Symphonies of cicadas and spine-tingling chanting echoing across the ravine come as part of the package at Kano Sari, along with the meditative snipping of grass by hand; the staff preferring tradition over convenience.
There’s no mistaking where you are as owner Karen Lewis helps support Kutuh Kelod village, where Kano Sari is located, by contributing to the community, embracing Bali’s seemingly endless ceremonies (she even has outfits for her guests to use), placing offerings around the property and hiring locals. What was originally supposed to be a villa for her family and friends to enjoy, evolved into a rambling guesthouse using natural materials sourced locally including the stone, linens, artworks, weavings on the ceilings and even the communal dining table is crafted from an old truck; although the marble came further afield from Sulawesi where her parents once lived.
Comfortably sleeping 13, Karen urges visitors to, “Stay as long as possible and immerse yourself in the culture. Take the time to communicate with the locals.”
One way to take Karen’s advice in a mindful manner is to hire her local driver and guide Tano for a unique tour. If you only have time for one excursion, make it Tirtu Empul Temple for a water blessing beneath a dozen spouts; even if praying isn’t your thing, I guarantee you you’ll leave refreshed and invigorated.
Carmen Jenner was a guest of Kano Sari in Ubud
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