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How to Plan a Trip to Bali: Frequently Asked Questions

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Pura Ulun Danu Bratan temple in Bali

Bali, Indonesia

We answer everything you need to know about how to plan a trip to Bali so you can bask in the Indonesian sunshine without a worry in the world.

Indonesia’s crown jewel, Bali, is a tropical paradise that boasts the best beaches in the world, islands with friendly locals, resorts that rival the fanciest on Earth, and seascapes you need to see to believe. Vacations in Bali show why the Indonesian island remains a favorite among honeymooners, adventure travelers, and cultural explorers.

If you have dreamt of its sun-kissed beaches and culinary hotspots serving Southeast Asian cuisine, here you can find what you need to know before you go on a Bali vacation.

Overview

  1. Can I travel to Bali?
  2. Where is Bali?
  3. When is the best time to visit Bali?
  4. How many days should I spend in Bali?
  5. What is Bali famous for?
  6. What are the most popular destinations in Bali?
  7. What should I do on my trip to Bali?
  8. Does Bali have good beaches?
  9. Where can I see wildlife in Bali?
  10. How do I travel around Bali?
  11. Is Bali a good destination for families?
  12. Is Bali suitable for senior travelers?
  13. Is Bali suitable for couples or honeymooners?
  14. What food should I try in Bali?
  15. Is Bali safe to visit?
  16. What language do they speak in Bali?
  17. What is the main religion of Bali?
  18. What are some cultural traditions in Bali?
  19. What should I not do in Bali?
  20. What vaccinations do I need to travel to Bali?
  21. Is Bali easy to visit?
  22. Which airports should I plan for?
  23. Do I need a visa for Bali?
  24. What currency does Bali use?
  25. How can Zicasso help me plan my trip to Bali?
  26. Where can I find recommended itineraries for my trip?

Can I travel to Bali?

Bali is open to American travelers.

You can travel to Bali subject to any restrictions and requirements. Should these change, your Zicasso travel specialist will provide you with updated information regarding entry into Bali.

To explore where else in Southeast Asia and the world you can travel, visit our guide on Where Americans Can Travel Right Now.

Learn more: Plan Your Trip to Bali

Where is Bali?

Bali is an island and province of Indonesia in Southeast Asia. While Bali is not a country, many travelers choose to spend entire vacations on the island as it is the most popular place to visit in Indonesia.

When is the best time to visit Bali?

The best time to visit Bali is between April and October, during the dry season. During these months, you can enjoy the summer sunshine on Bali’s beaches, the island’s main attractions, and avoid rainfall that prevails through the rainy season.

July and August are the most popular months to visit Bali as they fall within the peak of the high season. During this time, the skies are clear and the days warm with low humidity, but travelers must contend with an influx of tourists.

Bali is quieter during the tail-end of April through October and you can avoid the crowds between October and December. During these times, you can expect frequent rainfall. However, this is not a deal-breaker for all travelers as you can comfortably explore Balinese temples, partake in yoga classes, and enjoy indoor experiences when it rains.

Learn more: Best Time to Visit Bali

How many days should I spend in Bali?

Eight days is an excellent duration for a trip to Bali, providing time to experience the highlights of Ubud, relax at the seaside resorts of Nusa Dua, and enjoy a day cruise to or night on Gili Meno island.

Bali is small, so you do not need to plan a long vacation to explore most of the island’s main hubs. That said, trips of up to 12 days are ideal for travelers with a vested interest in Balinese and Indonesian culture. The more time you spend in Bali, the more room there will be for activities and tours that reveal the island’s rich history and traditions.

What is Bali famous for?

Bali is famous for its picturesque beaches that attract families who enjoy the outdoors, couples on their honeymoons, and surfers searching for the world’s best waves. Balinese temples are also famous, and history buffs and senior travelers adore any opportunity to embrace Bali’s humble culture at these spiritual sites.

What are the most popular destinations in Bali?

Bali is a small but significant island with plenty of seaside resort towns, rural villages, forest sanctuaries, and scenic coastlines. Below, we list the most popular destinations:

  • Ubud
  • Seminyak
  • Kuta
  • Nusa Dua
  • Nusa Penida
  • Lovina
  • Bukit Peninsula
  • Mount Batur
  • Tegallalang
  • Sideman Valley

Our guide on the 5 Best Places to Visit in Bali unveils what makes several of these must-visit places, revealing the highlights and number of days to spend enjoying Bali’s most popular destinations.

What should I do on my trip to Bali?

