25 Amazing Things to Do in Bali

Bali is crazy, and Bali is magical. An ideal tourist spot, Bali has all what it takes to be a dream destination. A small location of diverse geography, a small population of vibrant culture and a beautiful, scenic place of warm and friendly people, Bali has always remained in the top rungs of best destinations of South East Asia. Rightly called as a tropical paradise, Bali has charming locations, exotic temples, beautiful beaches and some of the most incredible food and cuisines. Can anyone ask for more? Probably if you are still scratching your head as to what you can expect from such an incredible locale, here is our list of 25 amazing things to do in Bali. Tighten your belt and get ready for an exotic joyride to some of the most remarkable and indelible holidays of your lifetime. Brace up, for Bali is waiting for you.

Visit the Butterfly Park

Butterfly Park in Bali

Play with colorful butterflies at this park.

The butterfly park or the Taman Kupu Kupu is essentially an insect conservation park, spread in a vast expanse of 3,000 square kilometers and located in the village of Wanasari, about 30 km north-west of Denpaser. The largest of its kind facility located in Asia, the park facilitates a wonderful educational and exploratory tour for children and adults where they can witness different stage of the lifecycle of different insects.

The park has a tremendous variety of butterflies, of different colors and patterns. Moreover, one can also find other exotic varieties of other insects such as Rhinoceros beetle, leaf insects, common birdwing, Bali Peacock, paradise birdwing, hairy spiders and scorpions etc. The park was opened in 1993, after International Butterfly Conference resolved to protect and preserve the rich insect diversity of Indonesia and promote environmental awareness and consciousness amongst children. It is a frequently visited destination for tourists travelling towards northern regions through Tabanan.

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Take a Stroll through the Rice Fields

rice-feild

Bali has mesmerizing paddies which look exceedingly rich and beautiful, in all their cinemascope glory. Amongst them, Jatiluwih and Tegalalang are especially alluring. These two are located in the same area and one can have easy access to them if one is living in Ubud. The location offers peace and serenity to visitors whose eyes meet greenery and pristine landscapes wherever they are cast. The farmers practice stepped cultivation, a tradition which has been handed down to them since long past.

This incredible landscape is accompanied by a small village called Pakudui where one will find simple hearted villagers, practicing a charming form of ornamental woodwork as well numerous other carvings. Most of the villagers are skilled craftsmen who practice making different kinds of sculptures through a technique bequeathed to them through generations. Along with having beautiful pictures, tourists can shop for charming little souvenirs which they can purchase walking down the village roads.

Explore the Temples

Taman Ayun Temple in Bali

Taman Ayun: A seventeenth century built temple.

Bali is pervaded with temples all around and many of them are simply amazing. Some of these like The Tanah Lot, Ulun Danu and Taman Ayaun were built in the 17th century (other temples are even older) and look simply majestic with fine carvings and exquisite architecture.

There are around 20,000 temples across the island and even though it is impossible to tour them all, many of these can be covered, especially those which are located closer to each other. The Pura (meaning temple in Balinese) Besakih temple is the most revered temple in Bali and known as the “The Mother Temple”. Other important temples which the tourists can find incredible are Tirta Empul, Pura Luhur Lempuyang, Goa Gajah, Pura Luhur Uluwatu etc.

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Do a Yoga Retreat

25 Amazing Things to Do in Bali

Azadia Yoga Shala: A Perfect Yoga Retreat

Bali has some of the best opportunities to practice yoga in the midst of natural and exotic surroundings. The yoga retreats in Bali are some of the most famous and incredible facilities that can help you find peace, calmness and a feeling of physical and mental well-being. Whether you are an experienced yoga practitioner or a just a novice, the adventure at these retreats is one the best in the world. Offering a unique spiritually uplifting atmosphere, with soothing sounds, natural settings and state of the art elegant facilities, these retreats are some of the best in the world to help you revitalize and rejuvenate and make a refreshing vacation of your stay in Bali.

Go Dolphin-Watching: Lovina Resort

Dolphin show in bali

Play with Dolphins at Lovina resort.

An awesomely exotic destination, located on the shore and flanked on either side by lovely Bedgul Mountain and Bali Sea, Lovina Resort is a wonderful stopover to feel and experience the true essence of Balinese hospitality and exotic ambience. Here at the resort, one can enjoy numerous attractions such as hot-springs and diving, Dolphin watching, snorkeling in the waters of Menjagan Island, trekking to waterfalls as well as witnessing the wonderfully preserved coral reefs.

