So following my last post, and a few questions some of you asked, here are some more tips on travelling to Bali…
Visa requirements – If you have a passport from any of the countries listed here in section 1, and you’re travelling for under 30 days, you don’t need a visa. Trips lasting longer will cost you $35, roughly £25. Shout out to that Red British passport.
If you have a passport from any of the countries listed here, you also have to pay a fee of $35 (roughly £25). There are 10 countries (see section three) that are excluded from the Visa on Arrival option and will have to go through the Indonesian Embassy in their respective country. It’s rather long but for Bali it’s worth it.
It goes without saying, but when travelling always try to get the best price. Admittedly I too can be lazy when it comes to this. My recommendations are Skyscanner, Opodo, Kayak and Kiwi. I know it can be a pain, but always try to be flexible with your dates, as this can save you a sizeable amount of cash. Travelling out on a weekday tends to be way cheaper than a weekend, and the same goes for returning. A Friday night Eurostar to Paris vs a Saturday morning train can save you up the price of dinner at the Ritz (you do the maths!).
Another important thing is to make sure you sign up and get membership with your most used airlines. Do not miss out on collecting air miles, I cannot tell you how many discounted or near free flights I have claimed using my BA Avios points. If you haven’t done this yet, what are you doing?! Login now as you can still claim miles on past flights.
Anyway, that’s all on the extra tips for travelling alone; I hope these help! Now to tell you about the rest of my trip…
Bali is certainly an amazing destination with more than enough activities to do – trust me, you won’t get bored. I stayed at the Kamandalu, Ubud, for 11 nights, and would most definitely recommend it. Check out their rates as they have amazing deals. It’s a beautiful resort in an ideal location, perfect for getting around. If you’re looking for somewhere cheaper or don’t fancy a hotel, as you may know Bali is a top tourist destination so there are also some great hostels and beautiful villas worth checking out. As such, I managed to actually meet a number of interesting people.
First, I met Fredrick and Julia, an old couple from Germany who decided to go on this trip now that their last child has graduated from university and landed her first job (congratulations to her). We had a lovely dinner together, enjoying traditional Indonesian cuisine. We found out quite a lot about one another including our mutual love of art and they recommended two galleries which were amazing: The Neka Art Museum and Blanco Renaissance Museum. They sweetened the whole deal by making dinner free.
I later met Noel, Victor, Alex and their friend, whose name escapes me, while walking around Ubud Palace. They were causing havoc with their skateboards, and as a low-key skater, I couldn’t help but join. They were from France, had just finished visiting Singapore, and were staying in Bali for a week before leaving for Hong Kong. Lunch was a great experience and it was refreshing to interact with people my age and similar interests. As lovely as Frederick and Julia were, you can’t beat hanging out with your age mates on holiday.
I later met Hannah and Catherine from Sweden, which was probably the funniest meeting during the whole trip. It started with a monkey attempting to rip Hannah’s skirt off for the cashew nuts in her hands in the middle of road, something you certainly do not see every day. We struck up conversation and decided to walk through the Monkey Forest together, jumping and running around like little children. We met up for dinner that same night with more of their friends.
The last group I met was through the power of social media: never forget social media is your friend. I reached out to Leonora through Instagram, after a friend sent me a snap thinking we were staying at the same location in Bali. After our initial conversation, I met her and her group of friends (Ama, Estare and Jess) and basically hitched a ride on their day to Bali Zoo and Bali Swing. Again, it was great to meet new people and they had so much energy and good vibes. It was easy to build a rapport, we were all from London and actually had mutual friends. I later went to visit them in Seminyak (the most stylish and upbeat part of the island) to experience some night life at Mrs Sippy which was a memorable night.
Clearly I kept myself busy throughout my stay but here are my top recommendations of places to go. Make special note of the food:
Places to visit:
Monkey Forest Sanctuary – Popular tourist destination, a natural reserve with over 750 monkeys. Careful to stay away from the baby monkeys and do not wear sunglasses, mine are probably still up a tree somewhere.
Bali Zoo – A nice variety of animals, few cheeky elephants. A place to visit.
Bali Swing – Fancy being 78m in the air or chilling in a bird’s nest? Certainly your place to go. Zen hideaway also offers a similar yet more private experience.
Tegallagang Rice Terrace – Beautiful landscape perfect for photos (gotta get that snap for the gram)
Tanah Lot Temple – One of Bali’s most famous temples, perched upon a rock in the sea. When the sea rises, it honestly looks like it’s floating. I would recommend doing this as part of a tour. Check out Baliku Tours.
Tegenungan waterfall – A beautiful waterfall with many cafes and shop nearby. Also check out the Kanto Lampo Waterfall.
The Seed of life – mostly serves raw food, but it is certainly worth a visit.
Akasha Bali – Delicious food with a remarkable atmosphere and décor.
Indus Restaurants – To be honest, I initially went there for its beautiful view but ended up getting starters from their fusion cuisine and was not disappointed.
Roots Bali – Recommended by my driver, the best Korean food I’ve ever had.
Cooper Kitchen and Bar – Rooftop dinner with guaranteed excellent service.
Kebun Bistro – It had a romantic ambiance which was a bit awkward for me on my own but it had this delightful vintage feel and the food was awesome.