Tag Archives: Bali

Seminyak Beach

Whether you come to Bali for a few days or a few weeks, Seminyak beach remains an obligatory crossing point for all tourists. Chic, glamorous and flashy, the city attracts for its bars, beach clubs, villas and hotels but also its long beaches which give everyone the opportunity to try their hand at surfing, try out some Beach Clubs and enjoy the magnificent sunsets. Seminyak beach is golden sand stretching 3 km (1.8 miles), as far as the eye can see on this west coast of the island is a pure wonder for any lover of sunbathing, swimming or surfing.

In the evening, from 5.30 p.m., the beach becomes St Tropez, with thousands of people settling into the colorful poufs to watch the sumptuous sunset over the Indian Ocean.

The beaches are indeed very wide, very extensive, and the atmosphere is festive day and night. So inevitably, street vendors take advantage of this to offer you watches, tattoos, clothes, jewelry, massages all the time (for this last point, don’t hesitate to let yourself be tempted). These untimely requests are often painful to manage but they perfectly reflect the agitation which reigns in Kuta.

If you’re not into wave sliding, maybe you’ll be tempted by a game of football with the young people of the area. And if all that has given you the cravings, there too you will easily find something to satisfy for only a few rupees. Another little happiness, the sunset, which between five and seven, illuminates the waters and the sand with a warm light in orange tones.

To do: Taste the benefits of a massage under the expert hands of Balinese women for an unbeatable price.

To see: The superb sunset which offers an unforgettable spectacle every evening between 5 and 7 am.

Double Six Beach: perfect for swimming and learning to surf

Double Six Beach is one of the most popular beaches in Seminyak, named after a nightclub. During the day, this beach is perfect for swimming and learning to surf. The beach is wide with soft golden sand and there are cafes as well as local beach stalls to get food and drink.

Around 4 p.m., Double Six Beach transforms into the perfect Bali postcard. This is the time when the beach bars pull out their beanbags and umbrellas in all the colors of the rainbow. It’s the classic image of Seminyak that you’ll see on the covers of travel magazines. Sit back with a coconut or tropical cocktail and wait for the sunset to hit. It is magic !

La Plancha has cool DJs and sometimes even theme nights that last until midnight. Other bars have live acoustic music to set the perfect ambience for the twilight hours. Children play in the sand and run on the shore. Lovers watch the sunset.

Everyone is trying to take that perfect shot of the sunset in Bali. It’s lively, colorful and wonderful. You just have to experience it for yourself.

Seminyak Beach, aka Kayu Aya Beach: Sunset in Style

Relax in style: this area is more chic than the nearby Seminyak Beach, aka Kayu Aya Beach. Spend your days sunbathing and swimming and enjoying the sea breeze at the edge of this wide sandy beach. At the end of the day, indulge yourself in one of the chic and refined restaurants on the seafront and watch the sun go down.

The sunsets there are magnificent. If you don’t feel like spending the day in the sand, there are hotels, restaurants and shops nearby.

We have 3 words for this fabulous beach in Seminyak: KU DE TA is the master of beach clubs in Bali – it was the first and it is still world famous. Sitting on the corner of Kayu Aya Street (Eat Street!) where Villa Carissa is located, KU DE TA always comes out on top when it comes to unforgettable events, parties, exquisite food and sophisticated sunset drinks.
KU DE TA has an infinity pool these days and the on-site restaurant Mejakawi is truly outstanding.

Read also: Seminyak Beach Club | Chic, Glamorous and Flashy | Perfect For Both Day and Night

Petitenget beach: Surf, swing & clubbing on the beach

Undoubtedly the best known and most visited beach in Bali, it is also the longest. Starting from Legian Beach to go up to the temple of Petitenget, it offers holidaymakers several experiences thanks to its waves allowing the practice of surfing, especially for beginners.

Petitenget Beach starts at Pura Petitenget, a famous beach temple at the end of Jalan Kayu Aya after KU DE TA Beach Club. You’ll find plenty of other must-visit beach clubs here: Potato Head, Bar Woo at W Bali, and Mano Beach House. You can’t just do beach clubbing but beach club-hopping in Petitenget!

The beach has black sand and slightly choppy waves that surfers will love. You can also pose on the Petitenget Swings for the perfect sunset shot. All the beach clubs have pools, there are frequent parties and events and the food/cocktails are great!

Batu Belig Beach: Surfing

Less crowded, awesome surf waves and cool beach clubs you probably haven’t heard of just yet. Batu Belig Beach is still raw with gray sand, wild ocean waves and a mix of laid-back beach bars and stylish clubs such as Tropicola. Batu Belig is always coming and it is the perfect area for those who like to stay in a quieter location close to Seminyak and Canggu. Batu Belig Street is full of shops, restaurants, spas and cafes. It’s wonderful to walk along this beach road that runs from Petitenget down to the beach. The road is perfectly paved and there are plenty of cool places to sit for a coffee and get away from the heat. places such as Watercress Cafe, Strawberry Fields, Nook, Unicorn Cafe and more.

Berawa Beach

Some say Berawa is part of Canggu but it’s really a short distance between Seminyak and Canggu and it’s a cool place with fabulous villas and lots of must-visit cafes! The beach has black volcanic sands, popular among surfers and it is home to amazing beach clubs such as the impressive Finn’s Beach Club (9 pools!!!), and the amazing Café Del Mar for an Ibiza experience in Bali.

Sources: CleverlySmart, PinterPandai

Photo credit: Ignartonosbg / Pixabay

Amed the Little Paradise in Bali

Amed is a group of peaceful villages bordered by black sand beaches, ideal for lazing around but especially for snorkeling and scuba diving in the east part of Bali. Renowned for its vertiginous drop-offs and coral gardens, this region of northeast Bali is home to some of the best dive sites on the Island of the Gods.

Amed is one of the increasingly popular destinations in Indonesia. Located at the eastern end of Bali, this village is relatively isolated. You will not regret making the trip, especially since the road that will take you there will take you through some beautiful places. Before arriving in this charming fishing village, you will come across beaches, rice fields and sumptuous palaces.

Location of Amed

Amed is located just at the foot of the Agung volcano, one of the volcanoes of Bali. If this place attracts more and more people, it is for several reasons. In the surroundings, you can enjoy superb beaches, such as Lipah Beach, Jemeluk and Virgin Beach.

A fishing village

Amed is a fishing village on the east coast of Bali with beautiful volcanic black sand beaches, where there are several spots for snorkeling and scuba diving to see fish, corals, and blue starfish.

Late afternoon you could take a nice ride in a traditional fisherman’s boat for fishing and watch the sun set behind Mount Agung…

Scuba diving

For those who do scuba diving, it is also possible to see the Liberty wreck in the village of Tulemben which is not far from Amed.

Volcanoes

Speaking of volcanoes, we advise you to climb the Batur volcano rather than Agung if you only have to do one 🙂 It is simpler and the view is magnificent in the early morning!
Jemeluk Beach is a beach of pebbles and black volcanic sand which is probably not the most attractive beach in Bali, but which turns out to be a true paradise for diving enthusiasts. Its clear water and very rich seabed make it one of the best diving spots in Indonesia.

Spending a few days in Amed is the perfect opportunity to discover some of the most beautiful buildings in Bali, such as the Taman Soekasada Ujung water palace, the Tirta Gangga water palace and the Pura Penataran Agung Lempuyang temple.

How to get around?

Amed is just under 3 hours drive from Kuta, Seminyak, Canggu or Ubud. To get there, you will have to rent a scooter or opt for a private driver.

What to do in Amed, Bali?

After these few practical information, let’s see together what are the places to visit in Amed. As I said before, the road that leads to Amed is lined with superb places and I therefore really advise you to stop there during your road trip. If you are on a scooter, you will be free to stop wherever you want, but if you book a private driver, remember to tell him to stop here and there according to your preferences.

  • Virgin Beach
  • Taman Soekasada Ujung Water Palace
  • Tirta Gangga Water Palace
  • Ababi rice fields
  • Pura Penataran Agung Lempuyang Temple
  • Jemeluk Beach
  • Sunset Point
  • Lipah Beach
  • Tulamben and the wreck of the USS Liberty

A little story: The most famous spot is undoubtedly the wreck of the USS Liberty, a former US army ship torpedoed by the Japanese during World War II in Lombok Bay. Towed onto Tulamben beach, the cargo ship was eventually pushed to the sandy bottom by lava following the 1963 volcanic eruption.

