Hotels

10 Reasons-Excuses to Go to Bali

Bali has so many things going for it. You will be booking your Bali accommodation in a flash, once you have considered the following 10 great reasons to visit Bali:

1. Beautiful Natural Landscapes

Not only are Bali’s natural landscapes extremely beautiful, there’s also a great variety, from beautiful beaches, active volcanoes, lush rice terraces to national parks and rainforests.

2. Pleasant Warm Climate All Year Round

Many of us live in regions that can become a tad cool during parts of the year. For those yearning for a little more warmth, look no further. With Bali sitting close to the Equator, temperatures around thirty degrees last the whole year. The wet season from October to March is no exception, with rain showers likely to pass quickly, leaving the natural setting all the more green and lush.

3. Hindu Culture and Ceremonies

The Balinese take their Hindu ceremonies seriously. It is common to see locals dressed up beautifully, heading to a temple for one of the rites of passage. Around the end of March and start of April, you may be fortunate enough to experience Nyepi day. A loud exorcism of Demons, using Ogoh-Ogoh (homemade puppet monsters) on the preceding day is followed by a day of silence, when all Hindu followers stay home, with all lights, radios and TVs turned off.

4. Surfing

Head down to the “Bukit” Peninsula – not only does it have the nicest white sand beaches in Bali, but also some of the best surf. Then again, you could always just amble down from your hotel in Kuta to surf some decent nearby breaks.

5. Wildlife

Visit a monkey forest, and you will certainly get a chance for a close up look. Ok, the monkeys are somewhat domesticated, so it’s debatable as to whether they are “wild” – just don’t tease them with that banana in your hand, or they may become so! Head to Bali Barat National Park to trek and spot other somewhat less tame fauna.

6. Great Shopping

Bali is home to sometimes whole towns of skilled craftsmen. Appreciate their ability as you shop for local handicrafts, jewellery or maybe some tailored clothing. When you come to Bali, just remember to also bring your bargaining skills.

7. Local Cuisine

Could you resist the enticing scent, as the aroma of satay skewers wafts your way from a streetside stall owner? Tasty Indonesian staples of nasi goreng and mie goreng are complemented by Balinese dishes like Babi Guling (suckling pig). With Bali being an island, sumptuous local seafood also abounds. Finish off by trying some of the abundant tropical fruits like mangosteens, starfruit, jackfruit, rambutans or mangoes.

8. Adventure Activities

For a thrill a minute, one can try white water rafting, or quad biking. Jungle treks, cycling tours through traditional villages and elephant rides will also keep you moving. For a more subdued, serene appreciation, a cruise may be appropriate, or a view of underwater tropical fish and coral in an actual submarine!

9. Massages

Treat yourself – you’ve earned it! What better way to unwind than to have your muscles soothed of the day’s rigorous activities. With local prices very reasonable compared to the west, you will already be planning your next visit as the masseuse’s magic hands allow you to drift into a contented and dreamlike state.

10. Great Value For Money

Bali’s hotels are very reasonably priced. Local food, shopping and transport is some of the cheapest, not just in Asia, but the world. So not only will you have a great holiday, you’ll also get unparalleled bang for your buck!

You will be pleased with the facilities Bali hotels can offer, the perfect base from which to explore and appreciate these ten features of an amazing Bali holiday.

Accommodation in Jimbaran, Bali: Some Tips

An accommodation in Jimbaran is a great option to spend the leisure days in Bali in a more peaceful setting. Why? Because: despite the popular notion about Kuta as the most beautiful beach in the island, most travelers agree that the area has grown into a congested venue, with barely a space for a peaceful lounging. As such, the current trend is now moving sideways, to the north to Seminyak and Canggu, and to the south at the direction of the Bukit Peninsula and Uluwatu. The southern movement promises an additional advantage other than beach view of the northern trend: altitude.

With the beach and altitude in mind, there are some points to guide you in choosing an ideal accommodation in Jimbaran. Let us turn the hard fact first. The famous bay is divided into three main venues, namely Kelan, Kedonganan, and Muaya. Most possibly, you know the specialties of these three venues: seafood restaurants where chefs use coconut fiber instead of gas or wood to grill the sea species into fresh, delicious meals ideally eaten up after enjoying the breathtaking sunset from the tables set on the white sand. Thus the first point is that one should stay at the closest proximity to those restaurants.

An ideal accommodation in Jimbaran will also point to the type of your stay. When one wants greater privacy, a villa should be on the top list. A villa provides its guests with personalized services and facilities but the cost can be rather high. A villa thus will be suitable when one does not have a plan to spend many days there. For longer stay, a residence is a wise option. As long as one is able to find a reliable residence, one will be able to stay in the best home with a cost that will not ruin one’s bank.

