bali bucket list, Bali Bucket List: 25 Must-Do Experiences in Paradise

Bali Bucket List: 25 Must-Do Experiences in Paradise

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Bali is more than just a tropical getaway – it’s a sensory explosion that boasts a rich cultural tapestry, diverse landscapes, and an undeniable allure that attracts travelers from all walks of life. Therefore, it deserves a Bali Bucket List!

Planning a trip to Bali? Buckle up, because you’re about to take a virtual jaunt through the emerald jungles, sapphire waters, and golden sunsets of this Indonesian paradise. 

Our listicle is your passport to iconic Bali experiences guaranteed to swipe right on your wanderlust. Grab a Bintang beer (or a chilled coconut), and read on for the ultimate Bali bucket list!

For reference, Bali was a stop on my backpacking trip after college. I must admit that I only booked for check off my bucket list, but Bali was one of my favorite destinations! I loved its diversity, beauty, and culture! 

Bucket List Review of a Bali Bucket List

Who Should Add This to Their Bucket List?Backpackers or luxury travelers
who want a diverse island
paradise for their bucket list.
Best Time to GoSpring or Fall
Traveling DifficultyEasy to Moderate
Physical DifficultyModerate
Popularity Rating8/10
Group Tour RequiredNo, but recommended for activities.
Wheelchair AccessibleCan be tricky, but depends on hotel
and activities.
Favorite Place to StayI can’t even choose. Good luck.
Favorite TourIntro Travel 12 Day Bali Experience

Love it? Pin it!

bali bucket list, Bali Bucket List: 25 Must-Do Experiences in Paradise

Plan Your Trip to Check Off Your Bali Bucket List

Before we start, I have to say that when I went to Bali, I chose to go on a multi-day tour with Intro Travel. I then stayed in Bali for a week or so by myself to hit anything I missed. I traveled with Intro Travel to Thailand as well and had an incredible time!

You can check out the exact tour I did below:

Bali is a very aesthetic travel destination. If you want more aesthetic travel ideas, I would suggest checking out my aesthetic summer bucket list in addition to this one ☺️

Without further adieu…let’s go to Bali!

1. Seek out the Best Temples in Bali

You can’t throw a stone Bali without hitting some jaw-droppingly beautiful temple

Seriously, the island is dotted with these spiritual havens ranging from sea-swept sanctuaries to mystical jungle retreats. So, I apologize if this section is a little longer than the others. We have a lot to talk about!

Exploring these sacred spots should be at the tippy-top of your Bali bucket list. 

Just remember to dress respectfully, a sarong and a smile go a long way here. Trust me, temple hopping in Bali isn’t just about ticking boxes; it’s about filling your soul with awe and wonder.

Best Temples in Bali

Tanah Lot

Prepare to have your breath stolen by Bali’s crown jewel, the Tanah Lot Temple. Perched dramatically on a coastal rock formation, this 16th-century temple is a feat of ancient engineering and a spiritual icon.

This was easily the most unique and best temple that I visited in Bali! If you only had to choose one, I would go for Tanah Lot!

Also, when I went, there was a running joke by the locals that this should be named “burn-a-lot temple” because so many people get sunburned. Do what you will with that information…

bali bucket list, Bali Bucket List: 25 Must-Do Experiences in Paradise
Tanah Lot Temple at high tide in Bali, Indonesia.

Uluwatu Temple

Another one of my favorites, solely because of its location and ocean views!

Picture this: a stunning temple perched precariously on the edge of a jaw-dropping cliff, with the deep blue Indian Ocean stretching out as far as the eye can see. 

Yeah, Uluwatu is not just any temple; it’s like the rock star of Balinese temples, offering you not just a spiritual experience but also an unbeatable sunset view that’ll have you spamming your Insta feed like there’s no tomorrow. 

Plus, those cheeky monkeys lurking around? Their brand of entertainment is guaranteed to add a bit of spice to your visit. This was honestly what kept me the most entertained during my visit.

The only thing that killed me about this temple was how much traffic I had to sift through, so make sure you are purposeful when you decide to visit. 

