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Balinese Villages Offer Cultural Insights, Hospitality, Amazing FoodOctober 15, 2008 By: Nancy Harkrider
A Bonus is a Five-Star Cup of Shade Grown Coffee
Join Nancy Harkrider of ExploreAsia.Net as she takes you to a Balinese village where visitors get to experience the complete cycle of coffee growing.
On a recent visit to Bali, we had the honor of being invited to a Balinese village, a part of a network for “capacity building”. If that sounds like management-speak, it is in a way.
Our group got more than they we could have imagined— amazing food and coffee along with an opportunity to help village people improve their lives and hear their stories about how entrepreneurship has changed their lives.
The village sits in one of the most breathtaking of Bali’s landscapes. We thought we had died and gone to heaven when we were greeted at the village pavilion with morning snacks, a tabled groaning with delectable nibbles. Afterward we were treated to guided tours through the village’s shade grown coffee mini-plantations, which turned out to be a good thing since we worked up an appetite for lunch. All this served up with that justifiably famous Balinese charm and hospitality.
A coffee entrepreneur in Bali
And by the way, the wood-fired coffee we had in this Balinese village was absolutely the best of coffee I have ever tasted. There’s a reason Bali's Robusta and Arabica coffee beans are exported all around the world.
Champions of Community-Based-Tourism work with local villages to give them skills in managing and hosting tourists. Local people even learn to turn away uninvited guests— difficult for Balinese who are polite to a fault.
The leaders in this particular village have apparently learned their assertiveness skills. When Starbuck’s approached them recently about switching from the small independent roasters they sold to, the village elders gave it a thumbs down.
Not that these villagers have anything against Starbucks, but they are more comfortable dealing with other small business people.
Contact Explore Asia [email protected] and we’ll hook you up with village experiences that match your passions and philosophy.