My Tips for surviving the Bali Spirit Festival
The Abundance Pass is worth it – right about now, they will be offering early bird deals for the 2019 Bali Spirit Festival. In the form of the Abundance Pass. It gives you access to all parts of the Spirit Festival. A separate area to relax in air-conditioned comfort during the day. Access to special events only for Abundance Pass holders. But most importantly (for me anyway), it gives you access to a private room with a normal bathroom. Call me a toilet snob, but I absolutely detest using port-a-loos. So, this in itself was worth the extra cost
You can Volunteer – If the Abundance Pass (or even the next level down – Spirit pass) is a bit out of your price range, then you can be a volunteer. This year there were 270 volunteers from all around the world. You work a 5-hour shift (either morning, afternoon or night) and then you are free to participate in the rest of the festival. All the volunteers that I talked to seemed to be having a great time
Must sure that you have Cash on you – While there is an onsite ATM machine. Every time I wanted to get money out, it was down. So, I would have to go back into town, get money out and then go back to the festival. Which is both time-consuming and annoying. So, my advice to you is to make sure that you have at least R2,000,000 on you. That way if you want to buy something or have a private session you can
Pocari Sweat Drinking Water – Sounds sexy right!!! 😉 Bali, in April, is hot and humid. Every day was 30C with (at least) 90% humidity. You sweat. You sweat a lot. Let me tell you, if I could sweat fat like I sweated fluids over in Bali, I would have lost 20kgs in two weeks. It was not pretty. I was a hot sweaty mess.
And on the second night, in the middle of the night, I got a cramp in my leg. So, the next day, after explaining to a couple how I had cramped the night before, they put me onto Pocari Sweat, a Japanese Sports Drink designed to replace lost essential minerals through sweating. This became my lifesaver. I drank about 2 litres every day. And I didn’t get another cramp. 2 litres will cost you about $A3.50
Sweat rag and Fan – Again, sounds super sexy right 😉 You will sweat while you are there. You might sweat a little, you might sweat a lot. But you will sweat. So, it’s nice to be able to cool yourself and wipe the sweat away. Trust me, you will thank me for this bit of advice.
Mosquito Repellent with 40% DEET – Most of you who know me, know that I am a completely natural girl. I use only organic skin care and deodorant. Why am I advocating using such a chemical concoction? Because there have been outbreaks of Dengue Fever in Bali. And I definitely didn’t want to catch that. I also had Mosquito Coils burning in my room every night.
I shall share something ironic with you. I was catching a shuttle back from the venue to Ubud Central. And there was a woman in the front seat chatting away. And she mentioned how she got Dengue Fever here two years ago. I piped up, saying that that’s why I decided to use the strongest DEET mosquito repellent possible even though I usually only use organic products. She shot back that I had undid all of the good that I had done with the organic products. And the chances of getting Dengue Fever are extremely rare – 1 in 10 million. And I was thinking to myself – You just told us that you caught Dengue Fever 2 years ago!!! Anyway, I thought it was amusing.
Myself, personally, I was not (and am not) prepared to risk catching a disease like that when I can easily prevent it. I did get bitten in a few places when the villa staff left the door to the bathroom open after fixing my shower. I didn’t realise it was open until too late. Two weeks later and these MF mosquito bites are still itchy
If you miss the Spirit Festival Shuttle, take a Motorcycle Taxi – This is if you are staying in Ubud central. The festival is about 9 km south of Ubud. And the traffic can get pretty bad. So, if you take a motorcycle taxi, you can get there faster than a car will. I negotiated the rides from R40,000 ($A4) to R70,000 ($A7).
The one honest taxi service in all of Ubud – The Provence of Ubud has a ruling that commercial taxis are not allowed. It is all done by private operators. Whether you are getting into a car or hopping on the back of a motorbike. Which means that you have to have razor sharp negotiating skills. And have some idea of what a reasonable price for certain distances is.
I found one operator that offered me a price for taxi service that I didn’t have to haggle down. Because they offered a fair price straight away. You can find this operator about 10m along Jl. Suweta (up from Jl. Raya Ubud) on the left-hand side. I can’t recommend them enough.