Asia is easy. Every corner has its own regional specialties and I’m always excited to find out more about special delicacies, I want to try them all! A good way to do it is to give those hawker stalls a go, as their food is mostly super fresh and good. Do as the locals do (minus the fish, the meat, the eggs…you get the idea). Three general advice:
1. Binge on fruits as they are always better than in your supermarket back home (and co2-neutral)
2. Make sure, your curry or whatever you’re after hasn’t been cooked in chicken broth or fish sauce has been used. Talk to the people.
3. Whenever I intend to go so far of the beaten path that locals don’t understand English, I let the receptionist in my first hotel (mostly where I land, so in a bigger city) write down the sentences „I don’t eat meat (including chicken), fish, any seafood, eggs, creme, milk or any other dairy products or products from animals (including chicken broth). Can you still fix something for me? Thank you!“ Or something similar. This piece of paper became a humble travel companion for lots of trips and brought lots of smiles and understanding in the faces of many locals.
However, this is not really necessary in Bali as tourism is wide spread and a lot of people live from it, hence English is understood widely. Plus, Bali, being a island that among others attracts lots of Yogis, alternatives and other tree huggers, the restaurant scene adopted accordingly and caters for vegetarians and vegans, especially in Ubud. Here we hit the jackpot as our hotel „Bali Swasti“ (https://baliswasti.com) was not only beautifully designed with natural building materials, offering Yoga and massages and the like in a stunning setup in walking distance to the „Monkey Forest“, but they also had a veg menu that left no desires unfulfilled. Organic and straight from their own garden. Tempeh-curries to die for with detox juices…. I wore that deranged smile in my face for days, utterly content. Welcome to happy-happy-land. Treat yourself!