Lempuyang Temple

Next, let’s head over to the Instagram-famous Lempuyang Temple! Yes, this is the spot where you’ve seen those jaw-dropping shots of the Gates of Heaven with Mount Agung perfectly framed in the background.

The Gate of Heaven is one of the most photographed and iconic Bali landmarks. Full disclaimer: this is busy and touristy!

But it’s not all about the ‘gram, guys. Lempuyang Temple is a place of deep spiritual significance.

The climb to the top? Oh, it’s an adventure alright, but each of the 1,700 steps gets you closer to a panoramic view that made the flight to Bali worth it!

bali bucket list, Bali Bucket List: 25 Must-Do Experiences in Paradise
Lempuyang Temple, Gates of Heaven, Bali, Indonesia. Photo by Hendra Wijaya on Unsplash.

Tirta Gangga

Oh, and you can’t say you’ve explored the wonders of Bali without stepping into the enchanting world of Tirta Gangga (a water palace)! 

Here, you will wander through a maze of crystal-clear pools and gushing fountains, set in the most jaw-droppingly gorgeous gardens you’ve seen. 

It’s like stepping into a travel photo and is one of the most unique locations in Bali.

Lake Beratan

Next up on our whirlwind Bali adventure is the magnificent Lake Beratan.

Nestled in the cool highlands of Bedugul, Lake Beratan provides eye-candy backdrops of Ulun Danu Beratan magically floating on the water.

Don’t forget to indulge in a little picnic by the lake – just watch out for the friendly local ducks; they’re adorable but have been known to photobomb with style!

Tirta Empu

Tirta Empul is this enchanting natural spring that’s not just about the cool water. It’s steeped in legend and spiritual vibes that’ll give you chills—in a good way, promise! 

Here, it’s all about purification and new beginnings. You’ll see locals and tourists alike, lining up for a dip in the holy waters for a ritual known as Melukat to wash away evil spirits and cleanse the body.

And hey, even if you’re just there to soak in the vibes (pun intended), the energy of the place is so palpable, you can’t help but leave feeling refreshed and maybe, just a tad more enlightened. 

Besakih Great Temple

Besakih Great Temple is known as the ‘Mother Temple‘ of Bali for a reason. It is a majestic complex perched high on the slopes of Mount Agung, offering views that’ll have you pinching yourself to believe they’re real. 

It’s a sprawling canvas of spirituality, with centuries-old structures that tell tales as ancient as time itself. 

Whether you’re deeply spiritual or just love soaking up some rich cultural heritage, this place has something special for everyone. 

Get ready to feel like Indiana Jones meets Eat, Pray, Love – adventure and soul-searching all rolled into one. 

Taman Ayun Temple

This temple sports majestic traditional architecture set amidst beautiful gardens and expansive fish ponds. Its name translates to “Garden Temple in the Water”.

Cooling off under the shade of towering trees, while gazing at the exquisite structures surrounded by crystal clear waters, is just the chill pill you need in the Bali heat. 

It is perfect for those who want to witness early and traditional Balinese architecture that is still prevalent on the island.

bali bucket list, Bali Bucket List: 25 Must-Do Experiences in Paradise
Looking at the views of Uluwatu Temple.

2. Monkey Forest in Ubud

Monkey see, monkey…monkey totally does!

In the heart of Bali’s cultural hub, Ubud, you’ll find the Sacred Monkey Forest Sanctuary, a lush expanse straight out of a storybook. 

Home to hundreds of mischievous long-tailed macaques, this forest is not just a photogenic paradise – it’s an interactive jungle with the most unimpressed-looking tour guides you’ll meet. 

When I visited Ubud, this was 100% my favorite part. All of my Tomb Raider dreams came true and I loved every minute of it! 

Monkey Forest Tours for the Bali Bucket List

bali bucket list, Bali Bucket List: 25 Must-Do Experiences in Paradise
Temple runner vibes at the Monkey Forest in Ubud for your Bali Bucket List.

3. Take a Flower Bath

You absolutely cannot skip out on indulging in a flower bath while you’re living your best life in Bali. 

Imagine soaking in a natural stone tub, surrounded by the lush greens of Bali, while floating amidst a sea of fragrant petals – it’s like being the star of your own luxury spa commercial.