Lovina Resort was awarded with a certificate of excellence by Tripadvisor in 2014. For furnishing experience to visitors, par excellence, luxurious and comfortable accommodation is provided to the guests in the shape of different suites and villas with most comfortable atmosphere and ambience, while dining is simply exquisite with different restaurants, bars and other dining space, where most delectable dishes, incorporating both local and international flavors are presented to the guests.

Walk through Monkey Forest

monkey forest in bali

This is essentially an adventurous trek through an astonishing forest stretch that is famous for its notorious monkeys, but at the same time also an important sacred destination. Located in Ubud, the forest is visited by hundreds of tourists everyday even when there have been incidents of being attacked, bit or mugged by these monkeys.

However, people consider this forest area as holy and it typically demonstrates the harmonious existence of man with nature. Moreover, the area is an important location for carrying out research and conservation programs as well. The forest also hosts three temples, however access to these is forbidden to tourists except to those who want to come and pray, properly dressed in Balinese praying attire.

Climb Mount Batur at Sunrise

Mount Batur in bali

Climb Mount Batur to experience beautiful sunrise.

Mount Batur is Bali’s most active volcano and catching the sight of sunrise from the summit of this mountain can be one of the most magical experiences of your life. Treks to the summit are usually organized for the tourists and they essentially begins in the night to reach the top, just in time for the sunrise.

The view, from above the clouds is simply majestic and cannot be afforded to be missed. Most of the local tour operators combine trek to Mount Batur with visits to the temples and hot springs. However, climb up the summit of this astonishing mountain remains high on the cards for travelers visiting Bali.

See a Kecak Trance Ceremony

25 Amazing Things to Do in Bali

Be a part of the cultural Kekak Trance Dance.

Balinese culture is rich with exotic tradition and folklore and chances are high that during your travels, you may come across few such cultural performances, showcasing the exquisite heritage and incorporating masks, mythical storytelling and cultural dance. Of these performances, Kecak Trance Dance is particularly alluring due to its unique and astonishing rituals.

Also called the Ramayana Monkey Chant, the dance is performed by at least 150 artists wearing a special kind of dress and chanting “cak” and depicting battle scenes from Ramayana. It appears as a kind of trance generating exorcism dance and seems particularly mysterious and bewildering but definitely deserves to be witnessed at least once by tourists.

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Aah, A Spa

Spa in bali

Balinese masseurs are widely acclaimed to be the best in the world and if you didn’t experience the amazing services that some of these spas offer then you are definitely missing a lot. The range of massage options in Bali seems infinite. From blissful royal experience in some of the exotic spas to quick, affordable treatments to simply uplift your mood and relieve your stress, there are numerous, amazing opportunities to pamper your senses.

The range of options incorporates acupressure to Ayurveda and many other aromatic and oil treatments which are designed to treat and indulge the visitor in supreme luxury and exotic experience. Do visit one of these facilities to experience the incredible services first hand.

Watch the Sunset at Uluwatu Sea Temple

Uluwatu Sea Temple in bali

Located atop 70 meters high cliff is the astonishing view of sunset from the horizon of the vast expanse of the Indian Ocean. The Uluwatu Sea temple is one of the best such structure which a visitor can’t afford to miss. The temple is a building of megalithic origins and various archeological evidences scattered around prove this fact. Nevertheless, the temple has an incredible Balinese architecture and is dispersed with verdant greenery all around. A small population of monkeys dwell here that the locals believe, guard the temple.

With its religious significance notwithstanding, the temple is mainly visited for the mesmerizingly picturesque views that surround it as well as an almost heavenly view of the sunset that is visible from here. In fact it is one of the most important sunset points in Bali. The temple is accessed through the main bypass road to Nusa Dua which is followed with almost an ascending road reaching up to Uluwatu.

River Rafting

rafting-bali

While in Bali, there is an amazing chance to enjoy the thrilling river rafting in the midst of wide, raw jungles and from high gorges and picturesque rice fields. Most of these trips, organized by local operators, lasts for 3-4 hours with an option of shower and lunch included. Feel the true adrenaline rush with an opportunity to raft in Melangit, Telaga Waja and Ayubg rivers. The rides are usually safe with skilled rowers to accompany. Hence, the adventure can be enjoyed with the family as well.

Visit the Turtle Breeding Sanctuary

25 Amazing Things to Do in Bali

With the support from WWF, the turtle breeding sanctuary in Bali is a must visit place. The sanctuary also has a hatchery and a mix of little pools and bathtubs that are filled with baby turtles. These turtles are nurtured and bred until they are about 8 months old and then they are released. The option of snorkeling at the site ensures mesmerizing views of these lovely creatures.

