The Bali Diary: Day Two ♡

The Bali Diary: Day Two ♡

DAY TWO IN BALI!  After spending the day before getting adjusted to the heat and getting our bearings, we woke up ready for an action-packed day full of sight seeing ahead of us!   There seem to be three popular ways to get around to visit all the must-see locations; a DIY tour by scooter, booking a tour through a company (and getting on their bus with others), or hiring a driver for a day to take you to the places you want to see.

I spent a bit of time on TripAdvisor before we arrived in Bali and settled on the company Bali Made Tour to organise hiring a driver.  Quick side note: TripAdvisor is an AMAZING resource if you’re planning a trip to Bali.  SO many companies ask that you leave reviews on there, so there are a lot of people who have shared their honest feedback about accommodation/services/restaurants/etc.

Just as another FYI, it’s not entirely necessary to arrange a private driver before you land as most villas will kindly organise a driver for you at the drop of a hat.  But doing this before we arrived allowed me to shop around to find the best price / itinerary for what we wanted to do – because #studentlife and #studentbudget!  I wanted a driver to take us up to the artsy and spiritual village of Ubud for the day.  Fun fact about Ubud, it featured in the movie Eat Pray Love (where Julia Roberts eats in Italy, prays in India, and loved in Bali!).  A lot of tourists seem to spend a few days/nights here, but because our trip was very short we only had time for a day trip.

Our driver Krisna picked us up from Abia Villas and was just awesome right from the beginning!  Something that I loved about this company was that they allowed me to put together my own itinerary based on what we wanted to do.  All I did was email them the day we wanted to go to Ubud, the kinds of things we wanted to do, and places we wanted to see – and they emailed back their proposed itinerary.  Unfortunately, on the actual day we didn’t get to fit everything in as we’d hoped because we encountered CRAZY unheard of traffic.  We later found out that it was because of a funeral taking place, and that the town were making their way to the temple to pay their respects to the deceased.

Even still, we did manage to make it to the Bali Zoo, the Monkey Forest, the Ridge Walk and we finished the day at Paon Cooking Class.  If I did a trip to Ubud again, and I will (hehe!) I would cut out the zoo and the Ridge Walk.  I do highly recommend the Monkey Forest, but I would definitely add in a trip to Tegallalang Rice Terrace, Goa Gaja (Elephant Cave) and I’d love to go to Tirta Empul (where you can bathe in the water for spiritual cleansing).  My advice is take your time and do some research on options of places to go, and then discuss your preferences with a private driver company to build your ultimate itinerary!

The Monkey forest is Ubud’s most popular attraction, and you can see why as it is such an insane experience having monkeys running around everywhere.  This also makes for some amazing photo opportunities!  Word of advice: they can, and they will try to unzip your bag!  So be careful around those sneaky monkeys!

The monkey was unzipping Dave’s bag as I took the photo!

After a late lunch with our driver we arrived at our Balinese cooking class which was something I was REALLY looking forward to doing!  We wanted to do this because we love cooking together at home and we regularly take classes in Christchurch to expand our cooking skills.  This class was a little different as it was set in a traditional Balinese compound, overlooking a forested ravine!  Puspa, our teacher was so fun and made the class really entertaining!  And we made SO many dishes… it was insane!

At the end of the class we took all of the recipes home, and Dave and I can’t wait to try those here.  In all honesty, even though this class had super positive ratings on TripAdvisor, I think if you wanted to do a cooking class it would be better to do one near to wherever you are staying – rather than make a special trip for one as we did.

Because Ubud is about 90 minutes away from where we were staying, once the class was finished we made our way back to the Villa.  Because our villa came with a daily complimentary cocktail each, we couldn’t end the night without enjoying a few cocktails by our pool before turning in for the evening!  HEAVENLY!