Bali is so beautiful and right after Cape Town it is Julia’s and my favourite travel destination. We have been getting so many questions regarding our stay there, so we decided to share our top tips with you in this Bali Travel Guide. Continue reading to find out where to stay (including some budget options), what to do, where to eat and how to get around the Indonesian island Bali.
The only thing you need to know about Kuta is not to stay there for longer than 20 minutes, because you might go crazy from the hectic tourism. Don’t get us wrong- if you go to Bali I do recommend checking out this area but only for an afternoon of shopping and not as a place to stay, since it is extremely touristy.
Luckily we moved further west from Kuta and made it to the best place to stay on Bali: Seminyak!!! This area is very new and has so much to offer: from beach action to shopping sprees and some wild party nights out at cool bars. It is our favourite area on Bali.
Hotels & Hostels in Seminyak
Budget: M Hostel 10 euro/night
I only recommend this place if you are traveling alone and are looking for a hostel. If you are traveling as a couple or more, there are nicer options for the same price.
Budget: Bliss surfer Hotel 25 euro/night
This hotel is amazing if you are travelling on a budget but still want to sleep in a proper bed with a proper blanket. We stayed at this place so many times it almost feels like home 😉 The rooms are relatively big, very clean and have a balcony. The location is quite good as you are close to the beach (10min walk) and only about 15 minutes from the heart of Seminyak on the scooter. I would recommend this to anyone out there who doesn’t want to spend too much money, but still enjoy a comfortable stay.
This one of the hotels we collaborated with and we absolutely loved it read about it here. It is expensive, but if you are travelling on a budget I can still recommend that you go there for sunset cocktails at the Woo Bar.
Alila Hotel Seminyak
Restaurants in Seminyak
Down to Earth
We are getting hungry just by thinking about the food there. This is for sure one of the best vegan restaurant in the world!!! Words can’t do this place justice- you just have to check it out. Tip: Try their macrobiotic planet platter, Hug-a-lafel wrap, papaya salad and seaweed of the day.
This is a good place for breakfast or for an after surf snack. They have lots of different smoothie bowls with delicious toppings, however they are a little bit “pricy” for the size, so make sure to tell them to fill the bowls up properly. Our favourite bowls were the Jay Bay and the Uluwatu smoothie bowl.
Another amazing breakfast and lunch spot with lots of vegan options. Our favourite was the Protein Bomb Smoothie, which put us right into smoothie heaven. Oh, and the Dragonfruit bowl and the San Choy Bow also taste amazing!
Spicy coconut (a favourite!)
This all vegan breakfast and lunch place is located between Seminyak and Canggu and it is easily one of our favourite spots on Bali!
For real though: this place and Down to Earth are the BEST vegan restaurants in THE WORLD. You may think I am over exaggerating, but wait until those banana pancakes hit your taste buds and you will know what I’m talking about.
What to do in Seminyak
- Visit Potato Head Beach Club for a day part
- Learn how to surf by Seminyak Beach
- Go shopping in one of the many cute boutiques along Seminyak’s main road
The vibe in Canggu is totally different to the one in Seminyak. It is even less touristy and is a hot spot for all surfers and beach babes. The atmosphere there is super relaxed and laid back. For sure a must-visit when you are in Bali.
Where to stay in Canguu
Unfortunately, we actually never stayed in Canggu, but we got these accommodation tips from some friends:
Rio’s guest house 25 euro /n
A friend of ours stayed there and we had a look at his room which looked nice and spacious with a proper bed and a clean bathroom. He got it over AirBnb, so perhabs you can negotiate the price if you talk to the owners there directly.
We only saw this place from the outside but it looked super chilled, it had a slack line and big bean bags outside. Lots of surfers stayed there and the price was really good aswell.
Restaurants in Canggu
Such a cool place with a great atmosphere and yummy vegan food. Tip: The Champ Smoothie and their sweet potato fries
Green Ginger Noodle House
Vegetarian, Asian restaurant with lots of yummy vegan option
Super chilled Café close to Canggu beach with some vegan options.