These baths aren’t just Insta-worthy; they’re a heavenly dose of relaxation that melts away the stress like magic. 

I kid you not, I felt like a totally rejuvenated person, minus the 10-hour flight fatigue, after I took the plunge (pun intended). 

The locals say it’s the ultimate way to soak in the island’s natural beauty, and who am I to argue with that kind of wisdom? 

Trust me, add a flower bath to your Bali bucket list and prepare to feel like absolute royalty.

Just don’t forget to hydrate – it’s easy to turn into a happy prune when you’re that relaxed!

bali bucket list, Bali Bucket List: 25 Must-Do Experiences in Paradise
Relaxing in a flower bath in Bali.

4. Climb Mount Batur

Early birds, this one’s for you! 

Mount Batur, one of Bali’s active volcanoes, offers the ultimate dawn patrol. Following a pre-dawn hike, you’ll reach the summit just in time for daybreak. 

There’s something incredibly humbling about sipping hot coffee as the first rays of light illuminate the island below. 

Funny story: even though I was hiking in layers, I was freezing at the top! Locals know that this is common so you can rent blankets. I rented a children’s blanket with the Cars characters on it. 

So there I was–witnessing the most incredible sunrise on an active Balinese volcano…wrapped in a blanket with Lightning McQueen on it…🤣

Don’t worry – you can find the incredible photo below. You thought you were going to get travel influencer photos?? Think again.

Mount Batur Tours for Your Bali Bucket List

bali bucket list, Bali Bucket List: 25 Must-Do Experiences in Paradise
The Bucket List Mermaid rocking her Cars blanket on top of Mount Batur in Bali.

5. Snorkel or Dive in Nusa Penida

Nusa Penida is a Balinese gem that boasts some of the clearest ocean views, brimming with vibrant coral gardens and an orchestra of marine life. 

If you hit the travel jackpot, you can try to see manta rays and turtles!

Keep an eye out for the elusive Mola Mola during its seasonal migration if you are diving. It’s the marine equivalent of a celebrity sighting!

Nusa Penida on Land

Bonus Tip: if you have seen pictures of Nusa Penida, it is likely that you saw the overlook of Kelingking Beach. This requires a bit of a trek (about 70 minutes each way), but the views are worth it. Trust me!

Nusa Penida Guided Tours

bali bucket list, Bali Bucket List: 25 Must-Do Experiences in Paradise
The iconic overlook of Kelingking Beach in Nusa Penida. Photo by Polina Kuzovkova on Unsplash.

6. Take a picture on a Jungle Swing

You haven’t truly tasted the thrill of Bali until you’ve soared on a jungle swing

Imagine swinging through the air, heart racing with excitement, as you’re surrounded by the lushest greens and breathtaking views of Indonesia.

Tips for the Best Photos on Bali Jungle Swings

  • Wear something flowy or colorful for those out-of-this-world social media shots; think vibrant dresses or even a sarong. 
  • Timing is everything – aim for that golden hour glow to really make your photos pop. And hey, don’t just swing once. 
  • Go for a few rounds to catch that perfect shot and feel the thrill each time. Trust me, the butterflies in your stomach will thank you later. 
  • Just remember, scream your lungs out on the swing if you have to – it adds to the fun, and no one will judge you for living your best life!
bali bucket list, Bali Bucket List: 25 Must-Do Experiences in Paradise
Going on a jungle swing in Ubud, Bali.Photo by Christopher Alvarenga on Unsplash

7. Explore the Island on a Quad Bike (ATV)

Strap in, because riding around Bali on a quad bike is like stepping into an Indiana Jones adventure, minus the booby traps! 

Imagine zooming through the lush jungles, feeling the wind whip through your hair, and the mud splashing up as you conquer challenging trails. 

And just when you think it can’t get any better, you stumble upon hidden waterfalls where you can cool off and snap some jealousy-inducing photos. 

Trust me, there’s no better way to feel the pulse of Bali’s wild side – it’s an adrenaline rush and a half, with a side of stunning scenery.

bali bucket list, Bali Bucket List: 25 Must-Do Experiences in Paradise
Witnessing a spectacular sunrise over the forests of Bali.

