Bali is a top destination for visitors from all over the World, but from Australia and New Zealand convenience and affordability makes it even more desirable.
And why wouldn’t you visit Bali? There are plenty of accommodation choices to choose from from luxury villas to western resorts or Indonesian backpacker vibe. The ocean is warm and there are a selection of clean beaches to bathe or surf at. Entertainment and shops are everywhere you look and the Indonesian culture has not yet been lost to the flurry of tourism. What was once purely the gateway to infamous Kuta is now an entire country to explore.
Depending on your preferred holiday style, there are specific regions within Bali to suit. Ubud, Sanur, Seminyak, Kuta, Nusa Dua or Canggu are the most visited range, and it can be difficult to know which one would be most suitable for your needs. Then factor in the multiple islands positioned just off the Bali coast like Nusa Lembongan or the Gili Islands, and you’re at risk of heading somewhere which – while is beautiful – is not entirely the holiday style you were after.
Fear not though; we have all the best places to go in Bali covered from top to toe, so you can sit back, relax, and enjoy your holiday.
Kuta is the original go-to spot for Bali visitors and through the 90’s and prior was Bali’s main tourist hub. Located on the coastline 10km North from Bali’s International airport (Denpasar) Kuta is convenient, accessible and humming with activity. This is where you will find row upon row of markets selling Bali’s trademark knock-off gear, small and inexpensive food vendors at every turn and large bars brimming with activity, eager to draw travellers in until the wee hours. This is where Bali began.
Kuta beach is 8km long and has beginner waves for those learning to surf. In fact, if you’re planning to surf in Bali but have little to no experience, Kuta would be a great choice to hire a board on the beach cheaply and head into the waves. Unintimidating would be one way to describe Kuta for surfing an with beach bars and restaurants lining the sand, you’ll have everything you need before moving further afield.
Full of energy and the authentic Balinese experience – haggling for low prices, beach massages, strolling about the markets – Kuta must be experienced at least once. Keep in mind that while this was the place to be back in the day, other areas of Bali have since left Kuta in their shadows. For the best placed to go in Bali, Kuta now has slid down the list.
One of the latest hot-spots for a Bali holiday, Seminyak ticks all the boxes for many holiday makers. Located 5km North along the coast from Kuta, you’ll find accommodation which is newer, trendier and with more of a high-end feel to the backpacker vibe of Kuta. One of the appealing aspects to Seminyak though is that it is walking distance (or a cheap cab ride) to both Kuta and Canggu which means travellers can spend nights in luxury yet embrace the craziness desired in a Kuta day trip.
Resorts on the beach front are the way to go in Seminyak. Picture clean oceans with white sandy shores in view from your infinity pool. When you’re bored of relaxing (is that even a thing?) then simply retreat back to your resort beach bar or swim up to the bar inside your pool (yup they have those in Bali!) to remind yourself you don’t have to go to work tomorrow.
Canggu tends to have collected the Kuta crowd who now have slightly more disposable income than the old Kuta crowd once did. This is the hip place to be and if you are 20 something you will want to find your way here. Home to the famous Potato Head Beach Club, spend your days bikini clad with cocktail in hand listening to the spinning beats of D.J’s, and socialising with fellow travellers. Classy accommodation, nice beaches and plenty of entertainment; best place to go in Bali for socialites.
Ubud is inland and utterly peaceful. Picture majestic resorts tucked away in the hills, surrounded by bush and no noise but for a few birds chirping; that’s romantic Ubud. You could almost say there are two sides Bali. There’s the crazy energy that comes with the beach vibe and then there is the nature driven inland scene where day hikes are prevalent, cycling around rice paddies is popular and feeling a million miles away form anyone is absolutely possible. For travellers who enjoy nature and serenity, that have more than a week in Bali, it is a nice idea to spend a week in Ubud and a week on the coast to experience a well rounded holiday.
Now you’re talking surf life. Uluwatu is known to be one of the best placed to go in Bali for surf and this part of the coast is different to that mentioned before (Seminyak, Kuta, Canggu). Instead of flat beach front where you can walk from your resort to the waves in but a few steps, Uluwatu’s coastline is predominantly cliff faces. Resorts, bungalows, restaurants and cafes are typically perched high above the waves with perfect views of those dropping in or the picturesque sunset you’re ready to admire. Swimming is pertaining still an option in Uluwatu but you’ll tend to find a more active holiday vibe going here with surfing, paddle boarding and beachside yoga at every turn.