Tourists abound in Bali and I initially though that sure, they’re here for the lovely beaches and tropical landscapes. But having been here myself, I’ve come to realize that the most beautiful and important attraction of Bali is the rich culture and spirituality of the island, which you feel and experience in visiting its magnificent temples that are set against breathtaking scenery. It’s also interesting to see the local villages as the Balinese people are very friendly and warm. Funny because for some reason, we always get mistaken here as fellow Indonesians, haha!
Since the island has no proper public transport system, I think that the best option to get around and see the countryside is to have your own transport (e.g., rent a car/driver or a motorbike) or otherwise book a day tour service (which would include a private car and a driver/tour guide).
Our day tour of Bali features:
- Taman Ayun Temple,
- Ulundanu Temple,
- Munduk Waterfall,
- Twin lake (Danau Buyan and Danau Tamblingan),
- Jati Luwih rice terraces, and
- Tanah Lot Temple.
Taman Ayun Temple
The temple complex has a spacious garden and a huge fish pond. I was amazed to see the Balinese architecture in here especially the multi-tiered pagodas of varying heights. The place is serene and has this peaceful vibe. Entrance fee is IDR15,000.
This temple is especially beautiful with a towering pagoda situated on the side of a lake, plus a mountain view as backdrop. It’s so amazing and you will understand why it’s one of the most photographed temples in Bali. Entrance fee is IDR30,000.
Before the trip, I’ve read some reviews at Tripadvisor and became a bit apprehensive of the seemingly difficult hike going to the waterfall. But my experience was that I really enjoyed the short visit here. It was a nice refreshing stop for our day tour of Bedugul. The hike to reach the waterfall was not difficult for me, which would take you about 10 mins. You can do the hike at your own pace, plus you will be entertained by the sound of the birds and the natural forest beauty around, so I really didn’t mind the hike at all. Entrance fee is IDR5,000.
Twin lake (Danau Buyan and Danau Tamblingan) and Jati Luwih rice terraces
We were able to squeeze in two other attractions in our trip (before heading to Tanah Lot), both of which have beautiful panoramic landscapes.
Tanah Lot Temple
The temple is beautifully situated by the sea, particularly on a huge rock formation at a distance from the shore, which is surrounded by seawater during high tide. If you happen to be here during low tide, you can cross the water to reach the temple. This temple is a must see at sunset, but is however the most crowded of the temples we have visited. The complex also has a lineup of souvenir stores/shops. Entrance fee is IDR30,000.