What to do in Canggu
- Watch the surfers by the beach
- Party at Old Man’s on a Wednesday. It is really packed and the atmosphere is super chilled
When in Bali, visiting Ubud is a must. The beauty about the island is the complete contrast between the different areas. Ubud is like walking into the Jungle book with lots of hippies doing yoga, drinking green juice and munching on gluten free banana bread. This place has so much to offer and I recommend staying there for at least 3 nights to see everything.
What to do:
- Visit the Tegalagan Rice Terraces for a breathtaking view and the perfect picture backdrop
- Walk through Monkey forest (be careful those monkeys might try and steal the vegan treats in your pocket not because it’s vegan but because they are cheeky af)
- Visit the Tegenungan Waterfalls
- Practise Yoga in one of the many studios. Our favourite was Radiantly Alive, which was less crowded, cheaper and less touristy than Yoga Barn
What not to do:
- The volcano sunrise tour up Volcano Batur is not worth it. You have to wake up at 2am, hike up the mountain for 2 hours (which might have just been the most exhausting hike of our lives) just to see a sunrise view that was really not all that spectacular
Where to stay in Ubud
Puri Padma 30 euro/n
The rooms here are quite small, hence backpacker friendly, suitcase unfriendly but very clean and modern. It is 10 minutes from Ubud centre on the scooter
This hidden getaway is really beautiful, however pretty expensive at the same time. Read about our stay here
Vegan Restaurants in Ubud
This is the best raw vegan restaurant ever. Even Julia who usually hates salads, devoured the the salad (which was twice the size of her head) in a few minutes. The raw deserts are also to die for!
We went there almost every night, it was not only super cheap and vegan friendly, but also it sooooo delicious.
Down to earth
Luckily you will not be deprived of down to earth food in Ubud as they have a second restaurant there.
Uluwatu is in the south of Bali and similar to Changgu a surfer hotspot, which is rumoured to have the best waves on Bali. If you don’t want to stay in Uluwatu you can simply make it a day trip as it is only 45 minutes from Seminyak on the scooter.
What to do:
- Visit the Uluwatu Temple This tourist attraction is really worth it, since the view over cliffs is absolutely breath-taking.
- Go to Padang Padang and Bingin beach. I don’t recommend you go to these beaches if you have suffered from a heart attack or heat stroke in the past, because down the stairs is easy as we all know but to go back up in the bold Bali heat is can make you a bit dizzy, but it’s totally worth it.
- Visit Single Fins Beach Club. We haven’t been there yet, but we heard lot of good things about this place.
Where to eat in Uluwatu
It’s only 5 minutes from Bingin beach and has some yummy smoothies and a lot of vegan options on their menu.
Now we are getting to some additional spots on Bali, which you can check out if you have extra time but are not a must must visit. Once Janine and I drove to Sainur because it was apparently a water sports hotspot but all we could find were a lot of retired tourists. Never the less if you don’t mind the average age being above 60 the beaches are probably the pretties on Bali with white sand and relatively clear water. This side of Bali has unreal sunrises so if you ever find yourself up at 6 a.m. pay the Sainur beaches a visit to see the sun rise from the horizon.
Again it is not the coolest spot on Bali but has some luxury Hotels and beautiful beaches to offer. We stayed there with Lifestyle Retreats-check out my blogpost about that here
The Gili Islands
If you have some more time on Bali, the Gili islands are definitely worth a trip! There are many travel companies, which will get you there via bus and boat. We went to Gili Meno, which is an incredibly small island, where the only way to get around is by horse or foot (read all about our Gili Meno Island getaway here). We also spent a few hours on Gili Trawangan, whilst we waited for our boat and that place also looked like a lot of fun. It is filled with young people and is supposed the party island. Next time we are on Bali, we are planning to stay there for a few nights.
Getting around Bali
The best and cheapest (and slightly dangerous) way to get around Bali is by motorbike, which only costs about 4 euro per day. Note: I DO NOT recommend anyone driving on Bali roads on a scooter unless you have driven a scooter before, as the Bali traffic is insane and pretty crazy to say the least. And please don’t be one of those tourists that think they don’t need a helmet, because they are simply #idiots. For those who can’t drive a scooter there, I recommend taking an Uber, which is available in most areas and a lot cheaper than taxis.
I hope you enjoyed our Bali Guide. It is honestly such a beautiful spot, that is very close to our hearts. If you have any questions, just leave them in the comments!
xx Janine & Julia