When I think of Bali, the first word that comes to mind is “honeymoon”.
After all, in the book and movie “Eat Pray Love,” Bali represents love. and in many other films and TV shows, it is depicted as a romantic setting. growing up, I always thought of it as a destination mainly for special celebrations. Back then, there were no direct flights from where I’m from to this Indonesian paradise. At least, no low-cost flights. A trip to Bali was a trip that you prepare for, you save a lot for. Of course, a lot has changed since.
Today, most of us know that Bali is not just a lover’s paradise. The island has something for travelers seeking nature, culture, and adventure. It is also an optimal choice for family trips, solo travels, group holidays, and even company incentive tours.
WHAT’S covered IN THIS GUIDE?
WHERE TO stay IN BALITop budget hotels in Kuta
Top budget hotels in Seminyak
Search for more Bali Hotels!
HOW TO get TO BALIBali airport to Kuta, Legian, Seminyak or Canggu
HOW TO get around BALI
POCKET WIFI RENTAL & local SIM IN BALI
THINGS TO do in BALIBali Instagram Tour
Lempuyang temple and east Bali Tour
Ubud and central Bali Tour
Nusa Penida Tour
Ulun Danu Beratan, Jatiluwih Rice Terraces, and Tanah lot Tour
Bali Food Tour
Other places to check out in Bali
SAMPLE BALI ITINERARYEasy itinerary for 2 Pax
Budget itinerary for 4 Pax
MORE tips FOR THE poor TRAVELER
FREQUENTLY ASKED questions about BALIWhen is the best time to go to Bali?
Do I need a visa to check out Bali?
Do I need polio vaccine to check out Bali?
What plug type is used in Bali?
Where can I exchange my money in Bali?
Where can I find ATMs in Bali?
Is it safe in Bali?
More tips on YouTube ⬇️⬇️⬇️Related Posts:
Bali is Indonesia’s most famous tourist destination. The tourism industry is the province’s main source of income, fueled by tourism-related businesses like hotels and resorts, tour agencies and operators, etc.
Aside from making up the majority of the province’s economy, tourism also led to the development of more sophisticated arts and crafts. It also revived some of the traditional dances and customs that are otherwise left buried and forgotten. natural attractions also abound in Bali — both on land and underwater. Rice terraces, mountains, islands, beaches, jungles, caves, waves, and marine life are the draw for the adventurous. All these and more propelled Bali to rise as one of the world’s top destinations.
Language: the most widely spoken languages are Indonesian/Bahasa Indonesia and Balinese. most people understand and speak English too.
Religion: Over 80% of the residents practice Balinese Hinduism, which is unique in Indonesia, a predominantly Muslim country. It is important to be respectful of their way of life, especially when visiting spiritual sites like temples. The island also observes Nyepi Day (Day of Silence), which we will discuss below.
Time Zone: GMT+8 (Central Indonesia Time). Bali is in the same time zone as Manila, Singapore, and Kuala Lumpur; and an hour ahead of Jakarta.
Currency: Indonesian Rupiah (IDR, Rp). USD 1 is around IDR 14,000; PHP 1 is around IDR 278; EUR 1 is around IDR 15,500 (as of November 2019)
Modes of Payment: most of the stores and restaurants transact in Rupiah, but major credit cards are accepted by most hotels, fine-dining restaurants, and souvenir shops. I noticed that quite a number of establishments have large signs that say they prefer Mastercard. Others like Visa and American express are accepted too.
WHERE TO stay IN BALI
Bali province is composed of Bali Island and other smaller islands clustered on the southeast portion, namely Nusa Penida, Nusa Ceningan, and Nusa Lembongan. The city of Denpasar is the provincial capital.
Bali has the most diverse options in Indonesia when it comes to accommodations. There are guesthouses, inns (losmens), hostels, budget hotels, high-end hotels, resorts, and villas.
The island can be split into four regions: South, North, Central/East, and West Bali. Although it is possible to stay in other regions, the southern portion is the most popular tourist hub. The majority of the accommodations, restaurants, cafes, bars, shopping areas, and attractions are located here.