What about a hotel? Unless you are a sociable person and able to stand the constant presence of others, a hotel is not recommended. Now let us consider facilities that you would love to be available in your accommodation in Jimbaran. Do you need a private swimming room when the beaches out there are all safe and secure for swimming and surfing? Do you need kitchen when seafood restaurants are waving their hands? Do you need Wi-Fi network when you want to leave your heavy daily business for a while? Consider such questions and you will get a rigid guide in choosing your ideal place to stay.

Tips For Taking A Spiritual Vacation in Bali

The culture of Bali is in sharp contrast to what we are used to in the West. A large percentage of the population are still dependent on farming for their living, people live on less money per day than what we would spend on petrol to get to work, and above all, most of the population is deeply spiritual as well as superstitious. If you want to feel that you’ve reconnected with your simpler side, a Bali vacation is the perfect way to do so. Today we look at some of the spiritual travel options in this tiny Indonesian island.

Temples in Bali

Bali, like many South East Asian countries, holds much of its art, culture and architecture in the temples of the region. Locals have believed for many years that the deities of the local area had a direct influence on the success of their lives, which is why there is such emphasis on inward-looking, on spirituality and on reverence. There are some truly beautiful temples to be accessed only minutes from a range of Bali hotels, including:

* Pura Besakih: This incorporates pre-Hindu beliefs into the temple complex, which consists of five compounds as well as the main temple. There are plenty of day-long Bali tours to Pura Besakih

* Taman Ayun Temple: This temple is around 18 km south of Denpasar, and is much quieter than the other famous and easily accessed temples. It is surrounded by a wide moat and beautifully kept gardens; visitors cannot enter the temple, but you can watch ceremonies being conducted inside.

* Temple of the Meeting of the Three: Intriguing name for an intriguing temple! This particular building has only been there since 1917, but there has always been a temple on this site for over a thousand years.

* Uluwatu temple: There is some controversy about whether the monkeys at Uluwatu temple are tamed or trained to be naughty. But the temple itself is a must-see for a Bali vacation.

* Yeh Pulu Temple: This is said to be a very quiet temple, although visitors are often ‘required’ to give an offering to the temple gods.

Spiritual Festivals

Much as we in the Western world take time off our usual work to be with our friends and family, people in Bali often take time out of their day to honor locally recognized gods and deities. These events are a great way to get insight into the minds and motivations of the Balinese people… simply a very special thing to be around! You can check out most of the temples at any time of year, so if you want to up the ‘heart factor’ of your trip, take your Bali vacation around the dates of the following spiritual festivals:

* January 2 Tempe Kandang – Special day of thanks for the gift of livestock

* February 06 Tumpek Wayang – Special day of thanks for the gift of Art

* February 26 Prophet Mohammed’s Birthday – Moslem Holiday

* February 27 Saraswati – Special day of thanks for the gift of Knowledge

* March 03 Pagerwesi – Special day for meditation to enhance balance in the world

* March 13 Tumpek Landep – Special day of thanks for the gift of metal

* March 15 Tawur Agung Kesanga – Held to welcome Nyepi holiday at every family compound; followed by procession of Ogoh-Ogoh (huge monster / evil dolls)

* March 16 Nyepi – Balinese New Year; The I Saka New Year 1932, the day of absolute silence for Hindu followers

* April 17 Tumpek Uduh or Tumpek Pengatag – Special day of thanks for the gift of fruit-bearing plants

* May 22 Kuningan – Believed to be the ascendant day of ancestral holy spirits and deities, back to the eternity

* May 28 Vaishakha 2554 – Buddhist holiday to celebrate the birth anniversary of Gautama Buddha, the founder of Buddhism

* July 31 Tumpek Kandang – Special day of thanks for the gift of livestock

* September 29 Pagerwesi – Special day for meditation to enhance balance in the world

* October 09 Tumpek Landep – Special day of thanks for the gift of metal

* December 07 1 Muharram 1432 H – Moslem New Year

* December 08 Galungan – Praying for the victory of virtue (Dharma) upon evil (Adharma)

* December 18 Kuningan – Believed to be the ascendant day of ancestral holy spirits and deities, back to the eternity

Ancient Spiritual Sites

Bali is beautiful and quiet… unless you are in Denpasar or the other urban areas, there is usually nothing to hear but the wind in the leaves, the faint chattering of monkeys and the call of the ocean! Perfect for meditation and some private yoga sessions. Check out spiritual sites perfect for these practices on your Bali vacation, like the West Bali National Park and Bali Barat National Park.