8. Rent a Luxurious Villa with Your Travel Buddies

Oh, get this – renting a luxurious villa in Bali? It’s like unlocking VIP access to a lifestyle most of us only drool over in glossy magazines, but here’s the kicker – you don’t need to break the bank!

Bali is one of those rare gems where you can live the lavish life, sip cocktails by your private pool, and feel like royalty without that pesky luxury price tag hanging over your head.

And the best part? You can split the cost with your travel buddies, making it an affordable slice of paradise. Seriously, where else in the world can you live like a mogul on a budget? Bali’s got you covered!

In fact, after I left Bali I started soft-pitching my friends and family for coming back to Bali and splitting a massive beachfront villa. Stay tuned!

Unbelievable Bali Villas under $500 per night and Sleep Over 8 People

So, here is my theory. If I have a villa that is under $500 per night and invite over 8 people, then this would round out to be around $60 per night, per person (plus fees) for a jaw-dropping once-in-a-lifetime villa!

And that is the most expensive option. Some of these are as low as $150 per night for 8 people (that’s around $20 per person per night!).

bali bucket list, Bali Bucket List: 25 Must-Do Experiences in Paradise
My private villa in Lovina with a private pool and right on the beach.

9. Try and Spot Wild Dolphins

Alright, buckle up for this one because it’s an absolute must-do in Bali! Imagine this: you’re out on the open water, the sun’s just beginning to peek over the horizon, painting the sky with shades of pink and orange, and then… you see them. A pod of wild dolphins, gracefully doing their morning dance on the water’s surface. It’s like something out of a dream!

Taking a tour out to spot these magnificent creatures in their natural habitat is nothing short of magical. And lemme tell ya, it’s a whole different vibe than seeing them at a theme park. 

These tours usually kick off super early in the morning (we’re talking before-the-roosters-crow early), but honestly, it’s so worth it. 

It’s all about peacefully coexisting and appreciating the moment. And don’t forget a waterproof camera because you’ll want to capture every second of this surreal experience.

After my tour, I couldn’t stop talking about it. I must have shown everyone I met at least a hundred photos – and they were all just of dolphins! This is one of those unique experiences that stick with you.

It was hilarious because when I was in Bali, I previously had ear surgery in Vietnam, but that’s a whole other story! So, when I went dolphin spotting, I had to do the entire thing with a granny shower cap on!

Again. Check out the photo below. Travel blogging doesn’t get more glamorous than this, people.

Dolphin Watching Tours in Bali

bali bucket list, Bali Bucket List: 25 Must-Do Experiences in Paradise
A VERY attractive picture of me trying to still spot dolphins while on doctor’s post-op orders to not get my ear wet.

10. Take a Soak in the Banjar Hot Springs

Alright, next stop on our Bali adventure train is the Banjar Hot Springs, and oh boy, are you in for a treat!

Here, you’re surrounded by lush, tropical greenery, the air is filled with the sound of cascading water, and there you are, chilling in a natural hot spring, soaking up all that good-for-you mineral water. Sounds like paradise, doesn’t it?

Before you go packing your bags and sprinting off to these heavenly springs, here are a couple of tips to make your visit even more epic. 

Tips for Banjar Hot Springs for Your Bali Bucket LIst

First off, try to hit the springs as early as you can in the morning. It gets pretty packed with both tourists and locals looking to relax, so if you’re after that serene, almost-had-the-place-to-myself vibe, timing is key.

Wear a swimsuit you’re cool with getting a tad sulphury – the springs are famous for their therapeutic properties, but they might give your swimwear a bit of a scent souvenir. It is also recommended to not just wear a swimsuit, but maybe a sarong or a t-shirt since this is considered a holy place.

There’s a restaurant on-site, so you can grab a bite after your soak. Honestly, it’s the perfect combo of relaxation and exploration.

11. Jungle at Sakti Dining Room

The Jungle at Sakti Dining Room is like stepping straight into a scene from your wildest travel dreams, where the boundaries between the lavish indoors and the lush outdoors blur. I mean, dining amidst a thriving jungle while you munch on gourmet vegetarian dishes? Yes, please!

