Top Things To Do in Bali
Travelling has provided me with countless escapes that only happens in movies. It gives me the rush, motivation and push that I need to go on with my life and not worry about the setbacks that I have experienced. Furthermore, it calms me mindfully. Seeing and meeting new places and people, tasting food that is both peculiar, delicious and new to my palette, and experiencing activities that I have deemed impossible for me to try has given me a new purpose, and that is to enjoy life. And one of my recent escapades is in a place where many have called paradise, and that’s a little Indonesian island called Bali.
Bali is known for its volcanic, forested mountain sceneries, stunning Hindu architecture, amazing coral reefs and iconic beaches that would make most people yearn for more than a week’s stay. Although Indonesia is a predominantly Muslim country, almost 80% of Bali residents or Balinese, practice Hinduism, thus explaining the beautiful temples and structures. And in my experience, though it was only a 5-day adventure, it was surreal and memorable. Bali opened my eyes to the world’s beauty, catching me off guard and swept me off my feet. To be honest, it was the best vacation ever.
The key to my unforgettable Bali experience was planning. Itineraries will play a key role in your vacation and will define whether or not you will be able to maximize every opportunity to explore and enjoy the place that you will go to. Researching destinations and activities are essential to your overall experience as well as the place where you will be staying (shoutout to Ubud Airbnb Homes) So if you intend to visit Bali soon, take a moment to read my 5-day experience and itinerary for this little paradise. The list of top things to do in Bali Indonesia mentioned below will definitely make your trip truly epic:
Day 1: A Memorable Visit to The Edge Bali Resort
The first place I wanted to sink my feet into was The Edge Bali Resort. It is a top luxury resort in Bali and by the looks of what its pictures had to offer, I had no trouble putting it on my first day. After arriving at Ngurah Rai Airport, I chartered a private car to take me to the famed resort. Choosing a morning arrival was the best thing I did because even though the Edge was just 30 minutes away, Bali traffic caused a bit of a delay. Upon arriving, I paid 50,000 IDR ($4 USD) for the admission and another 550,000 IDR (55 USD) to gain access to their VIP Lounge. Honestly, it was an expensive hotel resort to stay at but luckily they open it to the public at day time, so you don’t have to worry about staying at other accommodations. For me it was a great deal because the VIP admission was consumable, meaning you get to spend the amount that you paid for and will give you access to the best spot in the resort.
The scenery was already breathtaking because you could already see a full view of the Indian Ocean, but what’s more amazing was when you dive into their Infinity Pool with a clear glass bottom and see the bottom of the cliff where it is hanging. Talk about luxury at an affordable price! This is a place that is truly mesmerizing and captivating, and truly worth every penny spent. There are also nearby beaches and shopping centers that are really worth it to check out. Swimming is one of the top things to do in Bali with kids and this resort offers ideal settings to do it.
Things to bring:
- Swimming attire and a whole lot of conviction to relax
- Swimming (pool)
- Casual Drinking
- Food Munching! (my favorite)
- Spa Relaxing
- Sight Seeing
Day 2: Experience Religious and Serene Ambience at Uluwatu Temple
For my second day, I visited the famous Uluwatu Temple, a well – known historical and religious site in Bali. Just 11 minutes away from The Edge, the temple is built on a captivating cliff side that gives one of the best sceneries and picture-perfect moments in the world.
As a place for worship, visitors must wear Sarongs or shoulder covers in order to give respect to the temple’s holiness and rules. Monkeys are present in the temple and are believed to be its guardians. Be aware though, because these swift and agile animals can take your belongings in an instant if you are not alert and careful enough, resulting in a high-speed chase which I personally experienced, losing my sunglasses to these cute, furry creatures. A solemn and peaceful place, Uluwatu Temple calmed my soul and restarted my energy. Late in the afternoon, I went to take a look at another beautiful sunset in at Sunset Point Bar, which is just near the temple. This bar can offer you a place where you can have a drink and relax while watching the sunset sitting in a beanie bag! How relaxing can it get right? Then at 6:30 PM, I headed back to the temple to watch the Kecak Fire Dance, which is a wonderful show that is famous for its wonderful dance techniques and costumes. Tickets for the show are 150,000 IDR (10 USD) and are usually sold out by 5 pm. Luckily, I bought mine early in the morning!
Things to bring:
Note: Some extra breath (to avoid getting it taken away by the scenery), Suntan lotion, a good phone camera or DSLR, Bananas and Peanuts (bribe for the monkeys)
- Monkey Trailing/Chasing (meaning you get to spend time tracking down monkeys to their forest homes which are nearby the temple, and get to chase them if they take your belongings, LOL!)
- Meditation and Reflection inside the temple
- Lots of picture taking
- Sunset Watching
- Chilling at nearby beaches
- Kecak Fire Dance
Day 3: Unlimited Fun at Padang Padang Beach
For my third day, I chose to relax at a beach just near my last destination. This beach is famous for being one of the best sunset viewing spots in all of Bali and has attracted many tourists because of its beauty. Locals call it Padang Padang.
