Bali – a perfect destination for solo travelling
Bali is one of the most budget-friendly travel destinations out there. Many female solo travellers visit Bali because of this reason, and back in 2017, I visited Bali because of the same reason as well. Although I did meet a few female travellers who had visited Bali after watching the popular Hollywood movie ‘Eat Pray Love.’ Now, if you do not know what the movie is about, let me give you a brief. The main female lead (Julia Roberts) decides to travel solo to explore food, spirituality, and love after going through a rough patch in her life. For the love bit, she travels to Bali. It would be fair to say that this movie did change the perspective of a lot of people about Bali, and post the movie’s release, many travellers decided to explore this beautiful island!
So, Indonesia has about 17,000 islands, of which Bali is the most popular one. Tourists from all across the world travel to this island to take a break from their busy lives and relax for a couple of days.
Bali was my first ever solo trip. And considering the things it’s famous for – surfing, diving and meditating – it was a little scary for me to travel here. But once I planned my trip, booked my tickets, and landed in Bali, I knew I was in for a great time!
This blog is all about my experience on my first solo trip to Bali. And as you read on, you might even find out the things that you can try out or places you can visit on the island.
To describe Kuta Beach in just a few words, I would say “beautiful resorts, eye-catching umbrellas and chairs, and thrilling waves.” Kuta Beach is beautiful, and honestly, anything I say would do no justice to it.
Originally, the beach was a fishing village, and over the years, it has been beautifully transformed into one of the most popular beaches in Bali. You will find a lot of restaurants, eateries, and bars in and around the beach.
Not just that, there are a lot of water adventures to try here too. One of the most famous ones is surfing. Back in the day, I used to be a little scared of water. So to overcome this fear, I tried out surfing. It was not exactly a pleasant experience since I had not tried out that many water sports before, but it sure was one of the memorable experiences I had. Five years later, I can now surf like a pro! I guess I just needed a little push to overcome my fears, and the surfing experience in Bali did just that.
A mesmerising Kecak Dance at Uluwatu Temple
It is believed that Bali has six spiritual pillars and the Uluwatu Temple is one of them. The temple is located on a steep cliff that makes it all the more beautiful. And the view of the sea from the temple is simply breathtaking. Oh, and also, the views of the sunset from the temple are nothing less than magical.
A traditional Balinese dance, Kecak Dance, takes place at the temple. The dance depicts the ancient history of Indian mythology – Mahabharata! Although the dance performance takes place in multiple tourist spots, there is something magical about the one that happens at the Uluwatu Temple. I guess it is because of the stunning location of the temple.
When I planned my visit to the Uluwatu Temple, the Kecak Dance was also slotted during that time. I had never witnessed something so beautiful and eye-catching in my life before. The performance surely made one of the highlights of my trip to Bali because when I went back to my hotel, I watched it again on my smartphone!
Bali Safari and Marine Park
The Bali Safari and Marine Park are quite the typical zoo-like sanctuary. There are plenty of things for visitors to do here, including eating a delicious meal and playing with the animals. The sanctuary has a lot of animals that are from other countries and continents.
The reason I decided to visit the Bali Safari and Marine Park is my love for animals. Although I am really scared of them, the safari did ease out some of my fears.
On my visit here, I had a delicious lunch at the Tsavo Lion Restaurant. The name of the restaurant does justice to the fact that it allows its visitors to have a meal with the lions. Well, not quite literally. The lions are obviously kept far off from the seating area, but you can watch them walk around and do their thing while you munch on the mouthwatering dishes served at the restaurant.
The visit to the restaurant was surely the highlight of my visit to the Bali Safari and Marine Park because other things offered here did not really seem interesting to me. If you are an adventure freak, you can skip visiting here and try out some other things to do in Bali.
The Ubud Monkey Forest
The Ubud Monkey Forest is surely one of the most refreshing places in Bali. You will find over 700 different monkeys in the forest, which is beaming with lush greenery. It is fair to say that the monkey forest is nature at its best!
Apart from the monkeys, there is a wide variety of trees and plants as well with more than 186 species in the forest. Also, there are 3 Hindu temples in the forest that host different festivals all around the year. These things are also considered some of the highlights of the monkey forest. To make the most of your visit to the Ubud Monkey Forest, you can take long walks in the lush greenery, capture nature with your camera, feed bananas to the monkey, and just breathe in the fresh air!
But let me give you a heads up for when you visit the monkey forest. The monkeys are extremely naughty and can get all over you. Also, if you stare directly into their eyes, they can get a little aggressive. So try to avoid irritating the monkeys in any way, and you should be good!
