Free Things To Do in Bali
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Once upon a time, Jimbaran was a quiet and quaint fishing village with an equally humble shoreline – but that's no longer the case. Signaled by the oceanfront perch of the Four Seasons Resort Bali at Jimbaran Bay, this town is now one of Bali's most luxurious destinations. Aside from the opulent resorts that reside here, the town has gained acclaim for its succulent seafood and sandy shoreline. Many travelers come for a romantic sunset dinner on the sand, but they also note that this experience isn't cheap.
Jimbaran is just south of Kuta and can easily be reached by car or taxi. Many nearby hotels offer free shuttle service as well if you notify them in advance. The restaurants and shops maintain varied hours of operation, and sunset triggers a rush of tourists. Get here before the sun goes down to snag an ideal table on the beach.
- #5View all PhotosfreeKuta#5 in BaliEntertainment and Nightlife, Free, Neighborhood/Area, ShoppingTYPEHalf Day to Full DayTIME TO SPENDEntertainment and Nightlife, Free, Neighborhood/Area, ShoppingTYPEHalf Day to Full DayTIME TO SPEND
Touristy? Yes. Fun? Absolutely. Kuta has swiftly become Bali's most popular beach town, and with that title comes the responsibility of feeding and entertaining flocks of visitors. Restaurants, bars, stores, spas and even a water park provide travelers with numerous diversions during the day and night. Still, the No. 1 attraction in this town is Kuta Beach. The sandy shore is a prime playground for surfers, sunbathers, swimmers, kite-flyers and more. This isn't the isolated Balinese beach that you've dreamt about, but it has plenty going for it.
Recent visitors said the beach here is soft and the swimming conditions are great. Travelers suggest arriving at the beach early to stake your claim to some sand, as the area typically gets crowded as the day progresses. Beachgoers noted the vendors selling souvenirs and trinkets can be annoying, and said you have to be a bit forceful in declining their goods or services to get them to leave you alone.
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Those who want to break up their beach time with some healthy exercise will want to venture to Kintamani. Located near the island's northeastern coast, 40-some miles north of Kuta, Kintamani is a gorgeous region that boasts a towering (and active) volcano and a large lake. Both landscape features are named "Batur," and their pairing makes for dramatic scenery. The two also offer an array of adventures for intrepid travelers. You can hike up Mount Batur for a bird's-eye view or take a boat out on the water. Many travelers recommend hiring a local guide once you reach one of its small lakeside towns or arranging a daytrip through your hotel in advance. You also shouldn't miss Pura Ulun Danu Batur, one of Bali's most important temples, which is located on the lake's southwestern shore.
Recent visitors highly recommended a sunrise hiking tour, though many noted the trek is a bit challenging. Those who completed the journey said it was worth it for the views and serenity from above. Bali Sunrise Trekking and Tour receives favorable reviews from past visitors, as does the Mt Batur Sunrise Trekking company.
- #7View all PhotosfreeSanur Beach#7 in BaliBeaches, Free, Neighborhood/AreaTYPEHalf Day to Full DayTIME TO SPENDBeaches, Free, Neighborhood/AreaTYPEHalf Day to Full DayTIME TO SPEND
Sanur Beach attracts both locals and tourists alike with its soft sand and quaint boardwalk. Lacking the activity of rowdy Kuta Beach, these sands offer gentle surf that families with small children will appreciate, plus a more laid-back atmosphere. The shore's accessibility and conveniently located eateries and shops make Sanur an appealing option. Recent travelers were impressed by not only the calm water at this beach but also the colorful display of kites flying high in the sky. If you want to fly your own, travelers say a number of nearby vendors sell them for just that purpose.
You'll find this beach in the town of Sanur. Located along Bali's southeastern coastline, Sanur hosts numerous luxury hotel properties and is situated a little less than 10 miles east of Kuta and Ngurah Rai International Airport. You can access the beach free of charge all day, every day.
- #8View all PhotosfreeNusa Dua#8 in BaliBeaches, Free, Neighborhood/Area, RecreationTYPEHalf Day to Full DayTIME TO SPENDBeaches, Free, Neighborhood/Area, RecreationTYPEHalf Day to Full DayTIME TO SPEND
On the eastern side of the Bukit Peninsula, Nusa Dua is Bali's capital and tourist hub. With several golf courses, numerous spas and a handful of luxury resorts (including the St. Regis and Conrad Bali), this region competes with Jimbaran for wealthy patrons. However, all of the amenities and facilities can make Nusa Dua seem too artificial for some visitors. You won't find an abandoned coastline or a small fishing village here. Still, most travelers appreciate Geger Beach, the area's public shore. Some, however, say that the vendors hawking massage services can be a bit obnoxious and that in recent times, the beach has gotten a little dirty.
You can reach Nusa Dua from Kuta, Jimbaran or the airport via taxi or private hired car. You'll find extensive shopping and dining options, so bring your wallet. For more information, check out the Indonesia tourism board's website.
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