Bali Blogs: Feeling Comfortable Traveling Solo

Bali Blogs: Feeling Comfortable Traveling Solo

I spent the first half of November traveling solo around Bali. It was magical, blissful, invigorating, and rejuvenating. I love to travel and while there is something so special about traveling with a friend, partner, or family and getting to create and share memories together, there is something really empowering and relaxing about traveling solo.

I know for many people traveling solo can feel a bit overwhelming. I’ve gotten many messages on Instagram along the lines of “You’re doing that alone?!” or “I could never do that!”  If traveling solo holds no appeal to you, read no further. But if it’s something you’ve thought of doing but aren’t quite sure if that’s too far out of your comfort zone, keep reading, I’m sharing my tips for making traveling solo accessible and most importantly – FUN!

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eating solo at Crate Cafe

I’ll start with saying I didn’t wake up one day and decide my first solo trip would be halfway around the world to Bali. I’ve been traveling abroad since high school when I decided to take Spanish for a year so I could spend the summer in Cadiz, Madrid, and Seville. In college, I went abroad twice, first to Australia and then to Copenhagen, and since then I’ve traveling both throughout the States and abroad as much as my bank account and vacation days allowed. Getting comfortable traveling takes time, and like anything, the more you do it the easier and more natural it becomes.

Leading us to tip 1: start small. take a day trip to a nearby town you’ve been wanting to visit. wander around, take yourself out to eat, see the sights of the place. Then maybe take a weekend trip a few hours away, then maybe fly to a different state, etc. etc. Whatever feels accessible to you right now, start there. As you get more comfortable traveling in general and on your own, expand your horizons and the distance you go.

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waterfall showers

No matter where I am traveling to I like to have a plan in advance and do a bit of research. The less I know a place, the more I prepare. For Bali this meant reading up on the culture a bit, reading blogs to find out what other people enjoyed or didn’t, searching for restaurants, researching hotels and Airbnbs, and noting all the sight seeing or activities that I wanted to do. There is so much information out there in the digital age, with a bit of patience and time you can find everything you need to know! Once I have my favorites I save them in a list on google maps. These points stay available even when I don’t have service so I am able to navigate to and from places without worrying about roaming or Wifi. Before I leave I have a rough outline of what I plan to do each day. This also helps me to fit more in because I’m not spending time on my trip trying to figure out where to go or what to do.  Tip 2: Do your research. Pin your favorite places.

Contrary to Tip 2, Tip 3 is to deviate from the plan as necessary. A plan is great but so is spontaneity and being flexible. Opportunities may arise to do something new or you may feel incredibly jet lagged and taking a nap sounds way better than a strenuous hike. Let your plan provide the framework, from there go with the flow. Traveling is your vacation time after all, the less you worry about changes along the way, the more you will enjoy your time.

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swinging over the jungle in Bali

While you’re traveling solo, keep in mind that that doesn’t mean you have to do everything alone. Tip 4: ask for help! If you need a recommendation of where to go or how to get there, just ask! Hotel concierges and Airbnb hosts typically know the area well and can provide great recommendations of where to go. Or ask a stranger. I’ve only had positive experiences with asking people. Be kind, courteous, and grateful, but definitely reach out when you need to!

Tip 5: Be safe; Trust your gut. I operate on the theory that all people are good people and that the universe will keep me safe. That said, no matter where in the world you are traveling, the later you are out at night and the more you drink, the more likely you are to get into an unsafe situation, get lost, etc. When I’m traveling solo (and honestly really all the time) I’m back home early and avoiding the club scene. If going out & drinking is something that you want to include in your travels, be mindful and careful just as you would in any city. Along with some caution, trust your gut. If something doesn’t sit right with you – listen to that, don’t do it. I’ve canceled Airbnbs and plans because something felt off to me. There might not be a concrete reason but if my gut tells me no, I head that.

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Walking the Campuhan Ridge

And lastly, make the most of the time to yourself. Not only does this mean you get to determine what the day holds for you, but it’s really precious time to take to reflect, journal, meditate, and simply be.

Have other questions about traveling solo? Leave them in the comments and I’ll get back to you 😽

Bali Blogs: all my favorite food places

Bali Blogs: all my favorite food places

Bali has amazing, endless cafes and vegan eateries full of delicious food. If you are looking to eat well while on vacation, Bali has you covered. The places below are some of my favorite ones that I ate at during my trip and therefore can speak directly to! I listed my recommended orders but they all have extensive menus with TONS of options. If you’re looking for more options, I highly suggest Lonely Planet or searching your favorite travel blogs. At the bottom I also listed a few additional places I wanted to try but ran out of time for 😭

Canggu

Shady Shack – This vegetarian food cafe looks out over rice fields and has a menu full of delicious bowls, tacos, and smoothies. Our group tossed back a round of the Immunity shots (#wild) and ordered tempeh bowls and the burger!

