Promise Yourself That One Day You Will Wake Up in Bali

By Kimberly Ngo, Protravel International Luxury Travel Agent

Bali truly is a living postcard, an Indonesian paradise that feels like a fantasy. I think the first time that I ever saw a photo of Bali was back in 2009. It was rolling green terraces of rice paddies which I learned later were the Tegalalang rice fields in Ubud. Having grown up in the same area of Southern California all my life, that photo resonated with me because it was so different than anything I had ever seen before. It was so beautiful, vibrant and calming. I had yet to even travel out of the country, but I knew that Bali was going on my bucket list. Cue one decade later and I finally had the opportunity to pack my bags and visit one of my dream destinations.

Green terraced rice fields and coconut palm trees, luxury destination Bali, Indonesia

Why you Need a Professional Travel Advisor

I was fortunate to be working with one of our longtime partners, ICS Travel Group, to furnish expert local guides and drivers on the ground to help me (and my clients) experience the country in a deeper and more authentic way than I could have done on my own. The world’s most trusted and experienced luxury tour operators such as ICS only work with professional travel advisors. This kind of insider access is one of the many reasons—coupled with exclusive VIP amenities, peace of mind and personalized 24/7 service—why booking your next vacation through a travel agent is as vital to a successful Balinese journey as a passport and the perfect pair of walking sandals.

Upon landing in Denpasar, we made our way to the newly-opened and phenomenally breathtaking Six Senses Uluwatu.

This resort really impressed me with their dedication to sustainability and social responsibility. Tucked away from the hustle and bustle of the busy streets we just drove through, the resort provided me with a warm welcome after almost 24 hours of traveling. Watching the sunrise next morning from my private villa plunge pool and then seeing it set behind the gorgeous Cliff Bar while sipping their signature purpleroot snow cocktail are two experiences that I will never forget. I could already start to feel the magic of Bali.

Ubud

We then made our way to Ubud where I finally saw the lush green jungle that everyone raves about. It is an almost dreamlike feeling when you finally experience something in person that you’ve only seen in photographs. We were to fortunate to stay at the ultra-romantic Viceroy Bali, voted #1 Resort in the World by Conde Nast Traveler Readers’ Choice awards in 2018. The incredible thatched-roof villas set against the jungle valley backdrop make you feel like you’re in a completely different time and place. This property is family-run and we were able to chat with the lovely staff who keep things running smoothly over an exceptional eight-course chef’s tasting dinner at Apératif, including papua crab with kohlrabi and kaluga caviar and kagoshima A5 wagyu beef with tarragon, black garlic, pickled shallots and potato. There was also a vegetarian option.

Three flower arrangements, Gebogan offering, luxury destination Bali, Indonesia

Although I wasn’t ready to leave, it was time to head to our next destination, Mandapa, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve resort. From the moment you enter the lobby, you are treated to a panoramic view of its natural surroundings: rolling hills, rice paddies & the steady sound of the flowing Ayung River. One of my fondest moments on this trip was learning to make flower gebogan, a Balinese Hindu offering. Learning about this sacred ritual and the importance of spirituality in Balinese culture was an eye-opening experience that I’m so appreciative of.

Protravel International Travel Agent Kimberly Ngo in front of Tanah Lot Temple, luxury destination Bali, Indonesia

Wellness in Bali

Bali is a very popular destination for health & wellness retreats. Resorts like COMO Shambala Estate offer holistic programs that are personally tailored for you to achieve your optimal healthy lifestyle. Practice yoga out on the sundeck or from the comfort of your outdoor patio. Nourish your body with the colorful flavors of Indonesian cuisine at Kudus House and enjoy your meal amid the distinctly beautiful Balinese décor.

Pura Ulun Bratan Temple, luxury destination Bali, Indonesia

Temples

No trip to Bali is complete without visiting many of the public temples. We stopped by the ancient (and ultra-Instagram-able) Tanah Lot Temple (Pura Tanah Lot), which you should try and visit at sunrise or sunset; high tide and low. We also enjoyed strolling through the surrounding marketplace. There were so many dresses I wanted to buy but knew that I was already pushing the weight limit on my suitcase. However, it was a fun experience interacting with the locals & learning some entertaining Balinese phrases, such as sing ken-ken which translates to “no worries” – this phrase got the most laughs whenever I said it.)

Our last stop was in Seminyak, which lived up to its reputation as a stylish, upscale beach resort area. Shopaholics and foodie travelers will find bliss here among the endless abundance of stores and restaurants lining the streets. I loved walking through the stands and exploring the area. Before I knew it, it was already time to say goodbye.

Watching my last Bali sunset from the penthouse suite at Alila Seminyak Bali was the perfect end to the trip. Until next time Bali!

Oceanview from suite, Six Sense Uluwatu, Bali, Indonesia, Luxury resort

Six Senses Uluwatu

alan Goa Lempeh, Uluwatu, NC, Indonesia

  • 100 USD Spa credit (excl. retail)
  • Complimentary daily breakfast for two at Rocka Restaurant
  • Early check-in upon availability
  • Late check-out upon availability
  • Property will offer upgrade upon availability at time of check-in
  • High-Speed/Enhanced Wi-Fi
Mandapa, A Ritz-Carlton Reserve, Bali, Indonesia, luxury hotel

Mandapa, A Ritz-Carlton Reserve

Jalan Kedewatan, Bali, Indonesia

  • 100 USD Food & Beverage credit; 1/2 bottle port wine
  • Complimentary Buffet breakfast for two daily
  • Early check-in upon availability
  • Late check-out upon availability
  • Property will offer upgrade upon availability at time of check-in
  • Basic Wi-Fi
Viceroy Bali, Indonesia, Luxury Resort

Viceroy Bali

Jln.Lanyahan-Br. Nagi, Ubud, KS, Indonesia

  • 1 Hour Balinese Massage for 2 pax
  • Complimentary daily full breakfast for two
  • Early check-in upon availability
  • Late check-out upon availability
  • Property will offer upgrade upon availability at time of check-in
  • High-Speed/Enhanced Wi-Fi

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