Bali Tourism

Bali – The Bold and the Bountiful

Bali is stroked by the constant rock and roll of waves. It is powdered with the finest sands. Waterfalls slash down its limestone cliffs. Large stretches of emerald paddy fields wave rhythmically in the breeze. A cup of sunshine is poured all over the land – allowing it to bask and bloom in the warmth. Are we waxing lyrical? Does it sound unreal? Well, Bali is, at first glace extraordinary in its beauty. It is, as many people refer to it, the Land of the Gods. So, here we try and capture heaven in a few humble words. Let’s take a walk across Bali’s bounty and discover what this Indonesian island has to offer us. 

Bali Tourism: A Quick Guide View For bali
Country Indonesia
Capital City Denpasar (Provincial Capital)
Official Language Balinese, Indonesian, English
Dial Code 00-62 + Indonesian Area Code
Population 4.2 million
Currency Indonesian Rupiah
Area 5,780  square kilometres

Highlights of Bali 


Worship

Did we say the land of a thousand temples? Well, challenge accepted. Balinese temples here are known as Pura – and there are many beautiful ones to admire and worship. The largest and holiest of them is the 2,000-year-old Pura Besakih, also known as the Mother Temple of Besakih situated on Mount Agung. If quiet serenity is what you had in mind, after the awe-inspiring heights of the Pura Besakih, then settle down to the quiet lap of water that surrounds Pura Ulun Danu Bratan (the water temple), dedicated fittingly to the water Goddess Dewi Danu. The mighty crash for the sea is the perfect location for the stunning Pura Tanah Lot – dedicated to Dewi Baruna, the sea God. Perched on the edge of a cliff is Pura Luhur Uluwatu, another sea temple that was constructed in the 10th century. Take a dip in the sacred waters of Pura Tirta Empul – dedicated to Lord Vishnu. There are many more temples to be found here, combining history, the elements and reverence that is unmatched.


Nature 

Thank the gods that Bali was sprung from the sea – it gives you a chance to explore stunning and unique landscapes. Visit the West Bali National Park which contains within its green embrace, savannahs, rainforests and mangroves. Otherwise, explore the wilderness under the sea, when you visit Menjangan Island with its pristine waters and bustling coral reefs. Hike the cool highlands of Ubud, sit in contemplation on the shores of Buyan and Tambligan lakes. Make your way into the interiors of Bali’s jungles to marvel at the waterfalls of Gigit and Singsing. Feel the power of the wind at the cliffs of Melasti beach. Head to Mount Batur for a look at this fiery, bubbling volcano. Feel the tickle of salty sea spray at Nusa Dua – a small gap in the rocks that causes the waves to build up pressure and spray the land. Blue Lagoon, Banah Cliff, the secret gardens of Sambangan… we could go on. You may need to make a second or third trip to cover at least part of Bali’s natural beauty.


Shopping 

If shopping is part of your holiday agenda, head to the Beachwalk Shopping centre, where you can find a mix of both international and local products. If art, craft and souvenirs are on your mind, the Kuta art market is a perfect stop. You’ll find beautiful clothes, silver jewellery, pots, hats and other things to take home. Krisna Sunset store is ideal for more pricey Balinese products and souvenirs. For more Balinese crafts, visit the Sukawati art market, where you can buy paintings, wooden sculptures, antiques, gold and silver jewellery, beach fabrics and more. Behind the market, you will find great aromatherapy products, including oils, incense and candles. 


Cuisine 

If you’re here to eat, then eat you will! Balinese cuisine offers a wide variety of dishes, flavours and surprises for your palette – both vegetarian and non-vegetarian. Sink your teeth into the soft, grilled meat of Sate Lilit, doused in coconut milk and spices. Take a hearty bite of Nasi Ayam, a preparation of rice, meat, spices and vegetables. If you’re looking for a classic, Nasi Goreng it is. Steamed rice, egg, mixed meat, green peas, onions, sweet soy sauce and hot chilli sauce all combine to make a melodious mouthful. A simple plate of Gado Gado – lightly steamed, fresh vegetables doused in a peanut sauce and garnished with fried shallots and sliced tomatoes will keep you going during the day. There are so many wonderful dishes to sample – Sambal Udang, Tuna Sambal Matah, Serapah Penyu, Bubur Sumsum… the list is endless, a fact that we are all grateful for. 