As you can see on the map, most of the island’s tourist attractions can be found in the South. most visitors choose to stay in the south because of the tourist-friendly services and amenities. Furthermore, it’s accessibility makes it a good base and jump-off point to other tourist destinations in Bali. For me, the most optimal places to stay in the south are the following:
Seminyak. Seminyak is located further north of Kuta. It is like the high-end version of Kuta. Seminyak has plenty of luxury hotels, villas, and spa resorts.
Legian. Legian is a suburb located between Kuta and Seminyak. It offers the best of both worlds — budgetand luxury. This area is tamer compared to both Kuta and Seminyak.
Kuta. Kuta district in Badung Regency has the highest concentration of accommodations in Bali. Although there are high-end hotels here, the town is known for its budget- and backpacker-friendly accommodations.
But if you’re after peace of mind or a more cultural experience, Ubud in Central/East region is also a terrific choice. It’s not as accessible as the beach towns, but it offers a relaxing Balinese getaway.
We’ve discussed these areas in detail in a separate article: best areas TO stay IN BALI!
Top budget hotels in Kuta
Cara Cara Inn. photo provided by the hotel via Agoda
Cara Cara Inn. check rates & Availability! ✅
H-Ostel Bali. check rates & Availability! ✅
Praba Guesthouse. check rates & Availability! ✅
Kuta beach Stay. check rates & Availability! ✅
Yans house Hotel. check rates & Availability! ✅
D Beds Hostel. check rates & Availability! ✅
Top budget hotels in Seminyak
Balinea villa & Spa. check rates & Availability! ✅
Semimpi Basecamp. check rates & Availability! ✅
Room & Vespa Suite 2. check rates & Availability! ✅
Ibis styles Bali Petitenget. check rates & Availability! ✅
Arana Suite. check rates & Availability! ✅
Seminyak Square Hotel. check rates & Availability! ✅
Search for more Bali Hotels!
HOW TO get TO BALI
The primary gateway to Bali is Ngurah Rai international Airport, also known as Denpasar airport or Bali Airport. It is situated in the southern part of the island near the capital, Denpasar, and located between Kuta and Jimbaran. The airport is one of the busiest in Indonesia and connects to major cities and airports, both domestic and international.
Manila is directly connected to Bali. The travel duration between Manila and Bali is approximately four (4) hours. compare flights below:
Travelers arriving in Bali are requested to fill out two forms: custom declaration form and the yellow health declaration Form. No need for Arrival Card. If you are arriving as a family, you need to fill out only one custom declaration Form. Our forms were given to us onboard.
Bali airport to Kuta, Legian, Seminyak or Canggu
A majority of tourists choose these four areas as their bases: Kuta, Legian, Seminyak, and Canggu. all of them are located north of the airport on the southwest coast of Bali. Estimated travel duration:
To Kuta – 30 minutes
To Legian – 1 hour
To Seminyak – 1 hour
To Canggu – 1.5 hours
Here are your options for the mode of transportation from the airport to any of these tourist areas:
Arranged carry services (Example: hotel service and tour operators)
Public transportation (Example: Angkot/Bemo and Trans Sarbagita)
Tourist shuttle (Example: Kura Kura Bus and Perama Bus)
For the detailed post on how to get to Bali and its tourist centers, we created a separate article for that. You may read it here: Bali airport to the tourist Centers.
If you’re a group, a convenient option to consider is a private transfer. An indication that it’s one of the most trusted airport transfer options is the significant number of Klook-affiliated drivers waiting at the Arrival Lobby. all of them, wearing the orange Klook uniform, are clustered in one area. Some transfer packages on Klook also include data SIM cards.
✅ book BALI airport transfer HERE!
HOW TO get around BALI
kenjira / Shutterstock.com
There are choices aplenty for the modes of transportation to get around Bali. here are your options:
Joining a group tour. most tourists prefer to join group tours to get to famous attractions. These tours are offered by hotels, travel agencies and tour operators. You can also book the tour ahead online through Klook. We will tackle more of this later on the things to do in Bali section of this guide.
