Known as the Island Of The Gods, you’ll understand the name better once you touch down. Rich in history and culture, smiling faces and incredible landscapes, it comes as no surprise that Bali is the most popular destination in Indonesia. Here’s a list we’ve put together of what we found are the 10 top attractions in Bali.
Close to the international airport, Kuta is a feast for the sensations. Maybe not somewhere you’d want to spend a lot of time as it’s intense, commercialized and full of tourists, Kuta is, however a good way to ease yourself into Indonesia without plopping yourself right into the middle of the jungle. With beautiful beaches, heady nightlife and all the amenities, Kuta is the perfect getting in and out point.
Although only 20 miles north of Kuta, it will take at least an hour to get there by car. However, Ubud is surrounded by lush, green rice paddies, historic temples and animal reserves. The city itself, actually a series of villages, is home to a number of cultural presentations including traditional Balinese dancing, Gamelan music and shadow puppet plays. Made even more famous by the movie “Eat, Pray, Love,” Ubud also offers meditation and yoga retreats, cooking classes and word class spas.
Ubud Monkey Forest
While in Ubud take the time out to visit this nature reserve that’s full of long tailed macaques. Don’t plan on feeding them, however, as they can become quite aggressive around food. Still, the jungle is a great place to relax.
Nusa Dua Beach
Nusa Dua is the higher end of Bali with five star resorts and all inclusive hotels but still has a good selection of Bali deals. We found Nusa Dua to be ideal for a couples getaway, even if only for part of your Balinese vacation. Great dining, world class spas and top rate entertainment will keep you satiated.
Kintamani is in the northeast and boasts the active volcano, Mount Batur, and its crater dwelling sister, Lake Batur. The hike up Mount Batur is an easy 2 hours and affords amazing views, especially at sunrise. Nearby is Pura Ulun Danau Batur, one of the area’s most important temples which houses a virgin priestess and her two dozen servant priests.
A small island off the coast, Nusa Lembongan offers white sand beaches, excellent surf breaks and crystal clear waters for snorkelling and diving. Cliffs, viewpoints and spectacular rock formations such as Angel’s Billabong, The Devil’s Tear and Pashi Uug are great for those seeking a splendid view.
Dolphin tours abound on Bali. Some of the most popular boat tours travel from Lovina beach in the north. Plan on getting up before sunrise as the dolphins are more reliably active when the sun comes up. Bali is probably one of the cheapest places in the world to go on a dolphin tour.
Lush, green and iconic, rice paddies seem to be featured on the cover of every guidebook about Indonesia. You won’t find them in Kuta, but if you venture out of the main tourist areas, such as the outskirts of Ubud, you’ll be able to walk along these amazing structures.
Known as Pura Luhur in the local language, this 11th century sea temple is built on the edge of a 200 foot cliff. Because of its location on the Bukit Peninsula, this temple is a great place to experience the sunset.
Pura Tanah Lot
Another sea temple, Pura Tanah Lot is built on a wild rocky outcropping. Accessible by foot only during low tide, the 16th century temple has been battered by the ocean so much that restoration efforts have been mounted to preserve its antiquity.