A knack for travel and exploring places, brought husband and me to Bali, the most beautiful island in Indonesia. This was our first international trip together hence it was natural to be apprehensive and scared about lot of things; preparing a perfect itinerary being one of them. We chose to do this trip on our own without help from agents. So we collected a hell lot of info from blogs, magazines and personal experiences to create a detailed plan. Keeping in mind the Indian culture and mindset, here is a 6 day itinerary for your Bali vacation.
Those travelling for the first time should read about the preparations you need for Bali.
The day you reach, you would not have much to do. (We utilized the half day figuring out bike renting shops, where to buy sims from, eating joints, markets nearby and of course the hotel property. Since we were unable to sleep in flight, we dozed off quickly at night on day zero).
Depending on where you stay, you can alter your sightseeing plan accordingly. Few people prefer changing hotels while others stick to the same hotel. I stayed in Hotel Suris Boutique in Kuta (South Bali) and did not move out.
Tip– Advisable to book your hotel in north region if you want to explore North Bali. Since it is quite a long distance from South Bali, it would be wise to stay in Singaraja, Lovina, Banjar Gitgit, Sembiran or, Sangsit. The best way to travel within Bali is to hire a scooter. However riding the scooter is too tedious for long distance. Plus there are traffic snarls. (You cannot jump traffic signals or you’d be required to cough up a hefty penalty. We had calculated the distance of each spot from our hotel and planned the trips suitably.
Post breakfast, head to Ubud to experience the beauty of two most revered places, namely Ubud Palace and Ubud Monkey Forest.
Ubud Palace wont take more than thirty minutes while you can spend two to three hours in Monkey Forest. Have lunch in one of the fancy restaurants there. (I ate at a vegan restaurant). Spend some time exploring the art market and surprise yourself with the intrinsic paintings and artifacts that make great souvenirs to carry home.
If you are tired after exploring Ubud, you can head to the lush green rice paddies or hike along the trails. (We headed to Kuta and explored Balinese life in Kuta market. Kuta beach and market are barely one kilometer from Hotel Suris Boutique)
-To watch the blue expanse of endless oceans and exotic beaches, head to Nusa Dua in the morning. The journey itself is exciting as you would cross a toll bridge over the sparkling ocean. Being the Southern most part of Bali, it takes more than an hour to travel from Kuta to Nusa Dua.
Tip: Carry sufficient food and water to the beach. Though the shacks have a small market offering food and beach necessities, we suggest to refrain from them.
Nusa Dua boasts the most scenic beach of Bali and the exciting Waterblow. Watch the surfers ride the waves while you soak in the sun. Water blow is a place to watch the nature’s fury where water gushes into a rock cavity and blows up like a fountain. If History interests you, then you might want to visit Museum Pacifika, which is right at the beach compound.
Have lunch and rest in the shade.
-Head to Tanah Lot Temple by 3 pm. Witness the Balinese procession and the beautiful temple against the gorgeous backdrop of sunlit ocean. The marketplace has several eating joints where you can have your dinner. (We had ours in Naty’s). Jam packed roads and an action packed day will leave you tired. Head to your hotel and crash.
-Post a heavy breakfast, drive to Uluwatu temple. Also known as Uluwatu Cliff Temple, this gorgeous beauty is an ancient sea temple on the edge of a cliff in Uluwatu. Frequented by monkeys, the temple holds a spectacular cultural show in the evening.
-Not very far from the temple is Uluwatu beach, popular for surfing, high tide and adventurous dogs.
Have lunch at a restaurant on Uluwatu temple road.
-Post lunch visit Malini beach resort (which was under construction in August 2017) for the gorgeous views. It is nature lovers’ haven. You can also visit Padang Padang Beach a popular surfing spot with sparkling white sand. It is not easy to reach this place and that makes it more exciting.
-Head to Garur Krishna Cultural Park to witness the tall structures from Hindu history and Indonesian wildlife. (We visited only the outside perimeter and went to Kuta beach to spend the rest of evening watching the gorgeous sunset.)
-You can spend the evening in market, have dinner and return to hotel.
Leave early morning from your hotel for trekking or rafting activities. (We had bought a rafting package from Bali Sun Tours). The river rafting expedition was to start from Giyanar, around 40 km from Kuta. The rice paddies and beautiful forests were a visual treat. Rafting or trekking activity would consume more than half a day.
Post lunch, utilize rest of the day sightseeing Jimbaran village. (We went to Kuta beach to participate in releasing baby turtles activity which was the best experience for us in Bali)
– (This was the last day of our stay in Bali and we wanted to make the most of the day). If you are a nature lover and want to watch a colorful paradise, visit the Bali Bird Park in Giyaniar. Right opposite to the Bird Park is the reptile park and close to it is the Bali Jungle Safari.
-Post lunch leave for Goa Gajah, an ancient cave temple from 9th century.
-You can skip Giyanar trip in case you want to visit the popular temple Pura Danu Ulu Beratan Temple. (We had to give this temple a miss since this was 60 km from Kuta. Quite a long distance!)
-The evening will leave you with ample time for shopping and packing your luggage. (We visited a mall near our hotel and strolled around the beautiful Dharam Vihara Temple)
-Get your bags ready, have breakfast and leave for the airport. Make sure you have enough time before flight departure since Bali’s narrow roads are often choked.
-Stroll inside the airport and go on a shopping spree.
-Your itinerary can always be tweaked depending on your preferences or the places you stay in. For instance, you may not want to go rafting but go trekking the volcano mountains. You can stay in Jimbaran if you like the quiet village life. To visit Pura Danu Ulu Beratan temple, it is advisable to stay close to that place and not stay in South Kuta like we did.
No itinerary is perfect, but its you who can make it perfect. Remember to research extensively and use your instincts in real situations. What was your ideal itinerary for Bali like? Do share with us. In case you need help with yours, we would be glad to help. Drop in your comments in the comments section below or get in touch at [email protected]