The turtle sanctuary was essentially established a conservation project to increase turtle population as well as protect the injured turtles that the fishermen bring. Other sections of the sanctuary has numerous open air tanks, containing hundreds of turtles which the children, especially school groups enjoy. A small sandpit, encircled in a fence, contain the eggs waiting to be hatched. Overtime, this turtle breeding sanctuary has gained increasing prominence and has become an important tourist spot and has found a place in the itinerary of many travelers, touring to Bali.

Snorkel, Dive or Swim

snorkeling water sports in bali

Bali may not have absolutely clean, white sand beaches and aquamarine waters, but definitely the shores of Bali are rich in amazing natural heritage like corals, lava or big rocks, covered with large sweeps of black or white sand and an ambience for long, lazy evenings. Even when the beaches may not be much suitable for swimming due to large waves, the waters of Balinese beaches are great for adventure water sports like surfing and snorkeling. For deep sea diving, Nusa Lembongan, Amed and Pemuteran beach rule the roost. No matter if you are a swimmer or not or if you are with family or not, the beaches at Bali are surely going to find a place in your heart with its beautiful and exciting atmosphere.

Party like never before: Get your alcohol fix at these unique bars

bar in bali

It is only in Bali that one can have some of the most unique ways to enjoy the sip of alcohol. Experience the delight of your drink on a floating platform or get tipsy while swaying on a bamboo swing. These bars transport you to a different world altogether with exotic settings and out of the box environment and excellent ambience.

Some bars also features resident and international DJ’s as well as complimentary pool facility for the visitors while others are especially alluring due to their diverse exclusive features like distinctive architecture, exquisite cuisines, fascinating locations, peculiar themes and incredible services. These amazing bars are an important highlight of Bali and great places to relax and have fun and enjoy the bliss environment of this fabulous island.

Attend a Buffalo Race in Negara

25 Amazing Things to Do in Bali

Apart from beaches, one more entertainment option in Bali.

This is a kind of unique grand prix, not of cars but astonishingly that of buffaloes. This traditional race, organized since generations is one of the prime attractions in Bali. Initially started just as a kind of diverting sport for the farmers, the race soon acquired a cult status, generating a lot of excitement with the locals. With its popularity and the frenzy that it generates, professional jockeys, people who manage the bulls, have entered the arena.

During big events, like the famous Governor’s race, as many as 300 pairs of bulls can participate. The atmosphere gets absolutely electric with lots of enthusiasm which gets even more hysterical with the jegog player adding their bit to the commotion. During the Independence Day of Indonesia, these races get particularly attractive with the bulls bedecked with colorful insignia and brought out in fine decorations. Nowadays, a lot of international tourists can be seen cheering the participants at the venue.

Safari with a Difference – Bali Marine and Safari Park

Safari Park in bali

Your guaranteed bet of fun and adventure, the Bali Marine and Safari Park is cool wonderland of animals, fishes, cultural shows, treks, safaris and lots of adventure and enjoyment. There is a lot to do and relish in the park. The area incorporates a recreational area, a waterpark, a fun zone, the Bali Theater, restaurants, bungalows and cottages.

The zoo in the park organize bus tours for visitors to see animals that have been brought here from three regions, viz. Indonesia, India and Africa. Over 600 species of wild animals have their home in the park. The park facilitates accommodation for the guests which lets you to literally live with animals.

Out of This World: Stay at a Unique Hotel

hotels-bali

Due to its numerous exotic locations, Bali has a huge traffic of tourists coming to enjoy its locales every year. To cater to this increasing number of travelers, the site offers accommodation of just about any type. All kinds of hotels, from cheap budget hotels to exquisite resorts to villas with a variety of themes are offered to the guests of every taste and preference. Then there is Mara Safari Lodge, where tourists can reside amongst animals.

There are many other tailor-made budget plans which the tourists can avail of as well. Balinese people love to serve their guests with a variety of exotic guest house. Other fascinating living spaces like the water villas, bamboo houses as well as glamping tents are accommodations like out of a dream. Thus, you are never away from finding a wonderful living space of your choice in Bali no matter what budget you have or what personal choices you keep.

Solidarity at its Finest: Dine in the Middle of Paddy Fields

Paddy Fields in bali

Enjoy dining in the natural surroundings of Bali.