To make the most of Amed, I think you have to stay there at least 2 nights. The first day can for example be devoted to visiting the places of interest on the road to Amed. On your second day, you can visit the places in Amed itself and go diving or snorkeling.

See you soon my traveling friends. JWe wish you a wonderful stay on the island of the gods!

Sources: CleverlySmart, PinterPandai, Museum of Wander

Photo credit: Wawansatriawan Bali via Wikimedia Commons (CC BY-SA 4.0)

When to go to Bali?

Bali’s climate is tropical. Bali weather in May, June, July, August, September and October during the dry season which extends from April to October.
December, January and February as this is the rainy season, but the Bali weather is still very warm.

First of all, before leaving, you have to know when to go to Bali! The idea is not only to detail the climate of Bali month by month but rather to explain to you what are the best times to go there.

The island is located near the equator, in the heart of Indonesia and next to Java. So the climate of Bali is a tropical climate. This means that the temperatures are always very hot throughout the year (with an average temperature of 27°C (80°F), and that there are periods of heavy rain.

Bali weather with two seasons climate

Bali has a tropical type climate with two seasons, the rainy season and the dry season. The ideal time to visit Bali runs from May to October, corresponding to the dry season with an average temperature of around 26 °C (78.8 °F), ideal temperature to enjoy the beaches and discover the temples and archaeological sites.

Located near the Equator, Bali is subject to a hot and humid climate all year round with two distinct seasons.

Rainy and dry season

– The hot season or rainy season which goes from December to March. During this season, the month of January is the rainiest.
– The cool season or dry season goes from May to October with July being the driest and coolest month. Note that during this season it can also rain, but the rains are short-lived and usually occur in the late afternoon.

Average temperatures

In terms of temperatures, even if we talk about hot season and cool season, temperatures are very constant throughout the year. They vary between 23° and 32°C (73.4 °C to 89.6 °F), so ideal for discovering the country and enjoying the sumptuous beaches around Seminyak and Nusa Dua.

Read also: 2 Weeks Itinerary in Bali | What to do and visit in Bali for 14 Days | Best Itinerary

Note that in the central mountains, the temperatures are a little cooler, ranging from 20°C to 25°C (68 °F to 77 °F), great for nature lovers and hikers ready to attack the Gunung Agung volcano. In Bali, a little advice, it is better to get up early to fully enjoy the day, because the sun rises around 6 a.m. and sets abruptly around 6 p.m. and this throughout the year.

Bali weather by month in Celcius and Fahrenheit

Bali weather – Average temperatures
Month Min (°C) Max (°C) Averge (°C)
January 25 31 27,8
February 25 31 27,9
March 25 31 27,9
April 25 31 28
May 24 31 27,6
June 24 30 27
July 24 29 26,5
August 23 29 26,4
September 24 30 26,8
October 24 31 27,7
November 25 32 28,3
December 25 31 28
YEARLY 24,4 30,6 27,45

We recommend the months of May to October for your trip to Bali. If you can, avoid the months of July and August to avoid more tourists and benefit from cheaper hotel rates.

Bali weather in Fahrenheit
Bali weather – Average temperatures
Month Min (°F) Max (°F) Averge (°F)
January 77 87.8  82.4
February 77 87.8  82.4
March 77 87.8  82.4
April 77 87.8  82.4
May 75.2 87.8  81.5
June 75.2 86  80.6
July 75.2 84.2  79.7
August 73.4 84.2  78.8
September 75.2 86  80.6
October 75.2 87.8  81.5
November 77 89.6  83.3
December 77 87.8  82.4
YEARLY 75.95 87.05  81.5
Swimming in Bali, Sea temperature

To swim in Bali, no questions to ask: the water is warm all year round, between 27°C and 29°C (80.6 °F to 84.2 °F).

Bali – The Sea temperature
Month Celsius (°C) Fahrenheit (°F)
January 29 85
February 29 84
March 29.5 85
April 29.5 85
May 29 84
June 28 83
July 27 81
August 27 80
September 27 81
October 28 83
November 29.5 85
December 29.5 85
Year 28.5 83.3

Arrival at Bali airport

You know when to go to Bali, but do you know where you will land? If this is your first time traveling to Bali, be aware that the airport is not located in the city of Denpasar. Many peopole confused for the sirst time, that’s why we mention it. The airport is actually called Ngurah Rai and is located on the south west coast of the island (south of Kuta).

When you leave the airport, you will be surprised to see dozens of Balinese jumping on you to offer you a taxi! Don’t be offended and just say no with a smile, they will understand and go see another tourist! It’s quite boring! when you have to negotiate for several minutes because we know (WE KNOW) that we are being scammed from the start and that they triple their prices! Then we have two solutions for you:

We have a feeling that you are ready to go there! It’s not that complicated to get organized and know when to go to Bali!


Sources: CleverlySmart PinterPandai, Holiday Weather, Climate Data

Photo credit: Wpkomang / Pixabay

Photo description: Kelingking Beach (Nusa Penida)

Tanah Lot

Do not miss to visit the Temple of Tanah Lot in Bali, Temple of legend, and essential of the island!

Built in the 16th century by order of the priest Nirartha, who came to meditate on an isolated rock in the sea, the temple of Tanah Lot now overlooks this rock.

What is it?

Head for the Indonesian archipelago, where the wonderful island of Bali is located. Between its idyllic beaches, its luxuriant nature, its breathtaking rice fields, its impressive volcanoes, its mystical and authentic culture and the gentleness of its inhabitants, it is truly a dream destination!

But the charm and beauty of Bali also reside in its collection of temples, each more incredible than the next, starting with the Temple of Tanah Lot.

This temple is one of the most famous on the island, because of its location: the Temple of Tanah Lot in Bali is “set” on a small rock in the middle of the ocean, about 100 meters from the coast, accessible at low tide. The spectacle of this temple in the middle of the waves at high tide is just magnificent!

So to help you visit the Tanah Lot Temple in Bali, we have prepared a mini-guide for you with all the important information you need to know.

A legendary Tanah Lot temple

The temple has acquired its notoriety partly thanks to its particular architecture: located on a rocky promontory, it is cut off from the rest of the island twice a day, at each high tide.

The temple has acquired its notoriety partly thanks to its particular architecture: located on a rocky promontory, it is cut off from the rest of the island twice a day, at each high tide.

Legend has it that the sage once went to the rocky promontory that was then Tanah Lot, connected to the moor by a natural stone bridge.

Captivated by the spectacle of the ocean caressing the banks and by the backwash of the waves, the man would have decided to spend the night there… And in the early morning, in total harmony with the sea stretched out in front of him, he decided to build the temple to pay homage to this element of nature. Even today, the caves dug by the waves at the foot of the cliffs that surround it are said to be inhabited by sacred serpents, descendants of the former protectors of the site.

Myths about Tanah Lot

The myths and legends associated with this sacred place are almost as beautiful as the temple itself. The story goes that the holy priest Danghyang Nirarta spent the night here and the people of Bali decided to build the Tanah Lot temple on his resting place.

It is also said that at the time, there was a bridge between the continent and the temple, but that it was destroyed by the force of the sea. Another interesting detail: there is under Tanah Lot a cave sheltering a source magical. Curiously, the spring water is fresh while the temple is surrounded by the ocean and its salty waters.

Tourist flows

The temple of Tanah Lot has thus become one of the 7 temples of the Sea which border the island of Bali. These seven temples have the function of protecting the island of the Gods from any bad influence coming from the waves, and have the particularity of being always visible from at least one of the other temples of the Sea.

Today, Pura (temple) Tanah Lot is one of the most popular religious buildings on the island, and also the most visited. Right next to the temple, a “tourist village” has been created in order to stem the flow of daily visitors to the sacred site.

Sportswear shops, crafts, various clothes, the main street offers everything you need for an entire afternoon of shopping! The sunset is a particularly appreciated moment on this site, which also offers the possibility of enjoying a dinner in a restaurant in height.