But why, you ask, should this spot absolutely make it to your Bali Bucket List? Well, for starters, the ambiance is something straight out of a high-end travel magazine. 

You’re literally eating in a chic, open-air bamboo structure, surrounded by the tropical forest. It feels like Mother Nature herself cooked up the place!

And the food – oh, the food! It’s a farm-to-table experience that’ll have even the most dedicated meat lovers questioning their life choices. 

It’s one of those places you’ll find yourself telling stories about long after your Bali adventure is over. Trust me, add this to your list and prepare to be wowed. And hey, if you do go, send me a pic, or better yet, take me with you!

12. Snorkel at Blue Lagoon Beach

Ah, Blue Lagoon Beach – now here’s a slice of paradise that’s seriously postcard-worthy! 

Think crystal-clear waters, vibrant coral reefs, and a kaleidoscope of marine life just waiting to be discovered. It’s like stepping into a real-life aquarium! 

Whip out those snorkels and fins because you’re about to glide over some of the most breathtaking underwater scenes you’ve ever laid eyes on. 

One minute you’re snorkeling amongst schools of colorful fish, darting in and out of the coral, and the next, you could be swimming alongside a graceful sea turtle! 

It’s not just about what you see under the water; the beach itself is a stunner with its powdery white sand and turquoise waters creating the perfect backdrop for that #BeachLife selfie. 

And hey, don’t forget to treat yourself to a fresh coconut from one of the local vendors. 

Blue Lagoon Beach isn’t just a stop on your Bali tour; it’s an adventure that’ll stick with you long after your tan fades.

Blue Lagoon Beach Bali Tours

bali bucket list, Bali Bucket List: 25 Must-Do Experiences in Paradise
Blue Lagoon Beach in Bali. Photo by Fahrul Razi on Unsplash.

13. Discover The Rice Terraces in Bali

Bali isn’t just about beaches and cocktails, folks – the rice terraces here are like stepping into a different universe! Exploring them is an absolute must-do.

Tegallalang Rice Terraces

Step into a world of endless green at the Tegallalang Rice Terraces

These emerald waves are not just an explorer’s paradise; they’re the heartbeat of Bali’s agrarian life. 

Wander the paths that wind through the paddies, and soak in the tranquility that seeps from the land. If you’re lucky, you might even witness the sacred ‘Subak‘ irrigation system, a UNESCO-recognized heritage practice, in action.

Jatiluwih Rice Terraces

One of the most iconic rice terraces in Bali is the Jatiluwih Rice Terrace.

These terraces are also a dazzling display of community effort with the Subak system.

Imagine an entire community coming together like a big family, making sure every stalk of rice gets its fair share of water. It’s sustainability and harmony in the most beautiful form! 

Sidemen Valley

And if you’re craving that off-the-beaten-path vibe, mosey on down to Sidemen Valley. It’s quieter, but oh boy, the views are something else. It’s like Jatiluwih’s cool, lesser-known cousin. 

I noticed that these are more “flat” than the others, but they still create a traditional Bali scene that is straight out of a travel magazine. 

You can pretty much have the place to yourself, making it perfect for those Zen moments or a picnic.

Rice Terrace Tips for Your Bali Bucket List

Wear comfy shoes. You’ll be walking a lot, and flip-flops just won’t cut it. 

And please, oh please, respect the land. These terraces aren’t just pretty faces; they’re a critical part of Bali’s culture and livelihood. 

Have fun, take it all in, and remember to leave nothing but footprints behind. These spots are not just about the ‘gram; they’re about experiencing the real, authentic Bali. Trust me, you’ll want to soak in every second!

Rice Terrace Tours in Bali

bali bucket list, Bali Bucket List: 25 Must-Do Experiences in Paradise
Looking over the rice terraces in Bali.

14. Visit the Sacred Bat Cave of Goa Lawah

Now, just when you thought Bali couldn’t get weirder or more wonderful, enter the Bat Cave of Goa Lawah. Yeah, you heard that right – a bat cave! 

