The Top 10 Things to Do in Bali

Hit the surf in Bali
Hit the surf in Bali | © Footage Lab / Shutterstock
Photo of Elisabetta Crovara
31 July 2018

The impetuous waves, enchanted rainforests, sacred volcanic peaks, emerald rice terraces and the timeless tradition and spirituality. Sounds pretty epic, right? They can all be experienced on the magical island of Bali, along with much more. Check out our guide on the top 10 things to do in Bali and get ready to be spoiled for choice on this dreamy Indonesian island.

Hike a volcano at sunrise

Bali is home to outstanding volcanic peaks, reaching around 3,000 meters above sea level. What’s more exciting than hiking at night to reach the summit and have the sun rising on your tired skin? It will set the tone of your holiday, energizing and reinvigorating both the body and the spirit. Check our guide to Mount Batur sunrise trek and don’t forget to pack your hiking boots.

Sun rising on Mount Agung in Bali | © Chris Nener / Flickr

Potato Head Beach Club

Bar, Indonesian, Tapas, $$$
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One of the best bars in Bali, Potato Head Beach Club
The architectural wonder of Potato Head Beach Club, Bali | © Lavinia Elysia / Flickr
Imagine entering a modern Coliseum through an elliptical corridor. And then, right in front of you, a green-grass amphitheater overlooking an infinity pool merging with the blue ocean. That’s Potato Head Beach Club, opened in 2010 in Seminyak and designed by the world-class famous architect Andra Matin. Another perfect sunset spot, topped up by signature cocktails and mouthwatering tapas. Some pretty epic DJs have played here too, so if you’re keen for a dance, do come here.

Chase waterfalls

Who doesn’t like to chase waterfalls and jump in enchanted jungle water-pools? The northern-central tropical forests of Bali hold magical spots just waiting to be discovered. Head to Git-git, Sekumpul and Tukad Cepung to have an unforgettable taste of what Balinese nature can offer. The fresh water will wake you up from what may feel like a wild jungle dream.

Silvia Njoki at Tukad Cepung Waterfall in Bali | © Silvia Njoki

Tirta Empul Temple

Hindu Temple
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Bathing at Tirta Empul Temple
Bathing at Tirta Empul Temple | © Antonia / Flickr
Locals believe that the sacred water flowing at the Tirta Empul Temple has the power to heal and cleanse their body and soul. Tourists may or may not believe the same notion, but soaking in the spring water in a serene, beautiful temple is an experience not to be missed.

Get lost—metaphorically—in the jungle

The plateau and the highlands around the town of Ubud, offers plenty of choice for jungle treks and adventure. Head north, and explore the area of Munduk. Here the twin lakes of Tamblingan and Buyan will mesmerize you with paths cutting through the ancient rainforest, home to exotic birds and giant trees. And don’t worry, you won’t get lost: a local guide will show you around.

Melanie van Leeuwen / © Culture Trip | © Melanie van Leeuwen / Culture Trip

Single Fin

Bar, Australian, Tapas, $$$
Map View
Sunday’s at Single Fin are famous all over the world. Imagine sipping on an ice-cold beer, looking at the waves and the surfers, listening to the cheering of happy people on holidays, all with a chilled and relaxed vibe. Check their events schedule as well, because some pretty good bands occasionally play here.

Tegalalang Rice Terrace

Natural Feature
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© stefano baldini / Alamy Stock Photo
The postcard-worthy scenery of delicate rice terraces surrounded by lush palm trees and tropical greeneries makes Tegalalang a visually appealing sight to behold. But exotic beauty is only part of this attraction’s charms. Ubud’s rice terraces are purposefully built to facilitate effective use of water resources and organize local social units. In other words, these glorious rice terraces do not only attract tourists from across the globe; they actually bring people together and reflect the values and philosophy of the Balinese culture. Tourists can also explore the villages nearby to hear fascinating local stories and observe the custom and lifestyle of people who built and maintain the glorious rice terraces.

Watch a traditional Balinese dance in Ubud

Music Venue
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Balinese Dance | © rainy city / Flickr

Balinese dance is a century-old tradition and core element of the local culture, religious belief and day-to-day life. According to the traditions, there are several types of dance, with some including aspects of trance and possession. If you want to see one of the most famous, head to the town of Ubud and go to the Ubud palace to watch the Ramayana ballet.

The Yoga Barn

Yoga Studio
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The main yoga studio at The Yoga Barn, in Ubud, Bali.
The main yoga studio at The Yoga Barn, in Ubud, Bali | © The Yoga Barn
An oasis of peace in the heart of the island, The Yoga Barn is more than a simple studio: it’s a well-rounded experience of healing, wellness and community. Located in central Ubud, hidden off a little alley, the barn has seven yoga studios and 100 yoga, meditation and dance classes per week, together with healing and Ayurvedic treatments. And that’s not all — it also offers astrology sessions, acro yoga jams, ecstatic dance, kirtan concerts, Monday movies, all topped off with the delicious vegan, raw and ayurvedic food of the Garden Kafe. Paradise on earth.

Go surfing at one of Bali’s beautiful beaches

Even if you are not a surfer, you cannot possibly leave Bali without trying to ride a wave. Head to Seminyak or Canggu beach. Rent a board from one of the many rental places and ask the owner to give you a lesson. You’ll feel so alive in so many ways. If you are a pro, Uluwatu is the place to be, the best swell and surfers bars are found there.

Surfing in Bali | © wavehavenbali / Flickr

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