Eat, Pray, Love for the Sustainable Traveler: Indonesia

10.27.2010
by lauren

Bali Alila poolOur "Eat, Pray, Love" journey has led us to an organic farm in Italy and a wellness retreat in India. For our last entry, we'll focus on the universal importance of sustainable tourism, using Bali as a prime example of eco-conscious travel done right.

“The key point is to have genuine sense of universal responsibility, based on love and compassion, and clear awareness.” - The Dalai Lama

Liz Gilbert (and her on-screen counterpart, Julia Roberts) went to Bali in search of an equilibrium between worldly pleasure and spiritual devotion. Sustainability itself is the equilibrium between community, conservation, and commerce. Having a sense of universal responsibility is key in managing the balance of these interrelated components.

Finding Balance in Bali

Bali is world re-known for it’s incredible lush tropical surroundings, beaches, and unique culture. Unfortunately, commercialism and environmental destruction are putting these incredible Balinese qualities at risk. Thankfully, with the help of sustainable tourism, measures are being taken to preserve this nation’s treasures for generations to come.

Promising Progress

Monkey Sanctuary in Ubud, Bali - Eat, Pray, Love for the Sustainable TravelerUbud is a region of Bali that is doing its part in maintaining the integrity of their culture and surroundings, while at the same time inviting development and progress in a responsible manner. It is known for it’s incredible artist community, monkey temples, museums, and ethnic ceremonies. Tucked away in the deep green foothills of central Bali, you’ll find Alili Ubud, a property that poses as the perfect specimen of progress. This luxurious boutique property is heralded for its commitment to sustainable practices in tourism, and has received the ASEAN Green Hotel Award, Bali Tri Hita Karana Award, as well as the Green Globe design and build accreditation. Allila Ubud recognizes that the hotel industry is a major contributor to global waste and pollution. They have taken the appropriate measures to reduce their own negative impact by improving their design, management, and operations by implementing sustainable practices such as:

  • conserving water and energy consumption
  • reducing waste, oil, and carbon emissions
  • sourcing food locally
  • recycling
  • offering local employment
  • working with suppliers and travel partners who adopt sustainable business practices
  • instructing staff in green practices
  • protecting sensitive surrounding ecosystems

Immerse Yourself in Experience

Eat, Pray, Love for the Sustainable TravelerBesides minimizing their environmental impact, Alila Ubud demonstrates a deep respect for native cultures and a commitment to benefiting local economies. As a guest there you have the opportunity to take an active role in the preservation of this unique and inspiring culture. Broaden your perspective by immersing yourself in the undeniable beauty that Bali has to offer: take a traditional dance class, meet with a local healer, or witness a fantastic village performance. Feel like taking a walk on the wild side? Take a trip to the nearby Monkey Forest Sanctuary or explore one of the island’s central volcanoes.

Remember to keep in mind that you are a guest, and should act accordingly, by respecting the beliefs, attitudes, and practices of the native people. The majority of the population living in these small village communities, have been residing there for multiple generations, and are very proud of their roots and culture. What better way to expand your knowledge on Balinese traditions, than by chatting with a local? These individuals are a wealth of knowledge and offer a deeper insight, that cannot be found in traditional travel literature. By being open to new experiences, asking questions, and integrating yourself into the local culture you will have a fresh perspective on life and a greater appreciation for travelling and the unique benefits it has to offer!

Does preserving authentic Bali interest you? Fill out a custom trip request form , and you’ll be one step closer to the cute little critters in the Monkey Forest!

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