Teresia is a young woman who has a passion for art and culture. She is Indonesian and proud of it. At the moment, Teresia is still busy with her new bag brand, Luva, and also doing some freelance work, as graphic designer and illustrator. She doesn’t really obsess over those commercial and tourism things of Bali, rather, Teresia enjoys Bali in her own way, her style, and she loves it.
What inspires you about Bali?
I am most inspired about how the local people live in Bali. I love the way they keep balance between social, spiritual, art, and entertainment. Their culture, their philosophy of life and beliefs, the way they live and interact, their language and everything. It is really hard to see it if I only enjoy the tourism and entertainment part of Bali. Because it is all made to please the tourists, and they do it for entertainment. But when they do it for spiritual reason, it is so amazing, really amazing, not only beautiful, but also magical.
How may times have you been to Bali?
First time I came to Bali was when I was 4 or 5 years old. It was family holiday, but I don’t really remember about it. After that, I visited Bali a couple of times for study tour. I think I was in high school the first time I saw Balinese people pray in Taman Ayun Temple, Mengwi. I fell in love with that scene. If you really want to experience it, become one of them. It was a truly deep emotional experience for me. So magical. After I finished my studies in college, I decided to move to Bali, make a living here on this beautiful island. At that time, I had no idea what I would do in Bali. I only trusted my instinct. I know I would be happy living in Bali, and now I am!
How would you describe the Balinese Culture?
There are two kinds of lifestyle in Bali. One is the real Balinese lifestyle, and the other one is tourists’ lifestyle. Balinese lifestyle is when you wake up and having nasi kuning (yellow rice), Balinese porridge, or Jaja Bali (Balinese traditional cake) for breakfast. And when you walk out the door, you will see woman who sells canang (Balinese small offerings), traditional food stalls, and chickens running around your feet. Tourists´ lifestyle is when you have Continental breakfast, English breakfast, or fried rice with orange juice for breakfast, and you will see waiters and waitresses around you, and when you walk out the door, you will see swimming pool, or other tourists walking down the street. Both are wonderful and fun, but I rather choose the Balinese lifestyle because that is how I can feel the real Bali.
Where do you stay in Bali? Which Area?
I live in Denpasar, with local people, near bajar (where Balinese gather to dance, play gamelan, or any social and spiritual activities). My place has easy access to Sanur beach, to Art Center, and the heart of the Denpasar itself. There is a traditional market nearby where I can get fresh fruits and veggies, meat and chickens, and everything. But I don’t recommend this place if you want to enjoy a leisure holiday with tropical beach and palm trees, because the place where I stay is a city, with a lot of local people, who might or might not able to speak English, and of course, there’s no room with pool or beach scenery 😀 unless you wanna give it a try, living in Denpasar could give you a great experience interacting with real Balinese life.
Favorite Places in Bali
I think it could be anywhere 😀 But if I really have to mention specific place, I would say Ubud. 🙂 Fresh air, with many shops along the streets, cafes and restaurants with delicious food, and cycling to rice fields. 😀 Go there with your friends and have fun! You can go shopping and visit Monkey Forest. You can also can see art performances and meet many
Where do you relax and retreat in Bali?
Munduk! It is a village on hills, in Buleleng, North Bali. The air is fresh, sometimes it is cold there, but still nice though. The scenery is really beautiful, and not too crowded. The food is awesome, and don’t forget to try the coffee, sooo amazing! I also recommend to visit Lake Bratan when staying in Munduk. It is a really cool place for retreat. 🙂
How do you get around in Bali transport (scooter, walk, taxi, driver) / Travel Tips?
I get around by riding a scooter. It is a perfect choice to go around the city. There are so many narrow streets (and alleys) and you car might not be able to pass by. 🙂 But when it is raining, don’t forget to bring your rain coat with you. You don’t want to catch a cold!
Massage and Spa Experience
I don’t really enjoy spas. I do need massage sometimes when I feel pretty tired, but I have my personal masseur, so whenever I get tired, I only need to call her. I think natural hot springs are the best solution for relaxation. My favourite is located at Kintamani. It is called Toya Bungkah. The entrance fee is not expensive, good services, and nice view. Enjoying hot spring on the shore of Lake Batur is a must if you are visiting Kintamani.
Shopping and Markets
I have some favourite markets and shopping places. For buying veggies and fruits, I will visit Peken Badung or Pasar Badung. It is a huge traditional market in Denpasar where you can buy groceries. They sell almost everything there, 24 hours! I love buying souvenirs at Sukawati market in Gianyar. They sell bracelets, bags, clothes, sarong, and other cute and unique stuff with low prices. I enjoy walking around the market, visiting every store there, wishing I could find something worthy to buy.
I also recommend Beachwalk in Kuta. I buy branded clothes and other stuff there. It is an open-air mall, and I can find cool stuff there. It is also very near from the beach. That is why I love it.
Yoga and Meditation Recommendations
I don’t do Yoga, but I do Pilates. I do it by myself, everywhere. But my favourite place to do Pilates is at Sanur. Doing pilates while enjoying the sunrise is so wonderful. With wind in your hair and sounds of the waves, it is so soothing and relaxing. After doing pilates, I sometimes take a walk along the beach or visit food stalls nearby and have breakfast. 😀
Tours, Activities and Adventures
My favourite is Kintamani. At Kintamani, you can enjoy the view of Lake Batur, and visit natural hot spring there. You can also go fishing at the shore of the lake, having lunch at a floating restaurant, or just spend your lazy day at a cheap hotel by the lake. You can go across the lake and visit Trunyan Village, with its famous cemetery where they only place the death body under the Taru Menyan Tree.
Sightseeing recommendation? I already mention Ubud as my favourite. So, the other place for sightseeing is at Bedugul, Bali. If you are getting bored of visiting beach, just visit Bedugul. 🙂 You can visit Kebun Raya, it is like a huge park, with trees, and you can have picnic there. The air is so fresh and you can see Lake Bratan from there.
Travel Tips, Stories
Just enjoy your time while you are in Bali. Explore this beautiful island, don’t stuck in one place. Visit every part of Bali, find your own getaway. If you are travelling around Bali, especially when visiting sacred or holy places, please ask local people around you or a tour guide, or anyone who understands about do’s and don’ts there. We need to appreciate local beliefs and rules, and don’t forget to bring your camera with you! You will regret it if you don’t.
Special Experiences to Share and / or Anything You Would Love to Share
Bali is the place where I learned so many things about this life. I learned how to ride a scooter so I can get myself to anywhere I want. I also learned how to manage my life here alone. I learned how to take care of myself, become disciplined, and learned to manage my finances. But the most important thing I learned in Bali is about balancing your relationship with God, nature, and human. Balinese pray and give offerings to Gods and Goddesses, take good care of the animals, and do many social activities with other people. Keeping those 3 things in balance will fulfill your life, and I believe it is true. 🙂