Bali has always held special meaning to me and my wife. It was on this tropical island that we had our honeymoon way back in January 2003. Back then, I was so inspired by the holiday experience and customer encounters that I wrote an article that was published in the Straits Times on the legendary hospitality of Balinese.
Sadly things have changed, even at Ubud (Bali’s cultural heart) which is supposedly less mercantilist than Kuta, Uluwatu or the coastal cities. While its verdant and pastoral landscapes have largely remained, the ugly effects of commercialisation and gentrification have left major scars on the island.
To recharge, refresh, and relax, my family and I are heading off to Ubud this afternoon for a short break. Considered one of the more scenic and rustic spots in Bali, Ubud is the cultural centre of the island dotted with numerous art galleries, craft markets, museums and temples. From what I’ve seen and read, the Ubud region is full of picturesque scenes – rustic rice terraces, swaying coconut palms, charming temples, and healing resorts.
Of course, we will also be travelling to other parts of the island like Kuta Beach, Tanalok, and the Mara River (we’ll be staying a night at the Mara River Safari Lodge to experience lions upclose and personal). Hopefully, we’ll be able to catch a procession or two – those are quite spectacular from what I’ve seen and heard.
Do take care during the interim and see you all next week!