The Island of the Gods is rightly the most popular tourist destination in Indonesia. It’s the quintessential tropical paradise. Every day small offerings of flowers and burning incense sticks are left outside the hotels, bars and restaurants on the island. The gentle sound of a gong signals the passing of a parade of Balinese dressed in white robes. It is this rich culture, which has been enchanting tourists who come to the island for the last few hundred years.
Tourism in Bali is focused around the beaches and towns in the south of the island. Kuta attracts the young partygoers, Canggu has its hipsters, Ubud is where the yogis gather, Seminyak for the young and rich and Nusa Dua is where you go for your all inclusive 5 star resorts. It’s this diversity which makes Bali such an easy choice for a relaxing holiday.
Leaving the city behind you are quickly surrounded by paddy fields and thick forested hills. The roads lead you through small villages and isolated temples perched on the slopes of the hills, the perfect place for a bicycle tour. In the highlands there are dozens of tumbling waterfalls where you can go for a swim, which lead into the rushing rivers where people go white water rafting. Or if you’re feeling adventurous you can spend your time jumping off waterfalls and abseiling on a day of canyoning.
While Yogyakarta is the cultural heart of Java, East Java is the place to visit for dramatic landscapes. Most visitors to the region take a variation of a 3-Day 2-Night tour from Surabaya or Malang to Bromo and then Ijen Volcano. If you have the time include it in your itinerary.
Transport and Infrastructure
A lot of money has been invested in infrastructure in the last decade. The gateway to Bali is the Ngurah Rai International Airport just outside of Kuta, which is undergoing major renovation. Traffic clogged motorways link together the main areas on the island. It’s the ideal place to explore if you have your own private transport (renting a car or a scooter is the easiest way to get around).
Public transport is more limited. There are private companies running bus services between the South of Bali and Ubud, but that’s about it. Modern apps like Gojek, Grabcar and Uber are the most convenient way to get between the cities if you don’t have your own transport.
Bali: Local and City Guides
To help you arrange your trip around Bali we collected a selection of our most useful resources for exploring the island. You can find a variety of city guides, hotel recommendations and itineraries in the links below. We hope you find them useful for arranging your holiday.