Join Global Family Travels on our 12-day Learn, Serve & Immerse trip of Bali in the Spring or Summer of 2021.
An island famous for its stunning beaches, captivating culture and mystical traditions, you’ll learn about the Tri Hita Karana, the central philosophy of the Balinese people, enjoy a fun music workshop, witness a performance of the Balinese Legong dance, sample the flavors of delicious Balinese cuisine, and explore the back roads of Bali’s heartland on two wheels. This trip offers opportunities to learn about imporatant global issues, such as quality education, water and sanitation, and serve local communities by helping schoolchildren practice speaking English and help villagers with a community-wide litter cleanup.
On this trip, you’ll also visit the Tirta Empul holy spring temple, a sacred site said to purify the soul and mind, and explore the village of Ubud, a center of healing energy, good spirits, meditation, yoga and more. You’ll take an herbal walk to learn about how native plants are used in traditional Bali medicine. Another highlight is the chance to attend an exclusive Royal Palace tour and dinner hosted by a Balinese prince.
TRIP HIGHLIGHTS are below, click on ITINERARY to see all the details.
Global Family Travels
Much more than a traditional tour operator, Global Family Travels’ mission is to “Learn, Serve and Immerse” through community-based travel programs. In partnership with non-profit organizations and schools, we offer family-friendly and sustainable travel experiences in support of education, gender equality, access to clean water, preservation of local cultures, conservation and economic growth, all of which foster cross-cultural understanding and global citizens.
Our trips include a unique mix of cultural and educational activities, homestays and participation in local service projects aimed at improving the lives of people in the communities we visit.
Expect to expand your family circle when you embark on a Global Family Travels trip! Visit our website for more information: Global Family Travels
LEARN: Tri Hita Karana and More!
Throughout your time in Bali, each new person you meet is your teacher, and each new activity you try is an opportunity to learn! Whether it’s hearing about a new philosophy like the Tri Hita Karana, trying your hand at traditional woodcarving, discovering the island’s unique plants on an herbal walk, or dyeing fabrics in the batik style, Bali has no shortage of opportunities to learn something new!
At Global Family Travels, we believe the most powerful way to learn is through hands-on experiences. We let the destination and its people be your teachers, and supplement experiences with reading lists, informal discussions, and a pre-trip orientation to better equip families with the practical information they need to understand the culture, history, and industry of their host destination.
SERVE: Community Clean-up & Protect Coral Reefs
Serve with Balinese communities on projects that support education, village clean-up and protecting the islands' coral reefs.
Completing service projects alongside local people provides a unique opportunity to connect with the Balinese community. Speaking English opens up many opportunities for Balinese youth, and children at local schools love to practice their skills with native speakers through games and activities. Another service project is comprised of a village cleanup, as many areas of Bali still lack consistent waste management infrastructure and struggle to keep rubbish in check.
Immerse in cultural workshops to learn about local cuisine, dance, music, woodcarving, puppet making and more!
By spending your days engaging in activities with Balinese people, you will get a deep sense of the culture and daily life in Bali. Learning local arts at the banjar, visiting sacred temples and palaces, seeing a traditional shadow puppet performance, and visiting local organizations addressing some of Bali’s biggest challenges will give you a truly unforgettable immersive experience.
About Porita Smith, Your Trip Leader
PORTIA SMITH IS A TRAVEL-OBSESSED GLOBETROTTER AND EXPERIENCE ADVOCATE STAMPING MORE THAN 20 COUNTRIES ON HER PASSPORT.
BASED IN THE SEATTLE-AREA, SHE IS A LEADING TRAVEL EXPERT WHO FOUNDED OBSESSEDBYPORTIA.COM - CREATING THE ULTIMATE ONLINE RESOURCE CURATING TRAVEL + LIFESTYLE OBSESSIONS FOR THE 30-SOMETHING MOM CRAVING INSPIRATION. AND, SHE'S OBSESSED WITH SHARING THE GOOD.
SHE'S MADE APPEARANCES ON KING 5 NEWS (SEATTLE) AND WAS NAMED "A SEATTLE BLOGGER TO FOLLOW" BY MATADOR NETWORK.
Tri Hita Karana
This Balinese phrase roughly translates to “the three sources of good,” and it is the central philosophy of Balinese life. The three sources it refers to are harmony between people, harmony with nature, and harmony with a higher power. The philosophy is visible in many facets of Balinese life—for instance, Balinese pitching in at their community center or helping neighbors with a ceremony (harmony between people), the ceremonies they perform to bless their rice fields and water sources (harmony with nature), and the thousands of offerings and ceremonies performed daily in reverence of their spirits (harmony with a higher power).
Every village in Bali has a banjar, or community center, where villagers prepare offerings and foods for ceremonies, meet and discuss village affairs, practice music and dance, and just hang out and chat with each other. We invite teachers of traditional Balinese gamelan music, Legong dance, woodcarving, and offering making to a local banjar to give participants an introduction to each of these disciplines. You’ll quickly learn that the intricate finger and eye movements of Legong dance only look easy and that keeping a steady hand while woodcarving is no easy feat! All of the activities you’ll try are central to Balinese culture, and there is no better place to experience them than right in the banjar.
