I can not recommend Swallow Guesthouse enough! Set amongst the expansive rice fields in a traditional village, it literally feels like you're in another world - yet all the amenities like wifi, hot water, and swimming pool are available - the best of both worlds! Wayan and Putri are delightful people who are warm-hearted, fun to talk with, and genuinely happy to help with anything you need. Come here to rest, replenish, slow down, and perhaps create and be inspired. The sunrises, sunsets and wildlife are exquisite and there is literally sweetness in the air. If you want to venture into the small yet bustling city, Ubud is just 15 minutes away. Consider yourself lucky if you have the opportunity to experience Swallow Guesthouse.
This is a unique guest house situated in a small village just outside of Ubud. Swallow Guesthouse is situated in the heart of the rice fields and homes of the local people of the village. There are lots of opportunities to mingle and connect with the friendly people, many areas for walking, exploring and seeing how the people of Bali really live their day to day lives. Swallow Guesthouse creates, lives and breathes the true spirit of Bali with their special attention to helping the guests experience unique opportunities through different cultural events and amazing local food. This is not your ordinary "touristy" stay, it is much much more!
We stayed at the Swallow Guesthouse for three nights and four days at the end of July with our two children (aged 2 years and 3.5 years) and friends who also had young children. Our family were lucky enough to be able to stay in the traditional Javanese Gladak Garden Suite. It was perfect in every way.
The house was creatively re-purposed and was well proportioned for our little family, with a large single bed tucked into a nook just slightly away from the decent sized double. The storage was adequate and decor very minimalist in traditional Balinese style. The kitchen area on the rear terrace was very basically provisioned but we had only intended on making simple breakfasts and so it was fine for our needs.
The Swallow Guest house really is in rural Bali, tucked away in the rice paddies. We didn't have cars and so were very reliant on Wayan's taxi service to get anywhere. It was a good 20 minute drive into Ubud from Pejeng. The guesthouse really is the perfect place to while away your days, particularly if you have young children and want some relaxation time. We played in the lovely pool, sat on the front terrace watching the world go by and marvelling at the beautiful view, walked though the rice paddies and the village and made frequent visits to see the cows and ducks. We also had massages at the villa which were excellent.
Wayan and Putri were such friendly and welcoming hosts. Putri's food was divine (we had breakfast and supper) and Wayan's depth of cultural knowledge and ability to share it in an understandable way, enhanced what was already a fabulous holiday. They were both wonderful with the children too. Putri shared out the temple offerings between my two girls for example and Wayan was always chatting to them, smiling and warm.
We will definitely be returning to the Swallow Guesthouse and would thoroughly recommend it to others.
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Wayan and Putri provide a welcoming, home environment. The building and gardens surrounded by the ever-present and changing life of the rice fields are at once engaging and peaceful. The space is immaculate. The food, authentic and wholesome, is organically fresh and lovingly served. Each meal is like a work of art and is delicious. Dedicated to providing an experience of 'real Bali', Wayan and Putri included us in cultural experiences of awesome beauty that inspired reverence and sense of unity. My sister and I felt safe and cared for while enjoying one of the most memorable and positive travel experiences I can remember.
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What a beautiful place. A traditional Balinese building, tastefully decorated and very comfortable. The Guesthouse is surrounded by rice fields and other organic crops which are still farmed by the families of the local village.
Suzan, the owner was there and she was so welcoming. She took me for a walking tour of the farm and we stopped and chatted to so many locals, had a go at planting rice, visited the fish farm and then headed for a longer walk along the channels and into beautiful bushland.
She also included me in her birthday celebrations which included going to a temple at night under the full moon, followed by a magnificent Balinese feast prepared by Putri and Putuh. Amazing!
A day trip into Ubud for a bit of shopping and some spa treatments was good, but it was lovely to return to the tranquillity of the Swallow.
A lazy afternoon in the upstairs open room in the hammock, reading and watching the workers in the fields and listening to the birds.....and having a snooze.
I spent a total of 21/2 weeks in Bali using Swallow House as my home base. It really is a unique experience of Bali rural life that a tourist doesn't ordinarily see. The visitor can see scenes of daily village life and meet with incredibly friendly villagers: tending rice paddies, caring for farm animals, maintaining family shrines, village temples, and incredibly beautiful national temples. People make offerings to ancestors and local deities with their many makeshift offerings and shrines. You can witness the visible expression of a deeply felt Buddhist/Hindu religion.
The stillness and starry nightlife is very peaceful. The mating songs of the bullfrogs is the only sound breaking the evening quiet.
The food is delicious and Suzan, the owner, is extremely friendly, and knowledgeable about Balinese customs, history, and lifestyle.
If I only had 1 word to describe our stay in Swallow Guesthouse it would be, WONDERFUL... However, I have more like, HEART, SOUL, TRADITIONAL, PEACEFUL, INTERESTING, BEAUTIFUL and DELICIOUS...
My 77yr old Mother who broke her arm 6mths ago and is still healing, my older Sister and I stayed here for 7 days and wished we stayed longer.
Swallow Guesthouse is owned by Suzan who we met very briefly during our stay, she seemed like a lovely lady and maybe next time we will share a meal together...
The house is managed by husband & wife, Wayan & Putri and you couldn't ask for more wonderful hosts, we are in love with them, they feel like family in just 1 week...
Wayan is so kind, helpful and knowledgeable, he likes to have a good laugh and is fun to be around, he knows a lot about Bali and it's sites you intend to visit so you feel as though you have a tour guide and a great driver in 1, we really loved his energy and his smile and laugh is infectious.
Putri, what can I say... There is nowhere near enough positive words to describe this most beautiful lady inside and out... Not only is she the most amazing cook (the food is out of this world, organic, fresh & tasty), she has the kindest most peaceful presence, nothing was ever an issue, my Mother stayed alone at the house 2 days out of our 7 and Putri stayed with her the whole time and looked after her. I think Putri reminded her of my sister who passed away in 2012 so my Mum developed a bond with Putri and was sad to leave.
My Mother also has diabetes and the day we had booked to go to Marine & Safari Park her diabetes was playing up so my Sister & I took Wayan & Putri's daughter Tiaree who was 16 along with us. We have never seen such excitement in a teenager before, good mannered and the same infectious smile as her father, she could of had anything she wanted for lunch however all she wanted was Cheesy Pizza & Coca Cola, which brought the biggest smile you will have ever seen to her face. We had the most fabulous day and I am sure Tiaree will still talking about our day together for some time to come...
Last, but not least, your Security... Tina the beautiful Bali House Dog, she is so friendly and she was protective of us and the house during our stay, she loved our Mum, I think she could feel she was an older lady and a little frail so Tina was either laying by her door if she was sleeping or sitting with her when she was relaxing, a real sweetheart...
Then there is Made, a local man that Wayan & Putri have employed to help with the upkeep of the beautiful gardens and as security, you will find Made checking around the house 1 to 2 times a day, he is friendly and has a quiet energy which makes you feel safe, he does not speak English but sign language can be interesting.
The village people of Pejeng were friendly albeit could not speak much English but this is no issue as your hosts will assist you with communications if necessary and gives you the opportunity to practice your Balinese as well (Salamat Pagi)...
All in all I have been to Bali so many times and yes this property does not have the resort or the Villa amenities like a pool & room service, however it has SOUL & gives you a real Bali experience surrounded by beautiful, real people... I will be calling this place home again next year for sure...