But this isn’t any old dark, spooky cavity in the rock; this is technically a temple, folks. And its unique visitors? Thousands of bats. Just hanging out (literally), doing their bat thing. It sounds like something out of Batman’s vacation home, but it’s real, and it’s spectacular.

And yes, it’s totally cool to geek out about it. I mean, how often do you get to say you visited a temple swarming with bats in Bali? Plus, the locals believe these furry flyers are guardians of the temple, protecting it against evil spirits. 

Don’t worry; they’re friendly bats (no vampire bats in this crew). But maybe don’t wear your favorite hat unless you want a unique souvenir.

Remember, it’s all about the experience – and this is one you won’t forget. Snap some photos, soak in the ambiance, and hey, maybe learn a thing or two about bat conservation while you’re at it. 

Just don’t forget, this is a sacred spot, so show the same respect you would in any temple. But also, enjoy the slightly eerie, unique vibe that only a bat cave temple can provide.

Temple Tour with Goa Lawah

15. Balinese Cooking Class

Alright, get ready to put on your chef’s hat and roll up your sleeves, because we’re about to dive into a Balinese Cooking Class

During this bucket list idea, you’re in a traditional Balinese kitchen (which is already cool by itself), surrounded by the most aromatic spices and ingredients you’ve probably never seen back home. 

Learning How to Cook Traditional Balinese Foods

Now, you might be wondering, “What sort of deliciousness will I be whipping up?” 

Every cooking class is different, but most offer a wide array of vegetarian and non-vegetarian dishes.

They also love banana leaves and fish–something that I noticed they use a lot in their yummy food! 

My favorite dishes that I ate in Bali were:

  • Sate Lilit (minced meat satay)
  • Babi Guling (traditional pork dish)
  • Nasi Goreng (Indonesian fried rice)

And hey, if your food ends up looking more like abstract art than what it’s supposed to be (like mine did), don’t sweat it! 

It’s all about the experience, the memories you make, and hey, a for effort, right? Plus, it’s a killer story to share. 

Tour Ideas for Balinese Cooking Classes

bali bucket list, Bali Bucket List: 25 Must-Do Experiences in Paradise
Learning where rice comes from before my Balinese cooking class.

16. Chase Waterfalls in Bali

Oh, and just when you thought Bali couldn’t possibly get any cooler, welcome to the land of epic waterfalls! Now is my time to start singing that catchy TLC song…

Seriously, this tropical paradise is dotted with so many incredible cascading beauties, that you’ll want to trade in your beach towel for a pair of adventure boots and go waterfall chasing every day. Talk about shower goals, am I right?

Honestly, all of them are amazing. Don’t try to just pick one. My advice would be to go on a Bali waterfall tour that knocks out multiple of them. 

Waterfalls Tours in Bali

Best Waterfalls in Bali

Although there are endless options for waterfalls, these are the most magnificent and popular:

  • Munduk Waterfalls
  • The Magnificent Sekumpul Waterfalls
  • Banyumala Twin Waterfall
  • Tibumana Waterfall
  • Tukad Cepung Waterfall
  • Tegenungan Waterfall
  • Aling-Aling Waterfall

Seriously, each of these natural wonders has its unique vibe and magic, making them must-visits. So, lace up, grab your camera, and make sure your Bali bucket list includes these splash-tastic masterpieces. 

Because, trust me, the only thing better than experiencing Bali’s beaches is getting drenched under its spectacular waterfalls!

bali bucket list, Bali Bucket List: 25 Must-Do Experiences in Paradise
Sekumpul Waterfall, Bali, Indonesia. Photo by Aleksandra Dementeva on Unsplash.

17. Traditional Balinese Healing Session

Bali isn’t just a feast for your eyes; it’s also a sanctuary for your soul! Ever heard of a Traditional Balinese Healing Session? With these sessions, you step into an oasis of tranquility, where time slows down and the only task on your agenda is to relax and rejuvenate. Yes, please!

These healing sessions are all about harnessing the ancient wisdom of Balinese healers. They’ve got this incredible way of tuning into what you need – be it a physical alignment, an emotional cleanse, or even a spiritual awakening. It’s like they’re the wise wizards of wellness, and you’re about to be spellbound!

