Bali Itinerary (Our Ultimate 2 Weeks Guide)
After spending 2 months (in total) on this incredible island we put together everything you need to know about the island of the Gods in our ultimate Bali itinerary.
No matter if you are a first time visitor or lost your heart in Bali, as we did, this Bali itinerary includes all kind of facts you need for your perfect experience of the island.
Stunning surf spots, endless rice terraces, incredible mountain views and impressive temples.
Bali offers such a broad variety of sights and activities and in addition, has the friendliest locals in all of Southeast Asia.
That said it’s no secret that so many travelers fall in love with this Indonesian island.
So let’s dive into the most important facts you need to know about Bali followed by the perfect Bali itinerary. ;)
At a glance
- When to Visit
- Balinese Culture and Religion
- How to Get Around
- Are You Allowed to Fly Your Drone in Bali
- Where to Stay in Bali
- Bali 2 Week Itinerary (Day by Day Program)
- Nusa Islands Itinerary Add-on
- Bali Waterfalls
When to Visit
Bali has a very steady climate with an average of 27°C throughout the year and a humidity level of about 85-90%, which is why the temperatures seem even warmer.
The dry season is between April and September and the wet season usually from October to March.
Keep in mind that the two seasons are not fully predictable.
Apart from the months July and August in the dry season, the holiday seasons are when Bali gets the busiest and most expensive.
Christmas, New Year’s Eve and Easter holidays attract lots of tourists to the magical island.
We have spent time on Bali in December, February, April as well as March.
Our tip is to visit Bali in shoulder seasons from April-June and September-October to get the best combination of great weather and the best prices. ;)
Balinese Culture and Religion
While the majority of the Indonesian population is Muslim Bali is home to most of Indonesia’s Hindu minority.
Stories from Hindu epics are portrayed in dances that represent the diverse cultures on the island.
The most important festivity on Bali is Nyepi the Hindu New Year also known as Balinese Day of Silence.
Nyepi is a public holiday and each Balinese stays at home during this day of silence, fasting and meditating.
It’s forbidden to light fires, work, travel, talk, as well as entertainment or pleasure.
The day before Nyepi colorful sculptures of Ogoh-ogoh monsters (mystical demons) are paraded through the streets of the island and burnt to banish evil spirits.
One of the first things you will notice after arriving on Bali are all the offerings on the streets, in front of doors and temples.
You see them simple everywhere.
Little baskets made out of palm leaves and filled with different flowers, rice, and other offerings.
Women put them on the streets and temples in the early morning, saying a prayer, sprinkling holy water with a flower and lightning an incense stick.
This ritual symbolizes the importance of the different element: earth, fire, wind and water.
It’s meant to please the various gods and demons of Balinese Hinduism and part of the daily routine of almost every Balinese woman.
The scent of the Frangipani flowers and the incense sticks makes exploring the island of the Gods even more spectacular.
How to Get Around
The most important thing you need to know about transportation in Bali is that exploring the island takes time.
Bali doesn’t seem that big but due to the street conditions and the traffic in the cities traveling doesn’t go very fast.
One thing you will learn pretty fast on the island of the Gods is to be patient and take your time. ;)
After arriving at Ngurah Rai International Airport there are several options on how to get around on Bali.
Depending on the size of your group we are recommending the following.
If you are traveling alone or in a pair get yourselves a scooter.
It makes your time on the island even more adventurous and you will be fast as soon as you adapted to the Bali street rules.
Read our Definite Guide to Renting & Driving a Motor Scooter in Bali for everything you need to know to conquer the Balinese roads.
If you are a group of 4 people or more, you can either rent scooters (if you want to choose the fun option) or share a car.
We experienced that Uber and Grab are much cheaper than the official taxis, but it might get tricky to find them in non-touristy places and at the airport, since they seem to be banned at Ngurah Rai International Airport.
Are You Allowed to Fly Your Drone in Bali
During our time in Bali we never had a problem flying our drone and if you have one yourself we absolutely recommend bringing it. ;)
But be careful when flying it for the first time!