Our little secret…

Shhh, don’t tell anyone! The Pura Batu Bolong, located 10 minutes walk from the Tanah Lot temple, is just as impressive as its neighbor and much less crowded! Of more modest size, it is perched on a ledge plunging into the Indian Ocean.

During the Melasti celebrations, a few days before the Balinese New Year, hundreds of pilgrims come to deposit earthly offerings intended for the marine deities.

Visit the temple of Tanah Lot: Variable hours, expect about 2 hours to spend in this area.
Price: Allow 20,000 Rupiahs to enter the temple, 20,000 more to touch the tail of a small sacred reptile.

Read also: 2 Weeks Itinerary in Bali | What to do and visit in Bali for 14 Days | Best Itinerary

Discover Pura Batu Bolong: Follow the path that runs along the cliff to the west of Pura Tanah Lot: the site is open every day from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. and admission is free.

TANAH LOT: How to get there?

Tanah Lot is easily reachable from any locality in South Bali (Sanur, Kuta, Seminyak, Legian or Canggu), or from Ubud, both by your own means (scooter) and by car (taxi or Go-Jek application).

From the latter you can therefore go there for the day, without sleeping there.

From other tourist locations such as Uluwatu, Munduk or Amed it seems complicated and a shame to go there for the day, since you would spend too much time on the road.

It will therefore be necessary to book a room in the surroundings (see below), for at least one night.

APPROXIMATE ROUTE TIMES:

  • Sanur: 1 hour
  • Kuta: 1 hour
  • Legian: 1 hour
  • Seminyak: 1 hour
  • Canggu: 45 mins
  • Ubud: 1 hour
  • Uluwatu: 1h30
  • Amed: 3h30
  • Munduk: 3 hours

Reading sources: CleverlySmart, PinterPandai

Photo credit: PinterPandai via Wikimedia Commons (CC BY-SA 4.0)

HIKING MOUNT BATUR IN BALI: HIKE AT SUNRISE!

No need to say much more than what we see in the photos… The landscape offered when hiking mount Batur is a sea of ​​clouds, the Agung volcano, and the sun peeking out from the horizon. It is simply beautiful!

Try the sunrise hike during your stay in Bali, one of the well-known hikes is the ascent of Mount Batur in the early morning. Indeed the principle of the excursion is to witness this sunrise from the top of the volcano!

In this article, we come back to this ascent of Mount Batur, sharing our feedback. And by indicating how to do the same thing, by yourselves, or accompanied by a guide as we were able to do.

Access to the start of the Mount Batur hike

Where is Mount Batur?

Mount Batur is located in the east of the island of Bali, so if you are not staying nearby, access to the start of the hike around 4 a.m. is not really trivial…

We share in this article my experience of hiking in an all-inclusive package (this one, with a driver who brings you to the site from his accommodation, hike accompanied by a guide, and return to his accommodation).

But if you want to do the hike by yourself in the early morning, the ideal is clearly to stay close to the starting point of the hike. This is to minimize travel time as much as possible in the middle of the night, barely awake, and on the small Balinese roads…

For this there are in particular these villas not far from the starting point, or the Batur Green Hill hotel.

In any case, whether you go there via the transport of a driver, or whether you go to Mount Batur by yourself, the start of the hike is located at the parking lot of the Pura (temple) Jati Batur.

With or without a guide?

For the hike consisting of reaching the summit of Mount Batur in the early morning, we had read during our preparations for a trip to Bali, that when you are not accompanied by an official guide, access from hiking can bring tension started when you arrive at the parking lot. Apparently it is not well seen to hike solo, but personally we did not notice it.

This remark is in any case not valid during the day. Indeed, hiking accompanied by a guide during the day is not very interesting: you can see the path perfectly well.

But beyond the professional guide during the climb, the service also includes transport from your accommodation. Which is clearly appreciable in the middle of the night, and this regardless of where we are staying (in my case, he came to pick us up near Seminyak, a few kilometers north of Denpasar).

In summary, we can say that:
  • In the early morning, hiking in the dark and with a night start requires being well prepared. Beyond the fact that it is the most practiced solution, it is also the easy solution to be able to take full advantage of this moment. Without this solution, clearly we would not have done it.
  • During the day, the guide is not necessary. On the other hand, the “show” is not the same as in the early morning…

Go through a local agency

To avoid having to worry, we did the simplest thing and went through a local agency (this one), via an online booking site.

Beyond the driver, we benefited from a guide during the hike, which we really appreciated.

Even lit with a headlamp, the ground being volcanic, the supports are not always easy to find. And the experience of someone who knows the way well is a significant plus. Remember that it is 4am, and that we are not yet fully awake…

For the price we had paid around fifty euros per person (for this service, reserved in advance).

Get up early: the constraint to take into account

I do not hide the fact that for this excursion to Mount Batur the awakening is harsh… It varies according to the season, but the sun generally rises around 6am. Add to that the climb to the summit, which takes 2 hours, and the travel time from your hotel or villa.

Depending on your location, this means getting up between 1:30 and 2:30 a.m. approximately! The drivers can indeed pick you up in the south of the island, on the Kuta coast. But also from closer points such as from Ubud or Amed. As an indication, it is still necessary to count an hour’s drive from Ubud.

Hiking Mount Batur

The route, stage, itinerary, route, trajectory,

We rate hiking mount Batur as medium difficulty. As with any hike that consists of climbing, the difficulty lies above all in finding your rhythm so as not to lose your breath too quickly.

The elevation gain of this hike is 800 meters (2625 feet).

However, Mount Batur is a volcano, and past eruptions have lined some flanks with lava that has hardened and mostly flaked over time.

The hiking path is therefore often filled with black pebbles, more or less large, not very stable, and on which you sometimes have to climb to move forward.

You must therefore be careful where you put your feet and take good support. And let’s not forget that on the way out we walk by the light of the flashlight…

Equipment for hiking Mount Batur

We therefore advise to have a pair of sneakers that catch a minimum. Avoid smooth soles! Note that the guide is still there to help us clear our way, and give us a hand to climb the rocks if necessary.

For the record, on the way down I saw someone doing the descent in sandals! I take my hat off to him, and I think he was lucky not to slip…

For this ascent it takes between 1h30 and 2h depending on your pace. Admittedly, we are in the dark, but the torch allows us to orient ourselves. And above all, we are far from alone… We therefore see a ballet of beams of flashlights in front, and behind. This hike is more or less a victim of its own success and is therefore relatively popular.

For our part the ascent was foggy, and it often is apparently the case. But that is part of the scenery of this hike, because after a while we finish crossing this cloud cover.

We are therefore in the end above the mist, which makes all the beauty of the sunrise!

At the top of Mount Batur

The sunrise

In terms of altitude, Mount Batur is the second volcano in Bali: it culminates at 1717 m (5633 ft). It comes after Mount Agung, which rises to 3142 meters (10308 ft).

An enchanting moment!

In the early morning, and at altitude, the temperatures are rather low. So plan a good sweater for the hike, and especially for the summit where you stop moving.

In addition to the accompaniment, the guides also provide breakfast once you reach the top. Sandwiches, bananas, coffee and boiled eggs that can be cooked in the heat sources of the volcano 😉. There is also a cabin where you can sit and quietly wait for the sunrise.

The crater of the volcano

The ascent of Mount Batur allows you to enjoy the first light of day!
Once the spectacle of the sunrise is over, it is possible to walk around, and in particular to get a little closer to the crater. This shows that this volcano is indeed still active, because we can see several sources of smoke.

The last eruption dates from the year 2000. But the most significant was that of 1917 when several thousand victims were counted. As well as many houses and temples that were wiped off the map.

You then have to return to the car park by doing the reverse. The difficulty is different than during the climb, because it is a question of finding your grips well so as not to slip forward.

Nevertheless, this descent is done well, and it is faster than the ascent, of course. We can then visualize the path traveled on the outward journey and observe the landscape this time.

What equipment for the Mount Batur hike?

If you are like us, and do the hike before sunrise, you must above all take a good sweater. This will be used both for the ascent of Mount Batur and especially for the wait at the summit.

The waiting time can seem long and chilly. For the descent, however, the sun has risen and the weather is better.

We said it above, equip yourself with a pair of shoes that grip the ground. You don’t necessarily need a great hiking shoes, just sneakers without a smooth sole will be ok.