Padang Padang beach is an amazing spot to be in especially when you are a beach lover like me. Getting that natural tan while enjoying the sounds of the waves and sight of the ocean getting bluer by the mile is really an irreplaceable sight. Although it has already catered to many tourists, Padang Padang beach still gives you a sense of privacy since only a few people visit it at a time. Also, surfing is also a popular activity here and what’s awesome is that you can rent a surfboard for 100,000 IDR (6.67 USD) and try riding the waves. Never in my life have I thought about surfing, but being the adventurer that I am, I stepped up, went out the ocean, faced the beachfront, waited for a good wave, and rode like a pro… for 2 seconds! That was a lot shorter than expected but hey, it wasn’t bad for a first-timer. And lastly, they have these parties that they throw at night, which will make you appreciate the beach nightlife but sadly it was only thrown during weekends, (sigh) sad. Oh well, at least I taught that wave a lesson for 2 seconds, next time I’ll make it 3!
Things to bring:
Sun Tan Lotion, Guts to ride a surfboard, bikini/trunks, lots of will to wash away all your problems.
- Beach Tanning
- Sun Set Seeing
Day 4: Bali Tour is incomplete without a visit to Lempuyang Temple
For my fourth day, I went to Lempuyang Temple, another well-known religious tourist place in Bali. It’s about two and a half hours from my accommodation, that is why it is best to leave early morning or late dawn (around 5 am).
The Lempuyang Temple is considered to be one of the 6 holiest places in Bali and is perfect for sightseeing, pictures and meditation. Upon arriving, I was informed that this complex actually consisted of 7 temples, meaning there will be a lot of walking, and so, I did! Sites where amazing especially the famous Bali gateway to heaven where you can catch a perfect scene of a mountain between the archways. Though it is considered a tourist spot, the temple has rules like no kissing, no showing off shoulders and no drone photography. For 30,000 IDR (2 USD) you can dive into a pool of rich cultural and religious heritage and get lost in the arms of father time. This was the time that I was beginning to realize that this Indonesian adventure was one to really remember.
Things to bring:
- Sun Tan Lotion, a nice phone camera or DSLR (if you’re a photo enthusiast), water (if you get thirsty easily from walking) and shoulder covers
- Meditation and Reflection
- Lots and lots of walking while appreciating various unique, beautiful and historical structures
Day 5: Tegallalang Rice Terrace in Ubud
And for my final day, I went to perhaps one of the most beautifully crafted man-made sceneries in the world, the Tegallalang Rice Terraces in Ubud. Again, it is best to leave early morning as it is a 2-hour ride from the Lempuyang Temple. This place is part of the Bali UNESCO World Heritage site and is renowned for its exemplary beauty and breathtaking views of a stairway to heaven. When I got there, I quickly took my phone out of pocket went crazy with the capture button. It is truly a one of kind sight and gives you that vibe that heaven just became a little closer, just within your reach. I personally think that in order to get this kind of structural outcome, people responsible really put their blood and sweat in sculpting the mountain, making it possible to plant rice and feed their families. Imagine the hours, days, and months they put into this. I’ll my bottom dollar that nothing can replace the moment that they finished it.
Adventure is considered as one of the top things to do in Ubud Bali and you can experience it all here. Climbing the stairways was no easy feat for me. Although they do have a path for reaching the top, it was still a big challenge since I wasn’t fond of conquering heights. But all of it was replaced with awe and appreciation once I reached the top. But the best part is that they had a zipline! Now, how cool is that! Without having second thoughts, I conquered my fears of trying the unusual and just sped through the air (in the zipline of course!). and the best thing about the zipline was I saw the rice terraces from a bird’s eye view. Nothing can get better than that. It was like being a drone! Talk about first-hand footage!
Things to bring:
Water (obviously for climbing), an extra shirt, your indispensable phone camera or DSLR (which is much better by the way) and a bucket full of screams (for the zipline)
- Sight Seeing
Visiting Bali was one of the best decisions in my life. There are still a lot of places that I haven’t visited in Bali, but I do recommend avoiding Kuta Beach because of its polluted and waterfall areas during the rainy seasons as per the advisory of my travel guide because only mud can be seen falling down the waterfalls. There are so many things to do in Kuta Bali that you can experience at the beach to make your journey truly memorable.
There were no ill feelings or any regret with the money spent, and quite frankly, even if it did cost me a little more than what I had expected to spend, it doesn’t matter! I will be happy to come back next year and explore it even further.
If you are looking for the best places to visit in Bali then don’t forget to check out our other travel guides.
Sarah Grace Del Rosario is a blogger from MoonFish, when not working, she loves to travel, paint, and do crafting.