A family that eats together, stays together. And a family who travels together forms closer bonds together. This is the travel story of Curly Tales’ videographer, Rohan Das and his wanderlust family. On a day to day basis, Rohan, his 17-year-old brother, Ronit and his parents have hectic schedules. As a result, they don’t spend much time together. But their yearly trips provide a great bonding opportunity for the Mumbai-based travel-thirsty Das family, who have their own unique way of travelling. And this year, Rohan and his family, visited the picturesque Indonesian island of Bali. So here is Rohan Das’ 6-Day Family Trip To Bali.
Family Travel Style
Every family has their own unique way of travelling. Some might believe in travelling like hardcore backpackers and others prefer to book themselves a travel tour with a reputed travel agency. But Rohan and his family believe in immersing themselves in the local culture in the best manner possible. Their travelling style would involve doing thorough research before planning their own unique day-to-day itinerary.
Rohan’s father who is a keen travel enthusiast gets extremely excited to travel and plan his trip in detail, making all his bookings in advance. And that’s not all, to add that local tadka to their travel plans, the Das family believe in going on a local tour around every country they visit. They hire themselves a local driver, who takes them on a tour around the country. They also talk to the locals about any unexplored destinations in the city, so they can add it to their family itinerary and explore the country in total local style.
Planning The Trip To Bali
Incorporating their own unique travel style, Rohan and his father embarked on a 6-day family trip to Bali from 5th May 2019 to 10th May 2019. They reached Bali on the night of 4th of May by taking an 18-hour air-travel journey from Mumbai to Bali, via Singapore.
On checking into their quaint homestay, the family enquired with the reception about a good local driver to take them around the island. They booked a local driver for 6,00,000 Rupiah(₹3034 approx) per day. This is much more pocket-friendly than most travel tours which charge around 5,00,000 Rupiah(₹2529 approx) per person, per day. Rohan’s father also eagerly enquired about some of the local favourite destinations in Bali, which are often left unexplored by tourists, and quickly added it to his list. And thus started the family staycation in Bali for the artistic videographer, Rohan and his wanderlust family.
Rohan and his family commenced their Bali trip in a spiritual manner by first visiting the iconic Batuan Temple, located between south Bali and Ubud. The Das family were left awestruck by the intricate Balinese architecture, the majestic split gate and the beautiful sanctum which perfectly embodies Buddhist culture.
After paying their reverences to the Lord Brahma here, they then proceeded to the Tegalalang Rice Terrace in Ubud. Rohan was taken aback by the lush green paddy fields, the huge swing and the breathtaking scenery here. Looking at this place from the eyes of a videographer, he found it to look exactly like pristine desktop wallpaper.
Apart from the spectacular scenery of clear blue skies, tall green coconut trees and neverending rice paddy fields, Tegalalang Rice Terrace is popular for one unique thing- Kopi Luwak or Civet Coffee. Coffee lovers! If you haven’t heard of this expensive, exotic coffee, then what have you been upto? This is a type of coffee which is made from the defecation of the Asian palm civet (a type of wild cat) which feeds on coffee cherries. Rohan and his family saw many Asian Palm Civets scurrying around the rice paddies here. But fortunately or unfortunately, they didn’t have the stomach to try this unique coffee.
The Das family then boarded their car and continued their journey. They headed to explore Mount Batur, a 5,633 feet tall active volcano. This place is frequented by avid trekkers, who like to reach the peak of this volcano to witness a beautiful sunrise. The Das family instead, decided to explore the area around it on foot and spent some quality time clicking picturesque photographs.
Following which they drove down to the Batur Natural Hot Spring, which is a paradise for every water baby. With just an entry fee of 20,000 Rupiah (₹101 approx) per person, Rohan and his family could take a well-needed relaxing bath at the natural hot spring here. Rohan’s mother was really impressed to know that the special volcano water, which consisted of sulphur was really good for the skin. The refreshing bath in the fresh blue waters of the natural spring rejuvenated the family.
The super relaxed family headed back to their local homestay apartment, Suarsena Bungalow, to end the day on a relaxing, luxurious note. The Suarsena Bungalow might have been a local homestay, but its beautiful facilities like the quaint swimming pool, warm hospitality, Balinese style architecture and decor, makes this an interesting attraction to explore itself. You will be surprised to know that Rohan and his family only paid ₹1500 per night, for each room here. And yet, they could immerse themselves in the natural surroundings and the luxurious facilities to their best.
