Bali, THE hotspot for bloggers and one of the most famous and popular destinations in Asia. But … what makes Bali so special and popular?
Bali is an island between Java and Lombok, where the majority of the population are Hindu. This is in contrast to the rest of Indonesia, where the main religion is Islam. It is a developed island with beautiful nature, many active volcanoes, graceful rice fields, many monuments, impressive temples, interesting culture, traditional Balinese cuisine and of course the tropical climate! Bali is very easy to reach via the Ngurah Rai International Airport in Depasar.
Our Top 5 Must Sees
What the top attractions in Bali is of course very individual. Some people avoid touristic places and are more interested in pure nature, while others prefer to know more about the local culture. For this section, I can only speak from our experience.
In Bali, we chose the following highlights:
Pura Ulun Danu Bratan temple
Campuhan Ridge Walk
Ubud Monkey Forest
1. Sekumpul Waterfall
In the north of Bali, about 2.5 hours drive from Ubud, you will find the Sekumpul waterfall. These are actually 7 waterfalls and form number one of Bali’s most beautiful waterfalls! You pay just under 3 euros for parking and entry. In addition, the Fiji waterfalls are within walking distance. This can also be visited for less than 1 euro. Be aware of the guys at the entrance, who will stop you. They claim the area of and around the Sekumpul waterfall is their territory and will say you have to book a tour with them. You don’t have to book a tour with these guys!
How to get there?
The Sekumpul waterfalls are Bali’s territory and are accessible for everyone! When we planned our trip to the Sekumpul waterfall, we read on different websites that it would be very difficult to reach. This is not true. You have to walk down for about half an hour. Sand dunes are provided, which you just have to follow and at the end are even stairs. Just before the waterfall itself, you have to go through a small river. This river is 2 meters wide and the water is slightly higher than your ankles.
Conclusion, don’t be put off by what is being said. We definitely found this waterfall worth to visit!
2. Pura Ulun Danu Bratan temple, Bratan lake and Handara Gate
Anyone who drives to the Sekumpul waterfall can perfectly combine this with the Handara Gate and the Pura Ulun Danu Bratan Temple. The Handara Gate is the entrance of the Handara Golf & Resort. This gate has become a famous instagram spot, where almost every tourist wants to take a photo. Actually, it is a typical Balinese gate, as many can be found in Bali. The locals always laugh when you ask for it, because they find this a typical gate. In the environment is not so much to see, so if you drive along you can stop for a while but I would not recommend to drive for just the gate.
The Ulun Danu Bratan temple
The Pura Ulun Danu Bratan temple is located in the northwest of Bali on less than 1 hour drive from Ubud. This Hindu temple is located on the crater Lake Bratan and is dedicated to the goddess of the waters, lakes and rivers. The temple is located higher and is located between different mountains, which makes it feel cooler and the weather is often more cloudy. It may be useful to bring a jacket or sweater with you. There is also the possibility to discover the lake with a canoe!
The temple is open daily from 7:00 to 17:00 and costs no more than 0.30 euro.
3. Campuhan Ridge Walk
Ubud Campuhan ridge walk is located in the center of Ubud. This is a 4 to 5km walk, starting at the Ibah Resort Bridge, and is free. It’s a beautiful walk over a hill, with beautiful views of the rice fields and jungle. The best moment to do this walk is in the morning, because it can get very hot and you have no place in the shadow during the walk.
How is the walk?
The first part of the walk is uphill and so the heaviest, afterwards it is almost flat. A good and sporty shoe is recommended, but you do not need to wear real hiking shoes. This walk can be completed in a few hours, so half a day for this activity is enough. Need for refreshment? You can stop at the Karsa Spa and Café in the middle of the walk for a fresh drink and snack. The prices are normal and the view over the rice fields is really beautiful!