I visited Bali in January 2016 with my husband. It was a very memorable and mesmerizing experience. Being a wet season we missed out on Mount Batur – an active volcano in the heart of Bali. But all the places that we did get to visit were a treat to the eyes.
When to visit and for how long?
If I have to describe Bali in one word it would be “Serene”. It is such a calming experience, you are surely going to leave relaxed and at peace. There is plenty to see and plenty to do. I was there for 7 nights & 8 days. Exploring around you may find many reviews and comments saying that 5 days would be enough, but trust me even 7 days are going to seem less to explore this beautiful island. I would suggest 7-8 days for the visit. This would give you a nice mix of sightseeing, activities, and de-stressing at a resort.
The best time to visit Bali is in the dry season that is March-October, the peak time being July-August. It is best to avoid the peak season as there would be a heavy crowd and everything would be expensive. Go for Feb-April to get cheaper deals.
Must visit places
My trip was laced with some gorgeous locations that would stay with me for a long time. I managed to touch three main areas in Bali.
One of the first tourist attractions in Bali, this is majorly a town with commercial hubs and beaches. Places not to be missed here are –
1. Potato Beach Head Club – Head out to this gem of a place during mid-afternoon. It has an infinity swimming pool right next to the private beach with open areas to just laze around and enjoy the music and food.
Getting a place to sit is really hard here so come well in advance and prepare to spend 3-4 hours here. Do remember to take your swimwear along.
2. Ulluwatu Temple – This is right on the southern tip of Bali. Witness the crashing waves of the Indian Ocean along the walls rocks of the temple here, you may even get soaked completely by them once you reach the depths of the temple.
Do not miss the Kecak dance form here. It’s a rendition of the Ramayana – a Hindu mythology epic. Men and boys chant and sing together, the only music to
accompany the dance re-enactment. Quite an enjoyable experience 🙂
3. Tanah Lot – the Sunset Temple – Rock formations over the sea with a temple atop. A must see for the photography enthusiasts. This place is famous as the Sunset Temple because of the splendid visuals it offers during the evening. One of the most photographed places in Bali.
4. Legion Street – Venture here to witness the nightlife in the many clubs and restaurants open here. You may also find a few sports bars here with many a sweet deal. Beware of the street vendors though.
This is a beautiful district surrounded by a dense forest and rice paddies. It underlines the spirit of Bali – serene, artful, beautiful. You will find most of the resorts here in all budget ranges. It’s a place for relaxation, taking in and enjoying the silence and serenity around you. You will also find great works on the streets and shops of artisans. Things to do in Ubud –
1. Celuk Village – Home of local silversmiths and goldsmiths. You will get to see a wide variety of gold and silver crafts here.
2. Batuan Village – Famous for its artwork and unique techniques of painting (Batuan Painting), this village is a major painting center and contains a number of art galleries and cooperative art societies.
3. Goa Gajah (Elephant Caves) – This place is a visual delight. Its main attractions are the relic-filled walls and the central intricately carved cave.
A flight of steps takes you down to the main grounds. There are a few more exploration paths that lead you to small water springs and ponds, passing the beautifully preserved flora.
Since it is a temple, shorts and revealing clothes are not allowed. But don’t worry if you are not in the right attire because you would be provided with a wrap that you can wear with ease, like the one in the above picture. Yes, it’s not a skirt 😉
An hour is the most that you would be spending here.
Also linking the above picture for this wonderful Daily Post prompt: Out of this World!
This is known as the lake district of Bali. It is situated at a high altitude with lakes nestled amongst mountains, it makes for one of the most beautiful places in Bali. Visit the Danau Beratan lake here. It’s the more beautiful of the two lakes in this area.
There’re long grounds under a clear sky with no commercial buildings to hamper the view. Lie down on the grounds and take in the beauty around you. You can also hire a boat to wander in the lake or take a ride on the speed boat if you wish. There’s another small temple inside the area.
Ours was not an adventure trip, rather a laid back and relaxed itinerary. If thrill and adventure are what you seek, then there are many water activities available in the Northern Bali, along with dolphin sighting etc.
Where to stay?
We stayed at two accommodations. In Kuta, we stayed in the Sheraton Bali Kuta Resort. Would recommend it for its luxurious setting, lovely pool area, a king’s spread in breakfast and lavish rooms. They also have an in-house bar and shopping complex right next to the entrance. The hotel is right in front of Kuta beach and in walking distance from Kuta Square.
In Ubud, we chose a villa in Ubud Village & Resort and Spa. It was a delight to stay there, the breakfast was very delicious and very different. They also served an afternoon tea with light snacks. Other facilities included a pool table as well as table tennis.
A resort villa is one thing that is not to be missed in Bali. There are numerous options available for all sorts of budget ranges. Choose the one that best suits your needs.
- Balinese Coffee or Kopi
- Balinese Massage or Spa
- Mi Goreng – Fried noodles with Prawn crackers!!