The one thing Rohan Das, found most amusing in Bali, was the fact that the Balinese locals were die-hard Bollywood fans. His driver often hummed Shah Rukh Khan’s iconic DDLJ song “Tujhe Dekho Toh Yeh Jana Sanam” as he drove them down the island. The locals in Bali loved watching Bollywood films dubbed in the local language. And whenever they interacted with Indian tourists, their excitement knew no bounds. Rohan chuckled, as sitting in the car in Bali, seemed to him like he never left India. So listening to Bollywood songs and chatting with their driver, the family first visited the popular Alas Kedaton Monkey Forest. This forest sanctuary even housed a temple, which provided a home to the grey long-tailed macaques. Rohan even tried to capture a few pictures of the monkeys, but he was worried if they would steal his precious camera.
After the Das family witnessed the playful monkeys in the Alas Kedaton Monkey Forest in Bali, they then visited the most beautiful sightseeing spot in the island- Ulun Danu Beratan Temple. This is one of the most beautiful temples in Asia and is often known for its unique floating impression.
The smooth reflective surface of the Beratan Lake surrounding this temple’s base makes it appear to be floating. Just witnessing the beauty and serenity of this temple complex, with the mountain range in its backdrop, left Rohan speechless. He just felt like soaking in the serene vibes and tranquillity of this space.
For the water baby in Rohan and his brother Ronit, a trip to the Banyumala Waterfall or popularly known Twin Waterfalls was a must-visit. The brothers went on a steep 20-minute trek at 3 pm in the afternoon to witness this breathtaking waterfall. But little did they know, that at this time of the day, they would be the only people in the Banyumala Waterfall.
It was like their own private waterfall. Rohan and Ronit had a memorable time swimming, bathing in the waterfall and just spending some much-needed quality time together. They did wish their parents could come too, but since it was a steep trek, they preferred not to. Nevertheless, the brothers enjoyed splashing around and soaking themselves in the cool, clear waters.
When it comes to picturesque temples in Bali, Rohan would definitely vouch for the Taman Ayun temple, in the village of Mengwi. The Balinese architecture, expansive gardens, beautiful lotus filled fish ponds are just a sight to behold. And every photographer or videographer out there like Rohan would just feast their eyes on the beauty of this temple attraction in Bali.
As they say, every good day in life must be commenced taking the name of God, Rohan and his family, commenced their 3rd day in Bali, with a spiritual visit to a number of beautiful temples in the island. First being, the Goa Gajah or Elephant Cave Temple near Ubud.
Wearing the traditional sarongs, they visited the picturesque temple to pay their respects to the Lord. The temple complex was just breathtaking, with rock-wall carvings, bathing pools, fountains, lush greenery and a tranquilizing spirituality.
Rohan and his family then visited the enchanting Tirta Empul Temple located in Central Bali. This national cultural site was built by the Warmadewa Dynasty. The Das family attained spiritual bliss soaking themselves in the natural spring waters in the temple. The thatched roofs, picturesque landscape truly made this place a memorable one for them.
To add that extra dose of spirituality, Rohan and his family just had to visit the biggest and holiest of temples in Bali- the Besakih Temple. This majestic temple is popularly known as a ‘Mother Temple’ since its a grand temple complex housing over 86 clan temples and shrines of the slopes of Mount Agung.
The spectacular location of this shrine offers breathtaking scenery of hills, mountains and rice paddies. And not just this, Rohan and his family also came to know that at least 70 Balinese celebrations are held here on a yearly basis.
With a spiritual darshan at some of the most beautiful temples in Bali, the Das family drove down for lunch. And on their way, they spotted Arthagung, a popular local restaurant known for its amazing view of the Mount Agung volcano.
The family feasted on local delicacies like the flavoursome rice meal of Nasi Goreng, the spicy fare of Mie Goreng and delicious Chicken Satay with their refreshing pints of beer.
After a scrumptious family meal, the Das family just had to have a perfect family picture to encapsulate the beautiful moments spent in Bali. And they did just that, by having their picture-perfect moment in the picture-perfect Balinese temple of Pura Penataran Agung Lempuyang, one of the highly regarded temples of the island.
They ended their visit by heading to Taman Soekasada Ujung a former royal palace housing beautiful ponds, tiered gardens and scenic mountain views. After which they finally booked into the Crystal Beach Ulta Resort. The beach resort has large hotel rooms with 2 bedrooms perfectly comfortable for a family of four, charging ₹2200 per night. The calming waves of the shore, glistening sand and setting sun provided the perfect relaxing view for the family.
The family started their 4th Day in Bali in a total royal style by visiting the Tirta Gangga royal water garden in East Bali. Rohan was totally awestruck by the picturesque water gardens, ponds with huge fishes and the glossy stepping stones.
The Das family had an amazing time clicking fun pictures by the ornate statues and the tropical gardens here. It totally gave them royal garden feels!
