Bali is constantly voted the best island in the world. It is the dream destination for many. There are the famous surfing beaches, temples, rice paddies, as well as volcanoes to adventure and explore. Naturally, Bali is blessed with a cultural and natural landscape to captivate the most jaded of travellers. If you are planning a holiday to Bali, here are a few things you may wish to know, especially for first timers.
There are great temples to visit at least once during your visits to Bali. Each temple is unique. Be it the cloudy peaks of Mount Agung, at the Besakih “mother temple”, the mysterious ruins of Goa Gajah, or the golden sunsets of Uluwatu and Tanah Lot. Proper attire like “sarong” is required. It is available for rental at all sites.
2) Nusa Dua
If you want peace and quiet and 5 star accommodation you will love Nusa Dua. It is predominantly luxury hotels and small shopping centre. The beaches are less crowded here. It would be a perfect place to stay for a “honeymoon” holiday. Resorts in Nusa Dua usually presents a collection of rooms, suites and villas. Restaurants, bar, lounge, spa, health and wellness facilities, even private pool provide further leisure and pampering.
Kuta is best known for its Indian Ocean surfing and party-centric atmosphere. Kuta’s long, consistent waves make it a popular surf spot. Besides, you can find handful of great malls lining the main streets, such as the grand Discovery Shopping Mall, Kuta Beach Walk, etc, which offer great shoppings, dining and entertainment spots. Once the sun sets you will find an exciting nightlife scene with its wealth of bars, clubs and sunset chill-out spots here too.
Virtually everybody comes to Bali to shop, and even if shopping was not the ultimate aim. You will still end up with fascinating and irresistible buys. Bali shopping introduces you to a treasure trove of fine art and handicrafts, antique furnitures, paintings, etc. Not to mention the endless surf wear stores such as Rip Curl, Quicksilver, etc can be found everywhere, especially at Kuta area.
There is much you can see and do in the cultural and artistic heartland of Ubud. This popular upland destination is also profuse with nature scenes, from green rice terraces and valleys serving as backdrop to many art galleries and age-old temples and palaces. Most highlight spots are also actually within easy walking distance in the town hub alone, allowing for a quick day trip if you’re really pushed for time.
6) Kopi Luwak
Right here in Bali, kopi luwak, the most expensive coffee in the world, is grown and processed. The beans used have travelled through civet, a cat like animal’s intestine and have fermented in its digestive tract, staying intact the whole day through-all to improve the flavour! The civets only eat the freshest coffee berries, and the process removes much of the coffee’s bitterness, leaving a smooth rich blend behind. A cup of kopi luwak can sell for over $25 in western countries but in Bali can be bought for a mere $3-5. Hence, it becomes a popular and must buy souvenir in Bali.
7) Sunset Dinner
There are several places or ways to enjoy the magical sunsets in Bali i.e. Jimbaran Bay, Tanah Lot, Sunset Dinner Cruise, etc. You may choose to sit at a table on the beach with your toes in the sand or have a seat on the roofed sea terrace overviewing Jimbaran Bay, colourful fishing boats in front. Or, you may watch the stunning sunset of Tanah Lot while sipping cold beverage, savouring delicious dishes and having nice conversation with friends or beloved one. Alternatively, spend a tropical evening on sunset dinner cruise. Watch the colours of the sky changes from just a hint of a colour for shades of deeper orange, purple and red while you cruise along the harbour sipping a drink on the open-air deck of the cruise. Either one is surely a perfect setting to create unforgettable moment of Sunset.
To complement the holiday experience in Bali, you would not want to miss out on its assortment of dishes. These include interesting and exotic selections such as “bebek” (dirty duck), the Balinese satay version known as “sate lilit”, the pork ribs from Naughty Nuri’s Warung and the island’s famed ‘babi guling’ whole spit-roast pig. All these are the must try food in Bali!
9) Dolphin Watching Tour
Lovina Beach is the famous tourist place in north part of Bali with the spectacular of Dolphin Watching Tour on the calm seawater. It makes it as the idea place to stay and use traditional outrigger boat to see Dolphin in the middle of the sea. Hundreds of dolphins can be seen in the morning time around 1km offshore.
10) Kecak Dance
“Chark-a, chark-a, chark-a, chark-a…” Almost hypnotic, trance-like, the thirty or so barechested Indonesian men sway with the rhythm. They’re sitting on the ground in a circle – and in the middle the drama is unfolding. Two young princes; a demon king; a damsel in distress; a mischievous monkey. They all play their parts in the ring of unceasing cantillation. The nightly performance is very popular here at Uluwatu. The performance is called a ‘Kecak dance’, an onomatopoeic title for the sound of the chant. It’s based on a traditional Balinese ritual i.e. the famous epic Hindu story of the Ramayana.
Bali volcano, also referred to as Kintamani volcano or Mount Batur as a whole, is a popular sightseeing destination in Bali’s central highlands. The magnificent views of the 13sqm Batur caldera lake serves as the main attraction, surrounded by the captivating Mount Batur range.