Bali Bucket List: The Top 10 Things To Do in Bali

Why do so many travellers from around the world flock to Bali? Well the Bali bucket list can be summed up in three words: TROPICAL, CULTURAL AND AFFORDABLE! It can be honestly said that of Indonesia’s cities, The concentration of travel activities is the attractions in Bali.

Whether you’re a culture buff, a thirsty surfer, a waterfall lover or island hopping hipster, party hunter or simply a sun-seeking beach dweller you can truly find tropical palm tree perfection at every turn – truly the best of Bali.

There is a place to visit in Bali for every type of traveller and what I most love is that it’s a lot easier on the pocket than other island destinations like Mauritius and Maldives!

From must-see temples to wandering lush emerald rice terraces, the Bali bucket list is a collection of moments that are the best things to do in Bali Indonesia.

Bali tourist places are served up by the truck-load and the fact that Bali is still very budget-friendly makes it all the more appealing!

Apart from the countless places to visit in Bali, here’s a few more reasons to seal the deal:

IT’S CHEAP (particularly when you compare it to the likes of Bora Bora)

IT’S HEALTH CONSCIOUS (there are now endless vegan, vegetarian and nutritious food options)

IT’S FRIENDLY (the people in Bali are kind and welcoming)

IT’S GORGEOUS (whether it’s the ridiculously stunning island landscapes, the ancient temples or the beautiful jungle and rainforest

IT’S JUST AWE-INSPIRING

I easily fill this article with 100+ attractions of Bali, but that’s not the point here. These are the best 10 things to do in Bali.

If you’re in Bali for a quick vacay, I wanted to give you the ULTIMATE BALI BUCKET LIST-WORTHY things you have to experience whilst being on the Island of the gods.

Here’s hoping it inspires you to return to experience the countless more Bali attractions this paradise has to offer.

Here’s a map of Bali with some of these incredible Bali Bucket list locations

1. Try a Floating Breakfast

Swarming the Instagram feeds for the last few years, the Bali floating breakfast is honestly a bucket list item that I strongly recommend you tick off. As a result of it’s growing social media popularity, many accommodations in Bali now offer this luxurious experience.

Ubud is considered to be the epicentre of the floating breakfast craze, most likely due to the fact that’s the area surrounded by the lushest, jungle and rainforest atmosphere.

TRAVELIST TIP: Want to get others lusting after this experience? Make it a photographic event! Don’t be shy to ask politely for your accommodation staff to take your picture, they’ve become quite used to this request, but if you know your angles, giving them direction is key.

Whether you’re ballin’ on a budget or living the champagne lifestyle, you’ll find luxury and affordable options. This is a highlight now of the things to do at Bali hotels!

Thankfully the craze has expanded to the rest of the island. Below I’ve listed some of the most popular places to stay to get your Bali floating breakfast.

UBUD

Samsara

Kamandalu

Madani Antique Villa

Beji

SEMINYAK

The Daya

Ziva A Boutique

Villa Kayu Raja

CANGGU

Kano

Sense

Kalapa

Shore Amora

Regali

Want to try a floating breakfast without a hotel stay?  Try these awesome tours:

Ubud tour with Floating breakfast and Balinese massage

Ubud Floating Breakfast and Hot Air Balloon Experience

TRAVELIST TIP: Although this is one of the best things to do, Bali accommodations should be checked first before booking to see the inclusion of this breakfast option. For some accommodations it is built into the price, for others, it is an add-on for this Bali to do!

2. Explore the Fifty Shades of Green at the Rice Terraces

Tegalalang Rice Terraces in Bali
Tegalalang Rice Terraces in Bali

Of the many (many) sights to see in Bali, this is one of my favourites. Sometimes the bustle of the party scene and crowded beaches makes you crave a bit of solitude and serenity and this is truly the place to find it.

There are two main rice terraces to visit in Bali, the first (and more popular) is Tegalalang Rice Terraces in Ubud and the Jatiluwih Rice Terraces in North West Bali.

Jatiluwih Rice Terraces
Jatiluwih Rice Terraces in Bali

Want to visit Tegalalang Rice Terraces?  Try these combination tours:

Get Your Guide

Klook

There is an enchanting and calming nature about being surrounded by vast green rolling hills. Best visited first thing in the morning or in the late afternoon, it sets a gorgeous background for peace and stillness in refuge from the city.

