A tour guide knows the place we came to as it’s his world. We are new there, often lost and unsure. We need someone whom we can trust, depend on, and who will get rid of our uncertainty.
Guide’s job is often thought to be fascinating, but also demanding. It requires both knowledge and kindness. The guide is our host and he welcomes us into his world. Let’s get to know it!
Today we talk to Mardika, the tour guide from Bali.
Mardika, how long have you been working as a Bali tour guide? How did you become a private guide?
I am actually a private tour driver. I have been in this business for almost 8 years now. I used to work as a waiter at a few reputable restaurants. I love the hospitality industry. I love serving people. Meeting and exceeding client’s expectation is my goal, that then becomes my passion. The thing is I don’t like working shifts, I prefer flexible working hours.
Most of the time, I worked on breakfast time. Few clients asked me where to go, what is nearby and what are the best things to do in Bali. Then some of them also asked me if I could join them on tour as a guide. I made extra money guiding (on my day off only). I kind of liked it, made good money, then decided to quit my job and become a private guide.
Now as a professional guide, I can work with my passion. Tell my clients to come to Bali to see and experience the unique culture. We don’t have the best beach, we may not have the best attraction, but we are unique as a package. Beautiful beach such as Padang Padang beach, USS Liberty Ship Wreck Dive at Tulamben, or white sand beach at Jasri for sun summer lover.
What do you recommend to see in Bali? What is your advice for people coming to Bali?
Bedugul for green cold top hill countryside along with the rice field, lake, and waterfall or our unique traditional dances and performances such as Cremation Ceremony, barong dance or spectacular Uluwatu Kecak Fire dance during the sunset.
What do you like best about life as a tour guide? What makes you special as a guide?
Since this is my passion, I love doing the guiding. I am fully enjoying it when clients listen to my explanation and dig more history like they are hungry for more. When I can give them the right and historical information about the attraction, that paid off. I feel so special.
Do you have anything unique to offer in Bali? Where can you take tourists where nobody else can?
As I mentioned earlier, Bali is unique. It is open to everyone. With the new technology, there are no places clients cannot go in Bali. But for sure, with me, that places and attraction will leave a special trail, memory in their minds. They will feel at home, different, special and unique home.
Do you keep in touch with any of your clients? Do you have any funny stories from your guiding work?
When they feel like a home, they will treat you like family. There is one funny story. His name is Mr. Kunal Dalvi. He comes from India. He came with his wife and son. We have the same religion, we believe in the same God. Most of the time we went to the temples. I didn’t explain him details since he knows all of the stories. The funny thing is, he explained a few great attraction in India that made me want to go. I felt like he was my guide then. He also told some unique culture from a few states in India that makes those people act differently, and also teach me how to handle them. I found this amazing and funny. “Chord bazar” and “Delhi” are the words when we hear it, we will laugh a lot.