Thursday, April 16, 2015

That Beach Holiday

I've never been a big fan of planned holidays, tour buses or guided trips. Most of my trips overseas fall in these 3 categories -

1. Teaching and village school teacher training
2. Exploration of cities on foot
3. Being a beach bum*

*disclaimer: we are literally beach bums. we don't plan any activities or do any shopping. we literally plonk ourselves in a spot from brunch and lie there reading, listening to music etc. until dusk.

Since this Bali trip is spontaneous, I'm really excited and grateful. It's our first time going to Bali and most reviews say it'll be expensive. Come on guys, its a popular beach destination. . .of course it'll come with a cost. I'm sure there are many beautiful things about Bali looking beyond it's price tag.

Grateful because I wasn't sure the doctor would approve of me travelling, but as it turned out he was happy we were planning a getaway in the middle of the second trimester. He seemed really excited for us too.

Here are my must-haves on a typical beach getaway -

a. Sunblock 

We live in a summer-only climate. Even at home sunblock is a must have, much less when we're baking outside all day on the beach. That being said, we usually hog shady seats since we're always early to the beach while everyone else might be nursing their hangovers.

Remember also that a single application is never enough! I typically apply every hour or as and when I come out of a long swim. While we are young, we ought to do this diligently. Never underestimate how damaging the sun rays are on your skin.

I do a lot of water sports (maybe not this trip) so I typically choose something more water proof. But if you're planning to tan or just bake, tanning lotions and the regular sun blocks should suffice.

b. Aloe Vera Gel & Moisturizer

The sun also dehydrates your skin real quickly, so I usually apply aloe vera immediately after a shower when my pores are most absorbent and intensive moisturizer right before bed. It's important to get pure aloe vera (if available), the artificial types tend to leave your skin feeling sticky and clogged for ages.

While I'm at it, I always throw on a hydrating sheet mask if we're spending the whole evening in the resort villa. Air-conditioning does just as much damage in terms of dehydration, so give your skin more than enough! And drink up! Nothing beats having enough fluid in your body.

c. Beach Towel. Sun hat. Shades. 

Do not attempt to sprawl on a deck chair with your bare skin, leave models to do their thing. In reality, these chairs would probably scald you before you get a single shade darker.

Beach towels are handy things, they serve as cover-ups, and they prevent direct contact with the scorching sand. Always if you don't have a beach bag handy, you can dump everything onto the towel. Who does that? Haha.

I'm fine with my body getting a slight tan, but not my face. There was an incident where my sun hat went missing a transit, I ended up hiding under an umbrella for the whole first day. Sun hats are really amazing, they might not always be flattering but they definitely shade your face and prevent speedy dehydration.

Shades! Need I say more?

d. Readings

The book I have on a beach holiday can determine how well the getaway goes. A dull, tasteless novel versus an exciting, well-crafted story-line can really make or break my time on the beach. Rather than bringing a mini library with me, I typically start on the book before the trip. You usually know by chapter three if it sits with you.

e. swim wear / f. slippers / g. sun dresses and the list goes on!

What are your essentials on a beach holiday?


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