Bali needs almost no introduction. Eat Pray Love did that for the island. Nevertheless, no matter the mounting crowds, there’s always an oasis in one corner of the island to discover.
Beaches, surf breaks, nasi padang, temples, rice fields, motorcycles, cafes, roadside stalls, world class restaurants and bars - all in one maze. Here’s our mini guide based on our team’s visits to the island on chill time as well as during our #seasonalindustry campaign last year.
01. To Market, to market
Ubud Market is located at the junction of Jalan Monkey Forest and Jalan Raya. Local people gather early in the morning at the market to buy their daily groceries, offerings, cakes and clothes.
Later in the day, the market transforms itself into a souvenir market where you can find all things you can imagine: paintings, sculptures, masks, bags, etc.
02. Temple Run
Uluwatu lies at the southern tip of Bali which offers a wonderful spot to watch the breathtaking sunset. The Uluwatu temples are one of the nine (9) key temples of Bali. It is perched on a steep cliff 70 metres above the roaring waves. As you need to come properly dressed to enter the temples, they rent out sashes and sarongs at the entrance.
03. Kecak Dance
While you’re already at the Uluwatu temples, it’s best to take the opportunity to witness a Balinese interpretation of the story of Ramayana, performed to the sound of over 50 male voices chanting. The famous Kecak dance starts as the sun begins to set, continuing after dark when torches are the only light you will see.
04. Diving or Snorkeling in Tulamben
Diving and/or snorkeling should definitely be in your itinerary when visiting Bali. It is as welcoming and beautiful under the waters of Bali like it is on land. Located in one of the world’s richest marine zone, Bali contains diverse underwater ecosystem with diving to suit all abilities and interests.
TIP: Rated 5 stars on TripAdvisor, we trust Atlantis International Bali. They are one of the best dive schools in town to do your Introduction Dive or Open Water Course with. Their friendly yet professional crew, keeps you safe and at ease in the ocean. Look for Toto :-)
05. You can’t stop the waves, but you can learn to…SURF
Echo Beach is a popular destination for locals and foreign surfers. It’s the best spot for beginners, apart from Kuta. Here you find a couple of famous and infamous surf breaks, which are considered to be one of the most consistent surf spots in Bali. Its location is very strategic that close with other famous surfing points such as Berawa Beach and Batu Bolong Beach. Surfing instructors and board rentals are on standby and available at your disposal. Just remember to ask nicely and be respectful of the locals.
06. Fresh catch of the day: Sardine
If you’re all for fresh seafood, Sardine is definitely the place to be, with the menu changing daily depending on the catch. Enjoy your sumptuous meal and drink in the view of the stunning setting amid a rice field, lily ponds, and bamboo borders at the outdoor dining area. Sardine has a serenity about it that’s hard to put to words.
For another place that serves up fresh food with an international twist, check out Kilo, a cool but casual eatery perfect for groups with small plates to share.
07. Cuppa Joe: Crate Cafe
A new kid on the block called Crate Cafe has been getting a lot of buzz from coffee and art lovers alike. It’s a go-to place to pick up your coffee before you start your day. The place is decorated with hand-painted murals and walls full of scribbles and doodles. The place is almost always full, but it’s definitely worth lining up for. Everything from the coffee to salads and cakes are yummy.
08. Get some shut eye: Komea Villa
Picking the best spot for your accommodation can be oftentimes tasking, especially when you start looking in a particular neighbourhood and factoring in accessibility, price, etc. With so many incredible villas and resorts scattered throughout the island, one of our favorites is Komea Villa in Canggu. The Villa features traditional Balinese style rooms, your own pool, and sun loungers set out on a private area shrouded in beautiful rice paddies with no hassle from vendors or noisy vehicles.
A few things that we never travel with out are Booboo Balm, it’s an all around balm we use for anything like moisturizing your lips, soothes nasty mosquito bites, and cleans wounds. We also pack a scarf with us to keep us warm during flights which also doubles as a sarong/wrap as we’re strolling on the beach. On our downtime while lounging on the sunbed by the pool, we loved The Lost Guides - Bali to discover other places to eat, shop and hangout. The heat can be unbearable sometimes on the island so we make sure to pack lightweight, breezy clothing like the Sideswept Dhoti + Mobi Indigo. Lastly, don’t forget to bring sunblock. Obviously.