When I mention Bali, what comes to mind? White sandy beaches, temple run, hipster cafes, happening beach clubs are definitely the few that make it to the top of the list. But have you checked out these hidden gems?
#01 - Tukad Cepung Waterfall
Tukad Cepung waterfall is really out of this world like in paradise. It is not a super huge waterfall but it is a rarified beauty hidden in a small cave.
I wouldn't try to glam up on the journey to get down to this waterfall! It's around 5 minute of descending stairs followed by a muddy stream that you've got to cross into the caves.
You'd have to get real close to nature and get your feet wet up to around your knee height so make sure you wear a shorter skirt or shorts (don't wear a maxi skirt like me... XD), and bring a good pair of sandals suitable for walking in soil and in the water. If you don't mind showing off your figure, you are welcomed to wear your swimwear as well! My mum's sandals just broke halfway through the journey to the falls! That's the last thing you want to happen to you.
The sun's rays shining into the caves creates really beautiful beams over the waterfall, creating this magical feel in the photo above. Some say that 10am is the best time to capture the sun's rays but then that is probably also the time when the most crowded.
Visit Tukad Cepung waterfall before the word spreads even further! That said, this still remains as one of the less tourist-filled waterfall attraction in Bali due to the limitation in accessibility. Best way to get there is to book a driver if you are traveling with your family or in a group. But I recommend to book a day trip as you will be better taken care of during the journey down. Klook has a super value-for-money Private Day Trip to Tukad Cepung Waterfall and the Instagram hot spot in Bali, The Jungle Swing. Grab the deal!
Tukad Cepung Waterfall
Jl. Tembuku, Dusun Penida Kelod, Tembuku, Kabupaten Bangli, Bali 80671, Indonesia
Counter Opening Hours: 7am - 5pm
Entrance Fee:10,000 IDR
Or get the Klook Private Tour to Tukad Cepung Waterfall & Jungle Swing from S$37.50
#02 - Bali Safari & Mara River Safari Lodge
Bali Safari is home to more than 100 species, including rare & endangered species. It's a little on the pricier end but you can get super up close and personal with the animals. There are various Bali Safari packages on Klook with combinations including the basic entrance ticket to the park, day safari tram ride, various add-on animal encounters (Meerkat, Giraffe, Elephant, Tiger feeding), and night safari. There's also a petting zoo where young kids or kids at heart like me will be super excited to feed the animals like goats, rabbits, guinea pigs and geese.
For me the main highlight comes at night fall, when you become the ones being loaded onto a cage tram in the night safari tour, and you can hand feed animals like tiger, lions, elephants at a super close range! End off the the night with a BBQ buffet and Afrika! Rhythm of Fire Show.
Bali Safari & Marine Park
Jl. Profesor Ida Bagus Mantra km 19,8, Serongga, Kec. Gianyar, Kabupaten Gianyar, Bali 80551, Indonesia
Opening Hours: 9am - 5pm
Entrance Fee: From $52.60 on Klook
What's even more special about the safari is that you can choose to stay at the Mara River Safari Lodge in the safari itself to make the experience even more complete and the Stay and Safari packages are really very value-for-money and I personally find it more worth it that just going for the safari ticket alone. Check out Mara River Safari Lodge website for more details on the packages.
#03 - Keramas Beach
You might have been sick of white sandy beaches by the time you hang around Seminyak and Kuta for a day or two.
But Keramas Beach is quite literally a hidden gem in Bali that you must visit! This beach is made up of unique black sand that shines bright like diamond under the sun. This is also a great surfing spot as it has huge and fast waves that put the surfers' skills to the test. You can also catch beautiful sunsets here if you are around the area close to dusk.