It might have happened that we crashed our Mavic Pro into a banana tree once (True story and not proud of!).
There are certain areas where drones are restricted or prohibited like government offices, police stations or military bases but there is usually a sign saying so in those areas.
Out of respect, you should never fly your drone over temple areas.
Where to Stay in Bali
The accommodation options in Bali are as diverse as the different regions of the island.
From high-class luxury villas to hostels with shared rooms – you find it all.
We stayed in different accommodations and regions during our visits and we loved Canggu the most.
Below we put together all you need to know about each region in Bali.
Canggu – The Hipster Beach Town
Canggu is the perfect combination of culture, food, surfing and nightlife.
If you are an expat or digital nomad you will love Canggu.
It offers plenty of cafes with great wifi and several co-working spaces to get work done or connect with like-minded people.
Canggu is popular for its beaches like Batu Bolong, Berawa and Echo Beach.
During our stays, it was our absolute favorite area for hip restaurants.
Check our Guide to the Best Restaurants in Seminyak & Canggu to find out why.
Seminyak – Shopping Mecca and Beach Bars
You would never think of a former fisher village with all the designer stores and chic boutiques located in Seminyak today.
Most famous for the endless shopping opportunities and high-end spas, this area of Bali was one of the first to be populated by tourists.
Besides the many shops, Seminyak offers several miles of sandy beaches popular among surfers.
Kuta – If You’re Young and Wanna Have Fun
As one of the most active party towns, Kuta is extremely popular among younger tourists who are looking for surf fun and party on the beach.
Start the night with an incredible sunset.
Kutas location guarantees a night sky with vivid reds, purples and oranges looking out across the ocean.
Jimbaran – The Beverly Hills of Bali
Luxury villas close to the best beaches – welcome to Jimbaran.
This part is famous for its white beaches, which are perfect to relax and watch the surfers.
With a cocktail in hand, you can enjoy the colorfully painted sky during sunset and indulge in a fish from today’s catch.
For tranquil tropical waters, daily fresh cuisine and a twist of luxury Jimbaran is the place to be.
Uluwatu – Magic and Mystery
With the majestic Uluwatu temple, this region perfectly represents the island of the Gods.
In Uluwatu you can feel the fusion of cultural heritage and luxury.
You will find plenty of local boutiques selling handmade Balinese lace.
Uluwatu is the place to escape the busy city life and soak up the sounds of nature and crashing surf.
Nusa Dua – the resort town to the East
With all-inclusive hotel complexes, there is nothing you need to worry about in Nusa Dua – if this is your kind of accommodation.
Offering plenty of high-end restaurants, all kinds of activities and the white beach right in front of the hotel this area offers all the conveniences of a resort town.
Sanur – the family beach town
As the typical seaside tourist town, Sanur offers a peaceful beach resort holiday.
With its small town center, you can discover all the restaurants and shops expected in a seaside tourist town by foot.
Ubud – Eat, Pray, Love in Central Bali
You can feel the eat, pray, love vibes wherever you go in Ubud.
With its lush green scenery and the breathtaking temples, it shows a completely different façade of Bali compared to the beach towns in the South.
You can learn all about Balinese spirituality, with the numerous temples surrounding Ubud.
No wonder that Ubud is THE place for your Yoga retreat in Bali.
Besides the unique cultural experience, Ubud is famous for its Monkey Forest in the middle of the city.
Lovina – the slow-paced beach town in the North
Contrary to the South, Lovina is the perfect spot for a tranquil beach holiday with snorkeling and sunbathing on the black beaches.
Popular for dolphins and its hot springs the north of Bali is most of all the perfect starting point to explore Bali’s mountains.
The perfect getaway in the mountains is definitely the Munduk Moding Plantation.
Bali 2 Week Itinerary (Day by Day Program)
The perfect Bali Itinerary for the perfect mix of beach, culture and adventure.
