The South of Bali is one of the most popular parts of the island. If you’re looking for things to do in Bali you will find that the South has a lot to offer. There’s the shopping, beaches, water sports madness and the partying. It’s a great place for tourists and an exciting place to explore.
So in no particular order, I’d like to share with you 15 great things to do in the South of Bali. Let’s start. 🙂
1. Cafe hopping
If you are a big fan of coffee or sweet desserts, there are several places that I would recommend trying. Well.. There are actually a lot of nice cafes that I haven’t got the chance to try, but here are my favourites.
Anomali Coffee – Seminyak
Anomali coffee is one of the best places to go if you would like to taste coffee from across Indonesia. It is like a chain and you can also find Anomali coffee in Ubud (check my things to do in Ubud here) and also in Jakarta.
Mugshot Coffee – Legian
Mugshot Coffee cafe isn’t very fancy. The place is mini, but they do have very tasty coffee.
Angelita Patisserie – Kerobokan, Seminyak
This cafe is located on Jalan Raya Kerobokan (no. 10A to be exact). It is a great place for dessert lovers. Some good friends of mine said that this is the best place to be if you are talking about pastry.
Corner House – Seminyak
Though a lot of people like to come here for the food, I come here for their coffee. Other than that, the restaurant (especially on the second level) is relaxing. There are high ceilings, big windows and it’s very airy. It’s also a very comfortable place to work or read your book. Machinery Cafe Bali (MCB) – Canggu
Machinery Cafe Bali, which is located in Canggu was opened in September 2015, is quickly becoming one of the favourite places to get brunch and coffee. I love their fruit platter (dragon bowl) to the moon and back.
Bali is synonymous with Surfing. Whether you are an expert or just learning how to surf, South Bali can accommodate it all. Kuta, Legian, Canggu, Uluwatu, and also Nusa Dua, all have plenty of surfing spots. Be careful of the busy surfing places like Kuta, local surfers can be quite aggressive about getting the waves.
3. Diving and Snorkeling
The South of Bali is great for dicing. Tulamben is one of the best diving spots (yes, according to me) in Bali. There is also Nusa Penida, which is an island located to the southeast of Bali. It’s also close to Nusa Lembongan and Nusa Ceningan.
Nusa Penida is famous for its Mola-mola (Ocean sunfish), usually you can see them from July – October, and also Manta rays. Keep in mind that you need to be an advanced certified diver or have logged a large amount of dives if you want to go here. Nusa Penida is famous for its strong current.
Even if are not interested in Diving, I’d still recommend Nusa Penida. A lot of people say that Nusa Penida is like Bali several years ago. You can catch a speed boat or public boat from Sanur harbour, Padang Bai harbour or Benoa harbour to the island.
4. Devdan show in Nusa Dua
While the Ramayana Ballet performance is one of the things that you should watch while you are visiting Yogyakarta, Devdan show is the best attraction in Nusa Dua. If you are in to performances and would love to see Indonesian art in a nutshell, you definitely should check out this show.
The show is held Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday (from 7:00-8:30 pm) and involves hundreds of dancers and performers. It is a mixed theatrical performance, with dance and also acrobatics. Though there were a lot of interesting scenes, my favourite part of Devdan show is the duo strap.
5. Explore the beaches
Island life is always about beaches. Some of my personal favourites are Petitenget beach (beaches along Petitenget beach are also great for sunset), Balangan beach and Nusa Dua beach. I am sure that there are plenty of other nice beaches in South of Bali you can visit.
South of Bali is great for shopping. If you are on a budget you can check out the streets of Kuta or Legian. If you have money to spend you should definitely check out Seminyak. Besides being a great area to find surf brands and bikinis (that most of the time are on special offer), you can also find accessories (a lot of friendship bracelets and statement necklaces scattered around the South of Bali).
Some of my personal favourites that I think you should check out are:
Jewel Rocks. A great place to go if you want a hippie kind of style of jewelry. Besides bracelets and necklaces, Jewel rocks also sells some personal finds from the owner who collects things as he travels around the world, like cute fabric from Peru.
Address: Jalan Petitenget No.1 A, Kuta Utara, Bali 80361
Ni Luh Djelantik. Go here if you are looking for comfy and high quality shoes. Ni Luh Djelantik famous for offering hand made goods of great quality.
Address: Jalan Raya Kerobokan, Kuta Utara, Kabupaten Badung, Bali 80361
Bamboo Blonde. There are a lot of clothing stores in Seminyak, but Bamboo Blonde is definitely one of my favourites.
Address: Jalan Raya Seminyak, Kuta, Kabupaten Badung, Bali
Joger Bali. Joger is a must-go shopping place for locals, especially people who are visiting Bali for the first time. Joger items are considered a souvenir from Bali. You can get Joger sandals, t-shirt, key-chains, etc. It is like getting an Eiffel tower key-chain when you go to Paris.
Address: Jalan Raya Kuta, Kuta, Bali
Geneva Handicraft Supermarket. Looking for souvenirs from Bali? You can find almost everything here. Super crazy stocks and varieties. My foreigner friend spend hours at this supermarket, a great collection at a reasonable price (and no need to bargain!).
Address: Jalan Raya Kerobokan, Kuta Utara, Kabupaten Badung, Bali 80361
7. Do the Catamaran
Last time I visited Bali I tried the Catamaran. I didn’t know that sailing can be so relaxing and fun. 20 minutes was passed by very quickly. Our catamaran driver said we should bring soft drinks and beers on our next ride and we can spend more time enjoying the day. Sounds pretty tempting doesn’t it?
