Flores, Indonesia
Asia,  Travel,  Wellness

Bali & Flores, Indonesia

 

I went with a few friends to Bali and Flores in the end of June. We were told it was dry season, and according to every source it is indeed dry season, but it poured and poured and poured every day for us. We got a few hours¬†here and there of no rain, so we would get out and try to do a few activities (and a some instagrammable pictures ūüėČ ). We stayed at the¬†Dipan Resort in Seminyak, Bali. It was perfect for us. I would say it was more of a budget option, but it was still very nice. Given there were enough of us, we got a three bedroom villa which was fun. I was also really happy we stayed in Seminyak. Each town in Bali has its own vibe. Kuta is insanely touristy, honestly the whole island was far too touristy for my liking, but Seminyak had a slightly hippy, Aussie personality to it which I really liked. There are tons of healthy restaurants, a few beach clubs, and lots of cute shops, so I think it’s a great area to stay. Most of my friends who have gone have stayed in Seminyak, although Kuta if you’re trying to really party, and then a few in Jimbaran for some of the larger, higher-end resorts.

Seminyak, Bali

We went to a few healthy, easy restaurants in Seminyak which I would definitely recommend checking out. Sisterfields Cafe and Earth Cafe were my two favorite. Sisterfields was more of a trendy vibe with awesome food, and Earth Cafe was more geared toward the healthy eater (although I think the food was both healthier and better at Sisterfields). We went to a nicer dinner near the hotel one night at Bambu. Both the food and drink were great, and I think the bill was under $25/person with a main and a drink or two. That night we also stopped by Potato Head Beach Club, which is a gorgeous beach club in Seminyak. Given it was down-pouring, the club was pretty empty, but I imagine on a sunny day it is packed and a really fun spot.

We also spend one day in Ubud. We decided just to do a day trip there, but I know a lot of people really enjoy spending a few nights up there. It took us a little under two hours in the car to get there, but we were there during a holiday week so traffic throughout the week was absurd and apparently worse than normal. If you want to walk around the rice paddies, Ubud is the place for that. Naturally, I jumped on one of the big swings. It was ~$6 and I thought it was good fun. There were two restaurants we went in Ubud which were outstanding. The first was¬†Atman Nourish Kafe. It’s a cute little shop in front and then the back is a cafe with tons of seating and an open back to a big green paddy area. We just sat for a kombucha and matcha, but everyone’s food looked great and there were tons of healthy options. The second place we went was¬†Sayuri Healing Food Cafe, which might have been my favorite restaurant from this trip. It reminded me of some of the really good whole food, macro, plant-based restaurants in the States. The menu was creative and exciting and completely plant-based. I got “lox and bagel” and have never had anything like it. It truly tasted like a lox and bagel, except I didn’t feel gross and too fully after. It was a seed based cracker and cashew cheese of sorts. I would hands down eat that every day. We tried a few of their drinks, teas, and sweets, which were also really great. If you are ever in Ubud, I think this is a must go.¬†Finally, in Ubud we went to¬†The Yoga Barn, which is one of the main yoga studios there. Great spot to check out if you’re craving some yogs.

Ubud, Bali

After Ubud and a few days in Bali, we flew an hour east to Flores. Flores feels more like an undiscovered island – without much of anything at the moment – but from Flores you can take a little boat to all the islands. From my understanding, Indonesia was never conquered by a Western country (although it was by China), so many of the islands are still completely remote. Each of the islands we went to, while tiny, had their own language which was significantly different from Indonesian. The languages were so different that my Indonesian friend on the trip couldn’t even communicate with the natives. But, because these islands were so remote and so disconnected, they were unbelievably gorgeous. I felt like we were exploring islands that had never been found before. It was really special and unique. Aside from the boat tour from Flores, we went to two restaurants there that were pretty good.¬†Bajo Bay for dinner one night and Atlantis Beach Club for a drink and lunch on day. The beach club was decorated and set up to be super cool, but it was completely empty because Flores isn’t exactly touristy yet. Give it a few years and that’ll be an awesome day drinking spot!

Overall, the trip was incredible. Indonesia is such a cool place, but I think it might have been better a few years ago. Bali felt super touristy and overrun already which was a little disappointing. Flores on the other hand wasn’t developed quite yet, but I think will be an awesome destination in a few years!

Ubud, Bali

 

8 Comments

  • Stefanie

    Hmmm, I think Flores might be the way for me to go once I finally make it to that part of the world. (And I really hope to!) It’s interesting how the tourism industry has been changing in recent years. More and more destinations seem to be getting overrun. Thanks for sharing your Bali tips and experiences with us!

  • Yukti

    Bali in Indonesia is top on my wishlist due to those hidden exotic islands, terraced paddy fields, and beautiful lush green nature. I would also love to stay at Seminyak as it has a slight hippy culture and also less touristy than Kuta. Also staying in Dipan resort looks budget-friendly option. I was not knowing about Flores and therefore adding this to in my Bali list. Thanks for sharing all the information about restaurants and dine-in options in Bali and Flores.

  • Hendrik

    Ah beautiful Bali! I have been there in April and was amazed by this island. Even though I discovered quite a lot, I havent made it to Flores.
    The photo of the Dipan Resort in Seminyak looks very nice. I made the experience in Bali, that even the so called budget locations are often still amazing with many beautiful flowers, pools and other things. Great to see, that you also explored other areas than just Bali, just like Flores, Rachel. I think especially all those little islands around there must be unique places to discover.

  • Paul

    Sounds like you had a great time in spite of the rain, traffic and touristy Kuta. I haven’t been yet, but it’s good to have some restaurant recommendations which it sounds like you loved. Definitely need to add this to my list, thanks for sharing.

  • Sinjana Ghosh

    Bali, Fores, and Ubud – that sounds like a perfect trip to Indonesia. All these places are in my bucket-list more so after seeing these pictures. “The language was so different that my Indonesian friend couldn’t communicate” – that’s so relatable. I can’t communicate in majority of local languages in India , and i am trilingual ūüėÄ
    Flores definitely tops my list after reading your views.

  • Annick

    I agree that Bali has become too touristy. Kuta was too touristy even when I first went 30 years ago. I worry that Ubud is also losing some of its charm (although I would definitely be taking my photo on a swing!). I’d never heard of Flores so I’m going to hold out a bit longer and hope to see it at the right point between enough development without being too touristy.

  • Amar singh

    Everyone wants a piece of Bali and quite understandably why. But Flores is something different and not much heard of. Live the beautiful island all it has to offer. The resort looks amazing and seems like can be done on a budget. A great place and thanks fir sharing an offbeat location.

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