By Ola Endress
Never thought I would visit Bali due to all the media hype that has been around for many years but thanks to my special friends who decided to get Married in Bali, this is one country I will visit over and over again.
There is so much to do and see, so many places to visit and stay that it is impossible to list every decent place in Bali because most of them are (I haven’t even visited 1/4 of whats on offer yet!)
As this is my first time visiting Bali, I will post all the places I have visited during my stay that I recommend doing. I already have a list of all the things I will do next time and already cant wait for when that time will be.
Before you read on and before you travel to Bali, I highly recommend that you stay in different locations and not just one week in the same place. Bali has so much to offer and every place is so unique in its own way. I suggest doing what we did and stay every 2-3 nights in a different place to really make the most out of this city.
What you probably think Bali is like
Most of you would probably think (I know I did) that Bali would be a dirty place where it is easy to get sick and the that the hygiene levels are poor. You are scared because the police and government are corrupt and that you might end up like Nicole Kidman did in that Movie Bangkok Hilton where you could go to jail just for looking at someone, forced to sleep on concrete in someone else’s urine and never to see daylight again.
Hopefully my tips below will make you feel assured that these assumptions that you might have are only half true. Good news is that if you are a smart traveler you will feel safe with nothing to worry about at all. Bad news is if you like your drugs in suitcases then I hope you have your lawyer on speed dial
Arriving in Bali
You can get your money changed over at the airport or you can wait to go into town where the rates work better in your favor. Just look out for the currency office that gives you a cheap rate, there will be lots of them in town.
Ive never experienced an airport quite like this one. Be prepared to have 100s of taxi drivers approach you at the one time. The tough choice for you is that you will have to break someones heart and that you can only pick one. Price to town is around $15(standard).
Where to Stay
Milo’s Home – Jimbaran
Situated right on the quiet beautiful coastal cliffs and away from the busy, noisy city centre, you are rewarded with breathtaking panorama views of the beautiful blue Bali Ocean.
While we were staying here, it was quiet with hardly anyone around. It pretty much feels like you have the whole place to yourself.
Immerse yourself in the Bali experience by sleeping in a Bungalow made out of bamboo and straw. These rooms are very comfortable and comes with an outdoor/indoor shower which makes you feel like you are showering in nature.
I recommend staying here no less than 2 nights so that you have time to explore the surroundings. The staff are super friendly and loved my stay here.
Facilities: Spa pool overlooking the ocean, swimming pool, bar, restaurant, day beds, beach directly below Milo’s (with waves as well yay!)
Food: You can purchase food at the restaurant or you can go down to the main beach (highly recommend doing) and enjoy a nice lunch/dinner while soaking in the reggae music being played and watching the surfers catch waves in front of you
How to get around: Hire a scooter, it is so much fun and only $3 a day (not even joking)
Check out some of the other photos taken while we were at Milo’s below..
New Pondok Sara Villas – Seminyak
Located right in the heart of Seminyak, we couldn’t have picked a better place to stay!
It literally is a 1 minute walk to the lively Seminyak town centre and beaches. Surprisingly you hear absolutely no traffic from the busy roads while staying in the Villas.
You get a whole private villa to yourself and it is beautiful. I highly recommend staying here if you want to spend some time in Seminyak.
Facilities: Own private pool, massive outdoor living area, outdoor shower and bar (near reception).
Food: I recommend ordering some room service, we got so much food to share between two people! The food in Bali is so good and what makes it even better is that the prices are ridiculously cheap!
How to get around: You can pretty much walk to everything from this place but if you need to go further you can grab a taxi which is easily accessible outside the hotel.
Gending Kedis Luxury Villas – Jimbaran
If you want nature, peace and tranquility then this is your place! this is is a beautiful place to stay and I recommend staying here if you want a jungle feel to your Bali experience.
You are completely secluded in the surroundings with nothing but beautiful green forest.
I loved this place but if you are going to stay in Jimbaran then definitely go with Milo’s if you only have one choice.. if not then definitely stay here as well.
Facilities: Private outdoor pool, really nice bathroom and a beautiful bed! Massive hotel pool and restaurant.
How to get around: Hire a scooter for $3 a day as it is a long walk down to the beach and restaurants.
Where to go explore - must dos!
Tegenungan waterfall – Sukawati – 1 hour drive from Seminyak
Uluwatu Temple – Uluwatu – 30 minutes from Jimbaran
Climb Mount Batur – Volcano – You will need to arrange a guide (one below)
Sacred Monkey Forest – Ubud – 1 Hr 20 min drive from Seminyak
Other things to do:
Tegenungan waterfall – You can also climb to the top of this waterfall as well, there’s a little path to the right of the waterfall.
