The Indonesian island that's begging you to visit

Your mentors, Logan and Tyler, reveal their favorite spots in Bali.

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This week’s travel mentors are coming to you from North of The Border! Logan and Tyler grew up in a town of 10,000 people in Northern Canada. They were determined to see more than just the small town they grew up in, and they’ve committed to exploring the world. Now, they are motivated to continue traveling by all the people from their tiny hometown who are inspired by their adventures.

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Advice from Your Mentor

I met Logan and Tyler on a bus ride in Bali during a backpacking trip. We talked for a few hours en-route to our next destination, and they shared some of their favorite island experiences with us. Logan and Tyler like to travel light and cheap, often times with only a backpack.

“Travel doesn't need to be expensive. The cheap way can offer the most memories.”

Logan and Tyler are relatable because they are just like you and me. They aren’t travel nomads, and they have a permanent place they call home. They have roots in a small town in Canada and have family and friends that miss them deeply when they travel. They are proof that you don’t have to give up your career or your life savings to take trips halfway across the globe. I asked them to tell me a little more about their travel experiences, and what they learned about Bali on their two trips to the Indonesian island. Read on for some of their best travel advice!

I’m visiting a new place for the first time. What advice would you give me?

Think back to all of your favorite travel moments. Some of the most memorable ones probably happened when you least expected them. Although seeing the top attractions in a city should always be on your list, remember to give yourself time to just wander. Diverge from the beaten path and you’ll often find yourself having unique and unforgettable memories.

“Get uncomfortable. Instead of hiring a car, ride a bike, get a scooter, walk. See things you wouldn't normally have seen if you were only following the beaten path”

What does your budget look like when you travel?

Logan and Tyler prioritize spending on experiences and destination-specific souvenirs, and try to save money on accommodations. Some places make this easier to do than others. For example, it’s easy to find a clean, private room for under $20/night in Bali. Those prices left a ton of room in their budget for guided island tours and shopping at all the local markets. Logan and Tyler love when friends visiting their home comment on souvenirs they have on display from around the world. These comments bring back memories from their trips and are great conversation starters.

Destination Spotlight: Bali

Logan and Tyler have been to Bali twice, spending a month on the island each trip. It’s a great place to start a trip throughout Southeast Asia because it slowly introduces you to Eastern culture while still providing some of the Western comforts from back home. Check out some of their expert Bali tips below!

Why Bali?

The island is small, but it’s packed full of diverse options for adventure. There are mountains to climb, waterfalls to chase, beaches for relaxing, and cities for exploring. All of this on an island about the size of the state of Delaware.

Can’t Miss List

Only including the small list of experiences below is doing Logan, Tyler, and Bali a slight injustice. When I asked them about their favorite experiences on the island, they gave me a list that could have taken up this entire post. Comment below if you want to hear more about how they released baby turtles into the ocean, explored the island on a scooter, hiked mountains, or visited abandoned air planes! Here are just a few of their favorites in more detail.

Go temple-hopping

Indonesia is a majority-Muslim country, but Bali is the exception. The Balinese Hindu religion is the primary religion on the island and the evidence is everywhere. Try walking down the street without spotting the offerings made by the local women outside of every storefront and guesthouse. Spending a day (or three) exploring some of the Balinese Hindu temples on the island is a great way to see some of the religious customs up close. It’s not uncommon for tourists to be visiting a temple while the locals are performing a ceremony.

Book a waterfall tour

You could hire a local guide or rent your own motorbike to visit some of the many waterfalls around the island. Google “waterfalls in Bali” and you’ll see tons of results showing beautiful waterfalls hidden in the jungle. Logan and Tyler saved you the trouble of creating your own waterfall-tour-itinerary by offering their list of favorites: Tegenungan, Kanto Lampo, Gitgit, Aling Aling, and Twin.

Visit a coffee and tea plantation

Indonesia is one of the world’s leading producers of coffee thanks to its prime location in the center of the “coffee belt”. Find a coffee and tea plantation in Bali and visit to sample their drinks. Waterfall tours will often include a stop at a plantation, so double-check that your itinerary includes that! And don’t forget to sample the Luwak Coffee, also known as “cat poop coffee”. It’s a local specialty and tastes way better than it sounds!

Travel Tip

Bali is overflowing with small, family-owned restaurants known as “warungs”, serving traditional Balinese and Indonesian food. Usually you’ll find warungs connected to the home of the family who owns it. These hole-in-the-wall establishments can be a little intimidating for a first-time Bali traveler with “Bali-belly” on their mind. They were for Logan and Tyler their first time visiting the island

But after two trips to the island, their top Bali travel tip is to eat at warungs! They are clean, safe, and serve some of the most traditional food you can find on the island. They’re also super cheap! Logan and Tyler each spent about $10 per day on food in Bali when eating at warungs. Here are some of their favorite traditional foods.

Nasi Goreng

The name of this dish translates to “fried rice” in Indonesian, and is the definition of a traditional Indonesian meal. It’s often topped with a fried egg and served with a side of fresh vegetables and Indonesian crackers called krupuk.

Nasi Campur

In the U.S., we would call this dish a “sampler”. Although the items included in nasi campur are different at each warung, it always includes a small taste of a bunch of traditional Indonesian foods.

Tempeh Goreng

In Bali, soy is a first-class protein, paradise for vegetarians and vegans. Tempeh goreng is a deep-fried soy-based menu item you’ll find in most restaurants.

Planning Advice

Bali is a small island packed full of diversity. With so many options, a little planning before you leave for your trip will help you decide where to stay and what areas to visit. Here are some of Logan and Tyler’s favorites to kick-start your planning.

Ubud

This city is a bustling arts and cultural center in the middle of the island. Inside the town you’ll find a monkey sanctuary and more temples than you can count. But just outside it, you’ll find some of the most beautiful and stereotypical Bali landscape on the entire island. Mountain hiking or waterfall chasing day trips are common from Ubud due to its central location.

Uluwatu

This coastal town on the southern tip of the island is full of beaches and ocean-cliff views. It’s the top surfing destination in Bali.

Nusa Penida

A smaller island off the coast of the main island, Nusa Penida is an adventurer’s paradise. You’ll spend your days exploring this island’s natural beauty, with stunning ocean cliffs, epic views, and untouched beaches (I mean just look at that picture below…). Nusa Peninda is much less developed than the main island of Bali, and is just a short ferry ride away.


Logan and Tyler went from random strangers I shared a bus ride with, to long-distance friends I share a love of travel and adventure with.

“Experience the culture in one way or another. See things you wouldn't normally if you're only along the beaten path. That's when the best memories happen.”

You can follow Logan and Tyler’s travel adventures on Instagram and check out their story highlights for more Bali content!

Logan: @loganmarieearly

Tyler: @tylergrove10

Want to leave a message for Logan and Tyler? Visited Bali and have a tip to share? Drop a note in the comments below!

If you know someone who would love to read about Logan and Tyler or Bali, share this post with them! Spreading the word is the best way to support this newsletter.

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Your Travel Mentors provides insight from travel experts that can’t be found anywhere else on the Internet. A uniquely curated and easily digestible publication of authentic experiences and travel stories, provided by experts, and delivered weekly to your inbox. The travel mentors that contribute to the content you will read have made traveling their lifestyle. These experts will deliver weekly travel inspiration, help you discover new destinations, and teach you about what makes their favorite places so special.

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