Indonesia,Travel

A Day in the Life of a Balinese Farmer (Bali, Indonesia)

Four Seasons Sayan Balinese Farmer 15-min

We were spoiled crazy on our trip to Bali. (More on that soon!) But on one particular morning, we decided to “rough it up” by joining an excursion prepared for us by The Four Seasons Resort Bali at Sayan where we got to experience life as a Balinese farmer.

Four Seasons Sayan Balinese Farmer 2-min

There are rice fields and lush forests right inside The Four Seasons property and so it really was the perfect setting! You can choose from a half-day or a full-day activity. We got the half-day one.

Four Seasons Sayan Balinese Farmer 29-min

We were met by our guide Sari who, upon seeing us in our sneakers, offered to let us borrow hiking shoes. Oops. I thought the “trek” in our itinerary was just a simple walk but apparently, we were up for a real trek! Haha!

Four Seasons Sayan Balinese Farmer 1-min

What a very thoughtful surprise that they had extra shoes for us to use and that they had it in our sizes! (We had matching pairs too!)

Four Seasons Sayan Balinese Farmer 3

We pass through the rice fields, snapped a few shots (thanks, Sari!) and off we went!

Trekking in the Jungle

Four Seasons Sayan Balinese Farmer 4-min

Our activity began with a trek around the forest. Our guide said that just as the farmers had to walk a long way from their homes to the rice fields, so we too also had to do the same!

Four Seasons Sayan Balinese Farmer 12-min

We started walking along the gardens, learning about the different plants and herbs they grow in-house. Later on, we slowly hiked up the forest areas surrounding the resort. Before we knew it, we were out of The Four Seasons property and were already passing through a local village in Sayan.

Visiting Local Village Houses

Four Seasons Sayan Balinese Farmer 26-min

Sari took us around the local village and let us in on some of the family compounds. A lot of the families here live together and share common areas and responsibilities.

Four Seasons Sayan Balinese Farmer 5-min

I was posing by the entrance of their door not realizing that grandma was just behind me. Haha.

Four Seasons Sayan Balinese Farmer 6-min

It’s so amazing to learn that these are actual homes of real families! The exterior of their houses have such intricate designs, you’d think they were traditional royal houses.

Four Seasons Sayan Balinese Farmer 7-min

We were able to meet grandma, who is fondly called Dadong. One of her sons works at The Four Seasons Sayan!

Four Seasons Sayan Balinese Farmer 25-min

We pass by a few more houses and ended up meeting a lot of barking dogs that freaked me out a little. Also on the picture are roosters that they keep for cockfighting. Reminds me of the Philippines!

Four Seasons Sayan Balinese Farmer 27-min

After a while, we passed through the gates of Narnia (haha) and eventually made our way back to the resort.

Breakfast by the River

Four Seasons Sayan Balinese Farmer 9-min

After all the walking, we were famished. It was time to have breakfast. But it wasn’t just any breakfast…

Four Seasons Sayan Balinese Farmer 8-min

We were treated to a private bale by the riverside overlooking the Ayung River.

Four Seasons Sayan Balinese Farmer 11-min

Our server carefully prepared the set up, complete with fruit juices and of course, coffee and tea.

Four Seasons Sayan Balinese Farmer 10-min

We had a traditional breakfast of Nasi Campur, a typical Balinese farmer’s meal, which is a mix of a variety of dishes in small portions. We had fresh fruits, Indonesian rice porridge and crispy fried bananas with cinnamon scented palm sugar syrup. Yum!

Four Seasons Sayan Balinese Farmer 13-min

The rice porridge was my favorite! It’s made with shredded fish, crispy shallots, spring onion, vegetables and tofu!

Four Seasons Sayan Balinese Farmer 28-min

We sat down and enjoyed our beautiful view of the Ayung River as we waited for Sari to come back and pick us up.

Let the Rice Planting Begin!

Four Seasons Sayan Balinese Farmer 18-min

Okay, so we’ve trekked, toured and eaten. I think it’s about time we start being real farmers, right?! So let’s get to work!

Four Seasons Sayan Balinese Farmer 14-min

Meet our very cheerful farmer, Mr. Wirawan! I love his happy smile and very positive attitude!

Four Seasons Sayan Balinese Farmer 24-min

Time to get our hands, and most especially our feet, dirty. Plunging into the warm muddy waters, Mr. Wirawan taught us how to use the different tools to cultivate the land and prepare it well enough for planting.

Four Seasons Sayan Balinese Farmer 16-min

He really made me work! Haha! It’s not that easy, but I can’t complain! We’re only doing this for a small piece of land (and for only an hour or so) whereas real farmers had to do this to acres of land each day!

Four Seasons Sayan Balinese Farmer 17-min

The scorching sun was intense but this city girl is definitely enjoying being a farmer for a day! This activity gave me a glimpse of the hard work that goes into our food. Newfound respect for farmers!