Pantai Keramas Street No.80551, Keramas, Blahbatuh, Gianyar, Bali, Indonesia
Opening Hours: 24 hours
Entrance fee: FREE
#04 - AZUL Beach Club Bali
AZUL Beach Club is a beachfront bamboo tree house with Bali’s First Tiki Bar, open air restaurant, infinity outdoor pool with sun loungers and private dining terraces. It is on the pricier end, but it is a great sunset spot with its picturesque view overlooking the famous sunset Kuta beach. At night, AZUL Beach Club comes to life with it's neon lights, and I love it also because it's not as crowded as the other Beach Clubs along the touristy beaches. They serve uniquely mixed cocktails, tapas, and quite a selection of seafood and meat main courses as well. The Charcoal Grilled Lobster (365,000++ IDR) is also one of the best I've ever had, and it's worth every single cent.
AZUL Beach Club Bali (Kuta area)
Jl. Padma No.2, Legian, Kuta, Kabupaten Badung, Bali 80361, Indonesia
#05 - Desa Visesa Ubud
Desa Visesa is quite a hidden attraction in itself, though its a resort in Ubud. If travelling to Turkey to get on a hot air balloon is abit too far for you, then you can consider having a semi hot air balloon experience at Bali Hot Air Balloon in Desa Visesa Resort.
There's also a huge patch of paddy field and permaculture gardens for those who love to escape the hustle and bustle of city life. There's also a mini farm where you can interact with ponies, ducks and more cuddly animals.
If you are staying at the resort, you can even join in a handicraft class, plough in the fields, feed and release the ducks, learn how to cook Balinese food, or even join a Balinese dance class!
Location: Desa Visesa, Jl. Suweta, Bentuyung Sakti, Kecamatan Ubud, Kabupaten Gianyar, Bali 80571, Indonesia
#06 - Jimbaran Beach & Melati Bali Seafood Restaurant
Are you a seafood lover? Where else better to enjoy seafood than having them right by the beach. We found this really nice Melati Bali Seafood restuarant along Jimbaran Beach, where you can choose from the huge selection of live seafood, and tell the waiter how you would like it to be cooked.
They have both indoor and outdoor seating along the beach. While you are waiting for the food to be cooked, you can take some nice shots by the beach, and if you are there for an early dinner, you can even catch the gorgeous sunset on the horizon! <3
Location: Melati Bali, Kedonganan, Kuta, Kedonganan, Kuta, Kabupaten Badung, Bali 80361, Indonesia
Opening Hours: 8am - 11pm daily
#07 - Monkey Forest
Monkey forest, or The Sacred Monkey Forest Sanctuary in Ubud, is home to over 600 Balinese long-tailed monkeys.
There are quite a number of Balinese Hindu temples in the forest, tranquil rivers, waterfalls, and a nice wishing pond where many tourists will make a wish. I particularly liked the Pura Dalem Agung Pangtega. If you love to fully explore the entire place, do factor in about 2-3 hours.
If you are planning a visit to the Monkey Forest, please take note NOT to bring any plastic bag or food with you, as these adorable monkeys are real aggressive when it comes to food items. They would gladly steal your snack for their afternoon tea break. If you like your sunglasses, jewelry or accessories, then keep them in your bag and hide from plain sight. Don't doubt these monkeys fashion sense, they WILL gladly grab the sunglasses off your face and strut off to the runway. I personally witnessed 2 such incidents during the short time I was there.
Location: Sacred Monkey Forest Sanctuary
Jl. Monkey Forest, Ubud, Kecamatan Ubud, Kabupaten Gianyar, Bali 80571, Indonesia
Opening hours: 8.30 AM and 6.00 PM (last ticket sale at 5.30PM)
Entrance Fee: 80,000 IDR (Adult), 60,000 DR (Children 3-12 yrs)
With these 7 hidden gems in Bali, don't just stop at the beaches. There's plenty to explore out of Seminyak and Kuta! If you have any other hidden gems to share, do drop a comment below.
Looking for a place to stay in Bali? Check out these 4 Instagrammable Hotels and Resorts in Bali >>
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