If you decide to do it by yourself (without a guide), absolutely bring flashlights (and if possible headlamps). In the case of services accompanied by a guide that we mentioned above, these are provided.

Batur region

The road rises and the thermometer slowly drops. From Ubud, fruit and vegetable sellers are increasingly present on the side of the roads, in addition to the usual warungs and stalls. The piles of tropical fruits and jeruk (orange), those very fragrant green-skinned oranges typical of the region, pile up as one approaches the village of Kintamani, in the north of Bali. For a few thousand rupees, you can treat yourself to a basket of fruits in the colors of the rainbow and taste the different local varieties: pineapples, mangosteens, watermelons, bananas…

The Kintamani region is known to be the breadbasket of Bali. No or few rice fields compared to the rest of the island, but a cooler and more humid climate all year round which allows the cultivation of citrus fruits, but also tomatoes, eggplants, coffee or shallots.

Depending on the route taken, you will sometimes have to pay of a few tens of thousands of Rupiahs to access the village of Kintamani. Past a few shops and a few restaurants at the entrance to the village, the panorama on the right of the roadway is striking.

A grandiose view of the entire caldera is offered to us, with the volcano in the center, and Lake Batur overlooked by Mount Abang (3rd highest mountain on Bali and is located on the southeast side of Batur Lake and 10.6km or 6.6 miles northwest of Gunung Agung). The latter culminates at 2152 meters (7060 ft) and is the second highest peak in Bali behind the famous Mount Agung. On the flanks of Gunung Batur, large flows of black basaltic lava testify to past eruptions and have permanently settled in the landscape. A still active volcano whose last eruption dates back to 2000, one can occasionally observe white fumaroles escaping from its craters – there are three craters at the top of Mount Batur.

In Kintamani, many restaurants offering an extraordinary view of the entire caldera allow you to take a break to eat and drink, before descending to the lake and exploring its surrounding villages.

Sources: PinterPandai, CleverlySmart

Photo credit: Aaron Rentfrew via Wikimedia Commons (CC BY-SA 4.0)

Traveling to Bali: the guide to read before your departure

Traveling to Bali is dream destination for many of us, Bali is an island with multiple wonders lying in the hollow of the Pacific and just waiting to be discovered.

Understand the history of Bali before your trip

For a long time, the island of Bali was dominated by different nobility. In the 16th century, it was conquered by the Dutch, along with many islands in Indonesia. Bali then exports a lot of cotton, rice and cattle. The population, partly subject to slavery, revolts from time to time, like the slave Surapati in the 17th century.

The Dutch have little interest in Bali, in fact only seeking to prevent acts of piracy, a lucrative activity for the Balinese, but which harms the economy of the Netherlands. It was because of these maritime thefts that Holland took control of the island in 1906. The two royal families therefore committed suicide, accompanied by their subjects. The same scene is repeated during the return of the Dutch in 1946. The repression of a communist movement in the 1960s causes between 50,000 and one million deaths in Java and Bali.

Diversity of cultures: fells the islandy

Although modest in size (140 km long, 80 km wide), Bali is an island-world unto itself. She has a strong character, but cultivates the diversity of cultures and nature. Bali is a dream destination for all tourists who find an absolutely relaxing change of scenery on this island.

Balinese culture teaches a lot about exchange and sharing. This is probably due to local Hinduism. Thus, many ceremonies, dances and offerings take place in the various temples that you will have to visit, but also in the streets of the cities of Bali.

Everywhere, you can see craftsmen performing artistic feats, making furniture, making simple and touching decorations. Responsible tourism starts with buying products directly from the artisan. A great opportunity to shop with a clear mind.

A cultural trip: must visit

To visit Bali is to meet a civilization totally different from ours, a culture to be tamed by visiting the temples, museums, palaces, or cities of the Indonesian island.

Temples

Trip to Bali: the temples
The Hindu religion is omnipresent in Bali, but it is especially part of the landscapes thanks to the temples. They exist both in cities and in the most remote areas. Each of them worships a different deity, whether it is the three great Hindu gods (Vishnu, Shiva and Brahma), or whether it is the god of the earth, the river or any other element. natural. These temples are worth especially for their decorations and the architectural styles completely new in Europe. Here are 2 temples to visit during your trip:

Pura Ulun Danu Temple Bratan

In Begudul, you absolutely have to take a look at the magnificent Ulun Danu temple, a sumptuous place. Time literally seems to float on peaceful Lake Bratan. Such serenity emanates from the surrounding places that we are often left speechless.

Besakih Temple

Besakih Temple is the largest Hindu temple in Bali. Located at the foot of Mount Agung, it offers magnificent views of the surrounding wilderness, making it a popular destination in Bali. However, this surrounding nature confers a kind of peace which brings a lot to the sanctity of the place.

Museums

There are many museums in Bali. Many are interested in Balinese art. Some are dedicated to local particularities: nature, agriculture… Suffice to say that with all these cultural facilities, you will be able to know other facets of the Balinese.

Agung Rai Museum

In Ubud, this real living museum presents many paintings and artistic shows. From this museum, you will have a full view of the volcano which is an integral part of the museum.

Puri Lukisan Museum

This museum has a collection of about 150 paintings and 60 sculptures. It is the most beautiful art museum in Bali.

Palaces

The palaces of Bali are impressive in terms of wealth and decoration. Noble families have reigned on this island for a long time and have left very beautiful architectural works. Here are some of the palaces to discover during your trip.

Pemecutan Palace

Built in the 17th century, this palace is one of the few open to the public. You will discover all the modern splendor desired by the last king of Denpasar. Part of this palace has now become a hotel.

Puri Saren Ubud

Puri Saren Ubud (Ubud Palace) is a royal residence located in the center of Ubud. It is now a cultural center, with also a magnificent market. It is one of the great tourist attractions in Bali, but its splendor greatly justifies its popularity.

Taman Tirta Gangga Water Palace

Built in 1948, the water palace was partly destroyed by the lava flow of 1963. However, it is well worth a look with its veritable belt of pools and small richly sculpted bridges, as well as the many statues. A surprising visit.

Cities

The island of Bali is a dream destination resulting from the exceptional marriage between men and nature. In Bali, culture and nature are intimately intertwined, and you will pass from one to the other without even noticing it, stopping in cities with a rich culture.

Denpasar

Denpasar is Bali’s main city. Modern capital, Denpasar has nevertheless managed to keep some of its cultural origins, with in particular the Pura Jagatnatha temple dedicated to the God of Bali. Other places with a very strong historical interest are to be visited, such as Puputan Square, with an impressive monument, recalling the suicides of protest against the Dutch.

However, Denpasar has also been able to modernize. Witness the administrative complex of Renon and the Werdhi Budaya Museum, with many exhibitions of Balinese paintings and art.

In June, you must see the festival that takes place throughout the city with exhibitions, performances, artistic competitions and other arts related to nature.

Ubud

Located in the central part of the island of Bali, the Ubud region is both a magnificent set of green landscapes and an important cultural center. In terms of culture, two museums are must-sees: the Puri Lukisan and the Neka. There are also many art galleries as well as an artists’ village.

Seminyak

Seminyak is located on the south-west coast of Bali in the northern extension of Kuta and Legian.

Destination par excellence for a honeymoon, more snobbish and luxurious than these two neighbours, this small town is attracting more and more tourists. That is why, we are going to discover what are the interests and the defects of this place…

Read also: Why choose SEMINYAK during your trip to Bali?

A nature trip: the most beautiful landscapes of Bali

In Bali, the extraordinary spectacles offered by nature are impressive and quickly make you forget the long hours of flight. Approach the center of the island, and observe these magnificent rice fields which stretch as far as the eye can see and create unique landscapes, especially near Jatiluwih and Ubud.

To the north and east, breathe in the force of the wilderness, whether it’s hearing the sea rolls crashing onto the shore, feeling the sea air rush through your hair, or to see the vastness of the chain of volcanoes. A playground that will give you the opportunity to practice many activities throughout your trip!

The Jatiluwih region and its rice fields

The Jatiluwih region is anchored in the minds of most visitors thanks to the astonishing landscapes, and in particular the immense rice fields cultivated on the terraces. Rice is grown here using ancient methods. There are some of the busiest temples on the island. It is the ideal region for magnificent hikes along soothing landscapes.