Four Seasons Sayan Balinese Farmer 20-min

We did it! Now it’s time to pray to God for a good harvest! Hehe.

Four Seasons Sayan Balinese Farmer 19-min

Just as farmers usually reward themselves with a refreshing drink from a coconut, we also did the same! Mr. Wirawan said that this was the way to drink coconut juice, so we followed suit! We were just laughing at each other the entire time! (Don’t worry, I have permission from my husband to post this photo hahaha!)

Now it’s time to relax!

Four Seasons Sayan Balinese Farmer 21-min

After a hard day’s work, it was time to relax. Okay, so farmers don’t really have spa treatments at The Sacred River Spa everyday after work but we’re spoiled, make-believe farmers anyway so… there. Haha.

Four Seasons Sayan Balinese Farmer 30-min

Mor and I both had a traditional Balinese massage. To be honest, I don’t really get massages because I’m super ticklish (a massage session can be torture for me haha!) but I was so curious about this one so I didn’t back out from it! And I’m glad I didn’t!

Four Seasons Sayan Balinese Farmer 22-min

We were given the massage inside one of the gorgeous spa villas. Aaaah…

Final surprise!

Four Seasons Sayan Balinese Farmer 31-min

Before we had our spa treatment, the staff asked us to put all our dirty clothes from the morning’s activities into a laundry bag. After our treatment, we were surprised with a box of our clothes already cleaned and pressed! How awesome is that?

Four Seasons Sayan Balinese Farmer 23-min

They also gave us a book of our photos taken during the farming activity and a certificate that says we are now certified Balinese farmers! Haha! So cute, right? The little touches are so thoughtful. Thank you, Four Seasons for such a memorable experience!

Will be writing more about out Bali trip soon, including a review of our stay at The Four Seasons Resort Bali at Sayan (which is undoubtedly one of the best resorts we’ve ever stayed in so far!) so keep an eye out!

Read more about our Bali Trip here!

(NOTE: THIS POST IS ABOUT OUR EXPERIENCE LAST APRIL 2017.)
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14 Comments

  • Reply
    Angelica Jugueta
    April 24, 2017 at 4:16 pm

    Aww. I’m already falling in love with Bali even though I haven’t been there because of your post. <3 Wish I could go there right away. I would really want to experience what a farmer does. And Bali having this kind of experience of not all touristy stuff makes me want to book a flight right away! More Bali stories pleasseee. 😀

    • Reply
      Sheena Sy Gonzales
      April 24, 2017 at 8:34 pm

      Hi Angelica! Thank you I’m super happy you like my posts! Bali was awesome, it should definitely be on your list. Will be posting more Bali stories soon!

  • Reply
    Leni
    April 26, 2017 at 1:25 am

    Everything is so green and it so prosperous ! You have to tell me more about this resort. I hope to visit it one day with B! Can’t wait for the rest of your stories about your Bali trip!

    • Reply
      Sheena Sy Gonzales
      April 26, 2017 at 9:51 am

      Leni, you should definitely visit next time! It’s such a beautiful resort!

  • Reply
    Benita James
    April 27, 2017 at 3:17 am

    Bali is really beautiful and you did make the most out of it by helping the farmers and also having a great time there.

    Bernie, xx
    The Style Fanatic

    • Reply
      Sheena Sy Gonzales
      April 29, 2017 at 10:29 pm

      It was a lot of fun!

  • Reply
    Tales of Two
    April 29, 2017 at 1:10 pm

    Looks so interestng babe ! I love trying traditional food of wherever I am visiting ! And that village compound must have been very interesting !

    http://www.talesoftwoblog.blogspot.com

    • Reply
      Sheena Sy Gonzales
      April 29, 2017 at 10:28 pm

      Yes it was a wonderful experience!

  • Reply
    Kim
    May 6, 2017 at 1:13 am

    I love that you received matching hiking shoes from the company! That was really nice of them. What a trip of a lifetime! I am very interested in visiting Bali now, after seeing all your photos! The jungles are so beautiful!

    Kim | Simply Lovebirds

    • Reply
      Sheena Sy Gonzales
      May 6, 2017 at 8:16 am

      Hi Kim, yes they let us borrow it. It’s a beautiful resort; you should stay here when you visit Bali!

  • Reply
    Pearl
    May 8, 2017 at 10:58 am

    This is so interesting, Sheena! I’ve only tried planting in a Pinoy farm haha. This is a must-try :)

    • Reply
      Sheena Sy Gonzales
      May 8, 2017 at 3:39 pm

      Where did you try it in the Philippines? I wanna try!! I haven’t done that!

  • Reply
    Katie Mendoza
    May 17, 2017 at 7:32 am

    Wow!!! I definitely want to do this when I go to Bali. I’m planning a trip there with my family soon and I’ll inquire about this. Thanks for the suggestion, Sheena!

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