Incredible imagination runs through the people of Bali as they find one way or the other to let their guests indulge in exquisite luxury and incredible experiences. Dining in the middle of the paddy field is one such extravagance that tourist have the opportunity to enjoy. At two of the most incredible dining spaces in Bali, namely Pomegranate and Sardine, guests can indulge in just that.

With vast expanse of lush greenery spread all around, tourists can indulge in a cup of fragrant tea, a cocktail or a bite of their favorite food and savor the peaceful atmosphere and ambience that lies about them. During sunsets, these locations get even more exciting with day dissolving into night and birds finding their way back home. These locations have an amazing pull and find many tourists coming here to enjoy the environment annually.

Experience the Best Infinity Pools in the World

infinity-pool

These infinity pools, counted amongst the best in the world will make you fall in love with them. The pools have been exquisitely designed in such a way that it makes the visitor feel that they are hanging just on the edge while the pool extending into infinity into the clouds and having the curves in the shape of the hills surrounding nearby. However there are decks around the pool that lets you enjoy the picturesque views of the scenic locations around.

Two of the most famous infinity pools which the visitors must experience are Alila Ubud and the Hanging Garden Ubud. Located in the lush and verdant settings these pools lets you enjoy the peace and calm, making you relax and indulge. This is one of best places for honeymooners to expend some cozy and personal time together while families can expect to find some placid time, away from the chaos of the urbanity.

I spy: Find the half-submerged House in the middle of a Lake

lake-batur

Bali never fails to astonish with its fabulous settings, locations and attractions. Another such attraction is the incredible Lake Batur which has transparent, reflecting waters having a beautiful, exotic charm. The lake is formed of a crater and is a wonderful place for newlyweds to get some personal time.

Fascinatingly, the lake also features a house, which is half submerged in the water and appears to be abandoned. The house may have been washed due to flood but nevertheless has assumed a mysterious aura, furnishing as a great subject for professional and amateur photographers. The lake forms a setting like out of some movie or fantasy and is a great place to visit as a peaceful tourist destination.

Visit Asia’s Best Waterpark: Waterbom

Waterbom-theme-prk

A theme park, voted as the best one in Asia by Tripadvisor, Waterbom is ,hands down, a must visit place for fun travelers of all ages. Thrilling water slides like the snake-themed constrictor to lazy pools and gentle rivers are a haven of delight for the visitors who come here looking to have a wonderful time, cooling themselves off with exciting rides.

The park is situated in an expansive location and the surroundings are well-maintained. The rides are safe and there is always a lifeguard around. Moreover, the staff is friendly and the price food and other eatables inside the complex is reasonable. Waterbom, is a wonderful weekend destination for working Balinese families and one of the favorite spot for kids. It is also a nice break for visitors to enjoy some amazing adventure and share fun and laughter.

Visit a Pearl Farm: Atlas Pearl Farm

Atlas Pearl Farm

Pearls are the quintessential companion of any women and it not only looks great but also feels great, with its smooth texture, color and shape. A pearl farm is your wonderful opportunity to witness firsthand how these exotic objects are harvested, sown and cultivated. At Atlas farm in Pemuteran, this whole process is carried out and pearls are produced for various use. Moreover, visitors are allowed to see this process. The staff at these pearl farms are friendly and always ready to help people understand the minute details of the whole procedure.

Pearls grow in a delicate environment and the nature of the surroundings and quality of the eco-system matter a lot in the aspects of the final product. In Bali, pearls are produced with a sustainable approach, keeping in mind the health and importance of the survival of the oyster. Thus, it’s a great experience to see how this all is carried out.

Experience Life Underground: Gala-Gala Underground House

Gala-Gala Underground House

An underground house, inspired by the Indian epic “Mahabharata”

It’s not for nothing that Bali is called one of the most exotic destinations on Earth. Indexed on the long list of incredible spots in Bali is Gala-gala underground house, located in Nusa Lembongan. The house was built by a person named Made Byasa, after he got inspired by a legend from one of the India’s two epics, Mahabharata. According to this legend, after getting defeated in a board game, the righteous Pandawas were sent into exile. They spent a part of this exile by building an underground cave, Gala-gala to protect themselves from the dishonest Korawas, who wanted to find and kill them.

Made Byasa made his own underground house based on the legend, using just a crowbar. With an astonishing determination and dedication, he was able to complete the house in a span of 15 years. The house, which appears like a labyrinth are just 1-2 meters high. There are walls, a kitchen, sitting room, two bedrooms as well as three exits for proper ventilation. It a great fun to explore different corners of the house and fancy the labor that must have gone into it.