Boasting some of the best surf spots in the world, a fabulous food culture, sacred Balinese temples, and more, the list of things to do in Bali can quickly fill up an itinerary. Below, we share our recommendations of the top things to do to help you plan a custom trip according to the experience you dream of having:

  • Surf some of the world’s best spots, including Padang Padang, Uluwatu, and Medewi
  • Explore Balinese temples that share insight into the island’s long-standing cultural traditions, including Uluwatu Temple, Ulun Danu Beratan Temple, and Tanah Lot
  • Watch the sun set over Bali from gourmet restaurants clinging to the cliffs of Bukit Peninsula
  • Sway on swings hanging from towering palm trees and explore the emerald Tegalalang Rice Terraces
  • Capture remarkable wildlife photography and spot friendly primates living amongst the endemic creatures in Ubud Monkey Forest
  • Wander through the misty hills to the hidden Sekumpul Waterfall for a day of peace and tranquility
  • Snorkel and scuba dive Bali’s colorful coral reefs of Seminyak and Nusa Penida to view magnificent marine in crystal-clear waters
  • Partake in a fire dance show on the Bukit Peninsula to immerse yourself in local cultural traditions

You can explore some of these recommendations in more detail and discover more ideas for your vacation in our guide on the Top 6 Things to Do in Bali.

Does Bali have good beaches?

Bali’s beaches are some of the best in the world. Whether you’re a couple who enjoys afternoon strolls or cocktails by the sea, a surfer who desires to surf iconic waves, a family who adores snorkeling, or a senior who wants to relax and unwind, there are few better places to visit than Bali’s beaches. Below, we highlight some of the best:

  • Seminyak Beach
  • Nusa Dua Beach
  • Jimbaran Bay
  • Thomas Beach
  • Sanur Beach
  • Amed Beach
  • Medewi Beach
  • Balangan Beach
  • Padang Padang Beach
  • Kuta Beach
  • Lovina Beach
  • Nusa Lembongan

Where can I see wildlife in Bali?

While tourism thrives in Bali, much of the landscape remains untouched, providing shelter to animals, birds, marine creatures, and other wildlife. You can find a list of the top places to see wildlife and what to spot at these destinations below:

  • Ubud Monkey Forest, Crab-eating macaque
  • Petulu Village, Kokokan birds
  • Bali Bird Park, Cendrawasih and Bali myna
  • Turtle Conservation And Education Center, Sea turtles
  • Bali Butterfly Park, Bali peacock and paradise birdwing

How do I travel around Bali?

You can organize private transfers, hire a car or bike, use ride-hailing apps, take buses, and explore the seas by boat. For the most part, transportation in Bali is reliable, though be aware that Balinese people are laidback and public transport may not always be on time. Therefore, we recommend factoring in time for delays should you wish to use public transportation.

Is Bali a good destination for families?

Sun, sand, and sparkling seas make Bali the perfect destination to take your family on a beach vacation. Activities are suitable for all ages, from spotting the friendly monkeys of Ubud to exploring jungle temples and snorkeling in search of schools of fish and marine creatures.

You and your kids can learn to surf at Bali’s beaches with their smaller waves, visit vibrant villages where locals dress in colorful traditional garments, and watch fire dancers perform with the sunset illuminating the seascape behind them.

Our Family Vacations in Bali share the family-friendly possibilities in Bali and capture the spirit of adventure with activities perfect for young children and older teens, be they hikes through the forested mountains or water sports on world-class beaches.

Is Bali suitable for senior travelers?

On a trip to Bali, senior travelers can expect a comfortable vacation, thanks to the friendly lifestyle and cultural history that differs from mainland Indonesia.

The temple architecture and sculptures dressed in gold or covered in moss showcase centuries of Balinese Hinduism. There are tranquil resorts in private bays offering privacy and comfort like no other, with the beach steps from your room. Senior travelers can also enjoy fine Indonesian dining or take the trails from coasts to forests should the opportunity for adventure strike.

Traveling to Bali as a senior with Zicasso, you can enjoy first-class accommodations and tours with guides who can support any mobility challenges or enable an active vacation at your pace.

Is Bali suitable for couples or honeymooners?

Bali remains one of the world’s best destinations for honeymooners and couples. The breathtaking beaches and seaside resorts offer luxuries for all romantic travel.

You can stroll along your private strip of shore at sunset, feel your worries melt away with spa treatments, and explore the roads less traveled on hikes to secluded waterfalls. Romance exudes from every corner of Bali, whether along sun-washed shores or within wildlife sanctuaries.

To discover the best of Bali’s romantic experiences, explore our Bali Honeymoon Packages, curated for these milestone occasions.

What food should I try in Bali?

Balinese cuisine is twofold. There are authentic Indonesian dishes and fusion cuisine that takes inspiration from global culinary influences in popular places like Ubud. You should try a combination of Balinese classics and renditions of international dishes for a rounded taste. Below, we highlight a few of the best Indonesian foods to try:

  • Babi Guling, Balinese roast pork
  • Gado-Gado, Indonesian salad
  • Mie Goreng, stir-fried noodles
  • Sate Babi, Balinese pork satay
  • Pepes Ikan, fish steamed in banana leaves
  • Laklak, Balinese cake
  • Pisang Goreng, deep-fried banana
  • Nasi Campur, mixed rice

Is Bali safe to visit?

Bali is a safe destination to visit. With a well-established tourism industry, low crime rates, and friendly locals, travelers can confidently explore the island as a couple, family, solo traveler, or senior citizen.

The biggest concern regarding traveler safety in Bali is the busier areas, especially during the peak season. Pickpocketing and petty crime, although rare, can occur. For security, we recommend keeping your personal belongings out of sight and watching your children on beaches and in busy areas.