After spending 2 months on the island of the Gods we put together a day by day guide for your unforgettable Bali experience.
Starting in Canggu.
Where to stay in Canggu
Located super close to the beach Shinta’s Hidden River Cottage is a real gem.
If you are looking for an even more exclusive villa check Mark’s Luxury Villa with rice field views.
For the budget travelers, we can absolutely recommend staying at Trisna’s Riviera House including good vibes and likeminded travelers.
Day 1-5: Things to do in Canggu
As we already mentioned Canggu is our absolute favorite area and the perfect place to start into your Bali adventure.
Day 1 – Get Oriented & Take in The Bali Vibes
From Ngurah Rai International Airport in Denpasar, it takes about 50-60 minutes to arrive in Canggu (depending on the traffic and the location of your accommodation).
With plenty of amazing restaurants and cafes, it’s a Mekka for food lovers and coffee addicts. ;)
See our post about the Best Restaurants in Seminyak & Canggu to the top places for your time in Canggu.
With its laidback vibes, Canggu is THE area of choice among many Bali expats.
So get your scooter and don’t forget your helmets, and start exploring one of the most upcoming areas on Bali.
Day 2 – Go Surfing & Visit Tanah Lot Temple
To start your first day right we suggest heading to the popular surf spots first thing in the morning.
Canggu’s sandy beaches shimmer in a light black or grey thanks to Bali’s volcanos.
The popular ones are Batu Bolong, Berawa and Echo beach.
We had our first surf lesson on Batu Bolong and we’ll never forget it.
It was so much fun and also super exhausting.
Yes, learning how to surf is exhausting at first!
You have to paddle all the way out to the right spot, while it will definitely happen once or twice that a wave will throw you all the way back to the shore.
It can get a bit frustrating at the beginning but keep it up – it’s so worth the effort!
At Batu Bolong you will find plenty of little stalls offering 2-hours surf lessons including a teacher and a surfboard for 200.000-300.000 IDR.
The teachers usually explain all the theory and you have to do a few dry runs at the beach before they let you enter the water. ;)
During our lesson, our teachers stayed with us the whole time and gave us helpful tips on how to get up the best.
At the end of the 2 hours, we were both super tired but happy that we made it.
There is no better way to breathe in the Bali atmosphere in the morning than strolling through the local markets on your way to the beach.
Another amazing part about Bali is the number of fruit markets.
You can find them on almost every street and besides the delicious taste, they are super affordable.
After your surf lessons, you can either spend the rest of your day at the beach or head to the close by Tanah Lot Temple.
It’s a 30 minutes scooter ride to the temple which is the most visited tourist destination on Bali.
Located on a large offshore rock it’s only possible to visit the temple during low tide.
Tanah Lot is a place to worship the Balinese sea gods and it’s popular amongst tourists for the incredible views when the sun starts to set behind the rock with the temple on it.
It is said that the caves below the temple are home to sea snakes which guard the temple from evil spirits and intruders.
On your way to the temple, you will pass an endless amount of shops selling all kinds of souvenirs.
Entrance fee: 60.000 IDR
Opening hours: 7 AM – 7 PM
If you want to head over to the temple make sure to bring appropriate clothing, like a Sarong.
You should always cover your shoulders and knees when entering a Balinese temple.
Day 3 – Discover The Gems of Bukit Peninsula
Being located in the South of Bali the Bukit Peninsula beholds many beautiful treasures.
We suggest visiting the following top places during your day on the Peninsula.
- Balangan Beach
- Green Bowl Beach
- Abandoned BOEING 737
- Uluwatu Temple
Start your day early and make sure to stop at one of the stunning beaches on West of the Peninsula.
Balangan Beach is a beautiful white sand beach which is usually not crowded.
After a refreshing swim continue your journey to the South of the Bukit Peninsula to Green Bowl Beach.
Spend the midday heat in the beautiful turquoise water, which attracts mostly locals.
