Bali Aria travel film by Jessica Peterson of Global Girl Travels

Watch my travel film: Bali Aria

Ignoring any stereotypes fixed on it by Westerners, Bali maintains its enigmatic culture in all aspects of life. Its lively and friendly disposition serves as a stark contrast to the daily dread of punishing Hindu spirits. In addition, Bali is one of the most thriving artisan cultures in the world, unfazed by the Industrial Revolution…

Checking In: 5-Star Luxury at Maya Ubud, Bali

Checking in to the luxurious Maya Ubud is a five-star experience. Bali is hot and you’ll be sweaty from a day zipping around in a taxi bound for temples, coffee plantations, rice fields, and beaches. At Maya Ubud, you’re greeted with a welcome drink and a cold towel. Cool off in the open-air lobby before…

Balinese dancer, Ubud, Bali

10 Things to Eat, See & Do in Bali

Sacred Monkey Forest Sanctuary Sacred Monkey Forest Sanctuary is exactly what it sounds like — a nature reserve and temple complex with more than 340 long-tailed macaques roaming freely. These entertaining socialites do not hesitate to climb on, steal from, and perch from visitors brave enough to interact with them. We thought all our junk was…

Balinese woman

The Humans of Bali (PHOTOS)

This woman is the owner of a thriving coffee farm in Bali. I took her picture before I knew that. I simply saw her cooking over a hot stove and was intrigued by her face and her work. I’m glad I found out who she is. I’ve written about being an eco-conscious traveler, but this is about the sting…

20 Photos of Bali

20 Photos of Bali That Will Make You Pack Your Bags and Go

I have a love affair with Bali, which is not to say I’m blind to its unpleasantries (traffic, peddlers, densely populated). My first visit to Bali was a quickie — three whirlwind days filled with kleptomaniac monkeys, blackened temples, and a volcano. My second visit allowed me 10 days at leisure to really soak up…

My 15 Favorite Travel Experiences

My 15 Favorite Travel Experiences

I didn’t visit every destination on my 2015 bucket list this year, but that’s just fine. I’m more interested in quality travel than in quantity. This is perhaps why I don’t travel full-time. I grounded myself for six months (!) to work on my first documentary film. I’m glad to report I’m almost done… And…

Santi Mandala Resort, Bali

Review: Santi Mandala Villa & Spa, Bali

Santi Mandala Villa & Spa was nothing short of magical. For $100/night we had a private villa with exotic outdoor bathroom at this quiet resort in Ubud, Bali. There’s nothing as serene as sitting on your private deck gazing at a waterfall and watching the birds flitter by. The grounds are lush, hilly, and floral with lots of stone paths to explore on your spa day in, which you’ll need after pounding the pavement for a day or two. The excellent breakfast spread included pink crepes and a pool view.

Sacred Monkey Forest, Bali

Sacred Monkey Forest Sanctuary, Bali

Sacred Monkey Forest Sanctuary is exactly what it sounds like — a nature reserve and temple complex with more than 340 long-tailed macaques roaming freely. These entertaining socialites do not hesitate to climb on, steal from, and perch from visitors brave enough to interact with them. We thought all our junk was bolted down, but alas a furry, klepto-maniacal macaque lifted some trash peeking from our bag.

Tips for Enjoying Blissful Bali

It’s hard not to describe Bali in hyperbolic terms like “paradise” and for good reason. One of 17,000 islands in Indonesia, this home of four million people is only 90 miles (east to west) by 50 miles (north to south) but infused with ornate temples, picturesque rice fields, and fresh organic food. Eighty percent of visitors…