Have you had enough of the rain? Then escape to Bali, where the weather is around 32 degrees all year round. Whether you go for the beaches, the numerous sightseeing attractions, or the shopping, there is a lot to enjoy in Bali.
In Bali, you can encounter cultural vibes and festivities that have lived on since centuries. Natural beauty awaits you all around the island, from down at the coastlines to up in its green mountains and valleys. Bali offers great beaches and world-class surf, scenic mountains and landscapes, plenty of cultural attractions and festivities, well-varied dining, shopping and nightlife options, as well as impressive hotels and villas at great value.
The true Bali however, lies with its rituals, festivals and ancient culture. From small offerings sitting outside shops to thousands of temples that reside everywhere, everywhere you look, you will see ceremony, ritual and sacred offerings. The Balinese carry out their religious obligations with pride and everyone takes part from the youngest child, through to grandparents, all dressed immaculately for the temple.
When you have done all you can during the day, Bali offers more fun times at night. Some of Bali’s nightlife hubs, such as Kuta, Legian and Seminyak are packed with nightclubs, pubs and bars that cater to a lively crowd. You can party well into the wee hours f the morning.
Even if shopping wasn’t on your plans, you’ll most likely end up with a bargain on your first time in Bali. Walking streets, art markets and modern malls boast fascinating and irresistible buys. You can discover a treasure trove of fine art and handicrafts, paintings, delicately carved jewellery and woodcarvings.
The markets are fun for first timers, but so are the high-end home ware stores, silver jewellery and antiques shops.
Bali sure knows how to make a fabulous cocktail. Some of the best can be found in bars, beach clubs and restaurants, but you can also find delicious lychee martinis in the middle of nowhere. Beer is also cheap.
Good to know
All Balinese share the same four names – Wayan, Made, Nyoman or Ketut – whether they’re male or female, and are named by order of birth. If a family has a fifth child, they will start again and call him or her Wayan.
Balinese cuisine is not world-renowned, but it’s tasty and inexpensive. You should at least try the babi guling (suckling pig) and nasi goreng (Indonesian fried rice). Bali’s restaurant scene is world class, with some of the most incredible food you’ll find anywhere in the world.
No to water
Drink bottled water only, and brush your teeth in it too. Bottled water is cheap and many hotels and resorts provide complimentary water. It’s advisable not to have ice in your drinks either, unless it’s a reputable hotel, restaurant or bar. Better be safe than suffer Bali belly, which unfortunately does happen, especially to first timers.
To tip or not to tip
The Balinese people have low wages, yet they are extremely generous and hospitable. If you receive good service, a small tip goes a long way. If you’re with a group throw in a couple of bucks each, and learn to say thank you: “terima kasih”. The locals appreciate you learning a few Indonesian words.