Opposite the beach is a cliff that offers a stunning view over the ocean (and down to the beach if you aren’t afraid of heights). ;)
Did you know that Bali is popular for it’s abandoned airplanes?
Yes, that is a thing on Bali!
Only a 5-10 minutes scooter ride from Green Bowl Beach you can find the probably most popular plane on the entire island.
An abandoned BOEING 737.
It’s located on a private property along Jl. Raya Nusa Dua Selatan.
After spending half the day at Bali’s beaches and exploring the abandoned airplane head to Uluwatu Temple in the afternoon.
The temple worships the Balinese Hindu deity of all elements and aspects of life in the universe and it’s believed to protect Bali from evil sea spirits.
Uluwatu Temple is sitting on a 70-meters high cliff which makes this temple another stunning spot for beautiful sunsets.
Stairs are leading up to the temple and a path is leading past the clifftops with their views across the ocean.
Entrance fee: 40.000 IDR
Opening hours: 9 AM – 6 PM (As a place of worship it’s open 24h daily.)
Another highlight at Uluwatu Temple is the Kecak Fire Dance, performed every evening during sunset.
Its plot is based on a traditional Balinese ritual telling the famous Hindu story of the Ramayana.
In short, the performance tells the story of a princess who is stolen from her husband by a demon and the challenges the young prince has to overcome to rescue her.
Day 4 – Belimbing Rice Terraces
The Rice Terraces in the Belimbing region are our absolute favorite rice terraces on Bali.
When we visited them in early 2018 we were the only tourists around and couldn’t believe the beauty of the endless rice paddies.
We put everything about Belimbing in our post about The 3 Most Magical Rice Terraces in Bali with lots of pictures and one of our top café recommendations. ;)
This was actually the place where our Drone kissed the banana tree … :D
Day 5 – Travel to Ubud
It will take a bit longer to drive by car but it’s definitely the more comfortable way to move from one area to another.
Especially with your luggage and stuff.
From Canggu to Ubud it usually takes about an hour by car.
So enjoy one last instagramable breakfast in one of the Best Restaurants in Seminyak & Canggu and head to your next destination.
Where to stay in Ubud
Day 6-10: Things to do in Ubud
After you’ve checked into your new accommodation for the next 5 nights we recommend exploring the Ubudhood. ;)
Strolling through the city you will soon notice the different atmosphere compared to Canggu.
Instead of surfer vibes and beach babes, Ubud is known for its spirituality and as a cultural center.
Day 6 – Temple Culture & Traditional Markets
What better way to experience the spirituality of Ubud than visiting its most famous temples.
Don’t forget to bring your Sarong. ;)
Only 10 minutes from Ubud’s center is the Goa Gajah temple.
Its name translates into elephant temple but you won’t find any elephants on the temple grounds. ;)
Goa Gajah is a popular water temple and also known for its beautiful gardens.
Entrance fee: 15.000 IDR
Opening hours: 8 AM – 4 AM
After experiencing the first temple head to Ubud’s Traditional Art Market in the center of the city.
It’s a great place to buy local souvenirs or a new Sarong.
Bargaining is expected so make sure to use your haggling skills.
You can usually start at half the communicated price. ;)
Opening hours: 8 AM – 6 PM
In the afternoon visit one of the national cultural heritage sites: the Tirta Empul Temple
This temple is 30 minutes from Ubud and famous for its holy water spring where regular purification ceremonies are celebrated.
Entrance Fee: 15.000 IDR
Opening hours: 9 AM – 5 PM
Another temple worth a visit is Gunung Kawi Sebatu which is only 10 minutes from Pura Tirta Empul.
Being one of the least visited temples it guarantees a beautiful and tranquil experience.
Perfect to end your day filled with temples.
Entrance fee: 15.000 IDR
Opening hours: 8 AM – 5 PM
Day 7 – Campuhan Ridge Walk & Jungle Fish
The Campuhan Ridge Walk was on our bucket list since our first time in Bali but due to bad weather, we never made it until our 3rd visit to the island of the Gods.
