I know I’ve kept you all in suspense and it’s taken me months to publish my first travel post. Truth is, I’ve been enjoying every minute and making the most of it; filling my time with eating, drinking, meeting new people and exploring new places. Southeast Asia really does offer some first-class ways to procrastinate.
My first destination from 25th November to 9th December was Bali and the Gilli Islands. I ate some fantastic food on this part of the trip and I wanna tell you all about it.
Bali is a big place for a travelling food blogger. There is so much to do, see and eat. If you follow me on Instagram you may know I visited three places; Seminyak, Ubud and Canggu. Ubud was my favourite. I just totally fell in love with how lush and green it is. And now I want to live in the middle of rice paddies surrounded by banana trees, coconut trees and mountains entwined with rice terraces… dammit!
Of course, I also documented what and where I ate. Here I want to show you the best places I dined at during my three weeks on this lovely little island in Indonesia.
The Cabin Coffee Shop, Seminyak
Seminyak is about 40 minutes from Densapar airport and is a busy, bustling touristy town with countless eateries and bars. I was only here for a few nights, but managed to scope out some cool places to get decent, cheap food, and The Cabin Coffee Shop was certainly one of those.
They serve a great breakfast, lunch and dinner menu and it’s owned by top Balinese surfer Diah Rahayu. Inside is decorated so cutely with some great surf and trophy memorabilia from her career as Bali’s most successful female surfer. We stayed in the Karisa Pods Hostel just next door (also recommended!) so were lucky to have such a great, cheap eatery so close by.
Go here for traditional Indonesian breakfast Nasi Goreng, cheap and tasty omelettes, great coffee, green tea lattes (ask for no sugar if on a true health-kick), banana shakes and fruit salad.
Fat Buddha, Seminyak
This place was just a short walk from our hostel, and although they played really strange music that got annoying after a while, the food was decent and good value. It was here that I first tried local Indonesian dish Mie Goreng; fried noodles with veggies, served with a chilli soy ‘sambal’. They have a great Asian menu, from India to China to Malaysia they have something for whatever you fancy.
Their Mie Goreng is pictured below, the chilli is optional but this one came served with the noodles inside omelette-style fried eggs, with crispy fried shallots on top. It was so good!
Go here for great service (the waitress learned all our names and addressed us directly!) traditional Indonesian Mie Goreng, veggie spring rolls, COMPLIMENTARY sesame prawn crackers with coriander dip.
The Halal Boys, Seminyak
This little gem is a street food vendor one of the the main streets in Seminyak, right next to “M Boutique Hostel”. They serve up these New York style ‘gyro’ meat bowls with chicken, lamb (or both!), rice, salad, warm pitta, cool sour cream sauce and HOT AS YOU LIKE chilli ‘red’ sauce.
Go here for epic, cheap lunch on the go and ruthlessly spicy hot sauce (optional!)
Sunset House, Ubud
In terms of finding a great place to stay in Ubud, we got lucky. There were four of us so we looked for an ‘entire place’ on AirBnb so we could cook our own scran a couple of nights to save money. We came across Sunset House and although it was a new listing on AirBnb with no reviews, we took a chance as it was cheap at just £7 per person per night., including breakfast.
I have included this as a recommended place to eat in Bali as the host family were so nice, and it turned out their son was a chef! The breakfasts he rustled up for us each day were delicious, especially his version of nasi goreng. You will need to rent scooters or at least bicycles in order to access the place as it’s set in the heart of rice paddies and surrounded by the serene green of banana and coconut trees.
Go here for epic breakfasts, warm and friendly service, comfy beds and an experience of how the locals live.
Sambal Matah, Ubud
This was a gorgeous bar and restaurant we went to in Ubud for drinks, but the food looked and smelled amazing. If it’s as good as their homemade crackers and dip which we sampled with our Bintangs (the local beer) then I would say this place is worth looking into for an evening meal or lunch.
Go here for relaxed drinks in a warm and welcome setting, friendly service and modern, fragrant Asian dishes.
A.A. Juicery and Cafe, Ubud
This is the most gorgeous little vegan eatery off the beaten track in Ubud. So much fresh, healthy food here with a great menu, serving food all day. We took refuge here during a huge downpour and ate the most amazing guacamole and baba ganoush, which were made fresh right in front of us.
Their vegan Thai curries were also insanely good. Epic healthy comfort food right on our doorstep just seconds from Sunset House.
Go here for hearty, vegan meals with tonnes of flavour, epic guacamole, great Balinese coffee and good wifi.
Arang Satay Bar, Ubud
If you’re looking for something a little more meaty, up-market and with great wine, then Arang Satay Bar directly opposite the Ubud Palace is a must. In a really modern setting, they serve up plate upon plate of satay and tapas style dishes. Or you can go for a bigger plate if you’ve got more of an appetite. Be warned, the portion sizes are quite small so you do need to order 3-4 small plates each if you’re hungry! The baby back ribs were sensational.
Go here for BABY BACK RIBS and a classy, modern take on Asian cooking in a beautiful setting.
Old Man’s, Canggu
This place is right on the surfer’s beach in Canggu. They serve great drinks at reasonable prices, and their food is wicked too. We went for lunch one day and had snacks and beers. I had a warm duck wrap with chilli sauce and a green salad which was delicious. And on another visit we shared their ‘bucket of chips’ which were proper hand cut chips with all the dips, including a great garlic aioli.
On Wednesday’s and Sunday’s they throw epic part nights too, with a beer pong competition (that is taken quite seriously!) and extra stalls serving food and drinks with a cute photo booth with props galore.
Go here for their ‘bucket of chips’, a party-vibe on a Wednesday or Sunday, lunch after a surfing lesson and drinks in a cool atmosphere.
Avocado Cafe, Canggu
This place is a must for health-conscious foodies in Canggu. They serve epic avocado on sourdough toast, as expected, plus nut butter smoothies, fresh juices and all sorts of other treats. We went twice, and the second time our poached eggs weren’t runny, so if you go it might be worth asking for runny yolks to avoid disappointment!
The cafe is clean, relaxed and really cutely decorated. Generous portions and great service too. If you want a healthy hangover cure this place needs to be on your list!
Go here for your avocado fix, proper bacon, epic salads, sweet potato waffles, healthy cakes and protein smoothies.
El Jefe Jose Cuban Sandwich Shack, Canggu
This place is a little gem. In a shack off the main road they serve fresh Cuban sarnies oozing with cheese for just a few quid. Get the roast pork which includes ham and roast pork if you’re a meat lover, or the veggie option is on-point too.
They also serve them in homemade, recycled paper bags too which is really cute and so much better than plastic and polystyrene! Highly recommended.
Go here for a late afternoon snack, a drunken alternative to a kebab on the way home and your meat/cheese fix!
So, there you have it. My round up of where to eat in Bali. My next post is about what I did whilst on the island Gili Trawangan, so keep your eyes peeled!
love, Sophie x