Sunday, December 19, 2010

End of Bali Bonanza - All that Glitters is ...

Spot the missing "e"
Pretty little shophouses in a row

Pesky monkeys in the background

Retro-looking speakers

Chill on a wooden bench at the patio

After a harrowing experience with vicious monkeys at Uluwatu, we decided to stay away from Monkey Forest in Ubud. We headed for Coffee & Silver cafe but could still see the pesky creatures harassing shop-owners and rummaging through rubbish.

Dirty Duck was our lunch stop and we delighted in seeing our favourite animal again in all her full nonchalant glory.

Traditional huts surround a lily pond at Dirty Duck

Our view

Signature Crispy Duck - Bebek Bengil

We ended the day at Cafe Havana - and sat beside a balcony overlooking the street.

We had paella and mojitos at this joint reminiscent of 1930s Cuba with a cool red Cadillac parked at the front.

Coffee & Silver
Jln Sukma, Ubud

Cafe Havana
Jl Dewi Sita, Ubud

Villa on a Padi Plain

Swim in a natural lagoon fed by pristine & therapeutic spring waters

Tail Fishing

We retreated to a villa in Ubud, the cultural and artistic centre of Bali. It was located in the middle of a secluded padi field - the true definition of being close to nature. We could hear the soulful symphony of frogs and crickets during the night and awoke to the cheerful melody of birds in the morning.

The highlight - we had a private pool to ourselves that led to a huge lagoon outside fed by natural underground spring waters. It was absolutely therapeutic as we had a leisurely swim under a blanket of stars. I found peace......

Lush padi fields gleaming in the sun

Weird face carving on tree

Serene & Quiet

What we loved about this particular resort is its location beside a small traditional Balinese village. You can take in authentic sights and sounds of village life in the morning. Some of the villagers have found work in the resort while others like farmers still till the land at the wake of dawn and you can see them hard at work in the surrounding padi fields.

We did a short tour around sister resort - Furama Villas & Spa where we were shown the lovely honeymoon set-up.

I loved the rustic feel of this sister resort with her outdoor showers, cosy pools and the overall earthly palate of colours. WJ still preferred the more modern resort we stayed in, with her huge natural lagoon. We will definitely be back again for a respite.

FuramaXclusive Villas & Spa Ubud
Banjar Bindu, Mambal
8 Jalan Melati

Badung, Bali - Indonesia

On the Rocks

Had to check out the authorised shop of Butterfly Brand of Bali Coffee in Denpasar. Very quaint little place with bags of coffee beans and other contraptions. You can have a freshly brewed cuppa there at a reasonable price. As we had already bought tons of Kopi Luwak beans, we skipped sampling a cup of it at 15 bucks.

The experience at the Rock Bar was totally sublime. I had one of the best margaritas and the view was spectacular. Easily one of the hippest bars and a personal favourite of ours in Bali. Glad we got to enjoy the sunset from here. Poor WJ had to cram in a few mins of study time for his upcoming exams here :(

The Rock Bar at Ayana Resort & Spa is perched on natural rocks 14 metres above the Indian Ocean at the base of towering cliffs. Just take in the lazy sounds of the ocean and hear the mighty waves crash against the weathered rocks just beside you. True bliss. 

The Rock Bar
Ayana Resorts & Spa Bali
Jln Karang Mas Sejahtera, Jimbaran

Monday, December 13, 2010

The Coolest Coffee Corner

Lions found internet at last!
Best Smoothie & Sandwiches in Bali!
Bright & Cheery

Why Coffee Corner has got to be the best cafe in Bali........

1) The most cheerful decor of them all, a great perk-me-up in the mornings.
2) The best service experienced so far, obliging and just genuinely helpful.
3) Free internet access available.
4) The BEST Smoothies and Sandwiches in town! Absolutely fresh ingredients used. So good we gulped down 2 smoothies in a row.
5) Clean 5-star *ahem* washrooms.
6) An ambience so relaxing we wished we could stay for hours...
7) They make a good cuppa, of course.

Coffee Corner
Jln Melasti Bk 1 & 2 Legian, Badung, Bali

Recess @ the Tuckshop

To escape the grasp of the merciless Balinese sun, we retreated to the Tuckshop - a cafe cum gallery cum boutique store. It was a simple affair as we recuperated over a cold bottle of Pellegrino, mixed fruit yogurt salad and a flat white. Refreshingly delicious - the aircon that is. The long walk from kuta to ku de ta was starting to take a toil on us.

Love the minimalistic zen decor. Casual and inviting.
Nothing like a cuppa to re-energise!

We made a pitstop at Divine Wonderland for some snapshots. This quirky little cafe with overwhelmingly huuuge chairs - just like something out of Lewis Carroll's famed tomes - is definately worth checking out. You've got to see it to believe it! Just like the White Rabbit, it was a pity we were too hard pressed for time to stop for a cuppa...

Adventure down the Rabbit Hole
Finally, after a 4-hour walk from our hotel -  Ku De Ta. Just in time to enjoy the sunset.
3 lions enjoying the view.

Divine Wonderland

located at
Jln Lasmana, Seminyak, Bali

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Bali Bonanza - Kopi Pot

Highly Vulgar Water Font
After a highly-charged year, we descended upon the island of Bali for some serious chilling and gratifying coffee moments. 

We were pleasantly surprised at the number of boutique cafe joints just flourishing in the quieter parts of Kuta and Seminyak. People take their coffee here seriously and locally grown beans are readily available.

On our first morning, we had decidedly the best breakfast in Bali at The Kopi Pot. Carefully choosing a cool spot under a shady tree with a view of early morning street-side activity, we proceeded to indulge ourselves.

A stowaway - Roary!
Bali Coffee

Breakfast with Nature -  a feather lands gently from the tree above.

Riot of Rainbow Colours

We had the best banana pancakes ever! It was crispy on the outside and soft with a burst of sweetness on the inside. The Indonesian-style hashbrown was so delightfully savoury we wished we had another and another..
With a bowl of fresh mixed fruits and yogurt, it was a totally balanced meal as well.

Kopi Pot is a charming colonial-style two-storey restaurant complete with a thatched roof and lush greenery. Perfect hideaway for lazying in cool romantic evenings beside playful tealights under a starry sky.

Check out their French-inspired dinner menu as well.

Cafe Kopi Pot
Jln Legian, North Kuta