Escape to paradise on this immersive, 8-day exploration of Indonesia's most popular island. Focused on Bali's southern districts, you'll hop between the cultural center of Ubud, the lush rice fields of Sideman, and the breathtaking beaches of the Bukit Peninsula. Along the way, try your hand at Balinese cooking, explore the volcanic Mount Bakur by vintage VW, and meet the monkeys of the clifftop temple of Pura Luhur Uluwatu.

Highlights

  • Learn how to cook Balinese specialties with locals
  • Take a scenic Volkswagen safari to the volcanic Mount Batur
  • Trek through the lush countryside & rice fields of Sidemen
  • Experience a sunset Kecak show at the cliffside temple of Uluwatu 
  • Spend a day exploring the spectacular beaches of the Bukit Peninsula

Brief Itinerary

Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive at Denpasar Airport, Transfer to Tanah Lot Tanah Lot, Bali
Day 2 Balinese Cooking Class, Transfer to Ubud Ubud, Bali
Day 3 Volkswagen Safari Tour to Kintamani & Mount Batur Ubud, Bali
Day 4 Transfer to Sidemen via Goa Gajah, Gunung Kawi, Tirta Empul & Pura Kehen Sidemen, Bali
Day 5 Sideman Countryside Hike, Transfer to Jimbaran Jimbaran, Bali
Day 6 Jimbaran Free Day & Kecak Dance Performance Jimbaran, Bali
Day 7 Bukit Beaches Tour & Visit Pura Luhur Uluwatu Jimbaran, Bali
Day 8 Transfer to Airport & Departure  

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1: Arrive at Denpasar Airport, Transfer to Tanah Lot

The stunning sea temple of Tanah Lot

Welcome to Bali! Upon arrival at the airport in Denpasar, you will be met by your private driver and transferred to your hotel in Tanah Lot. The drive from the airport out to the island can take a couple of hours, depending on traffic, but it's a beautiful one, passing through small villages and past endless green rice paddies and lush forests.

Once you arrive in Tanah Lot, you're free to spend the rest of the afternoon as you please. Relax and enjoy the legendary Balinese hospitality, order a massage or a cocktail, or go for a wander around the neighborhood.  As evening falls, head out for some food in the charming center of the old town, which has plenty of shops, cafes, local warungs (family-run cafés), and fine dining options to suit every taste.

Day 2: Balinese Cooking Class, Transfer to Ubud

Learn how to cook traditional Balinese food in a cooking class
Learn how to cook traditional Balinese food in a cooking class

Today, you are invited to the traditional home of Ayu and Made for a lunchtime Balinese cooking class. Learn the secrets of fine and delicate Balinese meals, and discover how to combine spices, vegetables, and other ingredients to recreate the recipes back home.

When lunch is ready, set the table in the beautiful garden and enjoy your self-made dishes! Most of the time you will share this class with a small group, however, if you would prefer a private class, feel free to ask your destination specialist.

In the afternoon, you'll continue to Ubud, the cultural center of Bali. Get settled into your hotel, then enjoy a free afternoon exploring the city. Your driver will be available should you wish to do some sightseeing farther afield. 

Day 3: Volkswagen Safari Tour to Kintamani & Mount Batur

Sunrise views over Mount Batur

Get the day off to an exciting start with a vintage Volkswagen convertible safari tour through the beautiful Balinese countryside. You will be picked up from your accommodation by your driver in a colorful open-top VW car, before hitting the open road and exploring the island in style.

First, you'll visit the rice terraces around Ubud, driving along beautiful winding roads through little villages, and past waterfalls and historic temples. Stop off at Tegallalang Rice Terrace, where you can walk through the paddies, take a ride on the famous Bali Swing, go shopping for souvenirs and trinkets along Tegallalang Crafts Street, or sit in a little cafe sipping on a kopi (Balinese coffee) or a beer (you are on holiday after all!), and enjoy the view.

From here, drive through the fertile heart of Bali with its orchards, vegetable gardens, and lush coffee farms and cacao plantations, before arriving in Kintamani. Take a stop to enjoy the amazing views over the stunning caldera lake and see the dramatic peak of Mount Batur, one of Bali's two active volcanoes.

Go for a drive around the lake through little villages and a walk on the ancient lava fields, before swinging by Tibumana Waterfall and Gunung Kawi Sebatu, a beautiful historic water temple, and rounding off your trip with a visit to Gianyar, where you can sample some local street food from the bustling market stalls. From there, you'll take a leisurely drive back to Ubud, where the rest of the evening will be at your leisure.

