Ahhhh, Bali. One of the beautiful tropical islands that make up Indonesia. Full of rich culture, a lit nightlife, and gorgeous scenery all over the damn place. So much to see in so little time. Here are my top six must-do's while in Bali!
#6. TAKE A YOGA CLASS IN UBUD
Ubud is like a yoga central; it'd be silly to not experience a yoga class in this mecca of downward facing dogs. Whether you are a beginner or a master, there is something for everyone. Rise and shine for an early morning of yoga! I decided to go to Ubud Yoga House because I wanted a nice intimate studio with a gorgeous view. UYH was right in the middle of rice terraces. It was so beautiful and peaceful; exactly what I was looking for.
I have also heard so much of The Yoga Barn. So many people loveee that place. Since it's much more popular, the classes are much bigger and less intimate. Also, the classes fill up rather quickly so if you're planning to go there, it's definitely recommended to go early to reserve your spot.
#5. FROLIC IN THE RICE TERRACES
There are beautiful rice terraces all over Bali. You can just take a drive and enjoy the beauty. One of the most popular places is the Tegalalang rice terraces just 20 minutes north of Ubud. It's a tourist attraction for a reason, it's gorgeous! You will see lots of people but the place was so big and there were tons of different trails so it never felt too crowded. Then again, I visited during the low season so I can only imagine what it is like during the high season. TIP: If you are going to walk through the rice terraces, make sure you have small money on you. There are several locals with donation bins. Although they are called “donations” they pretty much expect that you pay. So it’s more like you must pay, but the amount you donate is up to you. Here’s the thing, you don’t donate just once. There are several stops and they all claim to maintain different areas of the terraces so they expect a donation at every stop.
#4. COOL DOWN UNDER A WATERFALL
You can't go to Bali without visiting one of its many waterfalls. There are tons all over Bali, take your pick! One of the waterfalls I went to was Teganungan falls. This beauty is 20 minutes south of Ubud. Super easy to get to and very quick to reach. It is has a $0.37 entrance fee & is a quick 10-minute "hike" down a flight of stairs. A hop and a skip away, you're at the bottom of the waterfall!
I also visited Kanto Lampo falls, 30 minutes east of Ubud. Also with a $0.37 entrance fee and a short five minute "hike" down a set of concrete stairs. This waterfall was much less crowded than Teganungan Falls and just as spectacular in its own way.
#3. FEED A BANANA TO A WILD MONKEY
Pay a visit to the wild scavengers of the monkey forest. Resting in the heart of Ubud, these little rascals are as cute as a button. But wait! There are a few precautions to be aware of before you go. Don't go in with any food or loose objects. They will jump on you, open your bag, and grab anything and everything they can get their hands on. Once they've got it, it's theirs! Don't try to get it back.
#2. GET SPIRITUALLY CLEANSED AT TITRA EMPUL TEMPLE
Titra Empul, meaning “Holy Water Spring”, is a water temple just 30 minutes north of Ubud. It is open 9am-6pm and gets really busy mid-day when all the tour buses make their stop their. It's best to arrive before noon because it gets really busy when all the tour buses come rolling in. You’ll definitely want to rent a motor bike (average $3.75/day).
When visiting a temple, you must wear a sarong. If you don’t have one, no worries! They lend out sarongs at the entrance for you to use (for the frees!). Now, I’m not quite keen on tour guides bc I always like to explore things on my own. However, in this instance of a place with so much history and culture, a tour guide would be ideal; someone to explain to you the praying rituals and meaning of things. I started my visit to the temple alone, just exploring its beauty. When I got to the fountains, I was blown away. This place was absolutely incredible. I couldn’t wait to get in and have a spiritual cleanse. The only thing is, I had no idea what to do, how to do it, etc. while observing the fountains, I ran into Putu. He was a local of Indonesia helping visitors understand the spiritual process. He said he is free of charge but kindly accepts tips. Sure, why not!
We started with meditation, offerings, and a wish. Then we moved onto the fountains. Putu explained the meaning of each fountain and pool. Some are for releasing the bad energy out of your body and others are for restoring your soul with positivity and hope. You wash your face three times, gargle and spit three times, sip and swallow three times, then dunk your head for as long as you desire. Do this for all of the fountains except for three of them (some of which are only used after a death). After the fountains, we meditated a bit more then the ritual was complete. I wouldn’t have had the same experience if it wasn’t for Putu. If can, I’d advise to have a guide. Maybe you’ll run into someone like Putu who can help you. Otherwise, try to find a guide for a decent price. The temple itself cost $1.12 to enter. When I asked various tour desks around Ubud how much it would be for a ride and guide to Titra Empul, they quoted me $22.50! I ended up tipping Putu $3.75 because I enjoyed my time with him very much (50,000 rupiah or $3.75usd is a generous tip, if you didn't know know you know lol)!
#1. BALL OUT ON A DOPE ASS VILLA!
So you waited allll year to get your ass to Bali. You don't want to just stay in some measley little basic having ass hotel motel Holiday Inn. You need to ball tf out! It's Bali for gods sake! Ok, so you're not a millionaire? So what. No problem! Bali is full of dope ass villas for cheap. Check out airBNB; pick a location, filter your preferences, and enter your desired price range. I saw villas for as low as $37/night!
I stayed at this three-bedroom villa for $124/night:
And this three-bedroom villa for $120/night:
Those prices are cheaper than the average tiny one-bedroom hotel room on the Las Vegas Strip! Pick and chose your luxuries. Bali is waiting for your arrival, treat yoself girl!