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How to see a different side of Bali: 5 travel ideas

Bali Motorbike

For me Bali is one of the best islands in the world. Yet, with around 3.4 million tourists visiting this island from January 2017 to July 2017 alone – I feel as though the REAL Bali is getting lost in big resorts or common tourist traps. That’s why I want to share with you guys 5 travel ideas to see a different side of Bali.

Rent a private driver for the day

Although you might have ideas of a blacked-out limousine with a chauffeur driver, that just isn’t Bali’s style. Bali tourists will often flock to popular areas of interest, and leave little time to explore the ‘in-between’ areas that show Bali at its best. By hiring a private driver for the day, you will be able to explore the island as the locals do, and you even get the chance to stop wherever you see fit to explore at your own pace. Of course, you could skip out on a private driver and simply use a taxi, but beware! There are numerous taxis in Bali that are not reputable and could potentially charge you over the odds. If you don’t mind paying by the meter, 1cover suggests that you look out for a Bluebird taxi, rather than an unnamed taxi.

Rent a motorbike

Renting a motorbike to travel the island on your own is one of the most common ways to see a different side of Bali. Although you can take designated paths and routes, if you’re feeling really adventurous, you could pack your backpack and see where the wind takes you. You can check out the more secluded spots, taste some of the more traditional delicacies, and you can even learn with the locals. You could learn how to cook from traditional chefs, take part in a lettering workshop, or you could simply make bracelets to take home to your friends and family. The best part? You get to talk to those who have lived in Bali their whole lives. Renting a motorbike gives you the freedom to truly explore.

Get cycling

If you want to do your bit for the environment, then consider hopping on a bicycle instead of using a car or moped. There are plenty of companies that provide bicycle rentals so that you can explore the wonders of Bali solo. Alternatively, book yourself on an organised bike tour and you’ll be able to visit all of the hidden gems with a guide. One word of warning, some of the main roads (particularly the highways in the south) aren’t safe for cyclists. Keep to the country roads, instead or choose one of the smaller islands next to Bali like Nusa Lembongang and Gili Air for your cycling trip.

Go temple hopping

Many people choose Bali as their next travel destination with the idea of island hopping from Seminyak to the Lembongan Islands, then to Gili Trawangan and onwards, until they’ve covered all of the ground. Or water. Yet, by exploring these islands and the coasts around them, travellers don’t get the chance to see the real culture of Bali. Instead, explore the beautiful temples of Bali and carve your own path from temple to temple.

See Bali from the above or below

While you can travel Bali on four or two wheels, seeing Bali from above or below is also a great way to see a different side of this beautiful place. By surfing or scuba diving, you can check out some of the greatest underwater spots in the world. Or spend your days living like the locals and riding the waves Bali is so famous for. If that doesn’t quite give you the rush you’re looking for, you might prefer climbing Mount Batur before the sun rises so you can see what the fuss is really about. I can guarantee you won’t be disappointed.

It’s easy to get caught up in the tourist traps of the island, but there are ways to travel the island and see a different side of Bali. Do you have any more tips? Let me know in the comments!


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