Beach Vacations to Bali, Indonesia

Nusa Dua Beach, Bali, Indonesia
Nusa Dua Beach, Bali, Indonesia (Sektordua/Flickr)

Bali Beach Travel Tips

  • The rainy, humid season in Bali lasts from October to April; February, March, and April are the hottest months.
  • Bali's beaches are busiest in July and August, around Christmas and New Year's, and during other school holidays.
  • Red flags on beaches mean rip tides are present and swimming is not advisable.
  • Although bikinis and Speedos are fine for Bali's beaches, make sure to cover your legs and shoulders when entering one of the island's temples. A sarong is perfectly acceptable for this.

This island, of roughly 2,192 square miles and approximately four million people, can be driven around in just one day—but, oh, the wonders it hides. You'll fly into the airport in the main landlocked city of Denpasar, located in the southern part of the island, and from there you'll head to one of Bali's many beach resorts or fabulous hotels. There's the buzzing, party-central Kuta with the luxurious digs of Seminyak and Nusa Dua; and inland there are splendid upcountry arts and crafts villages, namely Ubud, with its misty volcanoes and terraced rice farms. Or, check out one of the many mellow beach towns with an array of lodging options that welcome travelers. The eastern coast of the island has the best beaches as well as the best snorkeling and dive sites; while the far west is the least developed area of the island, with mountainous terrain mostly consisting of national park land.

A predominantly Hindu island in Muslim Indonesia, Bali's culture is distinct to the region and markedly laid-back and accepting (drinking is not frowned upon as in other parts of the country). Rogues, rascals, and renegades make up the ex-pat community, and even terrorist attacks of previous years have not dimmed the island's popularity with foreigners. With a plethora of exotic temples, age-old rituals, volcanic peaks, bubbling hot springs, tropical jungle, and stunning beaches, Bali makes it easy for everyone to find something they love.

Scuba divers in particular will find much to their liking, including the extensive reef systems of Candidasa, the Menjangan Island, and the World War II wreck USS Liberty that lies off the shore of Tulamben. Surfers praise the waves at Kuta on Bali's southern coast and at the small village of Uluwatu. For some old-fashioned beach bumming, a must-stop is Sanur Beach on the island's southeastern coast and its sacred temple of Ratu Ayu of Singgi.

Published: 7 Jul 2009 | Last Updated: 30 Mar 2010
Details mentioned in this article were accurate at the time of publication



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