May 8, 2016



I’m currently in-between jobs, so to make the most of my ‘funemployment’, I booked a cheap and cheerful holiday to Bali to bask in the sunshine with Ryan and enjoy daily massages. My dad had been only a month earlier, and raved about Dara Ayu Villas and Spa. The pool looked amazing and was in Ubud – an area I had wanted to stay for years – so I went ahead and booked us in for four nights.

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Dara Ayu Villas and Spa

Dara Ayu did not disappoint. I managed to knock out two books while sitting poolside all while enjoying the glorious views, even while it rained.


View of Mount Batur from our villa

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The hotel is actually 40 minutes out of Ubud, so we had a driver take us to Tegalalang Rice Terrace so we could walk through and see how rice is grown and harvested. We decided to call it a day when we were exhausted from the heat and even a cold coconut couldn’t help. We grabbed lunch in Ubud at Kafe (lots of great organic and vegetarian food) before taking a walk through the Ubud Markets, where I did a terrible job of haggling for two beaded baskets.Tegalalang Rice Terrace3

Tegalalang Rice Terrace Tegalalang Rice Terrace4 Tegalalang Rice Terrace5


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After checking out of Dara Ayu (aka paradise), Ryan and I joined a bike tour of Ubud (booked through here). We cycled downhill through local villages, tasted a variety of local coffee, Ryan held a huge orb spider and learned to make traditional Balinese offerings. It was nice to see a different side of Bali, and not just sit poolside as we usually would.

Bike Tour, Ubud



We were dropped at Tony’s Villa in Seminyak, where we spent the next few nights. I’d only recommend this place with caution… it’s a bit hit and miss. The pool was lovely though! How inviting does it look?! We spent the next few days swimming, reading and napping, while occasionally leaving the hotel to grab a massage, have a sunset drink or eat at one of the cool restaurants that are in the area.

Tony's Villa Seminyak


Entrance to the W Hotel

Sunset drinks at W Hotel

Sisterfields Seminyak

The polenta fries at Sisterfields are 10/10


BaliBoatShed Seminyak Banana

Sea Circus was enjoyable as ever. What a shame that the colourful shutters were replaced.

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It’s always Taco Tuesday at Motel Mexicola.

I had the best pumpkin and eggplant curry at my new favourite spot, Saigon Street, which also happened to be directly outside our hotel. SaigonStreetfood2 SaigonStreetfood

Corner House was a perfect spot to get away from the heat and enjoy a cold coconut juice.HelloBali

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Potato Head Beach Club is still my favourite for sunset drinks.

Potato Head Beach Club Sunset

The hotel breakfast left a lot to be desired, so every other day we found ourselves at Cafe Organic enjoying eggs benedict and smoothie bowls.

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We thought that four days in a row of sitting by the pool was getting a bit much. Ryan and I booked a snorkeling tour out to Nusa Lembongan through Lembongan Watersport. The snorkeling was way better than I could have ever imagined… it was like swimming in an aquarium!

Snorkeling Nusa Lembongan

Snorkeling Nusa Lembongan

Snorkeling Nusa Lembongan Snorkeling Nusa Lembongan

Before leaving Bali, I wanted to check out Tanah Lot Temple. I was hoping that this temple, perched on top a giant rock in the ocean, would have been a calming and spiritual experience, but it ended up just being a place filled with market stalls and another thousand tourists taking pictures. We turned our back on the temple and watched surfers catch a few waves into the soft sunset before heading back for the flight home.

Tanah Lot Temple

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  • Reply James Katarski May 9, 2016 at 12:50 PM

    You forgot to read my review of Tanah Lot temple on TripAdvisor! (Short version: bit shit, really.)

  • Reply mahani June 16, 2016 at 4:27 PM

    That pool! Love Ubud.

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