Where To Stay In Bali – An overview of the main Resorts
The picturesque Indonesian island of Bali has a number of neighbourhoods and resorts to suit every type of traveller. Whether you want to hang with a hip, young crowd or get away from it all in the rice fields, read on to discover the different sides to Bali and what type of traveller they suit.
If you like shopping, world-class eateries and cocktails at sunset then Seminyak is the place to be. You can find a wide variety of accommodation in Seminyak, from boutique hotels to high-end resorts and private villas. There’s a thriving food and nightlife scene here – try Mama San for trendy Asian street food and Revolver Espresso for what is said to be the best coffee in Bali. Seminyak will suit travellers who like to shop for beach-chic fashion and artisan homewares in the independent boutiques and then end the day with drink at Potato Head’s legendary beachfront swim-up bar.
Canggu is like Seminyak’s chilled out little sister. Just 20 minutes down the road, Canggu is much quieter than Seminyak and that’s one of the things the expats and surfers you’ll find here love about it. Although there is not a huge number of cafes and restaurants here the quality of food is impressive. You can enjoy organic lunches with views of the rice paddies at Betelnut Café and take a breakfast bowl from Nalu Bowls down to the beach with you. Accommodation in this area mainly consists of villas (at better prices than in Seminyak) and boutique hotels such as Frii Bali Echo Beach. There is not much in the way of nightlife but a beer at Old Man’s whilst watching the sun set over the waves is a great way to spend your evenings.
Uluwatu on the Bukit Peninsular is known for its fantastic surf spots and iconic sea temple that perches on the edge of a cliff 70 metres above the ocean. Nearby Bingin is considered one of the best beaches in Bali – it’s golden sandy crescent is admittedly a lot prettier than some of the darker volcanic beaches. It’s not so good for the young and elderly though as many of the coves are accessible only by steep steps carved out of the cliff face. There are a lot of villas and laidback boltholes on this coastline though that make it a popular location for destination weddings.
Nusa Dua is an upmarket development of 5-star resorts, luxury malls and an 18-hole golf course on the east coast of Bali. The long golden beachfront is lined with high-end resorts by international hoteliers such as Conrad and Grand Hyatt. This area will suit honeymooners and families who are looking for a resort-based vacation – there is little in the way of restaurants and bars outside the hotels.
In the centre of Bali are the staggered rice terraces and jungle valleys you may have seen in brochures of Bali. Although central Ubud itself can get very busy with day-trippers you can find a number of boutique hotels and private villas hidden in the tranquil rice fields of the surrounding area. Ubud is particularly popular with yogis, there are a number of yoga schools here, but also for those who want to get away from it all and soak up the incredible scenery. If you’re looking for some indulgence check into one of Ubud’s luxury properties, like the Alila Ubud, which comes with a jaw-dropping infinity pool overlooking the misty valley.
Nusa Lebongan is considered to be like the Bali of old. Situated 30 minutes from the mainland, this island is still relatively new to tourism and will suit those who prefer rustic accommodation a bit off the beaten track. You’ll find idyllic-looking beaches at the aptly named Dream Beach and Secret Beach and the best views of the sunset at Sandy Bay Beach Club on the south west coast.