 

Interesting facts about Bali - Coffee, Chocolate and Cash

  • Bali is approximately 8 degrees south of the equator
  • The world’s most expensive coffee – Kopi Luwak – which is made from the coffee beans digested by a civet cat, is found here
  • Bali has beautiful black sand beaches, like Lovina Beach, which comes from the culled lava flow of the Agung Volcano
  • The Balinese New Year starts in silence – noise and light are kept to a minimum and the rule applies to all
  • The Bamboo Chocolate Factory is the world’s largest commercial bamboo building and offers a variety of chocolate

 

Location of Bali - Earth, Fire, Wind, Water 

Bali emerged, from the heart of the earth. Mighty tectonic plates moved over one another, pushing up the tertiary ocean floor – filled with coral reefs and marine deposits, birthing islands like Bali. A feat worthy of the great Sea Gods. More practically, though, Bali today is a province of Indonesia. This little gem of an Island can be found at the westernmost edge of the Sunda Islands. Along with the Greater Sunda islands, these form the Sunda Arc – an arc of fiery volcanoes that created the islands of Java and Sumatra. From an Indonesian perspective, Bali can be found east of Java and west of Lombok. 

Click here to view Bali on Google Map  

 

Timings - Best Time to Visit Bali 

Bali is located close to the equator, which turns the island into a tropical paradise for most of the year. April, May, June and September are great times to visit Bali, to avoid the slight heavy hug of humidity. This is the season of water sports – scuba diving, surfing, snorkelling and more. However, the busiest seasons of Bali are during July and August, Christmas and New Year’s. 

 

How to get to Bali - Wind or Water 

By Air - The Nugarah Rai International Airport or Depansar International Airport is in the South Bali district, and 13 miles away from the capital city. Flights from some of the biggest international cities in the world, land at this airport. It is also well-connected to other areas in Indonesia, with a fleet of domestic flights that fly to all parts of the country. From the airport, you can easily hop into a taxi to take you to your hotel. 

By Road - If you’re travelling in Indonesia, it is easy to catch a bus from Jakarta. However, this is a 23-hour long journey, so brace yourself! 

By Ship - Bali is a popular port for many cruise liners. To reach Bali by the waters, fly to Singapore, Java or Sumatra and set sail from there. You can also check out other ways on How to reach Bali.

 

History of Bali: Culture and Colonisation 

Bali is known, as the Island of a Thousand Temples. Each of these temples bear witness to the island’s glorious past and the cultures that influenced it. However, Bali’s story begins somewhere around 2000 BC, when Austronesian people (locals from Southeast Asia, Oceania, Taiwan and Madagascar) migrated to the island. The people settled here, and proof of that is found in stone tools (dated from this time) in the village of Cekik. The allure of the island drew many cultures to its shores. By the 1st century AD, Bali was strongly influenced by Indian, Chinese and Hindu cultures. In 1343, the Hindu Majapahit Empire founded a Balinese colony on Eastern Java. After the empire crumbled, a wave of intellectuals, artists, musicians and priests moved to Bali from Java. 

In 1585, Bali had its first brush with European Colonialism. A Portuguese ship sank near the Bukit peninsula, leaving a few Portuguese locals on the island. This was promptly followed by the arrival of Dutch explorer Cornelis de Houtman in 1597, and the establishment of the Dutch East India Company in 1602. The stage was ripe for colonial control, and 2 centuries later, the Dutch influence spread across the Indonesian archipelago. They solidified their presence in Bali, in 1840. After years and years of tumultuous battles, occupation by the Dutch and Japanese, Bali was included in the Republic of the United States of Indonesia when the Netherlands acknowledged Indonesian independence on 29th December 1949.  

Today, Bali is certainly a reflection of its past, but it also has a lot to offer to the present and future.

Language Spoken

Balinese, Indonesian, English

Currency used:

Indonesian Rupiah

NOV-MAR 25-27oC
APR-OCT 27-30oC

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Bali Tourism Guide

Cost and Money

There are ATMs and Banks in all the popular tourist destinations, and most of the establishments accept cards unless you go street shopping. For each night, the accommodation costs between INR 6500 to 2,00,000, depending on the location you choose.