The eastern volcanoes

Bali, like all of Indonesia, is adorned with several volcanoes. You will absolutely have to salute Mount Agung and Mount Batur during your vacation in Bali.

Mount Agung is the great volcano to see. From the top of its 3142 meters (10308 feet), it dominates the whole island with its imposing stature. It caused a lot of damage when it erupted in 1963. It is possible to reach its summit, but it is better to be in good physical condition, due to its high altitude. To realize its strength, you absolutely have to see the lava flow left by the last eruption dating from the 1960s.

From the top of its 1717 meters (5633 ft), Mount Batur is another must-see on the island. This volcano is indeed still active and is even the object of a real cult on the part of the Balinese. It is truly impressive. You can also hike to the top of Mount Batur and embrace a huge part of the island. An enchanting moment.

Hot springs

As you have understood, volcanoes are omnipresent in Indonesia, and especially in Bali. Their underground activity also allows a natural phenomenon: the presence of hot springs, loaded with sulfur, ideal for healing or relieving various problems in a natural way. A unique experience to test during your trip to Bali.

Hot springs near Tabanan

About fifteen kilometers north of Tabanan, the waters naturally contain sulphur, potassium and sodium, which you can enjoy in several private spas.

Panas Banjar Hot Spring

Imagine a natural hot water swimming pool… Well, here is one located in the northwest of Bali, not far from the coast. You will find many tourists and Balinese who come to relax in this little corner of paradise.

Bali Barat National Park

Almost the entire west of the island of Bali belongs to the national park. It preserves many species of fauna and flora that inhabit the tropical rainforest. This park allows tourists to discover an incredible and very rare fauna. Take a day to stroll through this huge protected area. Some tracks promise you pretty walks during which you can see most of this tropical forest.

You will also have the opportunity to discover the fauna through 2 animal parks:

Bali Bird Park

Located north of Denpasar, the Bali Bird Park collects many species (about 250) of birds from Africa and South America. You will have the opportunity to see magnificent shows of birds in the middle of huge tropical plants. A pleasant time to spend with the family.

Butterfly park

Near Tabanan, the butterfly park allows you to observe magnificent insects with rich colors. If there are fewer and fewer butterflies in France, in Tabanan, you will see many of them.

Nusa Penida Island

Still little known to travelers until recently, this island southeast of Bali has become the new star of social networks in recent years. It must be said that it is now easily accessible thanks to the ferry which connects it in just an hour. Once there, the steep coasts of this piece of Indonesia offer a breathtaking spectacle!

The beaches of the island

In Bali, many beaches are famous for surfing. Others, much more peaceful, allow you to enjoy the warm waters of the Pacific at your leisure. These are the favorite beaches of all lovers who have gone to Bali for their honeymoon.

Lovers of beautiful sunny beaches will appreciate the marriage of land and sea just as much. Indeed, the green hills and the high volcanoes are very close to the sea, offering magnificent hiking trails.

Grajagan

G-land, as surfers call it, is a world famous surf spot. Here, the rollers break at high speed and only the best surfers manage to stay on the ridge for a long time. If you are a board lover, this is an unmissable place in your Balinese itinerary.

Uluwatu

South of Denpasar is the other great beach known for surfing: Uluwatu. Rollers can sometimes be dangerous. Novices really need to be careful.

Amed Beach

Imagine an uncrowded beach with beautiful white sand, warm waters, a beautifully green hinterland… That’s it, you are at Amed beach. An idyllic setting awaits you here, in the northeast of Bali.

Shopping: souvenirs of your traveling to Bali:

Bali is an island increasingly known for its shopping areas. A good tip: leave with light suitcases, because you risk falling for many memories…

Craft

The Balinese are past masters in the art. They produce many objects from bamboo, coconut, ceramics, metal and silver… Do not hesitate to choose carved and painted wooden objects. They often represent fantastic animals such as a dragon, or pets such as cats. They are usually great decorative items to bring home.

Works of art

Bali is an island of artists, of which Ubud is truly the capital. Suffice to say that you will meet many galleries throughout your stay in this great Balinese city. You will also find some at the Denpasar market.

Tattoo

Take advantage of your stay in Bali to have your skin tattooed. Many artists will propose to paint a part of your body permanently or ephemerally. However, pay close attention to the choice of tattoo artist. It is better to have a good feeling with him, and do not hesitate to ask your hotel for information…

Practical information for your trip to Bali

To prepare your trip to Bali, nothing better than useful addresses and practical information! Find tourist offices, modes of transport, exchange rate, time difference…

Tourist offices

The website of the Indonesian tourist office:

http://my-indonesia.info/en/en/home

The website of the Bali tourist office:

Home

Getting around Bali

The easiest way to get around Bali is to rent a car with driver. This way, you won’t have any trouble with left-hand traffic, but in addition, your driver will show you the best places to visit and where to go out in Bali.

If you want to drive yourself, and thus be totally independent, consider asking your prefecture for an international permit.

Public transport can also be a good compromise between self-guided tours and safety. Choose a Bemo, a modernized local minibus.

Finally, cycling can be a great way to get around town. A handy Dutch heritage for getting around in the urban jungle.

When to go to Bali

Bali is located near the equator, in a tropical area. The island has two equally distributed seasons. The average year-round temperature is 28°C, but the heat is never unbearable.

To benefit from a drier and sunnier climate, the best period runs from May to October. To avoid the tourist influx, it is better to stay in Bali in May, September or October. Of course, you won’t be alone. June is also proving to be a good month to go, as everything is green after the monsoon and prices are not yet at their peak.

Note that the days have the same amplitude all year round, with sunrise at 6 a.m. and sunset at 6 p.m. at the latest.

Health

No vaccine is required to enter Bali. The island is not, a priori, a risky destination in terms of health, however it is recommended to be vaccinated against tetanus, typhoid and hepatitis A and B.

Beware mosquitoes: An anti-malarial treatment is also recommended, especially if you are traveling during the wet season. A resurgence of malaria has been observed in the western area of ​​the island of Java. Dengue fever is also increasingly common. It is therefore advisable in case of headaches (knowing that the incubation is 10 days) to consult a doctor and not to take aspirin.

In terms of food, consume only soft drinks, which are easily found everywhere, and preferably avoid raw foods and unpeeled fruits.

Avian flu epidemic (source: Ministry of Foreign Affairs) No cases have recently been identified. However, remain vigilant: avoid raw or undercooked products (eggs, meat), wash and disinfect your hands several times a day.

Phone

Indonesia’s telephone code is +62, Bali’s is 0361 (we use it without the initial 0). Two international codes, 001 and 008, allow you to call abroad from Indonesia.

Electricity

In principle 220 volts everywhere. The electrical outlets are the same standards as in Europe. So provide an adapter, depending on the region where you come from.

Are there any security issues in Bali?

Bali is not an island or country more dangerous than another, but as with any tourist stay abroad, these security measures, which seem obvious, must be respected in order not to spoil your stay.

Read also: Important Numbers in Bali | Essential numbers and addresses

It cannot be said that there are security problems in Bali. There is no real danger. There are only small abuses or miscalculations during purchases and in some exchange offices, especially in Kuta. Remember to recount your money directly on the contrary and remain diplomatic in any situation.

Sources: PinterPandai, CleverlySmartWonderful Indonesia

Photo credit (main photo): Desfosse / Pixabay

Bali is an Authentic Paradise in the Indian Ocean

Perfect for a vacation in the Indian Ocean, Bali lives up to its reputation as an island paradise. In the center of the island, Mount Agung is home to the most beautiful temples in the area. Surrounded by forests, the roads that lead there run along the cascading rice fields. Bali is an authentic paradise in the Indian ocean.

Between the Bali Sea and the Indian Ocean, discover the treasures of the Island of the Gods for a most exotic stay!

Bali is one of the most visited destinations in Indonesia, probably due to its sumptuous landscapes and the richness of its culture.
Although Bali is a popular tourist destination, it is still an affordable island for a cheaper trip than many other paradise destinations.

How to come to Bali?

Bali is generally accessed through the city of Denpasar, in the south of the island, from where numerous flights arrive for this destination.