Private Charter with Driver. This is our recommended option if you’re part of a group (with pals or family). This way, you have total control of your time and itinerary for 10 hours. This usually includes an English-speaking driver, gasoline, and driver meal. You just need to discuss it with your driver if your itinerary is feasible. Klook offers several private automobile charter services. Reserve a automobile with driver service here! ✅
Tourist Shuttle. Well, from the name itself, this option is more tourist-friendly than the regular public buses in Bali. These shuttles cover the main tourist destinations in Bali. Kura Kura Bus and Perama Bus are popular among tourists. To contact them, you may check their official websites and social media accounts. Kura Kura Bus has a mobile app too!
Regular Bus. Trans Sarbagita is Bali’s bus rapid system that serves mainly Denpasar and the southern Bali area. It has fixed routes but no fixed schedule. other regular buses normally cover long-distance routes. The fare depends on your destination. However, this is not recommended to take if you are pressed for time.
Bemo or Angkot. These are local minivans. They are normally open and non-airconditioned. They look like vans but they work like Philippine’s jeepneys.
Taxi. For short-distance travel, tourists hop on a taxi. Taxis are relatively low-cost in Bali compared to other countries. The meter starts at IDR 7,000 (PHP25/USD.50/EUR.45) and IDR 6,500 (PHP24/USD.46/EUR.42) per succeeding kilometer. As a rule of thumb, always insist on using the meter.
Ride-Sharing App. Or a ride-hailing app. This should be the most convenient option but it’s a bit tricky to use ride-sharing apps like GoJek and grab in Bali. There are certain streets that don’t allow these vehicles to pass and certain hotels that discourage their guests from hailing a ride using the app.
Motorcycle or automobile Rental. Some travelers who like to be in total control of their time and itinerary opt to rent a automobile or a motorcycle. A motorcycle is the main mode of transportation used by both locals and tourists. The tourist hubs are bombarded by lots of motorcycle-for-rent ads/signboards. The rental rates range from IDR 70,000 (PHP250/USD5/EUR4.5) to IDR 150,000 (PHP540/USD11/EUR10) per day, depending on the type of motorcycle.
Learn more about the rules when driving a automobile or motorcycle in Bali and other important details here: how TO get around BALI!
POCKET WIFI RENTAL & local SIM IN BALI
Photo provided by Klook
There are many available local SIM and pocket WiFi rentals in Bali. You can also get your SIM card or pocket WiFi from Klook!
Pocket Wifi. The better choice if you want to connect more than one device or if your handset is locked to your service company at home. This is also good for those traveling with pals or family members. For those traveling from Manila, you can have it delivered to your home or office before your departure (within Manila only). choose the data package that you need — unlimited, 1GB, 500MB, 350MB or 150MB. Reserve here! ✅
Local data SIM. You can pick it up at Bali Airport. choose your data package. SIM card validity options are 14 days, 25 days, and 30 days. select the service type that you need — data only or data with free calls and texts. get your SIM card here! ✅
Having a reputable Internet connection while traveling is beneficial. It will help you save time and money as you explore. You can access Google Maps, a language translation app, and the currency conversion app. and should you decide to book tours or private automobile with a driver, you can communicate with the local drivers, tour operators, and tour guides via online messaging apps.
THINGS TO do in BALI
The good news is, Bali has a lot to offer. A LOT. You’ll never run out of things to do and places to discover even if you stay for weeks. I have pals who are now based in Bali and they still haven’t explored many parts of the island.
The bad news is, well, Bali has a lot to offer. With so many options, it can be quite challenging to pick attractions and activities, especially if you have limited time. If you’re building a Bali itinerary, it will help to look at them as tour packages. many tours bundle tourist sites according to proximity (attractions closer to each other) or according to your interests. You’re in Bali to see the temples? There are tours for that. Food? There are tours for that. beaches and waterfalls? There are tours for that. Instagrammable spots? You bet there are tours for that, too!
In this section, we’ll do a short rundown of the tours available on Klook to make it less overwhelming. You can also do these tours on your own. If you’re a group, you can do the long-distance tours by renting a private automobile with driver, which is typically more affordable. This way, you have total control of your time and itinerary for 10 hours. This usually includes an English-speaking driver, gasoline, and driver meal. You just need to discuss it with your driver if your itinerary is feasible. Klook offers several private automobile charter services. Reserve a automobile with driver service here