This post is part of a larger trip report from my 16 day honeymoon in Southwest Asia!
Southeast Asia Trip Reports:
- Planning a Southeast Asia Honeymoon
- Park Hyatt Saigon Vietnam Hotel Review
- Ho Chi Minh City / Saigon Activities
- Le Méridien Angkor Hotel Review
- Angkor Wat / Siem Reap Activities
- Grand Hyatt Bali Hotel Review
- Bali Beach Town Activities
- Ubud (Bali) Hotels and Activities
Day 1: Nusa Dua
We spent the first few days in Bali just relaxing at the hotel, I guess you are supposed to do that during your honeymoon! We were just on the go in Vietnam and Cambodia, so we were excited to spend our first day hanging out at the pool and the beach. We walked along the beach and visited some of the other resorts. Just around the bend is The Laguna Resort & Spa (a Starwood property). I did not go inside the hotel, but from the outside/pool area it seemed pretty nice. There are private cabanas and some of the rooms even have balconies that go right into the main pool.
Day 2: Kuta Beach
After our relaxing day at the beach, we were back out exploring! Our first exploration was to Kuta beach. This is closer to the airport and VERY touristy, primarily with back packers. The beach was packed and all the locals were trying to sell us anything and everything. We did not love Kuta, but glad to see it. My husband was able to rent a surf board for about $10 and I did what I do best – laid horizontal on the beach. If you do rent a surfboard, you have options up and down the beach and depending on the time of year the waves are friendly for beginners. The biggest risk is the number of people in the water. While my husband surfed I would sometimes hop in the water to cool off, but you had to be careful as surfers were all along the water. We walked around the town where there are many shops ranging from high end designer to tourist tsotske stores. If you like night life this is the place to be. It was extremely easy for us to find a taxi to take us back to the hotel when we were done for the day.
Day 3: Jimbaran Bay
The next day we went to Jimbaran. This beach area was great. If I had to do it all over, I would find a hotel in this beach area. There was a beautiful Four Seasons resort that we walked through, but I have to believe it was way above our price range! There is also an InterContinental in Jimbaran that has received some great reviews and you are able to use your Priority Club points. Aside from those two chain resorts, there are some boutique hotels as well. The beach area was secluded with many fisherman. You see all the fishing boats out in the water getting the catch of the day and coming back in and shaking out the nets. There are fish flying all over the place! This was a great place to be at during sunset. All of the restaurants (warungs) are in a row and set up tables outside right on the beach for dinner time. Upon ordering your dinner (which I’d highly recommend ordering fish), they take you to the tanks to pick out the fish you want them to cook for you. This is extremely fresh fish as you can see them out there all day catching your dinner for that evening! We ate both lunch and dinner here and I loved the atmosphere. There were no hawkers and it was just a relaxing day. There are many taxis to give you a ride back to your hotel. This is about 20 minutes away from Nusa Dua.
Day 4: Uluwata Temple
The next day we hired a driver to take us to Uluwata Temple. When visiting the temple, you must have the driver wait for you, as there are really no taxis waiting to take you home. We decided to hire a diver for the day and take us to some other beach areas after visiting the temple. We were able to find a driver easily from the hotel and the going rate is about $40/day. This temple was one of the most sacred (and beautiful) temples in Bali. It is filled with monkeys who have no problem snatching items from tourists. They pretty much require you to get a monk guide when you are there (I think it was like $5), and the guide brings you though the temple explaining the cultural significance. The best part about the guide was that they ensure the monkeys stay away!
We spent about an hour at the temple then had the driver drop us off at a nearby beach. My husband wanted to check out some of the famous surfing beaches he had heard of and I am glad we did as they were very unique compared to where we were staying in Nusa Dua. We started at Padang Padang. This was an extremely quiet and quaint beach. We walked down a ton of steps to get to this cove beach area. It was small and you could see the reef exposed about 100 yards out. It made going in the water tough as you were walking on reef in the shallow area.
The next area we went to was a spot my husband calls Impossibles (it’s a surf spot). We essentially had to walk through a farm to get there. It was a private area and we did not see too many people. The beach was lined with private bungalows containing many surf boards! We hung out and walked along the coast for about 20 minutes to Dreamland beach. This was the touristy area and packed with many Indonesians who had never seen the ocean! They were all in jeans and long sleeve shirts (while it was 90 degrees) and running away from the water when the waves came. It was very interesting! We met our driver at Dreamland beach at the end of the day and he took us back to our hotel, about 30-40 minutes away. On our way we stopped to get a late afternoon lunch. We could tell that this was more of a surfing area and not too touristy, which we liked.
Day 6: Another Resort Day
We spent our last day at the resort soaking up the sun and enjoying the Hyatt pool. We then got a driver to take us to Ubud (which is in the center of Bali) where we spent the last three days of our trip. More to come on Ubud…
- Absolutely eat at one of the Warungs in Jimbaran – any of them will do!
- Bumbu Bali – This restaurant is in the Nusa Dua area (close to the Conrad hotel). We LOVED this restaurant so much we actually are here twice during the trip!