After this amazing family time at the royal garden, they headed to the Tenganan Pegringsingan, which is an unexplored cultural hub of Bali. This village is known for its unique handicrafts, artwork, handmade masks which are often exported to different parts of the world.
The cotton garments are made in an intricate manner taking the weavers more than a month’s time to complete. Rohan’s mother loved the beautiful Ram-Sita artwork displayed here in Balinese style.
Thanks to the locals’ suggestions the trip to this artsy village was something so unique and memorable for the family. And they went on a long drive down to the picturesque Blue Lagoon beach in the eastern region of Bali. This secluded beach with exotic panorama and peaceful waves was just too beautiful to be true. The videographer in him was just delighted to witness the clear blue waters and pure greenery surrounding this beach. Rohan and his family just let down their hair and spent a relaxing time together here, soaking in the natural beauty to the fullest.
Over the past few days of their trip in Bali, Rohan and his family had ticked a variety of beautiful things from their list, like visiting a plethora of spiritual shrines, gorgeous beaches, waterfalls, royal palaces and what not. So now they just craved for a little fun. And the perfect place for that is Seminyak, a beach resort area at the southern end of Bali. Seminyak is known for its beautiful villas, luxury hotels, spas, high-end shopping and amazing restaurants, and the Das family just had to pamper themselves here.
So they roamed around the streets and did loads of street shopping. Rohan’s mother put her bargaining skills to full use, by haggling with the street vendors here, who brought the price of the items down by a whopping 30% of the cost. The family shopped for beachwear like apparel, handbags and whatnot. It was a total family shopping mania unleashed.
They also gorged on the special pork dishes served at a beautiful restaurant in Seminyak. And washed it down with pocket-friendly pints of beer. The pork was well cooked and had a unique smoky taste, which left Rohan craving for more.
From an amazing time sent street shopping to bonding over delicious continental food at Seminyak, the family just couldn’t have wished for anything more.
Well, they might not have wished for anything more, but they actually got much more than they ever imagined. How? Well, they were in a for a surprise when they checked into their own private villa- Gracia Bali Villa. A gorgeous 2 storeyed villa, with their own private cook for only ₹6500 for 2 nights. The Das family spent a beautiful laid back evening gorging on the local delicacies of Nasi Goreng and Mie Goreng prepared by the chef while spending much-needed family time together.
On their final day in Bali, Rohan was quite perplexed on how the days just flew during their staycation. The Das family felt they just couldn’t have enough of the lush green paddy fields, clear blue waters, picturesque scenery and everything pure and pristine that Bali had to offer. As a videographer, he was spellbound by the tranquillity of Bali, so much so that he just felt like putting down his camera and soaking in every moment to the fullest, through his own camera, his vision.
And just like how they commenced their Bali trip with a spiritual visit to the pristine shrines of the island, the family wished to even end their trip on a similar spiritual note. They first drove down to the Pura Batu Bolong Temple located on the right side of the Tanah Lot temple complex in southern Bali. ‘Batu Bolong’ in the Indonesian language means perforated rock. And just as the name implies this temple is built on a rock stretching out to the Indian ocean. It’s a beautiful spot for photographers.
They then went on to explore the temple complex of Tanah Lot which is popular for its offshore setting and sunset scenery. The crashing waves, huge rocks, clear skies makes this place a picture-perfect one for pilgrims. Tanah Lot means ‘Land in the Sea’ and Rohan was truly mesmerized by the beautiful offshore setting here.
The Das family then headed to a homely Indian restaurant to gorge on a wonderful lunch of Butter Chicken, Dal and Butter Naan. They truly missed the masaledar khaana back in India. And they just had to tantalize their taste buds with some authentic Indian food. The family finally enjoyed a hearty Indian meal together, before visiting the last sightseeing spot of the day.
They drove down to one of the must-visit spots in Bali, the Uluwatu Temple. When they were here, they just had to watch the breathtaking Kecak Fire Dance show.
This sunset dance show uses fire and human vocals to enact the Ramayana write in front of a live audience in the gorgeous amphitheatre.
So the larger than life fire dance performance at the Uluwatu Temple brought an end to the Das family’s 6-day trip to Bali. Rohan and his family just felt they couldn’t have enough of this gorgeous Indonesian island.
They made so many beautiful memories together soaking in the spirituality and tranquillity of this place. And they wished to visit Bali another time for a longer duration. With this Bali trip, the wanderlust family formed yet another closer bond together. This trip to Bali yet again, united everyone from their busy schedules, providing them a much-needed family time in togetherness. And like they say, a family that travels together, indeed bonds together.