Ubud News


It’s informal and its members come and go, but the Ubud Garden Society can be a very useful way to find out more about how things grow on this island.

According to their Facebook page, they’re a community of people who love to grow food or fulfil their garden fantasies. Group gatherings are rare, but there’s plenty of online support, and people meet regularly to swap seeds and plants.

Last week there was one useful FB exchange about organic pesticides, and another about introducing plants that encourage butterflies. And there were good-sized Eureka lemon, fig, cherry guava and other fruit trees for sale at reasonable prices.

Membership is open to anyone, after you answer some simple garden-related questions.



In the tradition of Gandhi and Martin Luther King, a team of experienced international trainers brought powerful training to Ubud this month, in a nine-day residential program teaching Nonviolent Communication (NVC).

The extended program allowed participants to immerse themselves in a “community” that focussed on developing the NVC mindset and studying practical tools to increase connection and closeness with other people, from that vital basis of respect for oneself.

Participants learnt to speak in ways that inspired compassion and understanding, to initiate difficult conversations with more confidence, and to remain centred and peaceful when expressing and receiving anger.

Hopefully, they are returning to their lives better able to resolve long-standing conflicts and heal painful relationships at home, at work and in the wider community.

For information on future Bali-based programs, go to: www.balinvc.com.



It takes a special kind of dedicated, patient and passionate person to work with injured people or animals. Most of us are torn by the trauma of an emaciated, damaged or neglected pet, for example, and we see many such heartbreaking examples as we travel around Bali. However far fewer have the fortitude to work closely with them; it takes special people like the staff and volunteers at Bali Animal Welfare Association (BAWA).

Still, it takes our donations to keep BAWA’s wheels turning and to ensure that these heroes have the means to continue to transform the lives of the dogs and cats in their care.

Visit BAWA’s website to see the extraordinary range of activities with which this organisation is involved– emergency ambulance response, disaster relief work, political lobbying, university programs, responsible tourism, animal rehabilitation, rabies control – to ensure a better future for animals in this country. Hotline (24/ 7): 081 138 9004.



It’s 450 years since King Anglurah of Karangasem began this Balinese tradition, making a special occasion of dining together as a group. The word “megibung” derives from “gibung” meaning “to share with each other” and the good king used a shared meal to reinforce the concept of togetherness in Balinese life. Since then, especially in times of conflict and scarcity, the Balinese people have often gathered in circles to share what food they had.

Now Ubud’s Laughing Buddha restaurant & bar – well known for fine cuisine and great music – is offering us the opportunity to dine together, Balinese style. And being at the Buddha, there’s sure to be a lot of laughter too!

You will get to taste a very authentic Balinese meal, with a set menu for eight persons (a “sele”) offered including rice, meat and vegetables cooked to traditional recipes. Delicious – and already popular – so best to book ahead! For reservations, contact Nova on 0821 4524 5199 or email info@laughingbuddhabali.com.



Over the past decade, Ubud has developed a worldwide reputation within the field of sacred sound healing. Our local Sound Healing Collective travels to Europe, the UK, Australia and the US to share their expertise in training programs and give performances in sacred sound and voice.

Whether you are in one of the healing professions, a musician or singer, or you simply want to learn another gentle way to relax your mind and heal yourself and your family, studies in this field will be invaluable.

This July, Ubud-based Shervin Boloorian will lead intensive sound healing retreats for both novices and experienced practitioners, at Swasti Eco Cottages’ new Octagon venue.

Shervin is one of the founders of the Ubud Sound Healing Collective, with ten years training and professional experience as a sound therapy practitioner.

Six days of Sound Healing principles and techniques from July 11-18, with a follow up Level 2 training from July 21-25. For more information about the program and one-on-one sessions, contact shervin@soundhealingbali.com.



As Bali expats and tourists we’re so fortunate to have the luxury of space and time for personal growth, with support around us at even the busiest times of our lives, and expertise offered in a vast range of fields.

I remember being a young mother with my own consulting business and two small children – or wait, do I really remember anything except a constant state of exhaustion, trying to juggle mothering, home and work? For sure, I didn’t have time for studying anything outside my work essentials!

Yet in Ubud, even the Mums and their small children are offered a nurturing space to grow and learn together. Earlier this year, an amazing group of moms and kids from Australia, Singapore, New Zealand, The Netherlands and Bali, joined Ubud’s first seven-day retreat dedicated to mothers and young children under five years old.

Great feedback from participants has resulted in an even better program for two more retreats later this year.

As one young mother said, “The constant challenge to find more balance, calm, space and support in my life has become much more crucial since I embarked on the journey of parenting. Our children are the ultimate reflection of how we feel and where we are at in life.”

Visit www.transform-retreats.com to read more feedback, view the Mama & Child Retreat content and sign up for either the September 15-21 or November 3-9 programs. Register soon to get super & early bird rates!