Underwater Prayer: Pay a Visit to Pemuteran Hidden Underwater Temple

Pemuteran Hidden Underwater Temple

Pay homage at this unique underwater temple of Bali.

With a deep, mystical surroundings and in a bewildering location lies this underwater temple that attracts a lot of adventure tourists every year. The temple, which generated a lot of mystery, was actually a part of a conservation project and consists of a total of 10 statues and the associated temple structure including plinths and gateways.

The structure is doubtlessly an astonishing engineering feat. Little sea creatures which have their habitat in the area demonstrates a beautiful harmony between man and nature. Vising this temple is both an adventure and a religious sojourn. Located in the waters of Pemuteran, the structure is situated at a depth of 30 m, with visibility and oxygen level going pretty low with increasing depth. The site is wonderfully picturesque and consists mainly of Buddha statues. The allure and significance of this site in Bali is such that many couples have taken their wedding vows here. A not to be missed destination for sure!

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Bask in an Untouched Piece of Nature: Blahmantung Waterfall

Blahmantung Waterfall in bali

Bali has some wonderful waterfalls and one of these, the Blahmantug is a famous tourist hotspot. A site of relative peace and calm in Bali, visitors can come here and simply enjoy and soak in the beauty of nature. In fact the journey to the waterfall itself is full of most quaint views, pervaded with large farming area. The waterfall itself, situated in the Pupuan area of Tabanan, is a part of a very fertile area of Bali which receives a lot of showers.

Either swim here or just enjoy the cool mist. The best time to visit the site is from January to March, when the weather is most suitable to enjoy the ambience. Surrounded by lush greenery there are many other great mesmerizing sights on the island where this waterfall is located.

Get into a Mud Fight: Mepantigan Balinese Mud Games

25 Amazing Things to Do in Bali

Take part in this interesting game in Bali

Mud fights are great fun and amusement and in Bali rice fields you can indulge in this delightful sport. However the best part is that these dirty games are very much part of the Balinese culture. Locals love getting themselves muddy so much so there are various cultural games involving people to drench themselves with mud and play. The activity is not only enjoyed by the children but adults also enjoy to the hilt.

Other cultural games which the visitors can indulge in are Mud horse riding, Eel or frog catching, Mud Tug of War, Love and Kiss duck, Kecak body painting, Mud pillow fight, Mud Gamelan as well as simple dance and massage in the mud. Doesn’t it recall those childhood memories?

Into the Blue: Take a Photo Shoot at the Tulamben Shipwreck

Tulamben Shipwreck

Take some memorable pictures of the underwater world.

Ever fantasized an underwater photo-shoot? Well, at Tulamben Shipwreck, you can just fulfill this fantasy. In fact the site is famous for some quirky and memorable wedding photo shoots, with surreal views in the background.

Go ahead and get a picture of a lifetime. It is an incredible experience and must be on your check-list of holidays in Bali.

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Mayank Chawla

Born in New Delhi, India, Mayank grew up admiring, perceiving and then embracing the vastly complex, colorful and paradoxical nature of the Indian Society, which further led him to accommodate and appreciate the tremendous diversity of world. This admiration brought him to travel writing to share his thoughts and personal experiences with readers and travel enthusiasts at large to make them enjoy the wonderful beauty of the world as he sees it. Mayank also reviews books and can be reached through his website at http://www.themayankchawla.com/.

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6 Responses

  1. Nate says:

    Thanks, it is quite informative

  2. Sahil says:

    This article makes me want to visit Bali desperately now. Thanks for such an insightful article.

  3. Sophie says:

    This is such a useful blog. I’m so excited to go to Bali. I’m desperate to go and see the underwater temple at Pemuteran but I can’t scuba dive – can you tell me is it possible to snorkel and still see the temple?

    • Mayank Chawla says:

      Hey Sophie! Yes, it is very much possible for you to snorkel and see the underwater temple.

      Any of the dive/snorkel companies in Pemuteran could show it to you. It’s a great place to be, especially for the wonderful trip to Menjangan for diving and snorkeling. If you do go try to plan for at least 2 or 3 days to make the most of the trip there and back, doing sightseeing and things along the way. Have a great time! 🙂

  4. Ana B. says:

    Bali is simply amazing! It is one of those places you just have to visit sooner or later. I especially enjoyed the yoga retreat suggestion because I think that Bali is the perfect place to practice yoga, recharge your batteries, and enjoy the nature. I am sure that everyone can find the best yoga retreat that will fit their level of knowledge.
    I also want to see the Pemuteran hidden underwater temple and experience it for myself. It looks so magical!

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