23 Jun

Ubud Know-How

Excited to start living in Ubud? Here’s an expanding list of our volunteers, interns, and staff’s favourite spots, food, and running track!

The Onion Collective//Passion Lab

This donation-based co-working space also has a nice outdoor boho-ish cafe, cocktail happy hour is until 9pm and guess what? You can use their outdoor pool for free if you order any food/beverage (tips: bring your own towel). Did we mention they have a water slide as well? 😉
Less than 15 minutes walk from Volunteers’ Accommodation.

Dian Cafe

For those who rather sticks with Beer, the last time we went here Large Bintang is only 30k – hands down cheapest beer along the monkey forest street!
Less than 10 minutes walk from Volunteers’ Accommodation.

Goutama Spa

Great Balinese Massage at 80k/hour tried and tested multiple time and still one of the best for the price! Best time to go will be after your Agung/Batur hiking trip to loosen up all the sore muscles 🙂
Less than 2 minutes walk from Volunteers’ Accommodation.

CP Lounge

The only place in Ubud that opens till dawn… Gotta try their rainbow shots (don’t forget to ask the bartender for the fire show!).
CP Lounge is about 5 minutes walk from volunteer’s accommodation.

Black Pearl

Pirates on board! When in doubt ask Jack not-Sparrow of what to order – we recommend you to save a little bit of spot for their awesome chocolate lava cake!
You might need to take a scooter fro this one as it’s located at Jalan Bisma, about 15-20 minutes walk or 5 minutes scooter ride from Volunteer’s accommodation!

Bungkus

Literally means packed – it usually cost around 10k-20k for decent amount of rice, a little bit of lawar (balinese style vegetable), a little bit of meat (pork or chicken), and balinese sambal. Definitely a value meal! You can get bungkus in most warung around Ubud too!

 

4km Running Track

For those who want to stay fit after all the yumm meals in Bali, why not try running? Ubud is blessed with pretty ricefields not so far from the main street!
Our volunteers recommend this one: turn right before Starbucks at the main road and start running, go straight and you get to the rice fields where a couple of boutique hotels are, eventually the path ends. It’s a total of 4 km run, which is not that much but it has some uphills and downhills which makes it more challenging! Here’s a snap of the view…

 

19 Jun

Settling In: The Peaceful Joy of Living in Ubud

From the bustling metropolis of Kuta, to the chill of the northern mountains, all the way down to the surf breaks of Uluwatu, Bali is unique in the fact that there are many types of experiences for tourists. Truly, the “island of gods” presents something for every traveler. We can guarantee that you’ll never hear a tourist say “I was bored in Bali.”

Especially for those traveling in Southeast Asia for the first time, visitors experience a sensory overload arriving in the south coast of Denpasar. Most head straight for the beach towns on the nearby south coast. You’re overwhelmed with the amount of things to do – the clubs of Kuta, the island tours, the Seminyak sunset strip. There’s a rush to move quickly as possible in your trip, because you realize there is too much to see in a short period of time.

But then, just an hour north – you arrive in Ubud. Immediately, you sense a change in the air. An immediate urgency to stop, and take it all in. Temple complexes seamlessly weave into the center of town, amongst endless markets where you can’t tell the inside from out . When you’re on the main strip, you may feel similar as you did in the south – a bit congested and often packed with group tours. But once you take a step outside of center, you’re immersed into neighborhoods full of art and vibrant character – a glimpse into a more authentic Bali.

Whether you start your morning with a sunrise over Campuhan Ridge Walk, or in a yoga class in chilled out Penestanan – there is nothing quite like the silence and tranquility of an “Ubudian” morning. You choose from the plethora of cafes overlooking rice terraces for breakfast, and it begins to feel like you’ve stepped into another world.

If you spend your afternoon in town, vibrant art and handmade crafts are inescapable. Balinese Hinduism places great importance on art and attention to detail – there is nowhere on the island where you see this more clearly than in Ubud.

If you spend your afternoon outside of town, friendly village locals will direct you to hidden waterfalls and mountain landscapes. Throughout your day, you’ll catch glimpses of Mount Agung peeking between the clouds, Bali’s highest and most sacred volcano.