Known for its lush and scenic views this trail is loved by local joggers, dog owners as well as tourists.
Start into another early morning and head to the Campuhan Ridge Walk to watch the sunrise.
Since the area is exposed to the elements it gets way too hot during the day.
You will also have the best light during sunrise to shoot some amazing pictures.
We were super lucky when we headed to the Campuhan Ridge Walk because apart from a few joggers and maybe 6 other tourists there was no one around.
However, we heard from many other travelers that it’s super crowded usually – so be prepared. ;)
If you walk the whole path, which takes about 30-60 minutes (depending on how many pictures you take), you can continue to the Jungle Fish a laidback beach club without a beach but with a pool in the middle of the jungle.
Enjoy their breakfast and relax in the pool soaking in the amazing jungle view.
Entrance fee: 200.000 IDR (no breakfast included)
Opening hours: 7.30 AM – 10 PM (breakfast from 7.30 AM – 11 AM)
Make sure to arrive at 11 AM the latest because they operate on a first come first serve basis. ;)
Day 8 – Tegalalang Rice Terraces & Ubud’s Monkeys Forest
The most popular amongst all of Bali’s Rice Terraces is definitely Tegalalang.
It was the first rice terrace I visited in Bali and I was stunned.
During our time together on Bali Berni and I visited a couple more terraces and we put together all you need to know about The 3 Most Magical Rice Terraces In Bali, including Tegalalang of course.
For your afternoon we recommend visiting the Sacred Monkey Forest which is located in the center of Ubud village and a dream come true for anyone who loves monkeys.
The Monkey Forest plays an important role for the village as a spiritual, economic and educational center.
It’s also a place for research to learn more about the monkey’s social interaction and behavior with their surrounding environment.
There are about 600 macaques living in the Monkey Forest divided into 5 groups.
The main food of the monkeys is sweet potato.
In addition, they get treats like banana, papaya leaf, corn, cucumber, coconut and other local fruits.
Tourists can buy bananas inside the area – so if you want a monkey climbing up to your shoulders you should definitely get some for them. ;)
Entrance fee: 50.000 IDR
Opening hours: 8.30 AM – 6 PM
Day 9 – Mount Batur
A special highlight in hiking Bali is the 1717 m high Mount Batur which is an active volcano and has the largest crater-lake in Bali.
Most popular are the guided sunrise treks.
After being picked up around 2 AM in the morning the car will bring you to the base of Mount Batur where you can enjoy tea or coffee with the rest of the group.
When it’s still dark you start your hike at 4 AM.
It takes little less than 2 hours to hike up to the top.
The hike itself can be challenging at some parts leading through mostly off-road trails and rocky terrain.
It’s recommended to wear proper hiking boots and long sleeves because it’s very chilly in the early morning.
On top of Mount Batur you will not only be rewarded with the amazing views but also with breakfast that includes eggs cooked on lava-heated rocks, bread and fruits.
To relax your aching muscles head to the Hot Springs at the foot of Mount Batur after your descend.
If you don’t want to miss this experience check the Mount Batur Sunrise Trekking Tours.
We recommend spending the rest of your day taking in the atmosphere of Ubud for the last time. ;(
Day 10 – Travel to Northern Bali
Again it’s time to say goodbye but there are more adventures ahead of you.
The Northern part of Bali is completely different to what you have seen so far.
So once more pack your backpack and head to the bus terminal this time.
We recommend taking a shuttle bus instead of Uber/Grab to Northern Bali because is cheaper.
Check for example the Ubud Shuttle Service, they have 2 shuttles per day for 150.000 IDR going to Munduk.
If you are staying in Lovina take one of the Perama Shuttle Service for 125.000 IDR.
Where to Stay in Northern Bali
If you want to enjoy a luxury mountain retreat in Northern Bali, staying at the Munduk Moding Plantation is the right decision.
Breath in the mountain air while relaxing at the infinity pool or enjoy their coffee tasting after one of the massages.
