50 Things to Know About Traveling to Bali: an A to Z Guide to Explore Bali

50 Things to Know About Traveling to Bali

Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness, and many of our people need it sorely on these accounts. Broad, wholesome, charitable views of men and things cannot be acquired by vegetating in one little corner of the earth all one’s lifetime.

― Mark Twain


1.  Vibrant lives

For you with young spirits and adore dynamic lives, you should choose to stay in Kuta. Kuta is a region in Bali where pop culture exists. Pubs, nightclubs, cafes, five stars hotels, contemporary galleries, and other hangout places scatter everywhere. However, there are also small alleys in Kuta region where you can find cheaper accommodation. The thing is, when you want to experience Bali for 24 hours a day and 7 days a week, Kuta is the best place to stay. Kuta also has a famous beach called Kuta beach that is famous for its beautiful sunset.

2.  Quiet atmosphere

Sanur is just the opposite of Kuta. Many tourists choose to stay in this area because it has relatively more peaceful atmosphere. This place is so perfect for anyone who wants to visit Bali with family members, especially those with kids. There are also various types of accommodations that you can choose, from luxurious hotels to bed and breakfast. The lowest room rate in Bali cost you for approximately $20-$30 per night. Some places apply “bule price” which means slightly higher rates for foreigners. One more thing, Sanur has many small beaches for you to enjoy sunrise.

3.  Hilly and green village

For you who wish to experience a real getaway, you may choose to stay in this village, Ubud. Surrounded by rice fields and green hills, this high land of Bali is a perfect place to escape from your busy life. Although there aren’t many options of accommodation in this area (compare to those of Kuta and Sanur), you can literally find great accommodations that blend seamlessly with the nature. Do not imagine high storey buildings with many rooms in a single alley, Ubud has many cottages and resorts—and some offer private swimming pool and outdoor Jacuzzi—that truly make you feel at home.

4.  Car and motorcycle rentals

Real travelers don’t take taxies (although it is OK to take them occasionally). It is advisable to rent a car, motorcycle, or scooter. All you need to have is an international driving license. However, if you don’t have one, you can go to a Police Station in Denpasar to get a temporally driving/motorcyclepermit which valid until three months. If you don’t speak Bahasa Indonesia, you’d better ask a local to provide you with an interpreter service (contact your hotel, they will absolutely help you with this). Good tips for you: always negotiate the price when you rent any vehicle in Bali, and ask whether the price include any insurance. One more thing, you can also hire a private tour driver along with the car in a package for approximately $100-$150 (depending on the type of the car) for 10 hours (with $10-15 of extra per hour cost). The car can occupy 4-7 people. For motorcycle or scooter rent, the price is about $8-$20 (depending on the type and the duration of renting).

5. Hotel tour service

If you are a first timer, you can use this service that is usually provided by most hotels in Bali. You can start with a one-day package to make yourself familiar with Bali roads and traffics. The tour is usually grouped based on the activities you wish to perform, for example adventurous tour, water sport tour, cultural tour, and many more. However, you can also request a special tour (for example a combination of several packages at once) with different prices of course.  A one-day tour usually cost for about $40-$100 (depending on the hotel) per person, including lunch and drink, entrance fee for all destination spots, insurance, a tour guide, and of course tax.


6. Famous beaches

There are two types of beaches in Bali—famous and unspoiled beaches. The famous beaches include Sanur (famous for its beautiful sunrise), Kuta (seeing a romantic sunset and many hangout places afterwards), Lovina (watching dolphins), Nusa Dua (high-end private beach), Dreamland (relatively unspoiled and clean but quite far from the main city of Bali), Geger beach (clean and safe), and many more. The beaches are usually categorized based on the activities you can perform, for example surfing, culinary, party, sunbath, romantic dinner, etc.)

7. Hidden and unspoiled beaches

Some hidden and unspoiled beaches in Bali have great tourism potentials. However, you have got to prepare yourself with enough food, drinks, and other supplies for there are only few stores or sellers there. Some of great hidden beaches in Bali include: Perasi /Virgin beach (famous for its white sand), Balangan beach (surfing spot), Green bowl (difficult to reach, quiet, the heaven for pro surfers), Amed beach (diving and snorkeling), Dream beach (a small island in the eastern of Bali), Karma beach (a bit expensive and very exclusive), Finn’s beach (beautiful scenery, cable lift, great food), Balian beach (black sand, surfing), and many more. To reach those places, you need extra efforts for most hotel tour services do not include them in their package. Asking a tour guide to take you there is better, otherwise, you can always ask local people for direction.

8. Surfing points

Every beach has unique waves’ characteristics. Therefore, surfers categorize the surfing points based on the character of the waves and the level of surfing expertise. There are beaches for beginners (including Kuta, Legian, Seminyak, BatuGolong-Canggu), intermediate/experience (including Kuta reef, Nyanyi/Muara, Madewi, TukadBalian, Biaung, Segara, Sindhu, MatahariTerbit, Berawa, Echo, and many more), or professional surfers (including  Uluwatu, Suluban, Impossible, Keramas, Bingin, Dreamland, Padang-Padang, and Parerenan). There are also surfing schools for beginners to practice riding the waves. If you are lucky, you can watch international surfing championship (check out Bali surfing calendar).

9. Water sports

If you wish to challenge yourself with some water sports other than surfing, you can visit TanjungBenoa. Teens and young people usually love this place (well, I can say that most kids also love this place but they will feel disappointed for some water sports require certain age or height to be met). You can enjoy snorkeling, sea walking, banana boat, parasailing, wakeboard, water-ski, jet-ski, scuba diving, donut boat, flying fish, and many other breath taking activities here.

10. Diving sites

Talking about water sports and activities in Bali is endless. When it comes to diving, Bali has great diving and scuba diving spots as well. Some of them are Liberty Ship Wreck, Manta Point (observing Manta Ray



Please read all 50 Tips and learn more about this book: 50 Things to Know About Traveling to Bali  by Lisa Rusczyk Ed.D.

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