Bali is a top destination for honeymooners and has even been given the nickname ‘Island of Love’ and it is clear to see why. Bali has something for everyone due to its varied landscape of mountains, sandy beaches and word-class coral reefs. Newlyweds should go to the island to discover the spiritual culture which is like no other.
When people think of Bali, they think of the famous Kuta Beach. When you touch down at the airport it feels like the runway is Kuta Beach, you may even be thinking the pilot is performing an emergency landing on the beach as it is so close.
Kuta beach has rose to fame thanks to its’ nearby Ozzy neighbours. Their presence has boosted the local art scene, the array of delicious international food and they have also brought premier surf schools and international tournaments. For a bit more peaceful part of Bali, travel slightly North to Ubud where you will find a much more tranquil atmosphere and more of the traditional culture.
We couldn’t mention beaches without mentioning Bali’s famous sister islands, the Gili Islands (‘Gilis’), which you can easily reach via fast boat from Bali.These three islands are unique to any other Indonesian island as there is no motorised transport (which is a novelty in itself), the sand is powdery white and the water is a clear sparkling turquoise. And here are the best sunsets – the islands couldn’t be more romantic if they tried.
Now you will be asking which island is for you?
Gili Air is the most popular destination for honeymooners. It is the ‘inbetween island’, having both restaurants but also the peaceful atmosphere. Gili Trawangan is the largest and attracts the majority of the visitors but has now gained the reputation as a hippy party paradise. But even though it has this title it has luxurious options for honeymooners including picturesque villas, quality dive schools and this island has all the facilities you could need. Then there is the smallest island, Gili Meno, it is by far the most peaceful and underdeveloped, so if you are an adventurous castaway type or simply want a bit of total escapism, then Gili Meno is the island for you.
The surfing in Bali is not just for the experts as the island has the best waves for all skill levels. There are plenty of board rentals and surf schools for complete beginners, you can even rent a board on the beach, but be careful you are not paying too much. Surfing pros should head to the south-east of the island, Bukit whilst novices should stay in Kuta.
Bali is also a great destination for kite-surfing, wind-surfing, and is a great opportunity for you and your other half to try out the hottest new water sport to hit Bali, stand-up paddle boarding. Lessons are often laid-back but comprehensive; the instructor will show you the best spots for your capability and ensure you have an enjoyable lesson.
The sea and water-sports are not for everyone, so we recommend spending a fun-packed day at Bali’s famous water-park, ‘Waterbom’. The park is not like other waterparks, it has been voted third in the world and best in Asia. The park caters for all and most importantly for newlyweds; here you can have a thrilling day whilst also catching some rays on a sun lounger and the park also has varied, quality food.
3. Snorkeling & scuba diving
If you wish to explore some world class diving, then Bali should definitely be on your travel agenda. Bali is your one-stop shop for all things diving, the island is even a popular destination to take PADI courses (again for all levels).
If diving is not for you or not in your budget, then the snorkeling is equally jaw-dropping with most sites offering the same sea-life experience – you will still being able to see unusual, brightly coloured fish, manta rays and turtles. Snorkelling trips are suitable for all ages and most diving associations even offer personlalised private packages.
Bali has a tropical climate which means the diving conditions are generally good all year round, but the worst months to dive are January to March.
There are great dive sites all around Bali and the nearby islands, which include Nusa Lembongan, Nusa Penida, the Gili Islands, Flores and Komodo (yes that is the Komodo dragon island!).
4. Spa / Yoga
It wouldn’t be a honeymoon without a bit of relaxation, and nothing is more relaxing than a spa day or a great foot massage, and finding a creditable spa in Bali will be no problem.
If you are truly looking for ultimate relaxation and what to find your inner zen then try your hand at yoga. If you are a complete beginner or an absolute yogi guru there is a yoga retreat for you on the beautiful island.
For those who no knowledge in regards to yoga, it is a physical, mental and spiritual discipline that has Hindu and Buddhist origins. Bali is home to the majority of Indonesia’s Hindu minority which has given the island additional nicknames ‘Island of Hinduism’ and ‘Island of Peace’.
At your own pace
You do not have to eat, sleep, dream, yoga. You can even try it once and vow never to put your body in those positions ever again. But most quality retreats do offer relaxing accommodation and some will even include healthy healing meals, cultural visits/events and evening discussions (such as mindfulness and alternative medicines).
5. Hiking / Tour
Witness breathtaking sunrises and scenery from the top of a mountain which will be a complete unique experience.
The island has hikes to suit all time requirements. For example you and your partner can hike for two hours up Mount Batur, the active mountain is not far from Bali airport and not too strenuous but you still gain beautiful views. The eruption of Mount Batur has created a large hole to explore and an interesting black lava.
For the more adventurous and those with a high level of physical fitness, should attempt Mount Rinjani on Lombok island. Most climbers will need four days to reach the top for a beautiful sunrise. Rinjani offers adventurous scenery, waterfalls, rain forest, wildlife, hot springs, caves, a pristine lake, interesting culture and of course, the volcano.
Bali also offers peaceful bike tours through the amazing countryside where you will pass fascinating rural rice terraces and peaceful villages. A bike tour is a great way to experience the real Bali and daily-life of the locals.
6. Local art
Bali is an island of artisans and finding beautiful locally produced goods is easy, which includes paintings, basketware, stone and wood carving, silver, ceramics and more. You can even try your hand at being a silversmith creating your own personalised jewellery to mark your honeymoon, this can be done at many local stores at a very reasonable price.
Popular sportswear brands are available in the known-tourist spots, but the island now offers an ever-increasing number of chic boutique shops. Head to Seminyak, the high-end spa and boutique shopping capital of Bali. It is more upmarket than Kuta with luxury accommodation and fashionable restaurants and cafes.
Bali key facts
Claim to fame – previously voted World’s Best Island and featured in Elizabeth Gilbert’s best-selling memoir Eat, Pray, Love.
Best time to visit – April and October, the island’s dry season. Bali experiences only two seasons: the rainy season and the dry season.
Climate – Being just 8º(890 km) south of the equator, Bali has a fairly even tropical climate year round. Day time temperatures vary between 20-33⁰ C although it can be much cooler in the mountains, so pack layers if planning a trek.
Popular tourist locations – Kuta, Legian, Seminyak, Sanur, Ubud and Jimbaran.
Religion – 83.5% Balinese Hinduism.
Population – estimate of 4.3 million.
Main airport – Ngurah Rai International Airport