I recommend hiring a private driver for the day if you want to do this, works out to be $60 for the whole day and he will take you anywhere you would like to go.
You can find a private driver in Seminyak where they will approach you and ask if you need one. They are really friendly people and like we did I suggest opening up your heart and take your driver out for lunch with you, he will make a great third wheel =)
This is a must do if you are visiting Bali and haven’t done it before.
When you arrive to the temple and are not already wearing knee length clothing ( I didn’t) then you will need to hire a sarong at the entrance point for $2.
This is a traditional Balinese temple where it is a place of worship for the Buddhist Hindus.
Take a walk along the magnificent coastal cliffs and feel spiritually awakened during your visit.
Warning: take note of the cheeky monkeys, these monkeys aren’t very nice and I learnt this hard way. Don’t wear anything on your head, especially sunglasses! they will steal them and you may never see them again.
I tried to get my glasses off one of them but they will attack you if you try and steal it back off them. Luckily one of the guides that was there at the time bribed the monkey with nuts in exchange to give me my glasses back and it worked!
Price: $2 AUD per person
Recommendation: Hire a guide for nothing at least he will be able to protect you from the monkeys, give you a history lesson and take photos for you.
Mount Batur –
One of the most incredible experiences I will never forget. If you are up for the challenge of climbing for 3 hours up a massive volcano (one way) then do it!
The 1am wake up is worth it and trust me you probably have never seen anything like it at the top.
Price: Around $80 AUD per person
What to expect: Early wake up, very long strenuous walk up the volcano in complete darkness, breathtaking views once you’ve reached the summit and you are provided with a lovely breakfast and hot chocolate (just do it for the hot chocolate at least)
The tour guides are so friendly, helpful and they even pick you up and drive you home after.
I recommend using the one we used at
Sacred Monkey Forest – This is a great way to get up close to experience these cute monkeys (much more friendly than the ones at Uluwatu Temple)
Buy lots of bananas in the forest and I suggest you don’t wear your nicest pieces of clothing. If you want the monkeys to climb you, search for lice on your head or try to steal bananas out of your pockets (they are smart) then expect to get peed on all over like I did. Their pee smells toxic but the good thing is that people wont come anywhere near you. It is really hard to wash out the smell so I ended up throwing away my shoes and clothes (may they RIP)
Recommendation: After visiting this place go and explore Ubud. The shopping markets next door are really good and you will definitely not go home empty handed.
Seminyak Beach - Spend the day/night on Seminyak beach. There are plenty of restaurants and bean bags to sit on while you sip on some cocktails and take in the beach vibes.
Cocoon Beach Club - This is a fun place to come if you want to listen to some music while you drink and swim. This place goes mental on some days and during the night as well, just make sure you lookout for the event dates.
Price: Minimum spend on the menu is $30 if you want to secure a daybed (worth it) ..cocktails are so good!
Potato Head Beach Club - Expect this place to be really busy but the views are lovely and the atmosphere is great.
Make sure you make a booking to deserve the best seats (day beds) otherwise there’s a whole pool bar to sit on =)I recommend getting yourself a Zombie stat! so good!
Ayana Hotel - While you are in Jimbaran I recommend taking a look at this stunning hotel. It is so big that there is even a golf course on it and the only way people get to their rooms is by cart.
Bring your swimmers and try out all of their pools, they are all unique and fun! There is even a water slide but don’t get your hopes up like we did.. you have to be 12 years or under to go on it =(
Make sure you visit the rock pool bar it is incredible! (make a booking, dress code applies).
Tegalalang Rice Terrace -
This is also a must do while you are in Bali! Walk along hundreds of rice fields and take in the Bali working culture.
Price: $5 to get in and be prepared to bring some change to donate to the farmers working around the rice fields
– Take travel bug a few days before you head over to avoid your trip being ruined by spending the whole holiday in the toilet (you can get this at most pharmacies)
– Don’t drink the tap water or use tap water for your toothbrush (use bottled water)
– Ask for no ice in your drinks otherwise make sure the place you are at uses filtered bottle water to make ice
– Hire a private driver for the day to get to places that are far away ($50 – $60 approx)
– Always make sure you are respectful to the Balinese culture and if you can be generous tip the locals =)
– Travel under dressed (so none of the attention is on you), the security at the Bali airport can be corrupt here and target you.
– I suggest wrapping your suitcase in Cling wrap before you leave, you can do this at the airport for $15 AUD (just for extra security)
– Try not to get involved with drugs and be safe!
That’s it! Thanks for reading, please feel free to leave a comment or feedback. The next edition to my blog is on its way shortly! You wont want to miss it, already excited to share.
Remember, you only have 1 life so make it count!
Thanks to the hotels featured in this post and all of their staff for making our stay so enjoyable!
Until next time.. Selamat Tinngal!