Day 4: Transfer to Sidemen via Goa Gajah, Gunung Kawi, Tirta Empul & Pura Kehen

The holy springs in Tirta Empul are said to have magical properties
The holy springs in Tirta Empul are said to have magical properties

This morning you leave Ubud and head out to Sidemen Valley, about an hour's drive east. On the way, stop off to visit the spectacular temples of  Goa Gajah, Gunung Kawi, Tirta Empul, and Pura Kehen.

These UNESCO World Heritage-listed temples are amongst the most famous in Bali, and for good reason. Built sometime between the 9th and the 11th centuries, Goa Gajah ( also known as the Cave of the Elephant) was lost to time until 1923, when it was rediscovered by Dutch archaeologists. You can reach the temple by entering the mouth of the carved stone creature at the entrance and descending the stairs.

From here, you'll visit the imposing 11th-century rock shrines of Pura Gunung Kawi, which are carved into sheer cliff faces on either side of a small river. Located at the bottom of a tiered valley surrounded by lush rice paddies and waterfalls, these historic temples are said to be part of the burial complex of King Anak Wungsu and his many wives.

After that, make your way to Tirta Empul. One of the most famous Hindu temples in Bali, Tirta Empul means "sacred source" in Balinese, and the waters here are said to have magical powers. Watch as people cleanse themselves in the purifying waters of the ancient pools, following a tradition that dates back centuries.

Your last stop before you reach Sidemen is in Bangli to visit Pura Kehen. Built in 1206, this temple has an impressive 11-tiered meru, a pagoda-like structure with multi-tiered thatched roofs. 

Once you arrive in the Sidemen Valley, check into your accommodation and relax and put your feet up after a long day of exploring.

Day 5: Sideman Countryside Hike, Transfer to Jimbaran

Go for a leisurely hike through the countryside around Sidemen
Go for a leisurely hike through the countryside around Sidemen

This morning, set off through the countryside of Sidemen for an easy 2 to 3-hour trek, accompanied by an English-speaking guide. On your way you'll come across farmers, rice fields and fruit orchards, passing plantations of clove, salak, cocoa, and other tropical fruits and spices that make up the lush tropical vegetation of Bali. Above all, you can admire the stepped rice terraces that make up the fantastic landscape of Sidemen.

After your hike, freshen up at the hotel and pack your bags. Your driver will be waiting to transfer you to Bali's south coast and the beautiful beachside fishing village of Jimbaran.

On the way, you can visit Sukawati Market to find thousands of fruits, spices and souvenirs of all kinds. This market is well known by the Balinese. They come to sell all kinds of textiles, baskets, paintings, fruits and vegetables at low prices, in a friendly atmosphere.

Day 6: Jimbaran Free Day & Kecak Dance Performance

Beachside swings at Jimbaran

Spend today relaxing by the pool or enjoying the spectacular beaches nearby. Take a walk through the lively open-air Kedonganan Fish Market and watch the colorful fishing boats go by, or head to Dreamland or Balangan Beach for a surfing lesson. If you feel like venturing further afield, your private driver will be available for transfers and sightseeing in the area. 

As the sun sets, you'll attend a Kecak show at Uluwatu Cliff Temple. Pronounced "ketchak," this dramatic Balinese dance is performed by around 50 people and narrates stories from the Hindu epic of Ramayana.

Day 7: Bukit Beaches Tour & Visit Pura Luhur Uluwatu

A playful monkey at the clifftop temple of Pura Luhur Uluwatu

Today your driver will take you on an unforgettable day of beach-hopping, as you discover the beautiful beaches of the Bukit Peninsula such as Padang Padang Beach, Thomas Beach, Green Bowl Beach, and Pandawa Beach. You can spend as long as you like at each beach, and visit as many or as few as you like.

Finish the day with a visit to Pura Luhur Uluwatu Temple to take in a spectacular sunset. Located on the cliffside, you can walk around and enjoy the landscape and surrounding scenery. Keep in mind that the monkeys here are masters of the place!

Day 8: Transfer to Airport & Departure

Say goodbye to Bali
Farewell, Bali!

It's time to say your goodbyes to Bali as your driver transfers you to the airport to catch your departing flight. Safe travels!

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