Upon arrival in Denpasar, you can easily travel to Kuta town. It is the island’s party town with its many trendy nightclubs, bars and restaurants. It is also a place frequented by surfers mainly from Australia. Kuta is also an ideal starting point to discover other nearby cities such as Seminyak and Legian which border the Balinese coast. These two cities are more conducive to idleness than Kuta.

If you have the opportunity to go there, have a cocktail in one of the beds overlooking the sea at Kudeta, a bar located in a zen setting that offers a magnificent panorama.

Culture of Bali

In terms of culture, Bali is also full of assets, with for example the temples of Uluwaltu and Tanah Lot, in the southern peninsula of the island.

The first temple has a mystical aspect due to its location on the side of a cliff, and the surrounding forest populated by howler monkeys.

The second temple is located on a rock in the middle of the sea, which accentuates its extremely rare beauty. This temple is only accessible during low tides.

However, the city of Ubud remains the cultural and artistic destination of Bali. Ubud is located in the center of the island, bordered by sumptuous rice fields. This city has many art galleries and small museums with impressive collections, including the Puri Lukisan and the Neka. The Balinese dance performances in the downtown temple is another strong attraction of Ubud. The markets that make it up are full of local crafts and paintings that make them ideal places for souvenir shopping. On your way to Ubud, you will also need to devote a day to visiting the rice fields that surround the city: they offer panoramas worthy of the most beautiful postcards.

Hari Nyepi Laut: Ocean Silent Day

Nyepi Laut… chutttttttt, the calm remains unshakable…

But what is it ?
It is one of the most important days for the southern islands of Bali. For centuries, spirituality has remained unshaken and locals spend hours commemorating the “Silence of the Ocean”.

Based on the Balinese calendar, the date varies each year and therefore takes place this time on October 11, 2022. This calendar, created on a system of lunar cycles, has 6 months of 35 days or years of 210 days as well as many surprising subtleties .

North Bali

The more adventurous can go visit the north of the island of Bali, to discover the ancient volcano Mount Agung and Lake Batur.

The North and East coasts are also worth exploring, with towns such as Lovina, Tulamben, Amed and Candidasa, idyllic destinations for scuba diving.

The Gili Islands, the neighboring island of Bali

To end your stay in Bali in style, you will have to go to the Gili Islands, destinations worthy of the most beautiful paradises on earth.

The Gili Islands are made up of three small islets that each have their own particularity: Gili Trawangan, festive and developed, Gili Meno, serene and wild, and Gili Air, romantic and splendid with its white sand and turquoise waters. Read also: Itinerary in Bali, Lombok and Gilis in 3 Weeks Stay

For those who do not yet have inspiration for their upcoming trip, Bali is therefore a destination that will satisfy you on a multitude of points!

Sources: TripAdvisor, Two Fish Divers

Photo credit: Pxhere (CC0 Public Domain)

Bali for the Firstimer

What to see in Bali, what to do, where to sleep, where to eat? Find all our advice, good addresses and ideas for visits to discover authentic Bali, off the beaten track! In the meantime, we want to offer you a short article with our advice, ideas and tips for visiting Bali for the firstimer.

Ah Bali, its rice fields, its surf spots, diving spots and its sunsets…

This destination makes more than one dream! But Bali is much more than that. It is a magical island where the gods reign, where the inhabitants offer you their most beautiful smile, it is an island with relaxing and rejuvenating landscapes… Bali is paradise!

WHY GO TO BALI?

✓ Because the cost of living is low: we eat and stay for next to nothing!

✓ Because the landscapes are breathtaking and diverse: volcanoes, lakes, forests, rice fields, volcanic beaches… You could think that Bali was sculpted or drawn, it is so beautiful!

✓ Because the Balinese are adorable, smiling and of a rare kindness. They are soothing and very calm in nature. They rarely get angry, it’s quite impressive by the way! This is surely due to Hinduism, practiced by more than 80% of the population.

✓ Because the food is just excellent! Mie Goreng, Nasi Goreng, Ayam Satay, Soto Ayam or even Nasi Campur, you will quickly become addicted to Indonesian and Balinese cuisine.

✓ Because Bali is the perfect place to unwind and reconnect with yourself. Meditation, yoga, relaxation, you will come back completely changed from a trip to Bali!

✓ Because Bali has managed to preserve its traditions and its authenticity. You will attend the offering rituals daily, wherever you are. It is not uncommon to find yourself in the middle of a religious ceremony or event.

✓ Because Bali has a very rich culture and ancestral traditions. Crafts, gastronomy, traditional dances, architecture… There is a lot to learn and discover on this island.

✓ In short, because Bali is simply magnificent!

3 THINGS TO DO ABSOLUTELY IN BALI

✓ Negotiate prices, all the time! For the Balinese, negotiating is a pleasure, a game. Whether it’s transportation, accommodation, clothes, handicrafts and even fruits in the market, negotiate all the time without attacking them, keeping calm and with a smile! 🙂

✓ Rent a scooter or moped to discover the Balinese countryside, the temples and the magnificent rice fields: you will find scooter rentals everywhere. For IDR 50,000 a day, you are free! Be sure to bring your international license and wear a helmet + make your insurance cover a scooter accident in Bali. For gasoline, you will easily find it everywhere.

✓ Eat local and taste a Nasi Campur in a small warung! The warungs are family restaurants or small groceries where you can enjoy yourself for next to nothing. Balinese cuisine is very diverse, spicy, gourmet and tasty. The ideal way to make our taste buds travel!

Read also: Itinerary in Bali, Lombok and Gilis in 3 Weeks Stay

PLACES TO VISIT IN BALI

Ubud, in the center of the island. The city has a lot of charm and is still very authentic. It is also a good starting point to visit the island because it is central. Read our little practical guide to visit Ubud in 1 week.

Payangan and Tegalalang, the countryside of Ubud and its rice fields as far as the eye can see for a Bali off the beaten track.

Munduk and its waterfalls, passing by the sublime Pura Taman Ayun: not very touristic and still preserved, just like the west of Bali.

Nusa Lembongan, Nusa Ceningan and Nusa Penida islands for their heavenly beaches. Prefer Nusa Penida if you want more calm and authenticity.

Amed in the north: we were not there, but we heard a lot of good things about this place. Ideal for snorkeling, calm and authenticity of the place.

WHERE TO SLEEP IN BALI?

Here is the list of our accommodations, all very nice and very correct in terms of price:

In Ubud and its surroundings
Gangga House, a homestay located less than 10 minutes walk from Ubud Palace.
Address: Jalan Sukma Kesuma No. 70, Peliatan, Ubud.

Bersila, la Maison du Bonheur, a guest house located 700 meters above sea level in an exceptional setting. More details in this article.

In Nusa Lembongan
Sukanusa Luxury Huts: Pretty overwater bungalows located 5 minutes from the beach in Juguntbatu. Read our article about Nusa Lembongan, we talk about it in more detail.

In Canggu
Mojo Resort: Charming hotel located 5 minutes by scooter from the beach, close to warung and supermarkets, with air conditioning, private bathroom and swimming pool! Address: Jl. Pantai Batu Bolong No.10, Canggu.

In Seminyak
Villa Carissa: Located in the heart of Seminyak, offers a private outdoor pool, an enclosed garden for your privacy and a sunny terrace…

RESTAURANTS BEST ADDRESSES IN BALI

List of restaurants, cafes and warung that we discovered in Bali.

✓ In Ubud
Puteri Minang: our favorite in Ubud and our HQ! We enjoyed ourselves for less than 2 euros! Address: Jalan Raya Ubud No.77, Ubud
Cafe Wayan: a zen tea room not to be missed. Sitting on cushions on the floor, treat yourself to a good fresh fruit juice, a pastry or homemade ice cream! Address: Monkey Forest Road, Ubud (at the beginning of Monkey Forest Road when coming from Ubud Palace)
Manah Shanti: a very nice warung where we tasted our very first nasi campur! It is located not far from the Monkey Forest, on the Monkey Forest Road.

