Things to do in Bali
Depending on where you are flying in from, you are probably pretty tired. I suggest relaxing! We spent our entire first day chilling at our resort with the private villa and private pool. It is so worth it because it can be pretty overwhelming entering into a new country and throwing yourself right in without resting.
Initially we thought it would be a good idea to start the tourism right after checking in, and we did, we went out to the Ubud Traditional Market but we were so overwhelmed that we just didn’t feel very nice.
The best decision we could have made was to come back to our resort. It calmed our nerves and we were fresh and ready to enjoy our travels the next day!
So definitely take it easy on the first day, even if you are on a tight time limit. You want to be able to enjoy your trip to Bali, not rush to see everything and not enjoy it as much.
We did a lot on our 2nd day in Bali and that is partly because the Lempuyang Gates and Tirta Gangga is only a 15 minute drive from each other so it is a good idea to do them on the same day, especially if your accomodations is pretty far (ours was about a 2 hour drive each way).
TEGALLALANG RICE TERRACE
We started our day by going to the Tegallalang Rice Terraces as it was the closest to our resort. The best time to visit the rice terrace is during sunrise because it is much less crowded and seeing the rays shine down is extremely magical. However, we arrived at 11:00AM because we slept in and had breakfast at the hotel.
Yes there were other tourists around but it really was not as busy as I had expected but yes the weather was hot!!!
When we arrived, we had to buy a ticket for 10,000IDR (less than $1USD) by one of the men selling them outside the entrance. It’s known as a “donation” but it is not an option and you must pay it.
When going through the rice terrace, you will notice that in some areas, there are locals who ask you to donate another 10,000IDR to pass onto their area. You cannot pass them without paying this “donation” or you will be yelled at. It is NOT a scam! It is a very small fee, just pay it and move along.
There are also lots of swings to choose from at this rice terrace. They are about 50,000IDR each but you are welcome to bargain. We didn’t have the time to use any of them but I am sure they are a great experience!
We then drove all the way up to the Insta-famous Lempuyang Gates. You MUST wear a sarong here (either buy it from the market beforehand or you can rent it for 10,000IDR at the entrance). Shoulders also need to be covered and if needed, you will be given a shawl
(included in the 10,000IDR). You are also asked to make a donation of some sort per person for entrance. Please do so.
The entire temple can be an all day long hike if you want it to be but the famous instagrammable gate is only a 5-10 minute walk up from the entrance. It can get extremely busy here if you go in the afternoon so I suggest arriving super early if you don’t want too many tourists around you. Photos will look best when clouds are not covering Mount Agung.
Afterwards, we drove 15 minutes to Tirta Gangga, the famous water temple. I really enjoyed it here because it was a lot more relaxing and I really like being near water. The entrance fee is only about 20,000IDR per person.
There are locals outside of the entrance selling fish food because there are lots of fish in the waters and it can be pretty fun to feed them. We used the fish food to lure them closer to us so that they could be in our photos. These fish have been fed so much they are massive!
Oh and don’t drop your phone in the water like my friend did or you will have to sit in soaked clothes for the entire 2 hour drive back home.
This was a definite highlight of my trip because I had a lot of fun here. The price is $35USD per person and it is all inclusive (includes lunch and cold bottled water). I heard about Zen Hideaway which is located right next to Bali Swing and it is half the price with shorter line ups. U
nfortunately our driver dropped us off right at Bali Swing and we were swarmed with sales reps so we couldn’t get out of it at that point.
Honestly, I am pretty happy about that because the experience was so worth it! It was more than just a swing ride. The customer service was incredible which made it even more fun and there were multiple swings to choose from as well as different types of nests to take photos in.
That being said, this was an entire activity that took 3-4 hours on its own. I’m sure it would have been a lot shorter had we just gone to Zen Hideaway but we were having too much fun here. It was like an amusement park for adults (even though some kids were also having fun on the swings)
We spent the rest of the day at the Ubud Traditional Market bargaining for beautiful goods!
BONUS: Tukad Cepung Waterfall
This place is just absolutely incredible! It is a waterfall, inside of a cave! We woke up super early in the morning to make it for sunrise but there’s no point in doing that because we didn’t actually see the sun rays shining down through the cave until the sun was already up at around 9AM.
Basically, we spent 2 hours just hanging out there with no food and shortage of sleep until the rays finally shown down. It does start getting busy with tourists around this time as well.
Beware because we did see a snake jump into the water from the cave walls and we are not 100% sure whether it is poisonous or not. Just be extra cautious when you go into the water.
All in all, Bali is an island that I left my heart at. I did not spend enough time here and I am sure that I will return next year! I am confident that if you do Bali right, by exploring less touristy areas (Ubud and up), you will be a lot happier and fall in love with it just like I did!