Aah Bali. A trip we took almost 6 years ago but a trip that most people still ask us about. We love helping our friends plan their holidays and somehow Bali has been a hot favourite. The number of times we have sent out an email with what we did in Bali is more than I can remember. We did a 9 day trip to Bali, spending 3 days each in 3 different places, and we still felt there was so much we didn’t see. Here’s a quick glimpse of the trip we did.
PS: This trip was ages ago. Way before iPhone 8 plus portrait mode was even dreamed of – so please ignore the picture quality 🙂
Consider this a rather upscale Goa. Bars, beaches and clubs is what this place is all about. We stayed in Kuta but would recommend staying in Seminyak. It’s more fun, easier to get around and if you want to party all night, might as well go all the way!
What we did –
- We hired a bike and went down a bit south to Padang Padang beach, carried our beach towels and bummed the day away. In the evening we hopped across to the Uluwatu temple at sunset, took in some some spectacular views and watched the kecak dance as the sun set around us.
- Tanah Lot Temple – We drove 45 mins to the Tanah Lot Temple. At sunset again. You could even go for sunrise. It’s beautiful.
- We chilled – a lot. Various beach shacks and clubs in seminyak make the perfect setting to unwind. Eat- Swim- Repeat could well be your motto.
- Snorkelling, diving and surfing are all something you can do here but we kept that for the later half of our trip.
- Party the night away at Legian Street. Pub hop your way into the morning with some great bars and clubs.
- Get a massage at Chill Reflexology. Thank us later.
Where we ate –
- La Plancha – a colourful, hip shack on the beach. Get your drink, some fried calamari and relax.
- Potato head – our absolute favourite. A beach club with its own pool, great food and drink, and a great vibe. You can easily spend a whole day here. What we loved even more though was going here at midnight. It’s much emptier, the pool is all yours and the sound of the waves crashing under the stars is quite special.
- Ultimo – go here from some great Italian food.
- Rock Bar – Go here for the spectacular views. Since it is literally hanging off a cliff, there is a cap on the number of people they allow in. And there is always a long queue so make sure you have a reservation so you can be on the deck at sunset. They have a pool as well so don’t forget to carry your swimsuit !
- Jimbaran Seafood Bay – this is a seafood spread served at Jimbaran beach. You could do this on your way back from the Uluwatu temple. A tad bit overhyped but if you have an evening to spare and want to try different kinds of seafood this is your place.
- Made’s Warung – Go here from some incredible local fare. Always packed, and right in the middle of the bustling market, this place gives you great food at a great price.
Ubud stole our heart the moment we got there. Nestled amidst mountains with the beautiful Ayung river running through it, Ubud is the idyllic sleepy little town. Great food and even better activities greet you here.
What we did –
- White water rafting – The highlight of our trip. Navigate the rapids, jump into the river in a slower section and end the experience with a traditional balinese lunch. Definitely an experience to remember.
- Paon Bali cooking class – A fun morning spent with a trip to the local rice fields, the local market and then cooking a traditional balinese meal with a bunch of people from across the world ! A great place to meet other travellers and Puspa, the lovely host, only makes it more charming.
- Cycling tour – We didn’t have time to do this but we have friends who did and had an amazing experience. Cycle through this beautiful town and make your way to the gorgeous rice fields.
- Mount Batur – There are several ways to enjoy this active volcano near Ubud. There is a sunrise trek, which starts at 2 am (yes you read right) and you reach the top for some spectacular views while the sun rises. You could also just hire a scooter and ride there yourself. Alternatively there are also day tours which take you up (without the trek) and you can have lunch with a view from up on top.
- Meet Ketut Liyer – the fortune teller and wise old man from Eat. Pray. Love. who unfortunately passed away two years ago. Although he told us nothing exceptionally life changing, he was such an adorable old man with the most amazing energy around him, that it was a humbling experience to meet him.
- Just relax. Most resorts have lovely views, incredible spas and beautiful pools. What more do you need.
What we ate –
- Naughty Nuri’s– This is a place we will happily go all the way back to Ubud for. A small roadside joint with a woman standing outside grilling meat, Naughty Nuri’s will serve you the best pork ribs you have ever had. Trust us. Don’t get fooled by the bigger, fancier Naughty Nuri’s a little ahead of this place. The smaller one is the real deal. Do not miss this. The bbq chicken, Nasi Goreng and the chocolate cake were incredible as well.
- Bebek Bengil (Dirty Duck Diner) – You enter this restaurant and what seemingly seems like a small place just goes on forever all the way to the rice fields at the back! Sit here, amidst all the greenery and eat their speciality – Original Crispy Duck.
- Bridges – a small cafe overlooking the river, it’s a quaint little place perfect to spend your evening. The wine and cheese platter is a big win !
The final leg of our journey. A small, sleepy island with not too many people and sparkling water in breathtaking hues of blue and green. Nusa Lembongan was the perfect finish to our trip.
What we did –
- Hire a bike and ride around the whole island. It’s so small you can easily cover it. And its beautiful to ride through a changing landscape, navigate gorgeous bridges and witness some incredible views.
- Scuba dive. Snorkel. Swim. Basically do all things ocean related. We love the ocean and could not get enough.
What we ate –
- Scooby doo shack – Your typical shack on the beach with some of the best crispy calamari we have had ! This place also has rooms and is right on the beach.
- The Sandy Bay Beach club – We literally lived here. A lovely pool, great music, even better food. One of our favourite days of the trip was spent here just eating, reading and swimming all day.
Bali is so beautiful and easy to access that it’s the perfect holiday spot for almost anyone. Travelling solo ? Travelling with kids? Honeymoon on the cards? Bali could be your answer to it all. So start planning !