I was tempted to eat them all. At the end, I was feeling so bloated, hehehe. During the dinner, we talked a lot. And I ask the family about Balinese life. It’s interesting how this family run their lives (I’m planning to write another piece about it).
And the end we had to agree with the reviewer of Dek’s place, there’s nothing you can do after dark! Hahahaha. Fortunately, I brought my playing cards. My travel buddy and I then decided all the cards game we knew. 10 pm, we went to bed. Really, the art of doing nothing – other than sleeping and thinking about nothing. When we woke up in the morning, a smooth sun rays got into the room through the window, a soft and cold wind blew. It was a tranquil morning.
But seriously, it’s really fun to know all the member of this family and to know about the Balinese life. Staying with them is very different with staying in the hotel. We had local experience. We ate what they have eaten. We shared stories. We laughed together. They have touched us in person – not only as a guest, but like a family. It’s the best decision to stay with them.
The next day, Dek dropped us in our second accommodation called “Secret Garden” in Ubud. Maria – the owner, was not around this time. But Sri, the one who lived in the back of the property helped anything we needed. Our second accommodation is superb as well. It has two stories. The bedroom is on the second floor, but on the first floor, we had living room, bathroom, and most importantly KITCHEN!!!
What we did in Ubud: had healthy foods, shopped a little bit ingredients for my kitchen and some oils, watched the legong dance in the evening (my buddy watched the kecak dance), and did a trekking in the morning. I will write another story if I’m not too lazy, hahahaha.
But we needed to move to another accommodation in Labuan Sait – at the Padang-Padang area. it’s called Bombora surf camp! We did not know what was crossing in our mind when we decided to choose ‘surfer camp.” Maybe, because we’d decided from the beginning to do things differently. Also, we’re curious what the surf camp looks like. The place is on the hill – on a small road. We did not find this place all at once.
This place is interesting. The first time seeing the surf camp. It has a huge terrace like verandah with bean stools and hammock. In front of the verandah, there’s a small swimming pool. This place is also 1.3 km from Padang-Padang beach. Ah, not bad! But, in the evening, this place is also deadly quiet. Hahahaha. We walked from the beach to the hotel in the evening, and there’s only a few spots with several amount of people – especially around Pink Coco hotel. Besides that, this place is empty. Only several vehicles passed in the evening. The road is also steep. There’s nothing much to do in the evening. But that’s OK, we needed went to bed early as well. I needed to catch up my flight in the morning.
But yeah.. overall, this trial turned out to be good and amazing. We expected very least from this trip. It turned out, best result!!! Although, one thing I haven’t done yet: CYCLING! So, yeah.. I have reason to come back to UBUD!