Did you know that the beds in Bali are oriented in such a way that your head is facing the Batur Volcano? This is the most sacred mountain on the island, the lair of Balinese gods. They say that sleeping towards Mt Batur helps you relax and get in contact with the deities at night. We cannot say how much contact is made with the Balinese gods, but we can surely state that a night spent in Bali, maybe in a traditional Balinese cottage, is one of the most relaxing things to do.
Anyway, Bali is that kind of place for which one can find a huge amount of information on the internet, but no matter how much you’ll search and scour the web, by the time you’re really there, you’ll definitely be fascinated. It is that kind of place where the locals are guided by different values, different beliefs and time flows in a completely different way than we are used to. And the Balinese do that while enjoying life to the fullest.
All this because Bali is a truly magical place. There are few tourists who had visited Bali and not tell you that the island of gods has a special flair. We are not talking here about the administrative status of the Bali Island, a semi-autonomous island with predominant Hindu religion, adapted in such a unique way that you won’t find anywhere else the rituals and practices made here.
Your first contact with the Balinese culture will be made right in the Denpasar Bali International Airport, where you’ll probably have the chance to meet your guide dressed in a traditional Balinese costume. Pro tip: try to find a guide from the rural area of Bali. This way, you’ll be imbued with that local energy, and you’ll be quickly integrated into the Balinese culture. There is a huge difference between exploring a destination with the help of a commercial guide, who’s there just for the money, and a true guide who knows how to integrate you into the specificity of that magical place. The first will only recite a pre-learned text and enjoy the money while the latter will share you some of his energy, local secrets and captivate you with his passion and love towards his native places.
The latter will also help you deal with the cultural shock, especially if you’re coming from US, Europe or Australia. And trust us, you’ll feel it firsthand, starting with the acute traffic jams. There are scooters, cars, pedestrians, horns and bikes everywhere, and everyone seems to drive or walk chaotically. The uproar seems never-ending. But with a little help from your local guide, you’ll get used to it pretty fast and finally get to the hotel or resort of your choice.
By the way, it’s good to know that in Bali, a location such as Kuta is fitted for those looking for fun, entertainment, clubbing, restaurants, malls, and bustle. And surfing. Especially surfing. The waves are perfect and the Australian surfers prefer Bali to any other destination on Earth. But Kuta is not very well suited for swimmers, as the ocean currents are pretty strong, and the water is often dirty. For swimming, enjoying a quiet day at the beach or the peace of mind offered by the natural beauties of Bali, you should try visiting either the northern part of the island or a more secluded location, like Uluwatu, where you’ll find delightful hotels such as Hidden Valley Resort, near Pecatu village.