Sustainable Tourism in Bali: The Alam Sari

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After the shipwreck, I needed to shut myself away and decompress for awhile in Bali. And I found the perfect place to do it — the Alam Sari.

After hearing about the accident, the Alam Sari, a sustainable resort in the village of Keliki, just outside Ubud, invited me for a weeklong stay.

I couldn’t get there fast enough.

After nearly six months of cheap and often strange lodging, staying at a place like this — the Alamanda Suite — was a dream.

The Alam Sari feels like it’s isolated, in the middle of the Bali jungle.  On the drive there, I passed canyons, rivers and waterfalls, all covered with lush vegetation.

But in reality?  It’s only 20 minutes from Ubud. There are several complimentary shuttles daily.

Sustainability is a major topic in travel and tourism these days, and sustainable resorts are becoming increasingly popular. But some sustainable resorts simply talk the talk — the Alam Sari walks the walk.

The Alam Sari is an excellent sustainable resort in Bali, and their attention to detail is amazing.  No stone is unturned in ensuring that the environment is protected.

Like many resorts, they use solar heating.  Unlike other resorts, they break wastewater down so that clean water can be reused for the plants.

Most of the products in the suites are local — from Balinese hand-woven cotton linens to natural rubber mattresses on the incredibly comfortable beds.  And, of course, local Balinese artwork — paintings from Keliki village, coconut pillars, wooden carvings, hand-dyed batiks!

And that gorgeous wooden furniture?  All of it comes from a sustainable farm.

Many vegetables used in the resort’s cooking come from the organic garden. (And let me add that the food at the Alam Sari is AMAZING.  Incredibly delicious food!)

Gardening is done responsibly, with natural methods of soil stabilization and composting.

And that’s just the tip of the surface.  Here are many more.

It feels like you’re more connected to the land at the Alam Sari, down to the open gardens in the bathrooms.

The Alam Sari also has a three-bedroom villa which can accommodate large groups — it’s perfect for families, for destination weddings, and for yoga retreats.

If you’re looking to host a retreat in Bali, away from the tourist chaos of Ubud and Kuta, call them up!

I was in a bit of an odd state after the shipwreck, but I didn’t realize it until later. I wanted to be alone, shut myself in my room, and do nothing all day.

It was nice to do that in a place as nice as this — I relaxed, read, blogged like crazy, and sat by that beautiful pool.  After a few days, I spent more time in Ubud, replacing a few of my things lost.

I also took a special tour of Keliki village — all guests of the Alam Sari get a complimentary tour!

It was so incredibly relaxing, and exactly what I needed. If you’re looking for a relaxing trip to Bali, this is a great place to do it, far from the tourist madness.  The Alam Sari is a nice place.

I received a complimentary stay at the Alam Sari.  All opinions, as always, are my own.

14 thoughts on “Sustainable Tourism in Bali: The Alam Sari”

  1. Wow, it looks beautiful! I don’t know much about ecological or sustainable tourism, so thanks for posting this – definitely something to look into, especially as I always feel a teensy bit guilty over my carbon footprint whenever I jet off somewhere.

    I totally agree with you about needing somewhere nice to unwind after a stressful/strange ordeal though – I found that in Turkey when I stayed at a place called Annette’s House, in a tiny little town named Ayvalik on the Aegean Coast. All I did was read, go on Facebook, wander cobblestone streets and eat – perfect as the heat had caused my skin to break out in blisters and then start to peel off on my hands, ick (not exactly a confidence booster when you’re intending to have a lot of beach time!).

    Getting away from it all – and doing so somewhere comfortable! – is the best way to recover. You hit the nail on the head 🙂

    Oh, and that bathroom looks AMAZING!


  2. To decompress further you should take a ferry to Gili Trawangan, enjoy the scenery and have a few drinks at Rudy’s! I sometimes wish I was on that island, periodically throughout the week. If it brings up bad memories of the shipwreck, maybe it’s not a good place..

    1. T Roach, I was originally going to go to the Gilis — but after the accident, there was no way I was getting on a boat in Indonesia again, especially considering that the boat to the Gilis sank twice last year.

  3. Looks great! Sustainable travel is so important so it’s nice to see that you had a chance to experience this place, and even nicer that they were there for you when you needed a quiet retreat.

    1. Thanks I really liked what you presented here. I had the toughest time selecting a decent mattress for my dad last year. His leg suffered some damage when he was in the army, and the stress from walking with a limp is really bad for his back. I wish I had found your post sooner, because this seems to be the perfect fit for his need. He’s doing well with his Latex mattress too though. We just have to take care of the pillow he uses, because he loves the big fluffy ones but they raise his neck too much. Plus, I didn’t know Latex mattresses collapse in the middle with time.

  4. Looks like you hit the jackpot! Some good did come from you being shipwrecked after all, love the wood furniture and the organic garden. My wife would love that bathroom.

  5. That place looks amazing.

    Also, you’re heading home soon right? How do you feel about that? Do you know what you’ll do back in Boston? I’ve been following your blog for a while and I love it.

    1. I fly back to the States tomorrow! I’m planning out the next step — I will probably spend (at least part of) the summer working in Boston or in the suburbs. There are a LOT of projects in the works — I can’t talk about anything just yet!

  6. Wow Kate looks like a beautiful place to decompress after an, er, “adventure” like your shipwreck. Congrats on the free stay… you earned it!

  7. This looks like an amazing place. It is good to see some sort of eco-tourism. A lot of people from Australia have told me how poorly some parts of Bali get looked after – quite sad really.

    Keep up the awesome work

  8. This resort looks awesome! It seems like people want to live more sustainable lives, but don’t necessarily “know” how to do it. Alam Sari is a perfect example of using the environment to their advantage, showing that eco-tourism is a great way to explore different parts of the world!

  9. Cool story! I agree that it is hard to find places that not only talk the talk, but walk the walk… I am just staying at the Batu Ampar Eco Lodge just next to West Bali NP, and give it a warm welcome, and suggest that you reach out to them if you are looking for other sustainable spots in Bali. The business seems to have a real community impact, they help gather donations for eco-education for school kids so that they understand the importance of mangroves to the environment, and filter all of the waste water through an anaerobic digestor which then lets the treated water back into the environment. Serious sustainability stuff!

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