✓ In Nusa Lembongan
Bali Eco Deli: to treat yourself to homemade pastries and fresh fruit juices. Take a slice of banana cake, it’s to die for! Address: on Jalan Raya Jungutbatu street
Warung Bambu: a warung where you eat with your feet in the sand on Jungutbatu beach. Address: on Jalan Raya Jungutbatu street to the far north before going to the mangrove

✓ In Canggu
Warung Dandelion: an upscale warung, necessarily more expensive than other warungs, which offers exquisite dishes in a warm atmosphere. Rabbits come to say hello to you at the table! Address: Jalan Pantai Batu Bolong No.8
Warung Bu Mi: a very good address in Canggu. Delicious specialties are offered at low prices! Address: Jl. Pantai Batu Bolong No.52
Warung Jawa Bu Sri: a not too bad little warung where we ate for just over 1 euro per person! Address: Jl. Pantai Batu Bolong No.20

✓ In Seminyak
The Favela, Seminyak
And here is another address of the group which also owns La Brisa, here we have a rather Amazonian atmosphere with many plants and a subdued interior. More than a bar, it’s a nightclub that fills up nicely around midnight! One of the best clubs in the south of the island!
Mexicola: our favorite address ❤ The place is colorful, completely quirky, we go there for tacos with a cocktail or dancing in a festive atmosphere.

Local specialties to know

Bali rhymes with Foodie and it is undoubtedly an essential food spot in South Asia! If some addresses, called “warungs” offer local and traditional cuisine, based on Gado Gado, Nasi Goreng, Babi Guling & cie, you will also find the trendy dishes and concepts of the moment in the south of the island, with airs of little Australia on the plate. Include: pancakes, avocado toast, barbecue and healthy bowls. We have already revealed some tips for preparing your trip or discovering Bali once there. Here are now our favorite addresses spotted during our month spent in Bali and some anecdotes about the specialties to test 🙂

If a lot of Indonesian specialties are inspired by its neighboring countries, Indonesia is also at the origin of more or less good and quite varied dishes, so you can easily eat local for several weeks without getting too tired! Here is the list of Bali for the firstimer concerning the local specialties:

Warung

This is the name given to local restaurants, in general you sit on the floor and you taste a whole bunch of local dishes for less than 1€! Be careful, the warungs close early (8 p.m.) and in general in Indonesia, after 10 p.m., you don’t have too many places to eat.

Gado Gado

Want freshness and lightness? Crunchy vegetable salad with peanut sauce. If you’re into into veggie/vegetables, this dish is good for you.

Nasi or Mie Goreng

This great classic of Balinese cuisine almost looks like paella. If it is indeed a rice-based dish (nasi), there is also a version with noodles (mie), both sautéed in a pan with onions, small vegetables and some spices. Accompanied by meat or shrimp, this specialty offers an originality: the fried egg placed on top. The vegetarian version can be offered to you. Everything is served with sambal (small spicy sauce).

Goreng means “fried”, crumb version (rice) or nasi (noodles) usually accompanied by egg or chicken!

Bintang

Light local beer, love it!

Satay

And yes, the famous “sate” or “satay” that we find everywhere in Asia are from Indonesia! Needless to say we love it!

Sate Lilit

Sate Lilit is a variation of satay in Balinese cuisine. It is made from minced pork, fish, chicken, beef or even turtle meat, which is then mixed with grated coconut, thick coconut milk, lemon juice, shallots and pepper. The spiced minced meat is wrapped around sticks of bamboo, sugar cane or lemongrass, then grilled over charcoal. The term “lilit” means “to wrap”, which corresponds to the method of mounting the skewer where the meat surrounds the rod rather than being pierced as for a classic skewer.

Nasi campur

It is a dish, made up of several small portions organized around plain white rice. You will find a variety of foods there: fish, meat, condiments, shrimp crisps (krupuk) and some roasted peanuts to garnish everything. It is sometimes served with a fried or hard-boiled egg. Nasi campur is a simple, complete and effective dish of which there are many variations in Bali, to the delight of gourmets!

Read also: DPS (Bali Airport) Practical Tips to Improve your Experience at Ngurah Rai Airport

Babi guling (roast pork)

Simply great! It is THE traditional Balinese dish par excellence. But beware, it does not run the streets, the Balinese cook it for special occasions, I also tasted it for the first time at a wedding. Babi Gulling is roast pork, sprinkled with local spices and drizzled with coconut juice. Cooking lasts a whole night, so it’s a tender and tasty meat and a crispy skin that you can enjoy on your plate.

Bebek betutu (duck)

Bebek betutu is a very delicate dish. It is sometimes hard to find, and in some areas you even have to order it in advance! An expectation to which is added that of cooking, which is very slow, but rewarded by a very tender and tasty meat. The duck is prepared stuffed, stewed in a banana leaf and then quickly fried to make its skin crispy. A real delight that is usually reserved for offerings, so enjoy!

This typical Balinese recipe will allow you to taste an excellent duck stuffed, spiced and wrapped in banana leaves. It is then roasted very slowly for several hours. As you will have understood, this dish is very tedious to prepare! This is the reason why it is increasingly difficult to find this dish in Balinese restaurants…

Cap Cay (stir fry vegetables)

A dish made with sautéed vegetables influenced by the chinese food (tomatoes, beans, cabbage, carrots…) served in a broth base.

Various vegetables, such as cauliflower, cabbage, carrots, baby corn, black mushrooms, fragrant mushrooms Lentinula edodes, leek, dried lily flowers, tofu skins, spring onions, are thinly sliced and sautéed with minced garlic in a wok with a small amount of oil and water. The condiments are fleur de sel, cane or palm sugar, soy sauce, Chinese cooking wine (ang ciu), salted black soybean paste or fermented tofu and sesame oil. . It can be eaten with rice; or add a little water to the wok to cook soy vermicelli with the dish.

Cap cai can be either a vegetarian stir-fry dish. Either become a broth soup when mixed with meat: beef, pork, lacquered duck or seafood (shrimp, cuttlefish, fish and fish balls (bakso)).

Arak

Strong Indonesian alcohol, it’s a kind of brandy made from rice, it looks quite like sake, frankly it’s good! I brought a bottle haha!

Cafe

So there! In Indo, they drink it with the coffee grounds at the bottom of the cup, they do not filter it and it is not soluble. And to go further in the experience (ahah), in Bali the specialty is coffee with mongoose poo (Kopi Luwak) don’t ask us how they came up with the idea…

Instant noodles

You can find them in all the small shops and it’s really cheap (0.20ct) and nutritious: the good plan when you want to eat at a lower cost from time to time!

Gastric problems: because transit is fantastic! In Indonesia, the water is not drinkable: it is not a question of habit or other (like in South Africa or Morocco), nor of comfort (like in Dubai where it is desalinated therefore with a certain taste) but really because the water contains bacteria so even if it is more or less drinkable depending on the corner of the island, it is better to avoid consuming it: even the locals do not drink it. Beyond that, for Bali for the firstimer as we told you above, some of the restaurant seemed clean: you have to be careful with the preservation of the dishes to avoid bacteria!

And the sweet, for the gourmands

Dadar gulung (coconut pancakes)

Don’t be put off by their color! These little thick (almost pancakes) and green pancakes are simply made from rice flour and flavored with pandan, which gives them that special color! Inside, the filling consists of palm sugar and grated and toasted coconut. A real treat!
Want to learn how to prepare them? At Warung Classic restaurant cooking classes (Jl. Kayu Putih, Munduk).

Bubur injin (black rice with coconut milk)

The strange but delicious sticky rice is used to make this dish, often served as a dessert for tourists but which is a breakfast for the Balinese. This black rice is cooked in coconut milk, and served in a bowl with a few slices of fresh fruit, often mango. This tasty delicacy is eaten warm.
An address ? The Kafe Batan Waru (The New Lippo Mall, Jalan Kartika Plaza Kuta, Kuta).

Fruits

In addition to all these typical dishes, you can always find excellent fruits and fruit juices in Bali to accompany your meals: mangoes, papayas, guavas, bananas, pineapples and coconuts, but also fruits to discover such as mangosteens, the rambutans (kinds of lychees) and the pretty dragon fruit.

So? Tempted by a trip to Bali to test these culinary specialties?

BALI, TOO TOURISTIC?

Yes and no ! Bali is big, so it is possible to avoid the many visitors! Most tourists stay in the south towards Kuta, so like us, avoid this part of the island if you want to discover a more authentic and quiet Bali. Don’t worry, in the south, there are still places a little untouched by the crowds, this is the case around Canggu (not Canggu itself, but a little further). You can a scooter and set off to get lost in the surrounding rice fields. Canggu itself is not interesting unless you want to meet expats, Australian surfers and party!