Aerial view drone photography of Tegalalang Rice Terraces in Bali

Looking for the best list of Bali things to see and do? Try these incredible tours!

Want to visit Jatiluwih Rice Terraces?  Try these combination tours:

Get Your Guide

Klook

TRAVELIST TIP: This is high on the Indonesia Bali tourist attractions list because both are equally beautiful, but if you’re looking to avoid the crowds a tiny bit more, then choose Jatiluwih Rice Terraces for a visit.

3. Go island hopping on Nusa or Gili Islands

Rumah Pohon Treehouse on Nusa Penida a destination for your Bali Bucketlist
Rumah Pohon Treehouse on Nusa Penida East
Broken Beach on Nusa Penida a destination for your Bali Bucketlist
Broken Beach on Nusa Penida West

Yes, Bali is an island (a big one at that), but just a stone’s throw away is even more paradise. So, why are these islands worth visiting?

The Nusa islands hold some of the most photographed unique landscapes in Indonesia. Whilst the Gili Islands have made the Bali top attractions list for years too!

The Nusa Islands are comprised of Nusa Penida, Nusa Lembongan and Nusa Ceningan. I strongly recommend staying on Nusa Penida and doing a two-day tour with a sprinkling of snorkelling with manta rays too.

Places to visit on Nusa Penida include Angel’s Billabong, Kelingking Cliff, Broken Beach, Rumah Pohon Treehouse, Atuh beach, Diamond Beach and Crystal Bay.

Kelingking Cliff/Beach on Nusa Penida a destination for your Bali Bucketlist
Kelingking Cliff on Nusa Penida West (also known as T-Rex or Pinkie Cliff)
Diamond Beach on Nusa Penida East  a destination for your Bali Bucket list
Diamond Beach on Nusa Penida East
underwater Gili Meno Statues a destination on the Gili Islands for your Bali Bucket list
Underwater statues of Gili Meno island

It’s truly one of the most beautiful and unique landscapes I’ve ever seen.

There are plenty tours available for visiting Nusa Islands, Pick yours here:

Get Your Guide

Klook

The Gili Islands (Gili Trawangan, Gili Meno and Gili Air) are also definitely worth mentioning. The three islands each have their own inciting activities if you’re looking for amazing parties, beach lounging, incredible diving or even snorkelling with turtles– All can be done on these stunning pieces of paradise!

Although Nusa Islands are closer, some prefer to add visiting the Gili islands if you’re visiting Lombok, the next big island East of Bali. Regardless of whether you visit one or both, this needs to be added to your activities to do in Bali

This is one of my favourite Indonesia Bali places to visit because I absolutely am in awe of the underwater wildlife and untouched island natural beauty.

Want to visit Gili Islands? These are some amazing tours:

Gili Island Tours (Island hopping, diving and snorkelling adventures)

TRAVELIST TIP: If you only have a day to visit Nusa Penida, I recommend the Nusa Penida West tour with snorkelling at Manta bay, Crystal bay and Wall Point. If you have the opportunity to stay overnight then you need to check out the East attractions of Nusa Penida too- Jaw-dropping!

4. Experience Sunrise with an Active Volcano in Bali

Mount Batur Volcano sunrise destination for Bali Bucket list
Mount Batur volcano sunrise hike viewpoint

Trekking to the summit of Mount Batur is truly one of the once in a lifetime Bali activities.

Okay, now a 4 am start might not be for everyone, but gosh, the reward is an experience that will stay etched in your soul forever.

In the stillness of pre-dawn, you will watch as the dark gradually transform to a hazy pink before the first gilded glow ascends from the horizon.

Aerial view of Mount Batur Volcano Bali
Aerial view of Mount Batur Volcano

After the Batur sunrise, you’ll witness the sea of clouds engulfing your surroundings which is unlike anything you can compare to in the world.

This is definitely for those looking for more adventure activities in Bali, but it’s totally worth the early wake-up and trek! It was one of the most fun things to do in Bali for me at least!

