Bali Hidden Gems

What is the first thing popped in your mind when you heard a word “Bali”? Most people will say beach. Indeed Bali has beautiful beaches stretch along the island. Not only the white sandy beaches, but also the black ones. But do you know that Bali is not just about the beach?

The island of Bali has many hidden gems spread throughout the island. Rice terraces, forest, volcano, lakes, rivers, caves, canyon, you name it. The good thing is most of those places are still less exposed by many tourists. You still can enjoy the stream of the river between lush green canyons while you do rafting. Even if you are lucky, you can see one or two apes hanging on the trees.

Wandering the non-touristy places in Bali is one of my favorite activities during the weekend. I usually go with scooter for faster and easier way to travel around this island. I visited a scenic jogging/walking path on the hill in Ubud, enjoy the view from atop of hill overlooking to the sea in Karangasem, found a hidden waterfall with its blue lagoon, hike Mount Batur on sunrise time, trekking in an uphill village overlooking to the lake, and etc.

Bali is famous with its authentic rice terraces called Subak. Subak is the water management (irrigation) system for paddy fields on Bali Island, which was developed in the 9th century. For the Balinese, irrigation is not simply providing water for the plant’s roots, but water is used to construct a complex, pulsed artificial ecosystem. The famous rice terrace in Bali can be found in Tegalalang, Keliki, and Jatiluwih as a UNESCO world heritage. Make sure you stop by those places to see how Balinese combine art and irrigation system.

Are you an adventure seeke? Try to climb the volcano in Bali. Mount Batur is an option for those who want to witness a stunning sunrise above the cloud, with not so long hike needed. Only require about 2 hours hike to reach the top of Mount Batur on 1.717 meters height above sea level. And prepare yourself for the golden sun rising slowly from behind the sea of cloud. You also can spot Mount Rinjani in Lombok at the far east. Want to try the higher level of hike? Then you should hike Mount Agung, the highest one in Bali with 3.031 meters height elevation. Those volcanoes are not only for the strong legs hikers. For people who just want to enjoy the volcano from afar, there are restaurants that offer lunch with the view of this majesty volcano.

Where there’s a volcano, there’s must be a waterfall. And it’s true. Bali has a lot of waterfalls to offer. From the highest one in the midst of forest, until the one situated in the centre of rural villages. Both are worth to visit. And let the cool breeze indulge you while you enjoy the sound of waterfall hit the lagoon underneath.

Talking about the lake, Bali has some lakes with beautiful view surrounding. The famous ones are Lake Batur and Lake Bedugul. Each has their own beauties to capture. While the more secluded one, Lake Tamblingan, lies side by side with Lake Buyan in the midst of Munduk green hills.

I’m sure by now you just can’t wait to come to Bali and explore its secret gems, hidden in the middle of untouched nature. Then just pack your bag and go!

Written by Fransisca Widi

Indonesia Culinary Experience

Visit Indonesia is not only for the beautiful sceneries and cultural richness. It is also about enjoying the delicious culinary experience. You will always captivated by the various kinds of Indonesian foods in every province you visit. Indonesians eat rice as their daily meal, three times a day. Yes, three times. You might be surprise with this and wondering how Indonesian people could eat that such high carbohydrate in the morning. But that’s how we are. Most of us indeed eat a complete big meal with rice in the morning, but there are also people who choose to eat lighter meal on breakfast. The common breakfast menu in Indonesia are Nasi Goreng (Fried rice), Mie Goreng (fried noodle), Bubur Ayam (chicken porridge), Nasi Uduk (coconut milk rice), or Mie Ayam (chicken noodle). But in some provinces in Indonesia, they also have their own authentic breakfast menu. While eating bread or cereal in the morning is less common for Indonesians, unless the big cities residents.

Nasi Goreng Curry

Talking about lunch, we must agree with the common diet concept of big meal for lunch. And Indonesians know it so well. Even for dinner, we still able to eat rice complete with its ornaments. Lunch and dinner menu could be anything, like rice (of course), sautéed veggies, chicken/beef/fish/eggs, soup, and etc. You must have heard about Beef Rendang. It is one of Indonesian famous foods. It made of beef meat cooked in a thick coconut milk with herbs and chili. It took several hours to cook Rendang to make it soft, tender and juicy. Chicken is another favorite menu as well for Indonesians. In Bali, you can find the famous Ayam Betutu, chicken with fresh chili sambal and several kinds of ornaments to enjoy together. In Jogjakarta, you will find Nasi Gudeg – a mix rice with beef, chicken, egg, sautéed jackfruit, tempe, and sambal – display on a piece of banana leaf as your plate. Nasi Gudeg is slightly sweet. So, if you are afraid of Indonesian sambal (famous with its HOTness), you can try Nasi Gudeg.

Nasi Ayam Betutu Bali

Beef Rendang

Nasi Gudeg

Typically Indonesian Lunch

Indonesians have a motto for daily meal as “4 healthy, 5 perfect”. The 4 Healthy consist of carbohydrates main meal (rice, noodle, potato or bread), Animalic proteins (beef, chicken, fish, or egg), Veggies Vitamins, and Fruits vitamins. And number 5 is for milk. So it means if we could fulfill 4 kinds of those specified foods in our daily life, it’s good for our health and even perfect if we could drink milk as well.

So, got an idea of what food you will try once you are in Indonesia? Don’t think too much, just come and experience it yourself! ☺

Written by Fransisca Widi