Trying new things started with a bang in Jan with a 2 week trip to Bali with my Mum Veronica and sister Lisa. We haven’t spent that much time together since we were kids and even then, we all had our own rooms to escape to if we were driving each other crazy… so it was a gamble. We could get on like a house on fire, OR have each other killed before the second flight out had time to take off!
Thankfully, we had a great time together and it was amazing to take that time out to get together as a family. Great chats, laugh out loud moments and wonderful trips down memory lane. What a way to start the year!
Getting to Bali takes quite a while. We had a 7hour flight with a 1 hour stop over before getting onto a 9hour flight. We were chuffed that the stop over was so quick as we wasted no time hanging about the airport. When you break it into 3 movies and a chat. Then 4 movies and a chat – The flying becomes very manageable!
Mum was very nervous about getting to our accommodation so I arranged for a hotel collection at the airport. My name on the little board. How exciting! 😊 It was only €40 which was €13 per person and for a two hour taxi trip we thought it was great value for money. It took the stress out of it and the worry that you are being ripped off. Plus a two hour drive is a long time to be worrying that your going in the right direction! Well worth the money! Especially when you are tired and in serious need of a hot shower!
We kicked things off on the west coast of Bali at Pondok Pitaya. Described as a surfers paradise and yoga retreat, our hopes were high for this little haven. We were not disappointed.
The accommodation was really pretty and the food was lovely.
The mosquito nets made me feel like Princess Jasmine. So cute! But on a practical level they were invaluable at night as we didn’t need to worry about getting bitten. Yuck!
The breakfast was included in our accommodation and it did not disappoint. There were three options to choose from. A healthy a option which included eggs any style, a fruit and granola bowl, with tea/coffee and a green juice. Mum and Lisa went for that. I had the sausages, fried tomato, black beans, sautéed spinach and poached eggs served on a potato-rosti. Plus a fruit juice and tea/ceoffee. Delicious! (There was also an Indonesian option which came with rice or noodles but we couldn’t cope with that in the morning!)
For lunch and dinner the prices were incredible. €4 was the ball park price for everything from a chicken curry to a nasi goreng, a pizza to sweet and sour chicken. Plus they had a whole vegetarian section for Mum and Lisa.
The yoga centre was fab. Set looking out at the crashing waves we were feeling very zen before we even started. Nicky is the yoga instructor and he is fantastic. He has a wonderful voice for calling out the poses and the breathing rhythm and watching him showcase some of the more advanced moves is beyond impressive. He is gifted.
They run a 9.30am class and 4pm class each day and you can pay as you go for €7 and includes an iced tea. It seemed pricey compared to the food but it was a 90min class, in a fab studio with an amazing view so we felt it was worth every penny. The morning class was more challenging and energising. The afternoon class was a little more chilled but equally challenging. We stayed for three days and we did two mornings and one evening class. We were feeling very zen and chuffed with ourselves for starting Jan on such a health kick. Well, maybe that was just me! (Mum is a seasoned Yogi and Lisa is no stranger to the yoga mat.)
Team that with beautiful views and lots of nooks and crannies to enjoy a smoothie and read a book and we were in chill out heaven.
They are in the middle of building their spa so when you throw that into the mix it will add another feather into the cap of Pondok Pitaya. A hidden gen in Western Bali. We would highly recommend it.
There was another restaurant a very short walk from Pondok. Walking up the road to the right there is a right hand turn down a very pot holed road. 200m so you will stumble upon a restaurant on the right hand side. We ate like queens here for €11 one night. Tortilla chips with guacamole to nibble on to start, three main courses, plus one main course (veg enchilada) between us, plus drinking water. We couldn’t get over the quality of the food and the value for money. Amazing.