Christmas in Bali

Can you believe Christmas is over already?!

It went as quickly as it came. I don’t even know how my family and I ended up spending our Christmas in Bali. *scratches head*

When we were discussing Christmas plans, someone said something, someday, along the lines of “The Christmas atmosphere in Bali is great! There’s lots of white tourists here so there will be plenty of Christmas lights and atmosphere.” It would be fun, they said…. It would be a good place to spend Christmas, they said……. *shakes fist in the air*

All I felt was sweltering heat and intolerable humidity about three times worse than Singapore!! It was my first time there so I can’t say I wasn’t totally taken aback and surprised by how different it was from the way Bali is always portrayed in movies and in marketing advertisements. I thought it would be serene, peaceful, beautiful… On the contrary, people there were actually rather rude and rowdy, and the tourist area was anything but peaceful! To be fair, when we drove into the country side (at least an hour away from the city) it WAS a lot quieter and greener.. so maybe next time I visit, I’ll go stay around Ubud, to see “the real Bali”. I thought the touristy part of Bali (Kuta, Seminyak, Nusa Dua etc) would be like Phuket, boy was I wrong.. Phuket is in fact, a lot milder! Bali was really something else. A real eye opener. There was pretty much zero Christmassy atmosphere in the whole of Bali because most of the locals there at Hindus. People all around couldn’t even be bothered it was Christmas.

But that didn’t stop us from having a jolly good time! Having said all of this, the trip was still super fun and a great experience, despite being different from my expectations.

We spent our days stuffing our faces with traditional Balinese food and Western fine dining cuisine, doing massages and spa treatments, and shopped till we dropped. For the first time, I wasn’t snapping photos of every single thing I was doing when I was traveling. It was difficult to resist the urge, but I wanted to lay off my camera and phone as much as possible, to soak up all the precious time I had with my loved ones. It’s not everyday we get to bond overseas like this! Disconnect to connect, y’know?! Only really snapped pics when we visited the tourist hot spots like Ku De Ta, Potato Head, Tanah Lot… The rest, I only managed to take mental photos of, and they will be mine to keep.

When people talk about Bali, they will either mention the temples, food or beaches. However, my favorite thing about Bali happens to be the shopping. I never thought I would ever say this, but the shopping in Bali is COMPLETELY out of this world!! It definitely has the most amount of beautiful boutiques I have ever seen clustered together!!!! Streets after street of non-stop shopping is what you’ll find in the Seminyak area. I can’t believe I forgot to snap a picture of the shopping district to show y’all!!! I was too busy trying on clothes every second I spent there. I would go back to Bali again just to shop there until I’m broke. Bangkok, please step aside. The type of clothing you’ll find in Bali was a match made in heaven for a girl like me… summery, unique, bright colored stunning pieces from independent designers at decent to cheap prices (depending where you shop at). I came back with like 20 new pieces of pretty clothing – needless to say my bank account took a hit. But it was all worth it!!!! I can’t say “I’ve got nothing to wear” for at least another few more months now. :)

Most importantly, the best thing that happened in Bali was having the luxury of spending quality time with my family, creating unforgettable memories together. Food, presents and family is everything I love about Christmas and I’m glad I got to indulge in those things every day. I have so much to be thankful for this year. Thank you mummy & UJ for buying me so many pretty things to make me happy and also for taking me on this vacation for Christmas!! ♥

Here’s a photo diary of my vacation to Bali below!

Bali from the clouds. Takes about 3 hours to fly there from SG!

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Checking into our lush accommodation – Padma Resort!

 We’d originally booked a three room villa to stay in, but that turned out to be THE worst hotel experience I’ve had in my life. You won’t even believe how bad that was. That story will be for another post. Today’s post is meant to be a happy, carefree one. Thank god Padma Resort was top notch and made us feel so much better.

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Hello, Janice and Jeremy. My brother and his gf makes a rare appearance on my blog, lol.

Getting them to take pictures is really difficult. I had to lie to them that I wasn’t going to post them on my blog. Woops!

Our first dinner was alfresco dining at Warisan!

Crab, pomelo, avocado and tomato roulade

Red capcisum & lobster linguine

Lost count of the number of foie gras we ate in Bali. Working to lose weight now after all the festive feasting damage done over the past month!!!

Panna cotta is one of my all time favorite desserts!

Gorgeous set up, isn’t it? All the places we had dinner at were great. Bali is full of cafes & restaurants serving up good food at reasonable prices!

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Next day’s lunch next to a rice field.

Bali is so strange some times.

You get fancy boutiques selling designer clothes with each item costing at least $100 SGD and rightttt next to it you’ll find a rice paddy field. I guess that’s what people like about it – a commercialized place they can visit that still has its old cultural charms?

An hour’s drive out of the city into the countryside, we were surrounded by rice paddy fields stretching as far as the eye could see!!! Made for a very scenic drive indeed.

Thank you for taking care of me and being so nice throughout the trip! :) xx

Spot one of Bali’s most photogenic icons, Tanah Lot Temple behind me!!!

All those people (tiny figures in the background) standing at the base of the temple are crazyyy. They risk being drenched by crashing sea waves any time! In fact I saw a couple of people get really wet, with their DSLRs in hand. The whole area is covered with sea water when its high tide.

It looks so rustic and majestic, perched right at the water’s edge. I wish we could’ve gone in and taken a look around… but entrance to the temple is sacred, and reserved for local Balinese Hindus only!

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Best thing I bought that trip were these SGD $1 fans that kept me from dying.

Sunset seaside dining at Potato Head, which everyone says is the place to be seen and to be in Bali!

Crab cake with avocados and caramelized pineapples

Cajun prawns

Halfway through our meal, we ran out onto the beach to snap these mandatory sunset shots..

My ice cream on my creme brulee melted as a consequence but I reckon these shots are well worth it!!! I like runny ice cream anyway. :P

This was supposed to be “RAWR I BREATHE FIRE” kinda photo but I think I failed. I look like I’m letting out a ginormous burp.

The Balinese sunset in its full glory ♥

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Christmas dinner!!! Best meal of the trip award goes to Metis restaurant, hands down.

If you’re wondering why there are so many pictures of meal times and what else we were doing in Bali inbetween, you’d find us in changing rooms in boutiques or half asleep on massage beds.

Uh-huh more foie gras! I felt like a foie gras duck by the end of every meal.

My angus rib eye steak was melt-in-your-mouth-juices-bursting-with-every-bite kinda fantastic. It was so good, I almost wanted to cry. Really.

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The end of my rather brief photo diary! See you next time for shopping, Bali.

I hope everyone else had a wonderful Christmas with your family / friends as well!!! Happy New Year everyone! Wishing you all the mostest of love, luck, wealth and happiness.

 Love.