Bali is a small island but there is a lot to do – a vacation to Bali doesn’t have to be just sea and sand unless you want it. Even you don’t need to go anywhere near the beach if sunbathing is not a pleasant idea. We have rice fields! Volcano! Elephant Park! Yoga backwards! If you visit Bali for the first time, here is a list of destinations that must be visited.
There’s still a lot that I haven’t seen on this island and hopefully I can add to this list as soon as I venture further I really want to explore further – I have never been to the west or north of the island (no more, to west rather than Amed) and I hope to persuade Made to take several trips this year because children are getting better at traveling by car.
Bali doesn’t seem to be on the main backpacker circuit but that doesn’t mean it’s impossible to travel here cheaply. Yes, there are many luxury villas and 5-star hotels if you have a few thousand dollars that you want to pass in a few days but it is also possible to stay and travel in a simpler way (maybe better?). After all you can stay in luxury hotels anywhere in the world, but there is only one Bali …
Cheap accommodation in Bali = homestay. This sounds more exotic than it really is – you are not surprised at a room in a family home like you are being exchanged (although if you are interested in Balinese customs and culture and are friendly, you will definitely be invited to be part of the family) Bali houses consist from several bungalows in a walled complex. As usual for large families to live together (boys never leave, wives join their sons’ families), usually each of these bungalows will be used for different families. But in the tourist area they built several additional bungalows for guests.
Like most parts of Asia, it’s easy to eat well here at cheap prices. Bali does not have variations from several other Asian dishes (like Thailand, sigh!) But at least it has a taste (unlike food in Vietnam, ahem). The trick to cheap eating is to stay out of tourist restaurants where prices are rapidly increasing. I once ordered small mineral water from a restaurant that was a little expensive in Ubud and the price of 30,000 Rp. For a luxury branded bottle than 1,500 rp would cost me a store for the most popular brand of mineral water here – Aqua. Fortunately, it’s easy to find many local warungs (restaurants) even in the most touristy areas. Just follow the locals and you will be fine. the most common choices are fried rice (fried rice) fried noodles (fried noodles) cap cay (sauteed vegetables / fried soup), fried chicken (fried chicken), padang (choose your own dish from the choices displayed in the window impressively – tower balanced dishes), meatballs (meatball soup), and mixed rice (rice with a choice of meat, vegetables, and delicious tofu / tempeh)
You can spend a lot of money on Bali to do a tour but it really isn’t necessary. If you live by the beach then you have lots of entertainment there. On land you have rice fields and forests, good to explore. There are free and inexpensive art galleries and museums everywhere. You have to visit several temples when you come here and they are all very cheap to visit as tourists.
Many people enter Kintamani on a day trip where they can see the volcano quickly, disturbed by brokers selling souvenirs, and expensive lunches. Worth seeing, but I would also highly recommend to go down to the foot of the volcano and explore around (preferably on motorbikes). there are some beautiful scenery and crazy volcano views.
I like Bedugul. It has beautiful temples and a large beautiful botanical garden that has almost no cost to enter. You can bring a picnic or buy strawberries from the market and have fun. I hope it’s just a little closer so we can take the kids to walk on the grass without a 90-minute car trip. Bedugul is also at high altitude and is much cooler than the main tourist areas. If you can catch it on a day when it’s not raining, it’s really very beautiful. Oh and you can rent a boat to get around the lake!
It doesn’t have the best beach, but I still love Padang Bai. There is a very cool atmosphere here, but many cafes and entertainment keep you busy for a few days if you want to stay.
Amed Beach Resort
We went to Amed on a weekend trip when I was several months pregnant with Maya. Made bored stiff but I like it here and I want to go back. There’s not much to do, right, but what else do you need when you have beautiful black sand, rolling seas and dramatic skies? There are also dolphins! It is the right place to relax, in my opinion.
Take a boat from Sanur and you can reach this cool little island in 90 minutes. Again there’s not much to do but enjoy the white sand beach, have dinner on the beach and play scooters around you. There are no cars here and only one small road that surrounds the island so it is the perfect place to learn to ride a motorcycle. I did it (manually no less!) And then never did it again (4 years and continues to grow). Bali traffic is scary!
If you only see one temple then you might make it the biggest and the best. Besakih or the ‘Mother Temple’ is impressive every time but more so if you can visit one of the big ceremonies that are rare. I have heard tourists experience a lot of problems when visiting here because they are forced to hire guides, so I say wear Balinese clothes and find Balinese families to take you 🙂
I really think it is one of the most impressive waterfalls in Bali and one visited by several tourists – definitely worth a visit!
Yes it’s really very beautiful! Other shooting diary locations. If you find yourself in Ubud, it’s definitely worth doing this road, especially around sunset. See before the developer breaks it!
White Water Rafting Activity Adventure
Join the most happy adventure with white water fating Bali, the most booked and popular activity in Bali. Check another post guide hoe to join white water rafting in Bali