Bali is all about rugged beauty, exotic culture, historical magnificence and some of Indonesia’s best beaches! There’s some world class surfing opportunities, exciting diving experiences and interesting historical landmarks to visit on Bali – something for everyone! The island is known as “the Island of the gods’ because despite Indonesia being a Muslim country the people of Bali practice Hinduism and subsequently most things on the island have their own god! 80% of Bali’s economy depends on tourism and for better or for worse has shaped the country accordingly. Denpasar is the capital of the island and is located in the south of the island.
- You can meet wild monkeys in the jungle on Bali!
- Bali is one of 17,000 islands that make up what is known as Indonesia!
- The Indonesia archipelago has over a quarter of all marine life in the world!
- The world’s most expensive coffee comes from Bali – the beans are swallowed by the Kopi Luwak animal!
- The word ‘ketchup’ comes from the Indonesian word ‘kecap’ – the word for sauce!
Where to stay on Bali!
There’s a wide range of accommodation available on the island of Bali. You’ll find villas and apartments for rent throughout the island including in south Bali and the cultural centre of the island, Ubud. Wimdu offer a wide range of accommodation from spacious villas suitable for large groups or family holidays, to holiday apartments. You can search for exactly what you need as well, so if you want a swimming pool just tick that box!
Things to Do and See
There’s so much to discover on the island of Bali that we could be here all day talking about what there is to see and do on the island! We’ll give you a rundown of some of our favourite aspects of Bali!
You might imagine Bali’s beautiful beaches to feature sprawling, golden sandy dunes that stretch into the distance but you’d be wrong! As Bali and the surrounding islands are home to active volcanos the colour of the sand is a beautiful black colour. It’s certainly an experience walking on a black sandy beach! Bali’s most popular beaches are located on the south side of the island, and they’re a big draw for the many tourists and backpackers head for these beaches. The cheap cost of living, guaranteed sunshine and good waves has turned the beaches in this area into one of the world’s top surfing destinations. Ask your apartment host where the nearest surfboard rental shop is - there’s never one too far away! Away from the coast Bali’s landscape is equally impressive and unique. You’ll find some of the lushest , greenest land in Indonesia. Rice paddies dominate the landscape of Bali – you’ll either see cultivated rice paddies making full use of the available space or beautiful rolling natural paddies. Bali has several hot springs due to the volcanic nature of the island – one of the best is in the north of the island near Lovina – warm water passes through a series of pools in a lush garden. Bali is a famous spa destination and there are various excellent spa resorts located around the island.
Culture and Temples
Bali is known for having a wide variety of fascinating Hindu temples spread all over the island. Each village on Bali is legally required to maintain three temples – a temple of origin, a village temple and a temple of the dead. As well as these ubiquitous temples there are nine directional temples spread across the island. They are located at strategic points around the island and serve to protect the island’s inhabitants from evil forces. Balinese temples are uniquely designed and no one temple is the same! You must dress appropriately when entering the temples, and sarongs and sashes are available to rent at the larger temples that receive a lot of tourists.
Surfing and Diving!
Many people come to Bali for the excellent water based activities available. Scuba diving is particularly popular and there are many beautiful reefs worth exploring with a mask and oxygen tank! The 1942 wreck of the USAT Liberty is particularly popular with divers - your imagination really is captured by the sight of this once great ship lying on the ocean bed. It’s located on the eastern side of the island Tulamben. Off the north tip of Lowina you can find plenty of Asian dolphins swimming too – the Bali Dolphin Experience allows you to take a boat out to see some of nature’s most special creatures. At Kuta there is a popular water park called Waterbom.
Bali’s Ngurah Rai International airport has recently been upgraded and expanded. It is now easier and quicker to use the airport and the modernisation program has brought Bali into the 21st century. The airport is Indonesia’s third largest airport and is located 30 minutes from Denpasar. Plenty of low cost airlines run flights to Bali from Jakarta and flights to Hong Kong are frequent. Getting to Bali from Java is also a well-serviced route and many buses run between the two islands. The buses connect with ferries to Bali and bus tickets often include connecting ferry tickets too. Getting from Ngurah Rai to your destination is fairly straightforward and there are plenty of public taxis available.
Getting around the large island of Bali can be tricky if you are interested in straying off the familiar beaten track. Bali’s roads struggle to cope with the increasing numbers of tourists on the island, so you’ll need to think about how to get around. If you don’t want to have too much hassle travelling around, then be sure to book your accommodation so that you don’t have too much of a trek between your apartment or villa and public transport. The Perama bus service which operates on the island is probably the best way to get around and the service serves the major tourist destinations.