We arrived in Les, Bali not knowing what to expect. What we found was a village filled with the kindest and happiest people we have ever met. Les truly stole our hearts and it only took seven days. Here is a little bit of what we found during our week on the Java Sea.
HAPPY! HAPPY! HAPPY! I’m not sure of another word to describe the people we met in Les. It was amazing to witness how everyone in the village always seemed to have a smile on their face, even when working hard in the blistering sun. The people of Les made our visit what it was and will be what we remember most from our week in the village. We heard more random singing in a week than we ever heard back in the U.S. In fact, if people heard singing like this back home, the person would probably be labeled as crazy!
You couldn’t help but smile and feel better about your own day when surrounded by such happy people. 🙂
What To Do: Teach English, Learn to Cook, Snorkel, Dive
We arrived not knowing what would fill our days, but we left wondering how the time flew by so fast. Our days were filled with snorkeling in the Java Sea (diving is available for those certified too), playing games with local village kids, walking to the village center and relaxing while looking out over the beautiful water.
One evening we participated in cooking dinner, which started with us meeting Made at the local market in the morning to pick out fresh food for the meal. It was great being able to see how the food is picked and prepared and being back in the kitchen was an added bonus. The food was delicious and we were able to take a few recipes home to try in the future.
Helping teach English to local villagers was something we took part in each night. It was a wonderful experience for us and we hope we were able to pass along some helpful tips. It was amazing to see teenagers, fishermen and laborers commit an extra two hours of their day to learning a new language. Keep in mind, this is after working the entire day at their regular job. For some it meant sacrificing time with their family and friends, but they want to improve themselves, their village and make a better life for their children. Absolutely astonishing to see and hear these stories in person.
Coral Reef Rebuilding
A big undertaking is the coral reef rebuilding project going on right off the coast. Years ago fisherman would use cyanide, which unfortunately destroyed much of the coral reef. However, over the last decade the village has implemented a program to help rebuild the reef and show the fisherman how to fish in a more sustainable way. It was great to be able to snorkel the reef and see the progress being made by the community. The fish seem happier and the fishermen are catching more than ever!
Organic Salt Farming
Salt farming is very visible in Les as plots of farmland are right next to the sea. Farmers put in long hours for little pay, but again, they were happy and smiling just like everyone else. You can read a more detailed description of how salt farming is done in Les HERE
We heard great comments from the local villagers about Les waterfall, so we decided to make the trip one day to see it for ourselves. It didn’t disappoint. Read more about our time at the Les waterfall HERE
The village is working hard to become a sustainable tourist destination and from what we can see, they are well on their way. The biggest barrier to being a destination at the moment is getting more locals comfortable with their English speaking abilities. However, with continued English practice and the right people in the right guide positions, Les may become a must-visit destination before you know it!
For those considering a trip to Bali, don’t forget about the tiny village of Les on the North shore. It doesn’t have the yoga and raw foods of Ubud or the party scene like Kuta, but I guarantee you will gain a greater appreciation for what you have in life. Les truly shows that being happy comes from the inside. 🙂
Please find contact information for Segara Les Villa in Les, Bali below:
Phone (Eng): +62822 3776 9269
Phone (Eng/Indonesian): +62815 5806 8811