Some travelers express concerns about water-sport safety. Bali is a famous surf destination because of its world-class waves and big swells. These create currents and riptides, which you should be conscious of when swimming and snorkeling. Should you visit beaches with a guide, they can give you an idea of where the currents and riptides are.

Balinese roads can become very busy with cars and bikes, so drive defensively if you rent a vehicle. Also, do not touch or feed wildlife like monkeys when visiting forests or sanctuaries. When haggling with Balinese vendors, be mindful and respectful to ensure you get the best deals and do not disrespect locals. Finally, purchase bottled water for the duration of your trip.

What language do they speak in Bali?

While Bahasa Indonesia is the official language of Indonesia, the most widely spoken language in Bali is Balinese.

English is also commonly spoken in tourist areas like Ubud and Seminyak, so you should be able to communicate easily with hotel representatives, restaurant staff and owners, and other locals. For trips that include tours of rural areas, we recommend following a guide who can translate for you.

What is the main religion of Bali?

Balinese Hinduism is the predominant religion.

Bali also has Islamic, Protestant, Catholic, Buddhist, and Confucian communities. You will discover the differences between the traditions of these religions as you explore Balinese temples, encounter locals, and partake in customary experiences. When visiting Bali, be mindful of these religions and do not do anything that may offend religious locals.

What are some cultural traditions in Bali?

Bali has a long history of religion and spirituality that connect the local people to their ancestral culture. As you explore Bali, you will acquaint yourself with some of the following cultural traditions:

  • Galungan and Kuningan, religious festivals whereby Bali is laden with decorative bamboo altars and palm-leaf offerings are shared
  • Mesuryak, a jovial celebration in the Bongan Village following Galungan and Kuningan
  • Melasti, a Balinese Hinduism ceremony whereby locals refrain from non-pray activities
  • Mekare-Kare, a religious ceremony in Tenganan whereby local men partake in a mock conflict using pandan leaves

What should I not do in Bali?

From cultural customs to traditions and safety precautions, there are certain things you should not do in Bali. Below, we share a list so you can enjoy a respectful and safe vacation:

  • Drive a motorbike without a license, an illegal activity common among international travelers
  • Take unregulated boats on cruises
  • Drink Arak, a traditional but dangerous alcoholic beverage
  • Leave your legs and upper arms uncovered when visiting temples
  • Step on ceremonial offerings left on the streets
  • Surf without a guide, instructor, or local surfer

What vaccinations do I need to travel to Bali?

The CDC Indonesia Vaccination Information offers vaccination requirements and recommendations. You should take note of these and consult your travel nurse or doctor to confirm your vaccination status before your trip.

Is Bali easy to visit?

Bali is a very easy place to visit as the country has and continues to welcome American travelers.

Should you wish to explore more destinations in Southeast Asia that are easy to visit, explore our Southeast Asia Tours & Vacations.

Which airports should I plan for?

Ngurah Rai International Airport (DPS) is the only airport servicing travel to and from Bali.

Travelers will arrive at the airport and transfer to their accommodation. You will then return to the airport on your departure date and catch a direct or connecting flight home.

Do I need a visa for Bali?

American travelers can visit Bali without a visa for up to 30 days. However, you cannot extend your stay on this visa exemption and should arrange a tourist visa if you wish to travel for longer.

Your Zicasso travel specialist can provide you with updated visa information and any changes to entry requirements when planning your trip.

What currency does Bali use?

The official currency of Bali is the Indonesian rupiah (Rp).

You should ensure you exchange US dollars for Indonesian rupiah before your trip. Unfortunately, most establishments do not accept US dollars, electronic payment services are not always accepted and reliable, and ATMs are few and far between in rural areas and small towns.

How can Zicasso help me plan my trip to Bali?

Zicasso travel specialists can assist you with your travel plans, helping you find stunning accommodation and great deals. Before you begin planning your trip with a Zicasso travel expert, browse our Bali Vacations & Tours, where you can find sample trips of how best to experience the Indonesian island.

When you have found an itinerary that appeals to you or have ideas you would like to share, complete a Trip Request and our Travel Care team will be in touch with you. By providing insight into your preferred duration, budget, and travel style in your request, our team can pair you with a top Bali expert.

Your destination expert will be available leading up to your trip and for the duration thereof to book accommodations and tours, and help you navigate unforeseen circumstances should they occur. You can travel to Bali with peace of mind knowing your travel specialist is readily available through Zicasso.

Learn more: How to Plan Your Zicasso Trip in 4 Easy StepsHow to Plan Your Zicasso Trip Budget in 3 Easy Steps

Where can I find recommended itineraries for my trip?

Uluwatu Beach in Bali, Indonesia

Uluwatu Beach in Bali, Indonesia

With your biggest questions on Bali answered, you can begin to plan the perfect getaway to the tropical paradise. For inspiration on what to do and where to go when you visit the Indonesian island, view sample itineraries from our Bali Vacations & Tours.

These will give you an idea of what to expect when you explore Bali. You can also learn more about the island when chatting with a Zicasso travel specialist or in our Bali Travel Guide.

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