So Nusa Dua was explained to me as "the part of Bali they created to keep tourists in a certain area". Hmm, sounded both enticing and possibly lacking in culture at the same time. Lucky for us, it was far beyond our low expectations.
The area is basically a nice, sandy, clean beach fillwed with loungers and surrounded by luxury hotels. Not too shabby at all.
Now I will say that I like to travel pretty comfortably. That doesn't translate to boring or high-maintenance, but it means I like a clean bed and a nice bathroom.... and just general cleanliness.
Nothing could have prepared me for the luxury we were about to encounter when we headed to The Bale hotel for our night in Nusa Dua. Just wow. These photos don't do it justice. I feel a little strange writing about this, because i don't want people to get the idea that I'm accustomed to this level of luxury, but there is no guilt in indulging in it ever once and awhile. Isn't that what vacations are for?
We had the most beautiful villa, totally separate and private. Each unit had the most beautiful, clean bungalow with an immense bathroom, window lined soaker tub, outdoor shower (and an indoor shower just in case you're feeling picky), and rolling doors that openeed up to steps into your own private pool. If i could insert an emoticon in here, it'd be one with a dropped jaw and hands on the cheeks. Holy smokes guys. As if that amazingness wasn't enough, there was a covered outdoor bed by the pool and we were welcomed with a complimentary massage, drinks and a snack upon arrival.
The staff were so lovely and kind. Did I mention that every suite had a personal butler? I myself am not accustomed to having someone being so available to care for me. It actually makes me feel a tad uncomfortable to be tended to that well, and I mean that in the most complimentary way to attest to the wonderful service. Maybe I could get used to it if my life were like that more often? What a scary thought lol.
The whole time I had this feeling of "do these people know I don't belong here? ..in this world of luxury?" and not in the sense of feeling uncomfortable, more like feeling way too comfortable. It was really amazing. We really got to relax and feel as though we had nothing else to do but be in our space with each other. Seriously romantic.
We made the short 5 minute wander (they offered us a ride, but these two legs still have to do some work!) to the beach for the evening where we got drinks (a fresh coconut and a beer) and watched the sunset. While we were there a family was throwing a huge birthday bash for their two young kids and it looked like so much fun. They had a big balinese table of food and had lanterns to light and float into the sky and overall it was just that added bit of atmosphere that makes a moment feel memorable.
I realized after re reading this post that it's mostly about our accommodations, which is a bit strange. I think that's because for us Nusa Dua really was all about where we stayed. We were more than happy to spend the day in our own space and not venture out at all. Food, swimming, relaxing and having an amazing bubble bath...why would you ever leave?
But unfortunately it was over as soon as it began. We woke up, had breakfast delivered to us in bed (the best!) and were refreshed to start our trip through the mountains to Tyler's Uncle's house on the other side of the island.
On the drive up we got to stop at a coffee plantation that brewed Kopi Luwak, the famous catpoo coffee. Balinese coffee is known as Kopi. It doesn't get brewed in the traditional way. It's basically ground super fine and added straight to boiling water. It's thick, but delicious and often has powdered milk and sugar mixed in (I assume to avoid having to refrigerate milk). We got to do a tasting of all sorts of amazing drinks all made at the spot we visited. The ginger tea, coconut coffee, tumeric tea, kopi luwak, chocolate coffee, hot chocolate and more were all super delicious.
The Kopi Luwak wasn't the only good part of the experience. We got to see coffee beans growing and being roasted, as well as cocoa plants, cinnamon trees, nutmeg, snake fruits and durian growing naturally. I love to see food that we have eaten all our lives at it's source. It's amazing that we eat things and don't event know where they come from.
Fruit stands line the roads in Bali. Just simple huts with piles of exotic, ripe fruit waiting to be bought for basically nothing. The locals selling food on the sides of the street made the driving one of my favourite parts about Bali. Jackfruits the size of your leg and because Durians were in season we must have past literally thousands on our journeys. With a pit stop at a fruit stand to buy mangosteen, rambutan, jackfruit, snakefruit and lychee we headed into the mountains where rice plantations, livestock, tropical monsoons and the longest walk of my ife awaited us.
A lot of my favourite photos came from this upcoming portion of our trip. Hope that you come back to check it out in the next few days!