Read also: Tips for Scooter Travelers in Bali | Safety, Price, Road conditions, Driving license and Insurance

Of course, the most beautiful temples in Bali will always be full of people, regardless of the day and the season. This is the case of the magnificent Tanah Lot and Ulun Danu Bratan temples, very popular with Indonesian tourists. But difficult to escape, they are the postcard of the island of the Gods!

It is therefore up to you to choose the places preserved from tourism when organizing your trip. It all depends on what you are looking for! But be aware that in tourist places, you will never be alone, as in all tourist places on the planet! Logical no?

Read also: Bali Airport DPS | Important and Practical Tips to Improve your Experience at Ngurah Rai Airport and Things To Do When Arriving at Bali Airport (DPS) | Tips for Every Traveler As Soon As We Land

WHEN TO GO TO BALI?

In Bali, it is hot and humid all year round. There are two seasons, the dry season from April to the end of October, and the rainy season from November to the end of March. Avoid July and August, and the Christmas period. Early December and March-April seems like the right time to us!

If you stay there during the rainy season and it is rather quiet in Ubud, which is not the case in high season. The downside of the rainy season is… the rain! And this year especially. Usually, there are a few showers at the end of the afternoon, but there it sometimes started to rain from 2 p.m. without stopping! If it doesn’t bother you that much, go ahead!

You will find a lot of information and other ideas… Take a look here Bali or Lombok | Which island to choose for your trip to Indonesia?

So, would you like Bali? If you’ve been to Bali, please kindly leave a reply / comments… Thanks!

Sources: CleverlySmart, PinterPandai

Photo credit: Stockvault (Creative Commons – CC0)

Bali or Lombok? Isn’t it the same thing?

Bali or Lombok? In the end, isn’t it a bit the same? Indeed, Bali and Lombok are two islands located side by side in Indonesia. When you don’t know much about the country, you can wonder if these two islands will not ultimately look a lot alike. I’ll stop you right away, and you’ll quickly realize it if you visit both: there are many differences between these two islands. So how do you choose?

Bali is certainly the most famous Indonesian island for travelers. It is nicknamed “the island of the Gods”, and it is often mentioned that its charm has something bewitching about it. Bali is also one of the smallest Indonesian islands but yet one of the most populated. It has approximately 3.8 million inhabitants. There are small towns where life is good, such as Ubud, located in the center of the island, but also very pretty beaches and superb landscapes of rice fields.

Lombok, which means “chilli”, is an island located west of Bali. It is made up of 3.2 million inhabitants and consists of a very volcanic region, to the north of the island with the Rinjani volcano and a very fertile region to the south, where rice, cotton or coffee again. This island, once not very open to tourism, is now starting to make people talk about it. We discover landscapes of volcanoes, lush vegetation and dream beaches with crystal clear water.

So, what are the similarities between these two islands?

  • Bali or Lombok: common points

If these two islands are very different on certain points, let’s start by discovering the similarities they have.

  • Markets: even if they are better known in Bali (Kuta, Denpasar, Ubud market…), the island of Lombok also has many traditional markets such as Mandalika.
  • The population: if we often mention the kindness of the Balinese, that of the inhabitants of the neighboring island of Lombok also exists. However, the island of Bali is now more touristy. You will therefore find more authenticity in your encounters with the local population of Lombok.
  • Religion: If the island of Lombok is Muslim, like 80% of Indonesia, Bali is Hindu. However, religious life occupies an important place in the daily life of the inhabitants of these two islands. You can therefore discover a multitude of ceremonies and visit many places of worship (temples, mosques) on each of these islands. Buildings that often contribute to the charm of this destination.
  • Fauna and flora: Indonesia is known for its lush vegetation, jungles and important coral reefs. Thus, the islands of Bali and Lombok will be two excellent ways to discover the local flora and fauna during hikes or diving and snorkeling trips: seabed, jungle animals, butterflies and other monitor lizards will necessarily be part of the trip to these two islands.

Read also: Bali Local Ecosystems

Bali or Lombok for the landscapes?

Wondering which is the best Indonesian island when it comes to scenery? Unfortunately, the balance could not be tipped one way or the other. It will mainly depend on your desires and interests.

In Bali, you will of course find landscapes of rice fields such as those of Jatiluwih, classified by UNESCO, those of Tegalalang or even Sidemen. Moreover, it will often be said that the island of Bali is greener than its neighbor Lombok.

Do you rather dream of volcanic landscapes?

So, in Bali, you can survey the south of the Batukaru volcano, the second highest peak on the island, with its 2276 m (7467 ft) altitude. This walk will take you to discover traditional villages but also beautiful views of other rice fields. On the other hand, you can discover Mount Batur which rises to 1700 m (5577 ft) above sea level, wonderful at sunrise.

Volcanic lakes also await you with the Tamblingan and Buyan lake hike which will take you through traditional lands, where local life is in full swing, far from mass tourism.

So Bali or Lombok for landscapes? Finally, in Lombok too, walking enthusiasts will be delighted. The most athletic can opt for the ascent of Mount Rinjani which culminates at 3726 m (12224 ft) altitude. This volcano has a spiritual character for the inhabitants of the island. Indeed, the Sasaks regularly make pilgrimages there and deposit offerings at the top.

On the other hand, if you are looking for a shorter hike, you can opt for the hill of Pergasingan. However, the island of Lombok is also full of waterfalls to discover like that of Mangku Sakti. Finally, you can also walk along the beaches in Lombok. This, in particular to discover the famous rock of Batu Payung, from the beach of Tanjung Aan.

Bali or Lombok: which island has the most beautiful beaches?

When you go to Indonesia, are you mainly looking for an island to relax on a beach? Are you hesitating between Bali or Lombok? No worries ! These two islands will allow you to enjoy white sand beaches and warm and transparent water. In Bali as in Lombok, you can spend hours exploring the seabed. Whether snorkeling or diving.

For example, in Lombok, you can preferably turn to the beaches in the south of the island, which are wilder. In addition, those of the Gili Islands, with postcard landscapes, will allow you to admire fish of a thousand colors.

Read also: 2 Weeks Itinerary in Bali | What to do and visit in Bali for 14 Days | Best Itinerary

While in Bali, you will rather enjoy the beaches around Amed for snorkeling. But you can also discover huge sandy beaches for relaxation, such as those of Jimbaran Beach and Pandawa.

Finally, these two islands are dream spots for surfers. They will find many beaches to indulge their passion. For example, in Bali, Seminyak Beach is ideal for beginners. On the other hand, that of Padang Padang, famous since the film Eat, Pray, Love, will appeal to all practitioners.

To conclude, it must be said that the Gili Islands are truly the pearls of Lombok and it is difficult to compete with them. Travelers often think that the most beautiful beaches are therefore rather on the Lombok side.

The change of scenery: in Bali or Lombok?

For sure: Bali has a special atmosphere. It has been known to bring yoga and meditation enthusiasts together for decades. This is why Bali stands out as THE ideal destination for a stay under the sign of well-being.

However, during the high tourist season (June to September), the island is particularly crowded. This sometimes undermines its charm and authenticity. Is it an island where you will be disoriented? However, the answer is yes. The population, the culture… Everything in Bali will make you travel far from your customs and your daily life. In addition, there are more authentic regions in Bali and the island is attracting more and more expats for its magnetic atmosphere.

Lombok, meanwhile…

Lombok, meanwhile, is not yet well known to tourists. Thus, while some places are popular with travellers, many regions of the island are still authentic. Visiting Lombok will often be an opportunity to discover a new culture. This, in particular through the traditional Sasak villages, where time sometimes seems to have stopped.

For all these reasons, Lombok is sometimes described as “Bali as it was decades ago”. So it’s up to you to make up your own mind.

So, between Bali or Lombok, you have now made your choice. Nevertheless, these two Indonesian islands are complementary. Both can be visited easily during a two or three week stay in Indonesia. The ideal will therefore be to discover Bali and Lombok during your trip. This will allow you to form your own opinion on this question.

Photo credit: Njaj / Pixabay