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Tempeh Bowl at Shady Shack

Order the: tempeh bowl, a spritzer drink, and a juice shot.

Crate Cafe  This open air cafe is an right off the main road in Canggu and full of amazing breakfast options. Their servings are big, so come hungry!

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Iced Latte and Tofu Toast at Crate Cafe

Order the: chia bowls, açaí bowls, or mega stacked toasts!

Seminyak:

Earth Cafe (also in Ubud) – This was one of my favorites places; I went twice in two days and wanted to try everything on their menu. Both locations also have a small health food and goods shop!

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Raw Burger at Earth Cafe

Order the: raw burger and one of their juices!

Kynd Community – This place was made for instagram with palm tree walls, a cute swing, and gorgeous food. I love that they stress the message of “being kynd” through eating a plant based diet and being mindful how our actions impact the planet.

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Brekkie Salad

Order the: açaí bowl with writing on it, whole coconut, brekkie salad.

Coffee Cartel – This was one of my favorite lattes from my entire trip in Bali – the creamiest almond milk and incredible latte art made with their Ripple machine.

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Coffee Cartel Ripple Latte

Order the:  latte with the “ripple” if you want yours with your name on it!

Ku De Ta – This restaurant and bar overlooks the ocean. You can hang out at the pool or on one of their daybeds loungers while you enjoy your food and drink!

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Ku De Ta

Order: anything. I got a green juice but they have a great array of cocktails. Come for an amazing view of the beach at sunset!

Batik – I went here for dinner one night and absolutely loved the place. The restaurant is beautifully decorated and has lots of outdoor seating. I recommend outdoors for dinner because the heat of the day is gone and you get prime people watching seats.

Order the: One of their curries 🤤 I got a green curry here that was amazing!

Ubud:

Revive – this cute hipster cafe recently opened just on the outskirts of Ubud. With cozy velvet seats or tables to sit at, it is the perfect place to post up and do some work or enjoy coffee with a friend.

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Revive Cafe Golden Latte

Order the: amazing, frothy golden lattes and vegan chocolate covered coconut balls!

Nu Hype – I stumbled upon this place on my way to Alchemy and had to try it. This is a classic Instagram friendly cafe. Come for a picture in the swing chair, try one of their smoothies!

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Nu Hype

Alchemy – A must go place for every plant based foodie.

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Matcha Latte at Alchemy

Order the: the entire menu. Make sure to check out their dessert cooler filled with raw balls and amazing vegan desserts.

Sage – This space is beautiful and has one of the best plant based menus. It is a bit outside the center of Ubud but worth the trip!

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Jackfruit Tacos in a bowl

Order the: cauliflower fritters (slightly spicy but SO good), the nourish bowl, or the jackfruit tacos. Also anything and everything with the tempeh; it has a bit of spice to it that I loved. Make sure to get some of their chocolate chip cookies on your way out – amazing!

Seeds of Life – This restaurant makes raw foods fun and delicious! If you’ve never tried raw foods, this is the place to go. They have everything from raw lasagna, to pesto burgers, to desserts.

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Raw bowl at Seeds of Life

Order the: try a tonic if you’re looking for a health indulgence. I got one of their bowls and loved it!

Mudra – everything here looked AMAZING. This was one of my favorites places. Mudra’s food is sourced locally and based on ayurveda.  I got the veggie wrap as I wasn’t too hungry.

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Wrap at Mudra with Wasabi Aioli

Order the: smoothie for breakfast or poke bowl for lunch (the party sitting next to me got these and RAVED about them).

La Pachamama – If you are craving mexican-style food in Ubud, try La Pachamama. Great place for dinner with a group of friends.

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Buffalo Cauliflower at La Pacha Mama

Order the: buffalo cauliflower for some comfort food away from home. Or try a margarita and tacos for a Mexican kick.

Kafe – cute cafe with lots of breakfast options at the center of Ubud.

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Latte and Carrot Cake at Kafe

Order the: almond milk lattes with a tasty pastry on the side!

Elephant (views) – I got the green brekky here and to be completely honest wasn’t thrilled with it. It was tasty, but nothing special. The views here  are worth a stop. Enjoy your meal looking out over the Campuhan Ridge.

Clear Cafe – This place is well known for their decorated stairs, Clear Cafe also has great vegan, vegetarian and raw options.

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Steps at Clear Cafe

Order the summer rolls and a fresh juice for a light meal!

Other places that were on my list to try:

  • Yoga Barn
  • Nalu Bowls
  • Cafe Organic
  • Buda Bali
  • Milk and Madu
  • The Loft