We’re back in Bali, wrapping up preparations for the spring 2014 yoga & wellness retreats with Shiva & Randall. We spent the entire month of April traveling around Bali, basing ourselves for the most part in Ubud (considered Bali’s cultural and spiritual hub). We spent a fabulous 3 weeks in Lombok (more on that later!) but it’s nice to be back in Bali. What I enjoy the most is knowing the lay of the land—not just the streets and such, but the real social landscape. Knowing that the big black dog outside Alfamart is super friendly, catching up with our old taxi driver outside Tegal Sari, knowing that there is a beautiful secret shortcut to the great restaurant that has no problem substituting oranges for pineapples in your beet juice concoction… you get the idea.
Much of our trip this winter & spring has been a whirlwind, but when we get to stop for even a few weeks at a time, it’s delightful and the true nature of the place unfolds. Whether it’s getting to know the habits of the sweet street dogs in Kathmandu, the timing of the tides in Lombok, which ghat in Varanasi has the most kids flying kites, or which warung (café) in Bali has the tempeh that tastes like Cap’n Crunch (!!!), knowing a place takes more than having Google Maps on your smartphone.
We understand that it can be difficult to really “know” a place in the short vacation time you have each year. That’s something that we really pride ourselves on—being able to help you understand a place in a short while. Some might even say we can give you insight (*ahem*). With our intimate knowledge of the locales we lead tours, you almost feel like you already know the places and people you’ll see. (Previewing the pictures on our Facebook page doesn’t hurt, either!) And since the tours are so small (6-8 for cultural tours, 8-12 for yoga & wellness retreats), you won’t feel lost in the crowd on your own holiday.
Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m going head over to Monkey Forest Road to my favorite essential oil shop in Bali and see if they have any new goodies, and then maybe stop to see what shenanigans the monkeys are up to in the forest. Even though it’s good to know what’s going on in town, sometimes it’s even better to be surprised!