Room prices starting from U$ 170.
Another amazing tip is to stay at Andri’s Villa Putih in Lovina.
With a spacious room right next to the pool and Andri as one of the most friendly hosts we ever had.
Check out the pool in the picture!
Day 11-14: Things to do in Northern Bali
Day 11 – Ulun Danu Beratan Temple & The Twin Lakes Buyan and Tamblingan
Start your day by heading to Pura Ulun Danu Beratan.
In the highlands of mount Bedugul sits lake Beratan with the beautiful water temple Pura Ulun Danu Beratan.
Located on the shore of the clear lake, 1.500 meters above sea level, this place is one of a kind.
Breathing in the clear mountain air you can enjoy the amazing view over the lake.
No wonder this temple is the second most photographed on Bali after Tanah Lot.
Lake Beratan is the second largest lake on Bali.
It once was the biggest one before an earthquake divided the lake into three sections: Beratan, Buyan and Tamblingan.
Buyan and Tamblingan are the next stop on day number 11.
You will pass the so-called twin lakes when driving to Ulun Danu Beratan.
However, we recommend visiting Lake Beratan first to catch the stunning morning light shimmering on the lake and giving the temple an even more magical touch.
On the road (Jl. Raya Wanagiri) you find lots of the famous Selfie spots overlooking the twin lakes.
You can take pictures sitting in a bird’s nest a gigantic heart shape or just head to the simple viewing platform without other tourists and without paying for the view (like we did). ;)
It’s located on Jl. Raya Wanagiri facing Tambligan Lake but you can see Lake Buyan as well.
Day 12 – Cooking Class in Bali & Lovina’s Beaches
We love the Indonesian cuisine and we love to cook – what better way to combine those two passions by doing a Cooking Class in Bali. ;)
In Lovina, we finally booked one of the classes offered on every corner of Bali.
Read all about this amazing experience and get 4 traditional Balinese recipes in our post about our Cooking Class in Bali.
After the cooking class you will be stuffed so we suggest spending the rest of the day at Lovina Beach. ;)
If you do feel hungry or need a coffee in the afternoon check the Top 5 Cafés in Lovina.
Day 13 – Bali’s Biggest Rice Terrace Jatiluwih
The Jatiluwih Rice Terrace is reaching from the foot of the mountains to the coastal side.
Seeing rice fields that extensive is a breathtaking experience.
Some say that this rice terrace is on the world heritage list of UNESCO, but it’s actually the whole process behind this amazing agricultural system that made it a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Read all about it in our post The 3 Most Magical Rice Terraces in Bali.
Day 14 – Back to The Airport
Don’t be sad that it’s over, be happy that you’ve experienced this stunning island!
Yeah, ok, that’s a shitty thing to say but: There is always a second time. ;)
Now you know how to get around on Bali and what to do so why not come back and if you want to explore something new check our Nusa Islands Add-on.
Nusa Islands Itinerary Add-on
If you have more than 2 weeks to explore Bali or want to skip one of the above-mentioned points to head over to the even more remote Nusa Islands keep on reading.
We explored Nusa Lembongan, Ceningan and Penida and it is easy to choose our favorite.
Nusa Penida, the Bali 20 years ago, has an incredible amount of breathtaking beaches and other beautiful spots.
Riding your scooter beneath palm trees along the coast or down to the cliffs is an experience you won’t find anywhere else.
Then check our post about the Things You Should Do On Your Nusa Penida Tour (And What To Avoid). ;)
For all waterfall lovers out there Bali is the perfect island to explore incredible waterfalls!
We are still working on our post about the most breathtaking ones on Bali.
So please forgive us that the Bali waterfalls are missing at the moment!
What you will soon find here are the top waterfalls on Bali you have to visit, their special characteristics, the location and of course stunning pictures.
So, stay tuned! ;)
Is there anything we missed or do you have an extra tip for us?
Let us know in the comments so we can check it out during our next time on this amazing island! :)