Bali Tourism offers you nothing short of an adventurous vacation. From Nature Walks with beautiful views, horseback rides, dives, surfs including bungee jumping and river rafting, Bali Tourism is a thrilling experience of its kind. With Bali Tourism Guide available at all the famous and renowned tourist locations, tourism in Bali is well appreciated by tourists all over the country for its highly organized and exciting places. With scuba diving and river rafting on board, tourism in Bali has become the hub for watersport lovers across the world. One of the most famous attractions of Bali has to be the Devdan Dance Show that offers a scintillating 90 mins magic on the stage with contemporary dance performances. Not only scuba diving and river rafting, but Bali also have canyoning which is one of the most exciting watersports, sure to satisfy your adrenaline rush. Apart from these, there some zoos and bird parks because of its abundant wildlife that portrays a wide variety of animals and birds ranging from white tigers to some of the rarest bird species in the world. The white beaches of Bali, which are often regarded to as one of the favorite locations for family holidays, have a variety of watersports. You can indulge in sunbathing, Banana boat-ride and parasailing on these beautiful beaches. One of the most well-known beaches is the Kuta beach which offers an array of hotels, restaurants, cafes, and shops along its stretch. The evenings are mostly enjoyed at the Jimbaran beach with barbeque nights followed by a fantastic stay. Sanur beach is also one of the famous beaches with a lot of hotels and restaurants on the sea-front, whereas the Nusa Dua is the hub for most of the private beaches and grand deluxe hotels.Often regarded to as the Island of Gods, what makes Bali different from many other places is warm and welcoming nature of the people here. The hospitality in Bali is something you will remember the rest of your life because they treat you with such warmth that you feel like its home. From basic home-stays, 5-Star beach resorts to luxurious private villas, Bali has everything you are looking out for, along with an exceptional service. But Bali is something more than all these. It has a unique, warm and happy vibe, which is difficult to describe in words. It is for these qualities that people across the globe flock Bali. Bali offers one of the best cuisines in the world along-side pristine beaches and luxurious resorts. Balinese and Indonesian are widely spoken in this area with English and Chinese being next most spoken languages, owing to the rapidly increasing tourism here. Renowned for its diverse and sophisticated art forms like painting, sculpture, woodcarving, handicrafts and other performing arts; Balinese culture is a home for notable performances. Bali is a part of the Coral Triangle that makes it an area with the highest biodiversity of marine species. With around 500 reef-building coral species, Bali is the perfect host to scuba diving that will leave you breathless, quite literally!  

Nusa Dua is a home for surfers across the world because of the captivating waves at the Nusa Lembongan near Nusa Penida. Towards the south-western coast of Nusa Dua are the Manta point and Malibu point that offer a glimpse of the sharks. With the best diving spots located at the Menjangan because of its flat reef, anchor wreck, eel garden and some caves to explore; it is sure to send you home with a memorable experience. One of the best attractions of Bali is its many Hindu Temples. The most famous among these have to be the nine directional temples which are the largest and the most prominent ones here. While most of the coastline is blessed with luring beach-side, there are some mangrove forests areas along the south-east coast. There are certain parts of the Bukit Peninsula with high cliffs that drop straight into the rumbling waves of the Indian Ocean. Away from the coast, there are sizeable fertile rice paddies that are a sight in itself. Bali also has a few volcanoes among which Mount Agung is the biggest one, which is currently in news as it is spewing ash. However, there is Mount Batur that occasionally produces large bangs and plumes of ashes from within. Bali is the host of several hot springs that offer a wellness experience. The most famous one being Air Banjar near Lovina followed by Toya Bungkah on the shores of Lake Batur.

You cannot return from Bali without indulging in the nerve relaxing spa. The Balinese massage is an incredible value for money and health. These mineral springs, spas, make use of the famous lulur body scrub which is made with traditional herbs and spices. With Ubud and Seminyak offering one of the best yoga and well-being centers of Bali, they play host in helping Bali to provide the most exceptional yoga services. There are many more places to visit in Bali so do check it out now.

Ayung river by Ubud is the home for world-class adrenaline pumping white water river rafting. It also offers bungee jumping from a high cliff down to the river, touching the water. Bali water rafting ride and the Ayung river rafting rides are one of the exciting activities that Bali has to offer. Ubud and Uluwatu have some fantastic cycling paths that will help you experience nature in its pure forms. Bali also offers paragliding at Nusa Dua, mountain cycling in Ubud hills, jungle trekking and hiking in the rice fields.

The Kecak dance is one of the most staged dramatic performance organized in the open air by Pura Tanah Lot. This dance form tells the story of the famous epic, Ramayana, where Sita is abducted by Ravana.

The Padang restaurants offer the best cuisines in the place, with budget-conscious choices for the visitors. They offer rich; authentic Indonesian cuisine served with steamed rice. The most famous food item is the rendang sapi that is sure to tantalize your taste buds. There are many more Bali Tour Packages to choose from, here at Thomas Cook

Regardless of growing tourism in Bali, it has not lost its intrinsic charm, and the Bali culture, referred to as Balinese, remains one of the best cultures the world has witnessed.

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