The high-vibe frequency of living in Ubud can be shocking at first. Between the architecture of homes to the placement of offerings – ornate detail is brought into every aspect of life. As a volunteer however, living in Ubud more long term means that you get to experience a different kind of town. The vibrancy of the town begins to settle in, and what used to be overwhelming quickly becomes normal.

Familiar faces, restaurants, and rice terraces become regular aspects of your day. The kindness of the people however, never gets old. Through getting to know the people, between our local staff, their families, and your students, volunteers have the opportunity to experience the beauty of Ubud on a deeper level than monkey forest-bound tourists. You will quickly understand how the heart of this island and the Balinese people, have inspired the mission and vision of VP Bali.

12 Jun

Benefits of Co-teaching

At VP Bali, we aim to create a unique environment for our kids that they don’t get to experience in their normal public schools. Outside of our creative learning techniques, we create our own little melting pot between all of our volunteers from different countries. When volunteers from different cultures, speaking different first languages co-teach together, it allows our students to get a glimpse of cultures beyond the island they call home.

One of our major goals in the classroom is to show our students that education is not linear, that there are many different ways of learning – by the book and outside of the classroom. It is our hope that they gain a broadened view of education from our volunteers with different backgrounds. We want our kids to take this knowledge with them as they grow, so they are inspired to teach others to look past the simple benchmarks and tests in their public schools.

Co-teachers are typically paired between long term volunteers and short term volunteers. This makes it easier for our students to adjust to new faces, and for more kids to be given the attention they need based on their skill level.

The benefits of co-teaching also extend to our volunteers! We try our best to pair volunteers with co-teachers who are not from their home country or speak the same first language. This way, volunteers learn how to work with people from other cultures and solve problems together, all the while taking input and different creatives ideas to make their classrooms successful! Co-teachers will often get together outside of class at their volunteer homestays to prepare lesson plans – a quick and easy way to make new friends and get to know each other!

The fact co-teaching serves benefits to both our volunteers and our students is an example of how every member of our family is growing together. At VP Bali, all parties involved are empowered to inspire those around them long after working with us. We hope that our volunteers take what they learn from their co-teachers in Bali, and bring it home to make a difference around the world!

 

 

05 Jun

Better than Holiday: Interning in Bali

At VP Bali, every member of our family grows together. Our local staff, trainees, volunteers, and students all work towards their personal and professional goals as they contribute to our mission. We also give the opportunity for interns to join our team, for them to contribute their valuable skills while learning from our growing organization. The benefits that come from working and learning in a place as special as Bali, go far past a normal office internship.

Upon arrival, interns will immediately sense that their experience in Bali will be very different from past internships. The heat alone, causes a shift from “normal working conditions” as it quickly becomes a game to find the best workspaces in Ubud that are 1. Air-conditioned 2. Quiet 3. Have fast internet. Thankfully, Ubud is home to tons of beautiful bamboo-crafted cafes and workspaces to accommodate the “digital nomad” scene that has landed here. Whether you’re looking for a small, cool, room, or a wide-open table with a rice terrace view, Ubud has all the places to stimulate your creativity and productivity!

Interning in Bali creates a unique experience in many elements – one of the most obvious being the fact that you are working among an international community. Between our local staff, founder, fellow interns, and sometimes volunteers, interns get to work in an environment where you’ll learn how to communicate with people from diverse backgrounds. Gaining experience with cross-cultural sensitivity will help you more easily work with people from all over the world in the future!

Interning somewhere other than your home country means adjusting your typical work routines to a new and challenging environment. Even if its something as small as dressing appropriately, working in a new country forces you to break out of your comfort zone. Remember, you only grow when you are challenged, and are only challenged when you feel “uncomfortable!”

One of the most unique aspects of interning with us is learning to balance work in paradise. Some find quicker than others that living on a beautiful island doesn’t mean that day-to-day work routines don’t just go away during the week. But on weekends, interns have the opportunity to explore the island – get down to the beach, explore the east coast by motorbike, or hike volcanoes in the north! All of these incredible weekend experiences leave our interns refreshed with new creative ideas to come back with on Mondays. The balance of work and play in Bali creates an amazing quality of living, which leads to our brightest and most creative ideas that help VP Bali grow!

Feeling keen? Check out our internship availability here. We can’t wait to meet you!