A travel guide to exploring Bali sustainably…
The first stop on our Bali adventure was the Balinese Farm Cooking School which we absolutely loved! There are lots of cooking classes to choose from in Bali but I thoroughly recommend this one because they really do mean it when they say ‘real food by real farmers in the real village community.’
The morning was broken up into 3 stages:
- Local Market Guided Tour
- Organic Farm Tour
- Cooking Class
After the local market tour (where we got to discover and try locally grown exotic fruits) we arrived at the organic farm where the cooking classes are held.
As we arrived at the farm, a lush green oasis, we were given a basket and knife for harvesting some of the ingredients that we would later use. During the tour we learnt all about the plants, fruits and herbs that they grow here including aloe vera, coffee and mango.
We then headed to our cooking stations where we each made 6 traditional Balinese dishes using the fresh produce that we had just picked ourselves from the farm.
Our next stop in Ubud was Threads of Life, a fair trade textile arts centre that works with women in rural Indonesia to alleviate poverty.
Through working directly with weavers across 11 different islands in Indonesia, Threads of Live helps them to form independent cooperatives, recover the skills of their ancestors and manage their resources sustainably whilst securing financial stability.
I especially loved learning about their natural dyes that, with patience and skill, master dyers are able to manipulate to obtain exquisite colours. In fact most of the blues, reds, blacks, purples and browns come from only two vegetable dyes: indigo blue and morinda red.
The third and final place that I want to tell you about is Bali Swasti.
Here you can escape into a retreat of natural tranquility, away from any hustle and bustle. Bali Swasti prides itself on incorporating an organic approach that respects the earth and minimises any impact on nature.
We visited their organic farm and ate at their restaurant but the site offers so much more with yoga classes and places to stay.
I really recommend their restaurant where I ate the ‘Beloved Earth Salad’ – a uniqely sweet and rich combination of fresh delights from their organic garden including kale, avocado, grated coconut, dried fruits and edible flowers.
I also ordered a ‘Summer Smoothie’ that came with a glass straw (instead of single use plastic), in keeping with their eco-friendly approach!
So there you have it – an eco traveller’s guide to Bali!
As always I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments section below.