From avoiding the tourist traps and the never-ending mixed bag of price tags to being monkey-savvy and respecting the ocean, there are many useful travel tips to ensure you get the best out of your holiday in Bali.
1. Tom, Travel Tom Tom
Meet Tom Grond, whose biggest passion is travelling. In 2008 he spent a whole year travelling around the world and visited 24 countries including Bali. If you’d like to discover more about Tom’s journey, follow him on Twitter and Instagram.
Travel Tip: Most people stick around the South of Bali, but up North is where you will find the real beauty of the island. The green hills, the endless rice fields, the deserted roads, the traditional villages, waterfalls and lakes are incredible to visit. Make sure to travel to this part of the island and not just go there on a day trip.
Bali is not much of a beach destination. The real Bali feeling is the fresh air, healthy food and lovely people. The spiritual vibe is intriguing and captivating.
In my blog, I always warn people of disappointment and tell them to stay away from the extremely crowded areas of Seminyak and Kuta, but go to Canggu instead. What I also always say to my followers is to take at least a day trip to Nusa Penida, the magical island just about 45 minutes by boat away from Bali. The spectacular nature of this still whole island is mind-blowing.
2. Charlie & Lauren, Wanderers & Warriors
Meet Charlie & Lauren, who both share a sense of humour, love of travel and passion for life to explore the world. If you’d like to discover more about Charlie & Lauren’s journey, follow them on Instagram and Facebook.
Travel Tip: There’s so many must do’s in Bali such as the monkey forest, the Nusa Islands and the Tegalalang Rice Terrace for sunrise, which is truly unforgettable!
The food! The local warungs serve up some of the best curries, Tempe dishes and vegetarian meals we’ve ever tasted. There are a lot of avocado cafes and smoothie bowl spots but please don’t forget to try the delicious Indonesian cuisine.
Visit it all! Rent a scooter or a driver and create an itinerary. From the beaches in the south to the waterfalls up north, Bali has it all. It’s an island with booming tourism for a reason. Its vast landscapes and viewpoints are not to be missed.
3. Anuradha Goyal, Inditales
Meet Anuradha, who has travelled to 15 countries. She began her blog in 2004 and shared amazing travel stories with her readers. If you’d like to discover more about Anuradha’s journey, follow her on Instagram and Facebook.
Travel Tip: Must-see the water temples of Bali and understand their philosophy of using water in a way that everyone gets their share without damaging the environment.
The cultural heart of Bali amazed me – it is such a lively culture with performances, markets, artisans and of course tourists from around the world.
Enjoy the beaches, but do check out the unique oldest living culture of Bali through its festivals.
4. Brett Morgan, Urban Adventures
Meet Brett, who’s lived in Bali for over 27 years. He runs tours and takes visitors to some of Bali’s incredible attractions as well as teaching you the ins and outs of the island. If you’d like to discover more about Brett’s journey, follow him on Instagram and Twitter.
Travel Tip: Find a place in the mountains preferably the world heritage listed area of Pakerisan. Pull up a chair, a stone a log and take in the scene of rice terraces cascading down gorges between coconut palms – it is this view is that is so often the Iconic view or image of Bali, and it still exists.
The diversity in such a small place – that you can go from Palm-fringed beaches to rainforests to volcanoes to an arid landscape all with 2 hours. Make sure you have at least 9-10 nights, get a local guide for at least one day and sit learn and watch this fascinating place.
5. Jayne Gorman, Our Travel Home
Travel Tip: My must-do thing in Bali is to make sure you leave the main resorts. I’m a big fan of the laid-back vibes in surfer hotspots like Canggu, Bingin and Balangan. In cultural hotspot Ubud you can find many beautiful boutique resorts hidden in the jungle-clad hills and rice terraces outside the city, and many of them offer a free shuttle into town multiple times a day, so you don’t have to worry about being too remote. Finally, if you want to experience a much more rustic and simpler side to Bali’s head to the cluster of Nusa Islands (Nusa Lembongan, Nusa Ceningan and Nusa Penida) situated off the south-east coast.
I’m fascinated by the Balinese religion and the richness it celebrates. From the incense-filled shrines on the street to the village parades, offerings at the temple and the unique Day of Silence they practise for Nyepi – every time I go to Bali, I’m surprised and delighted by a different aspect of Balinese culture.
I love researching Bali restaurants and cafes on Instagram as there are so many great places to experience and you can get a glimpse of the dishes from home. I recommend typing in hashtags for the areas you’re visiting and saving ideas to a Bali collection on your profile. You’ll never run out of inspiration this way!
6. Andrea, Adventurous Andrea
Travel Tip: I highly suggest visiting Amed. Rent a scooter and explore all of the beautiful beaches with barely anyone else in sight. Go snorkelling just off the beach at Lipah Bay, and admire the stunning views of Mt. Agung! You can also head a little inland to see beautiful rice terrace farms. This whole area is stunning.
7. DJ Yabis, Dream Euro Trip
Meet DJ Yabis, who has visited almost 150 cities since 2009. He is very passionate about travel and still wants to visit more countries, which means more travel adventures! If you’d like to discover more about DJ Yabis’s journey, follow him on Instagram and Facebook.
Travel Tip: I love travelling for food and Bali has a lot of amazing food, so I would say the must-do thing in Bali is to eat your way through all the dozens of mouth-watering food in Bali.
The Architecture! Seriously, I was so surprised at how beautiful Balinese architecture was, with its distinct flair for being in harmony with nature. It’s so poetic how they use nature as a focus in their design to create perfect spaces with a relaxed and tropical atmosphere.
Travel Tip: If you’ve seen pictures from Bali, you’ve probably seen a few of the stunning green rice paddies. They are some of the island’s most popular destinations for travellers, and they don’t disappoint! The traditional Tegalalang Rice Terraces are just about half an hour north of Ubud, in the Tegalalang Village, and visiting them are a must-do!
The biggest surprise about Bali was the beautiful blend of tradition and modernity. It wasn’t uncommon to walk a street where there were traditional temples next to trendy restaurants next to sprawling palaces. You never knew what was going to be around the corner!
Bali is one of the hottest tourist locations, and it can be crowded, especially at the most popular attractions. The best thing I did was to hire a private driver for the day who was able to beat the large tour buses with hordes of people. Plus, I was able to create my tailor-made itinerary and got to visit only the places that appealed to me.