Ubud, Bali: visit the Eat Pray Love cafe

14 August 10

| Greening With Wayan |

bali-ubud-Wayan_lunch

Now that Julia Roberts has become Elizabeth Gilbert in her memoir Eat, Pray, Love, legions more will make pilgrimmages to the people and places rhapsodized in the book and movie. It’s gotten just plain silly. Hotels, tour companies and guidebook publishers are offering everything from do-it-yourself trips to luxury excursions based on Gilbert’s 2006 bestseller. 

The Indonesian island of Bali is on everybody’s EPL itinerary—in particular, its cultural, artistic, and spiritual center, the upcountry town of Ubud. Already the excitement has proven a bit too much for one of Gilbert’s “heroes.” The Balinese fortuneteller, Ketut Liyer, now 96, who was hospitalized with a heart ailment days before the movie’s U.S. debut.

But you can still find the ever-gracious healer and café owner Wayan. And here’s what the mainstream media won’t tell you: her now-famous healing center and lunch place (which Gilbert raised money to fund) is quite green.

Take note: If you really want to get the full Bali experience (and if you’re a tourist, you absolutely should, because it’s not like you’ll be visiting every weekend), you owe it to yourself to book a hotel in Bali. If you use Expedia, for example, you can find excellent prices on hotels in the area. And you can find a green hotel, too, because Expedia has compiled a list of these green properties, each striving toward the three main areas of sustainability—environmental protection, socio-cultural responsibility and local economic growth—with the help of Sustainable Travel International, a nonprofit dedicated to promoting responsible tourism, helping travelers protect the environments and cultures they visit. Whether you’re booking at the last minute, trying to find a hotel close to the Eat, Pray, Love Café, or simply looking for the best, five-star experience Bali has to offer, then you should book with Expedia. You want the trip to be fun, and booking in advance will help relieve a lot of stress.

Come for lunch

 

Dr Wayan of Eat Pray Love in Ubud, Indonesia

Dr. Wayan: healing is green

The café is just down a lane called Jembawan, near the village post office. Look for the sign amid pots of herbs and other plants that are actually a living medicine chest. The sign promises traditional Balinese healing and “vegetarian healthy food.” We won’t recount Wayan’s amazing story, except to say that she comes from a long line of natural healers and that the walls of her establishment are lined with ceiling-high cubbies storing natural remedies for maladies great and small (from cancers to “narrowing the vaginal orifice.”) With a hypnotic smile and gentle manner, she does body “readings” and sells her herbs, roots, and whatnots. Do come here for lunch, at least. No menu, simply sit down and wait. As plate after plate arrives, each with something interesting and truly delicious, you’ll also get an education: every dish is labeled in English with its attendant health benefits. Grilled coconut: prevents rheumatism. Papaya: digestion and strong eyes. And so on. All are carefully prepared from organic and clean sources.  And all can be had, along with a genuine EPL glow, for only a few dollars.

  • facebook fans

    Looks delicious..
    mouth watering

  • http://www.thedepartureboard.com Si @thedepartureboard.com

    It’s amazing how places immortalised on the big screen can become so popular! Especially when the film was as bad as Eat, Pray, Love!

    I did make the effort in Sicily to visit the cafe that Al Pacino sat in the Godfather. That was worth the twisty drive!

    Love the blog, kind regards, Si

  • nr

    Based on this little blurb we went to eat lunch at Wayan’s “cafe” only to be told by firstly a staff member and then Wayan herself that we should come back tomorrow and have our reading done (“past and future and whole body”) and then she would give us food according to our ailments. I think it’s very misleading to tell people to go for lunch and “sit down and wait for food” when you can’t just walk in there, it’s not a cafe, they don’t just have food ready for you to eat! Maybe in 2010 things were very different….

  • greg

    hello
    wayan how are you do you rember me greg dudley from u.s.a. lexington va.24450 i told you what.
    every.i eat i get gas i had all kine test done on my stamch and the doctors say they can not fine anything.worng with me can you help greg

  • http://budgettravelerssandbox.com Nancie

    I visited Wayan last winter. I had the body reading, balancing and lunch. She was pretty accurate, and it’s a unique experience. I’m sorry to hear that Ketut Liyer has been hospitalized. I do hope he is okay.

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