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  • Simeon Anastasov
  • "2 Weeks in Bali, what to do/experience/see/eat/drink?"

Simeon Anastasov

Sofia, Bulgaria

2 Weeks in Bali, what to do/experience/see/eat/drink?

Hey guys,

I will be going to visit Bali in April with my gf and some friends. We're interested in everything, so please let me know of everything touristy or not to do / see / experience.

1. I was told of Balinese cooking lessons - are they any good?

2. Also swimming with dolphins? Are they kept captive or its in the open sea ? Any places to recommend?

3. Is lulur a thing to try?

4. Some typical ceremonies / dances to see?

5. Rent a car advice? Do's vs. Don'ts?

Thanks in advance!

Simeon

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1 Answer

  • Damien Hatton

    top answer by

    I've been to Bali more times than I care to count. The number one thing for me is the surfing but that experience is limited to those who can surf!

    Your average visitor goes to Bali for the following:

    Shopping

    Stuff is cheap in Bali, a wander around Kuta and Legian yields an amazing array of stuff to buy from fashion to souvenirs and jewellery. Barter like crazy or you'll get ripped off. Seminyak is my preferred place to shop (and stay), it’s a little more expensive but classier, better quality shops in my opinion.

    Massages

    Again cheap, most resorts and hotels have their own masseurs where you'll pay a little more than on the street. I recommend Bodyworks in Seminyak. They do all kinds of massage and scrubs and relaxation in a beautiful setting, they do the Lulur thing you mentioned. Balinese masseurs a generally very good and tread the fine line between pleasure and pain! But you'll always walk out feeling better for it.

    Relaxation

    Hang by your pool and do nothing. We all dream of it but it gets boring pretty quickly!

    Ubud - Monkey forest & cooking schools

    Ubud is worth a visit, it’s a town in the mountains that offers a change from the beach tourist setting. I did an excellent cooking school there that took you on a tour of the markets and then we made some delicious food in a nice house in the rice paddies. The Balinese cuisine is fantastic. They also have a kind of theatre area in the centre of town where you can see the Balinese ceremony and dancing. I find it boring as hell personally but you should experience it yourself and make your own opinion. Most hotels/resorts on Bali offer evening tours/dinners that feature the dancing as well.

    Tanah Lot Temple

    Tourist buses go there at sunset where you can jostle to get a photo of the temple in the sea.

    Nusa Lembongan

    This is a little island near Bali. You can book all kinds of nature and adventure tours as part of a trip here including swimming with dolphins, manta rays and snorkelling. Book a day trip to Nusa Lembongan for adventure fun activities, get a fast boat so you don't waste time in transit. I haven't done the dolphin thing myself so I can't recommend anyone for that.

    Rock Bar

    Probably the most awesome setting of a bar I have ever seen. Go there for some overpriced cocktails at sunset and soak up the amazing surroundings.

    Nightlife

    If you wanna party, Bali delivers. Lots of drunk Aussies on Stag/Bucks/Hens nights in Kuta. Head to Seminyak for some of the nicer venues. KU DE TA BALI and Potato Head Beach Club Bali come to mind and are worth an afternoon/evening.

    Car Hire

    I strongly advise against hiring a car in Bali. The traffic is disasterously busy all the time in the tourist areas, driving anywhere by car is slow and frustrating. There is a high chance you'll have an accident, the road rules are virtually non-existent, it's crazy stuff. You have two better options. Get bemos (taxis) everywhere, they're very very cheap and the drivers know how to navigate the crazy traffic, just make sure they put their meter on and don't make up a price. Alternatively arrange a price with a driver BEFORE you leave with them. Your other transport option is to hire a moped (motorbike). Motorbikes are a far more practical way to get around because you can get around the traffic. They're also cheap to hire and fun. Just be careful, it's a motorbike and they can be dangerous, but they're far more easy to get around in than a car. Beware of police trying to trick you into paying them for breaking a road rule. Bali cops can be crooked so don't take any crap from them.

    Indonesia is a developing country and Bali is no different, it can be a bit rough around the edges in places but the people are wonderful, the culture is fascinating and there is much beauty beyond the busy tourist areas. You’ll have a great time!

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    • Simeon A.

      Simeon A.

      Whoa! That's what I call an exhaustively complete answer! Thanks a bunch for your time and effort, it's priceless! If you happen to be around in Bali in the beginning to the middle of April I will be honored to buy you beers! :) As a matter of fact we're planning on staying for couple of days on Lembongan. If you can please give me more details or directions what to seek there regarding sea related activities, that would be awesome. It's always better to hit already approved place. Also I have a few more questions regarding the bemo alternative. It will be the 4 of us with few suitcases ... I read that if not privately hired travelling by bemos can be an adventure on its own. Can we book a bemo to get us from and to destination of our liking or they operate on a scheduled route and times ? Thanks in advance and cheers!!! · (0 likelikes)

    • Damien H.

      Damien H.

      Hi Simeon, no problem. Bemos are basically unofficial taxis and are usually minivans. Some drivers are safe, some drivers are dangerous, you never know what you're gonna get! Your safest bet is to use the official taxis (they look like a typical taxi) but you would need 2 separate taxis to fit all 4 of you with suitcases. If you want to travel together you can arrange someone with a bemo minivan to take you. There will be plenty of bemo drivers willing to take you from the airport. A trip to Kuta is about 50,000rp which is less than $5US. Don't pay more than 100,000rp to Kuta. If the driver drives to fast/dangerous, just tell him to slow down, they're generally reasonable. In terms of Jimbaran activities, I can't recommend anyone personally. You're best off shopping around when you get to Bali, there are plenty of places to book activities in Bali and on Jimbaran itself. · (0 likelikes)

    Mentioned in this answer:

    1. Kuta (neighborhood)
    2. Legian (region)
    3. Seminyak (city)
    4. Bodyworks (attraction)
    5. Ubud (city)
    6. Tanah Lot Temple (attraction)
    7. Nusa Lembongan (island)
    8. Rock Bar (restaurant)
    9. KU DE TA BALI (restaurant)
    10. Potato Head Beach Club Bali (attraction)

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