If you wish to have a unique experience in Bali, then the Ubud Monkey Forest should definitely be on your list of things to do on this island.
Tegallalang Rice Terraces
If you are looking for pictures to up your Instagram game, then definitely visit the Tegallalang Rice Terraces. There are three stunning terraced places in and around Ubud, and one of them is the Tegallalang Rice Terraces. The other two are located in the towns of Pejeng and Campuhan.
Many nature lovers and artists visit the rice paddies to admire the beauty or capture them with their paintbrushes. There are also several craftsmanship stands and bistros offered near the area for artists.
Well, as for me, I fell in love with the place the moment I saw the meandering rice paddies and the eye-catching scenery! I carried my camera along with me and captured this beauty in pictures to cherish them forever.
The gorgeous waterfalls of Bali
After visiting Bali and some of its popular waterfalls, I can say that this island is the “land of waterfalls.” There are so many waterfalls, one better than another. It can get a little tricky for you to decide which one to visit. But whichever you decide, I can assure you that you will have a beautiful time in the waterfalls.
Tukad Cepung Waterfalls
This is one of the gorgeous waterfalls I have ever visited. From all the sides, the waterfall is surrounded by extremely high gorges that make it even more interesting. When you witness the waterfall from inside, you will feel like you are witnessing an indoor plunge. There is also a clearwater pool at the bottom of the waterfall.
When the sun rises, the sun rays filter through the rocks and make the inside of the waterfall look no less than magic. If you love photography, then visiting Tukad Cepung Waterfalls will definitely be the best decision for your Bali trip. This place is the best when it comes to capturing stunning photographs.
I visited the Tukad Cepung Waterfalls in the afternoon. Although it was a bit crowded, the scenic views made up for it. But if you want to visit the waterfalls when it is less crowded (and I highly recommend this as it will be perfect for capturing great pictures and exploring the waterfall), you can visit them before 10 AM.
This is another of the most popular waterfalls in Bali. And also one of the best spots to capture Instagram-worthy pictures. On rare occasions, you can even witness a rainbow that forms on the cascade!
When I visited the Tegenungan Waterfalls, I was blown away by its beauty. Once you are done having fun at the waterfalls, you can head to any restaurant in the area. When it comes to traditional Balinese food, these restaurants will not disappoint you.
If you decide not to visit Sekumpul Waterfalls, it might be one of the worst decisions you’d make! Trust me, Sekumpul Waterfall is just so gorgeous! When I had seen the pictures of this waterfall online, I had made up my mind about visiting it. The water trails from cliffs with lush greenery, making the views breathtaking. The pool at the bottom is so beautiful that it will surely tempt you to jump inside and take a dip!
I interacted with a couple of other female travellers during my visit to Sekumpul Waterfall. And everyone equally loved visiting this place.
You should check these waterfalls out for some scenic beauty, and have a great time!
Read my blog on things not to expect from your first solo trip to have a better understanding of planning your first solo trip.
Ubud Art Market
My first solo trip came to an end with the visit to this beautiful Art Market in Ubud. The market is great even if you want to take back home a souvenir with you.
The art market sells a wide range of items such as brass Buddha statuettes, fashion accessories, Moroccan-style oil lamps, among many other things. Also, if you want to add a dash of colour to your wardrobe, you can check out their quadruple-coloured bohemian satin skirts and quilt-stitched batik camisoles! These are extremely pretty and comfortable to wear.
However, remember to bargain well with the shopkeepers here. Some of the locals I had met during my visit to other places had told me about how the shopkeepers tend to increase the price of the items when they see a foreigner. A trick that works best in such situations is to walk away from the shop/stall after losing a bargain. When you do that, the shopkeepers reduce the price drastically. But all in all, to not get scammed at the art market, bargain well, and you are good to go!
I would recommend you visit the Ubud Art Market if you want to witness how the artistic work is done. But the prices of most items will be on the higher end. This is because of the quality of the items. Bargaining in shops and stalls might work, but when it comes to fine art galleries, there is no scope of any sort of negotiation.
A perfect destination for a solo trip
When I was on the flight back home, I realised choosing Bali for my first ever solo trip was the best idea. I was glad that I did not cancel my plans or hesitate to try out things I wanted to because of my fears and insecurities. I did overcome a few of my fears with the Bali trip. And as I took more and more solo trips to different destinations, I became more confident.
If you are planning on choosing a travel destination for your next solo trip, or if you are someone who is planning a first solo trip, I would highly recommend you take Bali into consideration!
An introverted blogger who is looking to make unforgettable solo travel memories with one short life.