Bali is a spectacular travel destination. It is no surprise that it is called the Island of the Gods. We’re here to help you out with a few tricks to make the best out of your holiday. Bags packed? Accommodation booked? Cheap flights sourced? Check.
Being a top tourist destination, you will need to know how to navigate your way around busier centres. For a quieter trip, we suggested the chilled north and west coasts. Even the central mountains.
Lonely Planet writer Samantha Chalker advices to put some thought into your holiday “Bali base.” Ideally, your accommodation has to be central. The sweltering temperatures would make it hard to wander too far off on foot.
If you’re planning a trip – and you really should because Travel Start is running a special on cheap flights – then fear not, brave traveller! We’ve compiled a handy guide of places to go and sights to see.
Bali is without a doubt one of the greatest islands in the world. Thanks to Travelstart’s cheap flights, you can book a return ticket for under R9,000. Now that is a holiday worth bragging about.
The city’s biggest tourist spots to visit are Pura Besakih, the largest Hindi Temple Bali. In addition, the natural wonder of Mount Batur and the Ubud Monkey Forest is a must-see.
It goes without saying that you simply have to spend some time on Bali’s beaches too. And don’t forget the magnificent and iconic rice terraces.
What to do in Bali and when to go
Best time to visit Bali
Bali’s high season is during July and August, as well as the Easter holidays and festive season. It’s also Bali’s busiest time of the year. However, travellers looking for some peace and quiet on their trips, should consider going between April and June.
It’s dry season, less humid and accommodation prices are up to 50% cheaper. Shoppers will enjoy all the sales this time of the year, and the restaurants will be less crowded. This is also the perfect time for surfers and scuba divers. The waters are clear and the beaches are quiet.
Let’s not forget, the traffic will be more bearable and the roads will be relatively empty. The narrow streets of Kuta, Legian and sometimes even Seminyak will be packed during certain times in the day with cars and motorcycles.
What to do in Bali
Ubud Monkey Forest
It’s just a 10-minute walk from the Ubud town centre. The Sacred Monkey Forest Sanctuary is one of the top attractions on the island. It offers a wealth of experiences for animal lovers and photographers.
Follow the paved pathways through dense forests of banyan trees. Marvel at the moss-covered statues and temples. After that, watch the monkeys’ antics as they clamper over the trees and temple walls.
The rice terraces
One of Bali’s greatest gems. The Tegallalang and Jatiluwih rice terraces are a must-see. It is situated about 30 minutes drive from Ubud. The iconic landscapes and timeless beauty attract photographers from all over the world.
Both terraces use the traditional water management cooperative called “subak.” It’s a UNESCO-recognized irrigation system that dates to the 9th century. The Jatiluwih terraces stretch for more than 600 hectares along the Batukaru mountain range.
Pura Ulun Danu Bratan
The small island is situated along the western shore of Lake Bratan. It is one of Bali’s most picturesque temple complexes, and the lake serves as the island’s main form of irrigation and drinking water. After that, visit the temple. It is dedicated to Dewi Danu, goddess of the sea and lakes.
A short trip away you’ll find the Bali Botanic Garden and the Treetop Adventure Park. With zip-lines, suspension bridges and Tarzan swings. In conclusion, the kids will love you for visiting this iconic spot.
The Tirta Empul Temple
The ancient temple is situated in the lush tropical Forrest of Central Bali and is a national cultural heritage site. In addition, you can join the locals in a cleansing ritual. Ask an experienced tour guide to guide you through the process so as to not offend tradition. Ideally, the best times to visit the temple is early in the morning or the later afternoon.
Visa requirements for South Africans
South African citizens must have a passport that is valid for at least six months beyond the date of their arrival in Indonesia. In other words, a visa is not required for a non-extendable period of 30 days.
As always, be sure to confirm with the Embassy of Indonesia in Pretoria before booking your trips, as visa requirements are prone to change. You can reach them via phone on 012 342 3350 or 012 342 3354, or via email [email protected] Find the embassy on 949 Francis Baard St, Arcadia, Pretoria.
Holiday accommodation in Bali
Accommodation rates drop significantly April to June, so make sure you factor then in when you plan the trip. A week’s stay at the Ngeluwungan Boutique Villa will cost less than R3,700 for two adults. Alternatively, the Villa is in high demand and 90% of Booking travellers say the accommodation exceeded the expectations.
Take at look at what Booking.com has to offer, there are cheaper options as well. However, if luxury is what you’re after, consider booking in at the Bambu Indah, where a week’s stay will cost approximately R23,000. Alternatively, check in at the Rouge Villa and Spa for only R8,900 for a six-day stay. However, be sure to confirm all rates on Booking.com as prices are prone to change.
Above all, have fun!