READ: Hungry for more volcanoes treks in Indonesia?
Check out Mount Bromo and Kawah Ijen and this awesome 7 day East Java Itinerary 

Active volcano Mount Batur Bali bucket list destination

Want to see the sunrise over an active volcano?  Try these awesome tours:

Bali: Sunrise Mount Batur Hike with Breakfast

Mount Batur: Private Sunrise Jeep Tour & Natural Hot Spring

TRAVELIST TIP: Dress in layers, despite the rest of the island being extremely tropical and humid, at a summit height of approximately 1700 metres above sea level, it’s going to be rather chilly before sunrise.

Looking for more Mount Batur sunrise trekking tours? 

Klook

5. Find Peace at a Water Temple

Regardless of your religious background, visiting temples in Bali has been high on the travellers’ Bali Places to visit list for years!

Tanah Lot temple Bali bucket list destination temple floating on the ocean perched on rocks
Tanah Lot temple perched on the ocean rocks

Why? Because these are honestly some of the most unique water temples in the world. The two water temples I recommend you top your list with are Tanah Lot and Ulun Danu.

Tanah Lot is great for sunset viewing as its located on the ocean shore and watching the tide come in and engulf the base to create the illusion of the temple floating on water is simply gorgeous.

Find some amazing Bali temple tours here: 

Tanah Lot temple (combination tours, sunrise and sunset adventures) 

Ulun Danu Temple (combination tours, sacred Bali rituals and countryside trips)

Ulun Danu is another illusionist temple that appears to float on a lake, coupled with a mountainous landscape as its backdrop, this 350-year-old gem is nothing short of mesmerizing.

ulun danu beratan temple in Bali a temple floating on a lake in Bali
Ulun Danu Beratan Temple floating on the lake

Absolutely stunning!

TRAVELIST TIP: Make a day of it! There are a number of temples in Bali and even better is that you can book a day tour of temple visits, great ones include are Taman Ayun, Ulun Danu, Uluwatu Temple and Pura Lempuyang Temple (famous for the ‘Gates of Heaven’ photo).

Looking for more cultural activities?
READ: Must-see temples in Bali for 2021

6. Spoil yourself with a choice of Sunsets

There are honestly countless places to enjoy a magical sunset scene in Bali. Whether you’re looking for the ocean view, beach vibe, utter silence, cliffside landscapes or lush forest vibes; there is something for everyone!

Here’s a couple of awesome choices to see the fiery ombre of reds intertwined with the cotton-candy clouds:

THE LAWN – Trendy cocktails and beach bar with infinity pool

WARUNG SUNSET POINT AHMED – a quiet place to enjoy the sun descending the should of volcano Mount Batur

MUNDUK MODING PLANTATION – to be in line with the sunset whilst dipping a toe in the infinity pool is simply magical

LA BRISLA BALI – Brushing the brilliant volcanic sands of Echo Beach, A tropical dream, that invites you to slip away into the sea breeze whilst taking in the sunset

TRAVELIST TIP: Try a different place every day if you have the opportunity, As mentioned above the temples of Tanah Lot, Ulun Danu and Pura Lempuyang are also stunning for a sunset viewing of Bali’s best sights!

PEMUTERAN BAY – isolated, tranquil and serene. This is the absolute height of finding peace in Bali.

SAYAN HOUSE UBUD – tucked into the lush rainforest, the islandy decor and moreish dishes are one of the best places to enjoy a sunset cocktail in Ubud

LA PLANCHA – possibly the most popular and easily accessible place for first time Bali beach goers

LA LAGUNA – gypsy, fantasy décor coupled with a laid back atmosphere in true Bali island style fashion

TRAVELIST TIP: Beach clubs are bars are the most popular sunset viewing spots so if you’re planning to visit you may have to call and book ahead of time or get there early.

7. Stay in a Jungle Forest Villa

If nature therapy is your kind of holiday, a forest hotel is exactly what you need in Bali. As much as some love the ocean view, this island is more than just gorgeous beaches.

Imagine waking to the sounds of chirping birds and becoming engulfed in lush greenery while breakfast is served floating in your private pool.

Could it get any better?

Leave the city madness and enjoy luxurious jungle retreats. Reconnect with nothing but lush green jungles, rich plantations – truly one of Bali best things to do.

Check out these incredible Jungle Forest Villa options: