Bali is one of those places in the world where you wished you didn't buy a return ticket. It has everything from pristine white sandy beaches to tropical forest with spectacular mountains and water inlets. From the trendy vegan restaurants in Ubud to fancy upscale bars in Seminyak beach, Bali has something for everyone. But wait that's not all there are few hidden secrets to this mystical island and here are a few noteworthy ones.
It's actually a Tri-State
No I am not talking about New York , New Jersey and Philadelphia , Bali actually is connected by three islands . Nusa Penida, Nusa Ceningan and Nusa Lembongan. Amongst the three Nusa Lembongan is located in the southeast side of Bali. The island can be reached by speed boat from the east coast of Sanur (a resort town). Most of the transport inside the island is done by scooters, and tourists can rent them quite easily.
The next island is Nusa Penida which is also located on the southeast of the main Bali island with its neighbour Nusa Lembongan next to it. The terrain is hilly with some hills peaking upto 524 meters (Source: Wikipedia), connection is via speed boat from Sanur.
Nested in between Nusa Lembongan and Nusa Penida , its is the smallest of the three. It is located in the Straits of Badung , south of Bali. The island is one of the most beautiful of the three with its scenic landscape. The island has become a hotspot for adventure travellers, and one of the spots which is popular is the Mahana cliff , for those seeking more thrill in their vacation. A note of caution that jumping off the cliff is only permitted when the tide is high enough.
Relax your senses
The island is home to the highest concentration of spas according to one report it is believed to have about 1200 establishments for spa. It looks like there is no excuse but to indulge your tense muscles to the soothing massages of balinese spas. The island has many different types of massages from traditional Bali massage to Chinese and Indian ones. You and your loved one can enjoy a couples massage delivered by pretty Bali women with delicate touch, perfect after your tiresome day at the beach.
If you are the type who is into vegan food then you are in the right place. Step into the trendy alley of Ubud , you are in for a vegetarian gastronomical journey. Small boutique shops selling a cacophony of artisan crafts to indulge your imagination. There is plenty to choose from and you might just turn into a herbivore. It's no wonder Ubud is the definite contender for the best vegan destination in Asia. The town is packed with yoga enthusiast and folks who prefer to trade their Burger King meals for Thai Green Curry. These dishes really gives their meat counterpart favorites run for the money.
Island of Gods
If you want to travel to a destination that has a history of more than 4000 years then you need to be in Bali, which is deemed as the “Island of the Gods”. Earliest civilization dates back to 2000 BC, Austronesian folks originally from Taiwan inhabited the island. Balinese culture has been strongly influenced by Indian and Chineese culture. According to historical accounts there were nine Hundu sects which existed around the 1st century AD; namely Pasupata, Siwa Shidana, Brahma, Bodha, Sora, Resi, Ganapatya, Bhairawa, and Waisnawa , each with their own God.
Make your own custom jewelry
Want to impress your fiancé or your wife with a custom made jewelry then head to Ubud or Sanur where you will find gold and silver boutique shops with custom made jewelry. You can show them your design and they will do it for you.
Okay you will not see Batman or his fancy Bat Mobile anywhere near but Bali has a Bat Cave. Goa Lawah (means Bat Cave in local language) is located at the south east cost of the island and 10 km south of Candidasa in the village of Pasinggahan. The cave is part of a large temple complex which is presumed to be built around the 11th century AD by the Hindus who arrived in the island. The cave has now become a common attraction for tourists heading east of the island.
Final resting place for Bowie
The legendary rock icon David Bowie’s final wishes were to have his ashes scattered in Bali. According to BBC, his family executed this wish in a private Budhist ceremony after the late singer's tragic battle with liver cancer. Bowie had a long-standing love affair with Indonesia and the song Tumble and Twirl with Iggy Pop released in 1984 describes their journey across the country. So you must visit Bali if you are a true Bowie fan.
Bali is located in the Coral Triangle
Bali is intricately situated in one of the most biodiverse places for marine life. The Coral Triangle is spread across the waters of Indonesia, Malaysia, Papua New Guinea, Philippines, Solomon Islands and Timor-Leste. Coral life is recognized for preserving the biodiversity of marine life and its important to the aquatic life.
Bali is truly an island with diverse customs and culture with ancient historical places to keep the avid traveller entertained. From the rice terrace of Ubud to the twin volcanoes of Mt Batur and Mt Aung the island has everything for your dream adventure holiday.
“The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes but in having new eyes” - Marcel Proust