In October my Instagram was full of pictures from Bali. I have never been able to share so many wonderful pictures of a destination before. And today I want to take you with my Bali Travel Guide behind the scenes and tell you more about our trip. Bali was the destination for me, which was at the top of my Travelbucketlist. On the one hand, since I’ve never been to Asia and on the other hand because of the many wonderful pictures I saw on Instagram. The promised jungle feeling I simply could not resist and in my friend I have indeed found a partner in crime for my travels. So let’s dive into my Bali adventure.
The journey to Bali took me over Doha, after a 15 hour flight we arrived at the airport in Denpansar. The first evening after the long journey we spent in the hotel. Actually, there are no direct flights from Switzerland, so you can fly via Doha (Qatar) or Singapore. If you have enough time, maybe you can plan a stopover right away?
After a short visit to the beach on day 2 it was time to move into a very special place. In Selat is the Hideout Bali located. Hideout Bali offers a variety of beautiful and unique bamboo houses as accommodation. The absolutely perfect photo spot. At the same time, you can really treat yourself with a break from the everyday life and hectic. Therefore, we decided to spend the whole day and evening in the hideout and enjoy. Since the Hideout is quite a bit out of the way it is worth – in my opinion – also to enjoy a delicious dinner there. A specialty they offer is the palm wine, which unfortunately wasn’t our taste ^^ But the food was excellent and the feeling simply indescribable. Therefore I let the pictures speak now.
The next morning we were awakened by the sunrise. For breakfast we picked the traditional pancakes with an iced latte with coconut milk.
Of course, we do not want to miss the beautiful water palaces in the region and we’re back on the road to discover them. At the top of my list of attractions was the water palace Tirta Gangga in Karangasem. Important Pro Tip: Buy fish food, in the pictures you can see why.
Also very impressive, especially because of its size, is the Taman Ujung Water Palace in Karangasem. The view over the huge palace is really breathtaking. The two water palaces each cost admission, but this is definitely worth it. If you like it a little quieter, I can really recommend the Taman Ujung Water Palace, because of the many Instagram photos of the Tirta Gangga Water Palace is really very well visited.
Ubud is a popular city of Bali, which has some attractions to offer. We booked for two days a villa with pool and great view of a paddy field. You can easily book such villas via Airb’n’b. Since we booked relatively shortly before our stay, of course, the most popular villas were already booked out. Nevertheless, we have found a great villa to stay at. With my link you’ll get 15% discount on your first booking at Airbnb.
On our fourth day we spend the morning by the pool. I mean – when do you have a villa with infinity pool and fantastic views available for your own? During our trip, we have always hired guides and drivers as it is the easiest way to get around. Our driver took us to Aloha Swing, which is a park with many different swings, nests and Co. with a great view nevermind. In addition to typical swings, it also has a decorated bed on offer. In retrospect, I can not recommend you to go to Aloha Swing, because such swings are synonymous elsewhere available and this much cheaper and without all the safety devices. After 1 -2 hours we had enough of it anyway.
Tegalalang Rice Fields
The Tegalalang rice fields should not be missed during a visit to Ubud. There you will find e.g. also great swings and Co. and this as stated before much cheaper then at Aloha Swing. If you like us strolling through the rice fields, you should pay a donation as a toll, which are in each case very small amounts. We were there in the late afternoon, but still had enough time to explore the rice fields and take some pretty pictures.
Ubud offers a lot of different attractions for example the famous Monkey Forest and some beautiful temples, but we decided to take a trip to a waterfall nearby Ubud. I decided to go for the Tibumana waterfall, because this smaller waterfall is not as crowded as the larger waterfalls around Ubud. After a short drive and 10 minutes walk, I had reached my bathing place for today. Conveniently, there are lockers for cellphone and Co. safe to stow.
On day six we booked a private tour to the island of Nusa Penida. After breakfast at our hotel in Sanur, our chauffeur took us to the port of Sanur. With one of the numerous speedboats there you’ll reach Nusa Penida within a 30-40 minutes drive. The small island of Nusa Penida has gained massive popularity, especially through Instagram, and is therefore pretty crowded. However, to drive around by car in Nusa Penida is not for the faint of heart (and stomachs), because of the bumpy roads and the busy traffic.
We visited various viewpoints such as Broken Beach, Angel’s Billabong, Kelingking Beach (the kind of T-Rex looking coast) and enjoyed a short stay at Diamond Beach. At 17 o’clock the last speed boats are going back to Sanur, so the tour was a bit stressful overall.
Anyone who travels to Bali must have heard of the infamous Bali Belly. But that does not have to be. I recommend you to refrain from street food. Guides and drivers often take you to the nearest tourist restaurant and most of the tourist attractions are located near the sights. The food there is also delicious but of course adapted to the guests. Basically, you should prefer local and traditional food before pizza, steak and Co. A dish that is always and everywhere offered and you should definitely taste is Nasi Goreng or Mie Goreng. In Ubud I can recommend you the restaurant Uname, there you can find the most delicious organic food in the city. The food is simply excellent.
Hotels in Bali
If you want to spend some relaxed days in the hotel like us, you will definitely find a nice hotel at your destination. Overall, we were in two hotels and both times we’ve bee satisfied. In contrast to Europe, breakfast in Bali is usually a la carte and not in the form of a buffet. The rooms in both hotels in Sanur were very clean and spacious. We had opted for a four and a five star hotel. But of course there are cheaper options and if you are more of a backpacker then you should not have a problem finding cheap accommodations.
Tips for your trip to Bali
Bali is located in Indonesia and it’s a tropical island. Accordingly, you should increase your travel pharmacy before traveling. Very important are also of course the right sunscreen and a good mosquito repellent spray.
I recommend you for longer distances to hire a private driver. Usually your Airb’n’b accommodations or hotels can recommend drivers and guides they know. For shorter distances, download the Bluebird Taxi App. Many tourists go by scooter or motorcycle, but the traffic conditions are rather chaotic and there are often accidents with tourists. Even if the locals drive as a whole family to third on a scooter, you should think carefully whether you would like to take this risk. The ride with the private driver costs for a depending on the route on the day about 30.00 – 50.00 Swiss francs and you do not have to deal with Navi and Co. either.
The majority of the population in Bali are Hindus. Every day, the locals prepare offerings for their gods, which are usually decorated with flowers, food and incense sticks. The inhabitants make these offerings, e.g. on the street in front of their shop or in our jungle villa there was a statue with offerings too. Therefore, especially in the city, make sure that you do not step on the offerings.
Bali was definitely worth a visit. A very diverse holiday destination, multifaceted and unique, for a discovery vacation just the right place to go.