Balinese coffee is renowned worldwide for its richness and taste. While I’m not an avid coffee drinker myself (more of a tea gal), I do appreciate an occassional cup of joe, especially when made from scratch. In Bali, there are plenty of coffee plantations and farms that will allow guests to look around and learn about the step by step process of creating rich coffee. During my trip to Bali last year, I went to one of the more popular ones – Santi Coffee Plantation Luwak. 

At Santi Plantation, guests not only get to drink and purchase coffee — they also get to see how it is created…from bean to cup! During our visit, we were showed around the plantation, and employees pointed out ripe green cocoa beans hanging from the trees. They explained the intricate process of harvesting them and finding the best beans to create coffee. The more interesting part of this process is in regards to the most famous of all Balinese coffee – kopi luac. Kopi luac is often (perhaps misleadingly) referred to as “cat poo coffee”. In reality (and thankfully) its creation is not so straightforward. Kopi luac is made from beans that were eaten and consequently pooped out by Balinese wildcats known as Asian palm civets. Civets are not really cats, but “viverrids” – without getting too scientific, they look more like ferrets than anything else. Civets are known to eat the most ripe and richest coffee beans that fall from the trees, and so Balinese farmers are quick to gather the droppings, wash them off and use the beans for coffee. The beans are in a solid state, as the civets stomachs can’t break down their tough exterior. For those brave souls, you can buy a cup of kopi luac to try. 

For those who are not quite willing to go that far, you can sample an array of less unique teas and coffees offered by the Santi Plantation, to include flavors like lemongrass, vanilla, chai, tumeric and chocolate. At the end of the visit, guests can purchase a bag of their favorite flavor, as well as a few other goodies like mugs and merch. 

Most tour guides and travel packages include a visit to Bali’s coffee plantations, and I highly recommend it especially if you are a tea and coffee drinker. For more information about Santi Plantation, check out their page on Trip Advisor:

TRANSPORTATION: The Santi Plantation is deep within the mountains and will require an experienced driver to navigate their. Most travel packages include a free car ride to and from the plantation. 

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