8. Night Life
There is no end to discussions about the nightlife of southern Bali. You’ll see plenty of young tourists go out around 9 pm to enjoy the nightlife and party until the early morning. There are so many places to party here, especially around Kuta, Legian and Seminyak and up to Canggu. If you have a favorite party spot in South Bali then let me know in the comments below.
9. Spoil your tummy
There are a lot of amazing restaurants with great food scattered around the South of Bali. It seems like there are new restaurants popping up every single day! Here are some of my favourite restaurants to try in South Bali:
A big fan of meat? Eat well is a great place to go. There is plenty to try ranging from the pork, beef, lamb through to chicken dishes. I personally like their burger, it is super tasty. One major problem here is the super tiny parking lot, but still it is worth the struggle.
Address: Jalan Raya Basangkasa, No. 36, Seminyak, Kuta, Bali 80361
If you are looking for a Mexican splash during your time in Bali, Motel Mexicola is the one. Guacamole, tacos, tortillas and other Mexican dishes are provided here. Besides the tasty food, they also have a great interior design that is very Mexican!
Address: Jalan Kayujati No. 9 X, Petitenget, Bali 80361
It is still possible to enjoy meals surrounded by rice fields in the South of Bali. Come to Nook Bali and you’ll be able to have your Indonesian or western meals in the open air. Good atmosphere and tasty food.
Address: Jalan Umalas 1, Kerobokan Bali
Indra the owner of Secret Cafe is a really friendly person. She decorates her little cafe in a surfing theme with a positive vibe. You can get tasty salad, sandwich and great coffee here.
Address: Jalan Siligita No.27, Nusa Dua, Bali
Layali Lebanese Restaurant and Lounge
If you are looking for a relaxing place to have a shisha fun time, Layali can be a great choice. It is located in Legian and provides great shisha and mint tea.
Address: Jalan Raya Legian Kaja no.445, Kuta, Bali 80361
10. Watch the sunset at Uluwatu sea temple
Uluwatu temple is one of the most beautiful temples in Bali (I also adore Ulun Danu Bratan temple by the lake Bratan). Visiting Uluwatu temple is a must, though you should be extra careful about the monkeys in Uluwatu (yes, they are much more aggressive than monkeys in Ubud). Also don’t missout on the opportunity to watch the sunset and Kecak dance at the temple
11. Massage and spas
You’ll be surprised how cheap it is to get a message or spa in Bali. And the best part of it is, it does a great service. Jari Menari is one of the best places for a massage, you can find them in Kuta, Seminyak and also Nusa Dua.
For more premium option, there are plenty of hotels with their in-house spa and massage services, one of my favourite is definitely Thalasso Bali. They have plenty of spa packages. The Island Spice – Island Fruit package (120 minutes) for couple is a great option. It costs US$170.00++ for two people.
12. Chill by the beach
Still one of the best places to hang out for a drink and enjoy the sunset in Bali. The Rock Bar is located in Jimbaran, Bali. It’s a favorite with locals as well as tourists.
This vintage style beach bar and restaurant, located in Canggu, is definitely one of the most instagramable spots in Bali. Suitable to enjoy sunset with food and drink at a reasonable price.
Nalu Bowls (though it is not located by the beach, but it has beach vibe) has quickly become a firm favourite. You can find the Bali smoothie bowl shack in several areas: Seminyak, Uluwatu and Canggu. The one in Uluwatu is probably my favourite.
13. The paradise of water sports
Banana boat, parasailing, jet ski, snorkeling, stand up paddling, underwater scooter, yup, name it and you’ll find it in the South of Bali. The most happening thing at the moment is Fly-boarding. I never tried, but enjoyed watching people try to fly. It cost around usd 75 for a 20 minute ride and it looks like a lot of fun.
14. Cooking Class
Bali is famous for its cooking classes, though you might have heard that the best cooking classes in Bali are available in Ubud, worry not because there are also great options in South Bali. Besides cooking class that are provided on the hotel / resort (which most of the time are great-I joined a complimentary cooking class during my stay in Samabe resort), there is also this awesome cooking class hosted by Warung Eny (located at Jalan Petitenget No. 97, Seminyak, Bali).
Bottom line is you should consider to take a cooking class while you are in Bali. You’ll be very proud once you know how to prepare the tasty Sate Lilit Bali and / or the famous Nasi Goreng. Indonesian food is interesting to explore and learn how to prepare. Cooking classes are also a great opportunity to see a bit of local life. Some of the cooking classes give you the chance to visit a traditional market, shop for the ingredients and then prepare the meal.
15. Bird watching – Serangan island
I passed Serangan island when I came back from Lembongan Island to Bali last year. If you are into bird watching and also photography, you should visit this island. Anyway, there is one lady that is really into photography who I followed on Google+, her name is Novita Listyani. She has a lot of beautiful pictures of Bali, starting from the beaches, sunsets, sunrises and everything else in between.
I noticed that Novita also shares a lot of bird pictures, and a lot of them are from Serangan Island. Curious and want to know more about it? Watch this beautiful video – she wrote, the island is considered to be the best spot for migrant waders in Bali.
So, what would like to add to the list things to do in the South of Bali? Let me know if you have any best Bali attractions that I missed out here.
If you are interested in booking accommodation for your holiday in Indonesia I recommend Airbnb. To help you with your booking I have a special discount for you. Book through this link and you will receive a $25 discount on your first booking. For hotel bookings I recommend Agoda for its low price and discounts.