For centuries Balinese have used a wide range of native plants and herbs for therapeutic, medicinal and health-enhancing purposes. Local herbal experts Lilir and Westi, who are grandchildren of traditional Balinese healers, lead this walk around the Campuhan River valley area and will teach you how to identify wide range of native plants and herbs, introduce you to the techniques and practices of traditional and contemporary Balinese herbal healing, and discuss plants that are used for first aid, emergencies and the treatment of chronic illnesses.
Balinese Legong Dance
Legong Dance is a form of Balinese dance. It is a refined dance form characterized by intricate finger movements, complicated footwork, and expressive gestures and facial expressions. Legong probably originated in the 19th century as royal entertainment. Legend has it that a prince of Sukawati fell ill and had a vivid dream in which two maidens danced to gamelan music. When he recovered, he arranged for such dances to be performed in reality.
Puri Agung Peliatan is an original Balinese Royal Palace built in 1769, preceding all other palaces in the region, and was designated as a command center for the family's battalions and other vassal palaces and lordships, during the age of warriors in Bali. Cokorda Agung Krisna Dalem is the Prince of the Peliatan Royal Family. He studied for 4 years in Switzerland and received his college degree at the School of IMI Luzern (International Hotel Management Institute).
Downhill Bicycling Tour
Friendly, knowledgeable local guides from the central Bali region lead the ride down from the hills surrounding Mount Batur. Riding through the countryside and making stops at a local landmarks along the way, you’ll get a true feel of the daily life of the local rice farmers and craftsmen. The ride is mostly downhill and moves at a leisurely pace so you have plenty of time to soak in the surroundings. For families with younger children or for those not wishing to do the bike tour, we will offer you other options
Tirta Empul Holy Spring Temple
Tirta Empul is a holy spring water temple located in Tampak Siring Village, Gianyar regency. This pool water is sanctified by the Hindu society in Bali and they believe that this water source can heal various diseases—as a result, every day it is visited by hundreds of Hindus to do rituals.
About Mt. Batur Volcano
The active volcano of Mount Batur and the beautiful surrounding Lake Batur are located in Kintamani, a district of the Bangli Regency in central Bali. The breathtaking caldera was formed when the much larger “mother” volcano erupted thousands of years ago, leaving the smaller volcano we see today and it’s surrounding lake in the crater. Mt. Batur has erupted 24 times since 1800 and has greatly impacted the local villages surrounding the mountain. Lake Batur is the largest lake in Bali.
About Bye Bye Plastics
Bye Bye Plastic Bags is an organization that was started by two girls in Bali, aged 10 and 12, in 2013. They were inspired to start an initiative to stop single-use plastic bags in Bali. They’ve made great strides since then, organizing an annual island-wide cleanup, creating educational materials for Balinese children about recycling and waste, and speaking at numerous events all over Indonesia. Though progress has been slow, they are beginning to see some real results in reducing plastic in Bali.
This workshop provides an introduction to the traditional wax-drawing and wax-resistant color dyeing techniques that have made Bali’s batik makers famous for their lively designs and Hindu motifs. Your instructor will guide you through the process of applying hot wax to a stenciled design on a fabric canvas, then you’ll apply colors to the patterned fabric- and finish the day with your new batik creation to take home with you!
Wayang Kulit Shadow Puppets
Wayang kulit is a traditional Balinese performing art using shadow puppets. In a wayang kulit performance, the puppet figures are lit from behind, with the puppet master manipulating the puppets between the lamp and the screen to bring the shadows to life. The puppets are traditionally intricately carved out of leather. In 2003, The United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) designated wayang kulit as one of the Masterpieces of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity.
About the R.O.L.E Foundation
The Rivers, Oceans, Land, and Ecology (R.O.L.E.) Foundation is a nonprofit based in Nusa Dua. The organization was created to stop land-based waste from getting into the oceans, and to help create sustainable jobs to protect the livelihoods of coastal communities. R.O.L.E. provides education and skills training programs as well as grassroots community assistance to alleviate poverty and ensure environmental sustainability. The foundation’s headquarters is home the branch of the foundation called Bali W.I.S.E. (Women in Indonesia Skills Education), which provides housing, meals, and skills training for marginalized women from Bali.
Coral Triangle Center
The Coral Triangle Center is a marine area including the waters of Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Papua New Guinea, Timor Leste and Solomon Islands. Named for its staggering number of corals (nearly 600 different species of reef-building corals alone), the region nurtures six of the world’s seven marine turtle species and more than 2000 species of reef fish, as well as large populations of commercially important tuna. Over 120 million people live in the Coral Triangle and rely on its coral reefs for food, income and protection from storms. Since it was founded in 2011, the Coral Triangle Center has supplied crucial knowledge and skills to thousands of people striving to maintain the health of the Coral Triangle: people working on the ground in fisheries and in protected areas, scientists, NGO workers, government officials, and volunteers.