A Totally Instagramable Day On Bali, Indonesia
If you're a first timer to Bali, if you normally like to spend more of your time at the beach, or are looking for an itinerary to bring you both fun and great photos of Bali, then you've come to the right place. From picturesque drives to UNESCO world heritage sites and a little bit of child-like fun, this itinerary will pack in a day of smiles, breath-taking beauty and memories to last you a lifetime. You'll need to bring with you a sarong, sturdy walking shoes, an Instagramable outfit, your camera (or phone) and your sense of adventure for this day ahead. Here goes!
A Totally Instagramable Day on Bali
This itinerary works best if you are staying in Ubud or north of Ubud, as this is where you'll be heading for all of your activities. The morning before your adventure, arrange to hire a driver to take you around for the day. You'll probably need the driver for at least 8 hours, as this is a full itinerary. And it's up to you if you want to eat breakfast before you leave or wait to eat some food at your first stop. It's all up to your preference.
Approximate cost for this itinerary = 1,000,000 rupiahs or $74 USD depending on your meal choices and photograph package and does not include your souvenirs or driver hire for the day. This may cost another $50 USD depending on whom you hire. Budget about $100-$150 USD for the entire day.
Start your day with the driver picking you up at 7:30 AM and head to the famous Bali Swing located east of Ubud in the town of Bongkasa.
Cost: 624,240 rupiahs (for ticket and photo package, tax and credit card processing fees - if you don't have cash. $35 USD or $45 USD with photos).
(If you are staying at Bisma Eight, a hotel that I have recommended in the Top 15 Things to do in Ubud, Bali post they will be happy to arrange very comfortable transportation with a great driver for you. Just ask at the front desk.)
The Bali Swing is about a 30-minute drive from Ubud and a very popular tourist destination for bloggers, families, and all kinds of tourists. The Bali Swing opens at 8 AM and you can have the opportunity to be one of the first people on a swing if you arrive at the hour. You will have the option of buying a photograph package (this is really helpful if you're traveling solo), but you may be able to ask staff who aren't holding cameras to also take photos or videos of you. It's best to have all kinds of options as you won't want to miss out on this one of a kind experience. In addition, not only can you go on the swings as many times as you want, but complimentary food and beverage is included in your cost, so you can swing, take a break and swing some more.
Around 9:30 am or 10:00 am you'll start heading to your next destination. There is a very quaint and peaceful coffee rest stop about half-way to your third destination, so it's a good idea to have a coffee/tea sampling, nibble on some chocolate and use the facilities. Subak Bali Agro is a small cafe essentially where you'll see coffee beans growing on the trees, understand the process of how they are harvested, dried and roasted and the difference in beans. You can also see a Luwak, the famous animal that eats and poops the beans out whole, up close and personal as well. Luwak coffee is special to the island of Bali. For 60,000 rupiah you can have an entire coffee and tea sampling, including the Luwak coffee and then browse the shop for anything you thoroughly enjoyed. The staff was all very sweet and friendly and you won't have to worry about feeling pressure to buy anything.
After about a half an hour, you'll start heading further north to Lake Beratan to see the famous water temple, Ulun Danu Beratan Temple. It is 50,000 rupiah to enter the grounds and if you are solo and taking the Bisma Eight driver, the driver can escort you and assist with photos, if you wish. Otherwise, take as much time as you need exploring the temple and grounds, maybe even go for a boat ride, and meet your driver back in the parking lot.
Close to the temple and lake is the world famous and iconic Handara Gate. This gate is the entrance to a golf club and resort and because it has become so popular to photograph they now charge a 30,000 rupiah fee to come off the road and take your photos. By this time of day you'll likely need to wait your turn to take the photo, but most folks understand the importance of not having anyone else in their shot and are both respectful and patient in giving each other a chance to take photos.
At this point, it will be around 12:30 or 1:00 pm and you'll be getting hungry, but good news where you're heading next has a tasty and safe restaurant to enjoy lunch with a killer view. Now you'll be off to Jatiluwih Rice Terrace, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and it makes Tegalalang Rice Terrace seem like small potatoes. When you have seen one rice terrace, you have not seen them all! You will spend a good chunk of time here and this is your farthest and longest stop from Ubud, so best to enjoy and take it all in.
Jatiluwih is a remarkable site to behold! The cost to enter the Rice Terrace is 45,000 rupiah. The buffet at the restaurant is 120,000 rupiah and is Indonesian food, but you are also able to order something from their extensive menu (including pizza if you really need it). Once you're good and satisfied head down to the trail and take the 45-minute trek through the rice terraces for some more incredible views and photos!
Around 3:00 pm or 3:30 pm you'll start making your way back to your accommodation. If any place on your drive something grabs your attention, don't be afraid to ask the driver to stop and let you get some snaps of it or ask questions as you go. Some of the best artisan villages are outside of Ubud and you may want to purchase beautiful and better quality souvenirs than in downtown Ubud.
Once you're back at the hotel, around 4:00 pm or 4:30 you'll want to rest and freshen up. It will likely have been a plenty warm and balmy day and you'll want to take the time to relax and look over your amazing photos!
After your refresh and restful break, plan to head out to dinner in Ubud at the restaurant Clear Cafe located on Hanoman. You may need to make a reservation before arriving in case it's a busy night of the week. This cafe concept is Hollywood meets Bali and with a delicious menu full of healthy options. It will be a great way to not only reward yourself from a big day of exploring but also, still very Instagramable with their artfully inspired concept and cuisine. Oh and you can slide down their pole!
That concludes your fun-filled and totally Instagramable day on Bali!
I hope you have a tremendous time exploring, photo-taking, learning and eating. Let me know what you think.