Bali with Kids Part 1

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

My wonderful 3 children and I have just returned from the best 12 day holiday in Bali. Whilst away I have had a lot of people ask me questions about travelling with kids which of course has prompted this post.

First of all...

Did I feel safe? Absolutely!!!!!
Did we get sick? Nope, not one of us.
Did the kids love it? More than I thought possible.

We flew Jetstar who are totally fine but do remember that you get nothing, zip, zero on the flight. Everything is an extra. Pack lots of snacks. The flight over left at 6.30pm so we had dinner at the airport and they were fine with that. I hired 2 video players for 3 kids and had one headphone splitter so 2 of them could share one unit.

I had arranged my regular driver to collect us on arrival, very happy to pass on his details. He is awesome, English is great and very trustworthy. Means no negotiations with taxis when you are tired.

We head straight to Ubud where I have been going for 23 years. There is something unique and wonderful about this town. You can see an old post here I do think the Eat, Pray, Love book and film has made it a lot busier sadly.

I stay at Honeymoon Guesthouse which I adore as it is so traditionally Balinese. No glass windows, everything is open air with! love! love! I reserved interconnecting rooms number 15 and 16 which were on the 2nd level with a huge private balcony where we spent most of our down time. The beds are all 4 poster with mosquito nets, the girls felt like Princesses.

A word of warning is due to the open air it is very noisy from about 6am with roosters. We went to bed earlier to compensate. I didn't mind as I love the experience of staying here. We had a fan cooled room which was fine at this time of year but would be hard between Sep - Apr.

I paid about $120 a night for 2 room including breakfast.

From here we walked to the Monkey Forest through the rice fields. well worth a visit but keep all valuables hidden and take off sunglasses. We bought bunches of bananas and had fun feeding the hundreds of monkeys.

There are loads and loads of fish spa places where hundreds of fish suck all the yucky stuff off your feet. Lola and I were a bit freaked about it and stayed clear but these 3 loved it.

We took a day trip to the Elephant Safari and Marine Park and had some amazing interactions with the Elephants. The kids got to feed them and we got to touch and cuddle some after the show they have. The whole park is incredibly well run and a beautiful oasis. When we arrived we were bombarded with pricing options and I found it overwhelming. We chose the $45 option (per person inc kids) which included lunch. NOT worth it. Go the $35 and get your own lunch, it is cheaper and way more food options. The kids had photos with a giant yellow snake around them...very brave. Don't forget bathers as there is a fantastic Water Fun Area to play in. Tip is to do it after the Safari as I could not get my kids away from there to do the safari.

My restaurant recommendations are:

Cafe Wayan located on monkey Forest Road. It has been around since 1986 and I have been numerous times. It is set amongst beautiful gardens that keep going and going. Children are welcome. The Chicken Sate was hands down the best we had in the 12 days and they also served a pretty good Nasi Campur, my all time fave Balinese dish.

Indus is an absolute must at sunset and for awesome food. It is owner by the same people that own Honeymoon Guesthouse and is about 5 minutes out of town overlooking the rice terraces. I have also been here many times over the years and have never been disappointed. Great Nasi Campur and the Signature Paella is very good. We celebrated the girls 6th birthday here, I pre ordered an enormous cake which has happy Birthday to me on it instead of the girls which we had a giggle over.

Clear Cafe is a brand new restaurant in town and we all loved it. Super funky decor. My son Jonah and I found it when we were out shopping one day and booked the floating pontoon table where you sit on floor cushions. Very fun and quirky for the kids. The menu is all organic and very yummy. I had the chilli prawn burrito and my Mum had the Red Fish Curry. The kids menu was good and cheap and the kids loved their macaroni cheese and hamburgers.

Bintang Beer has got to be the best in the world, a few cold ones with lunch and dinner is a must.

Next we went to Sanur which will be my next post

Please feel free to make comments and if anyone has their own recommendations it would be welcomed.

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