Cultural Wonders of Bali, Indonesia

11th Jul 2015
Photo of Cultural Wonders of Bali, Indonesia 1/3 by WithASuitcase
Pura Ulun Danu
Photo of Cultural Wonders of Bali, Indonesia 2/3 by WithASuitcase
Tanah Lot
Photo of Cultural Wonders of Bali, Indonesia 3/3 by WithASuitcase
Uluwatu Temple

Three words that aptly describe our dream destination, Bali: a magical wonderland.

Listed are some of the sights you must witness if you ever take a trip to this diverse island. We divided the country (and also stayed) in two to explore it better.

North Bali

(Note that we are using Ubud as the center here)

1. Pura Tirta Empul or Holy Spring Water Temple

A sacred setting in the midst of the Gianyar town, this Hindu temple attracts tourists and locals for the purpose of immersion in the blessed water and prayer to the Gods. We spent half a day here learning about the history, culture and traditions practiced by the Balinese people.

Distance from Ubud: 11km

2. Gunung Kawi or Rock Temple

Like a fairytale in stone, the structure is a 11th century spectacle where shrines are believed to be monuments for the then deceased royal family. A guided tour of the place is sure to reveal some of the mysteries of these engravings.

Distance from Ubud: 14km

3. Mt. Batur of Kintamani

A fairly long drive from the city but well-worth a visit. The active volcanic trail is a splendid trek of moderate difficulty that ensures you are awestruck by the time you reach the top. 100%! The panoramic view from here is matchless. Also, Lake Danau, the largest crater lake in the country is visible from this point.

Distance from Ubud: 40km

4. Pura Ulun Danu Bratan

This is the sanctity you see in pictures and movies, the very same one! At first, it looks too good to be true and on spending more time there, you realize that it does indeed have a miraculous effect. Set in Lake Bratan, Pura Ulun Danu is easily one of our top sights in the world.

Distance from Ubud: 45km

5. Ubud Art Market and Puri Saren

Take a break from all the sightseeing and visit the art market open till about 6pm everyday. We bought all our souvenirs here – paintings, masks, magnets, gifts, folding fans etc. Not far from here is the Water Palace which symbolizes the rich heritage of Bali.

Distance from Ubud: 0km

South Bali

(Note that we are using Seminyak as the center here)s

1. Tanah Lot

On reaching Tanah Lot, we were literally left standing breathless. The sunset over this rock formation was most magnificent, the colours from the sky highlighted in the backdrop.

Distance from Seminyak: 17km

2. Sanur Reef

An artificial reef where we did our first session of scuba diving; we hold this place very dear to our heart for its serene underwater life, and since we're back home in a single piece! Sightings of starfish, colourful corals and schools of fish are common.

Distance from Seminyak: 14km

3. Uluwatu Temple or Sea Temple

Most scenic sunset ever? We think so. Lofted a few metres above sea level, this temple by the sea can mend broken hearts. You have to see it to believe it!

Distance from Seminyak: 27km

"Above all, watch with glittering eyes the whole world around you because the greatest secrets are always hidden in the most unlikely places. Those who don't believe in magic will never find it."


  • Best way to travel in and around Bali is by renting bikes. Take fewer taxis as they end up being a more costlier option.
  • Some of the most authentic Indonesian food is found in the small restaurants by the side of the road. Yes, even if you're vegetarian.
  • Being a tourist destination, it goes without saying, travel with utmost care and caution. There are pickpockets and monkeys too!
  • Keep small change with you at all times, it comes in handy for tipping and shopping.

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