Now, you might be picturing some serious hocus pocus, but it’s actually a beautiful blend of massage, herbal remedies, and energy work.

And the best part? It’s not just about feeling good for the moment. Many folks walk away with a deeper understanding of themselves and a renewed sense of balance. It’s like hitting the reset button on your body and mind!

So, if you’re looking to add a sprinkle of soulful magic to your Bali adventure, a Traditional Balinese Healing Session is your ticket. Don’t miss out on this chance to connect with the island’s spiritual side – it’ll be a story to tell and a memory to cherish forever for your bucket list.

Traditional Balinese Healing Tours

bali bucket list, Bali Bucket List: 25 Must-Do Experiences in Paradise
Relaxing and healing while in Bali, Indonesia.

18. Learn How to Surf in Bali

Bali and surfing are like peanut butter and jelly, they just go together!

Whether you’re hanging ten for the first time or you’re a seasoned pro, many of waves provide the perfect arena to get your feet wet…literally!


Kuta is one of the big surfing regions of Bali. The vibrant beach town offers surf schools galore, so you can ride the waves and feel the adrenaline of the ocean firsthand.

Trust me, the post-surf beach bonfires are the stuff of legends here, and the camaraderie amongst Bali’s surfing community is unlike anywhere else.


Oh, Canggu, where the rice paddies meet the surf! If you thought Kuta was the be-all and end-all for surfing in Bali, allow me to nudge you gently (okay, enthusiastically) toward the laid-back, hipster paradise of Canggu.

You can head for a surf session at one of Canggu’s epic beaches. Echo Beach, Berawa, Batu Bolong – take your pick!

Learning to surf here is like nowhere else. In fact, this was the first time I ever surfed in my life! Bucket list: check!

Canggu’s chill vibes extend into the water, making it the perfect spot for beginners to catch their first wave without the intimidation factor.

The local surf schools are super welcoming, offering lessons that’ll have you popping up on your board faster than you can say “Bintang.”

And the best part? After you’ve worked up an appetite conquering the waves (or more likely, being conquered by them – but hey, that’s part of the fun!), you can refuel at one of Canggu’s countless cozy cafés or beachfront bars.

My own Bali surfing experience involved a wipeout so epic, I’m pretty sure the fishes are still laughing about it. But that first catch? It’s a feeling of freedom that’s downright addictive!

bali bucket list, Bali Bucket List: 25 Must-Do Experiences in Paradise
Learning how to surf for the first time in Canggu.

19. Relax at Uluwatu Beach and Watch the Kecak Fire Dance

Calling all backpackers and party animals for this bucket list check!

For a dramatic end to a Bali day, head to Uluwatu Beach for sun and sand, or stick around for the evening for the enthralling Kecak Fire Dance. 

This Balinese dance retelling the Ramayana through chant and fire is spellbinding, especially when set against the backdrop of an ocean lullaby. 

No instruments, no DJ – just the captivating sound of a chorus chanting “cak-cak-cak” in unison, creating a hypnotic rhythm. Then, about sixty performers dressed in traditional sarongs take their place, forming a circle around a blazing fire. 

The performance isn’t the only fire – Uluwatu’s boutiques and beach bars consistently throw some of the island’s hottest after-parties.

Kecak Fire Dance Tickets for Your BAli Bucket LIst

bali bucket list, Bali Bucket List: 25 Must-Do Experiences in Paradise
Attending a traditional Kecak Fire Dance in Bali. Photo by Den on Unsplash.

20. Enjoy the Campuhan Ridge Walk

Oh, the Campuhan Ridge Walk! It’s like Bali decided to show off and said, “Hold my Bintang!”

With this epic nature walk, you’re strolling along a lush pathway, with the most jaw-droppingly gorgeous green hills on either side.

It’s the ultimate detox for your eyes and soul from the buzzing motorbike-filled streets.

And guess what? It’s absolutely free. Yep, you heard me right. Free as the breezy Balinese air you’ll be taking deep, happy breaths of.

Whether you’re an early bird catching the sunrise or there to witness the sky paint itself in sunset hues, it’s an experience that screams, “This is Bali!”

bali bucket list, Bali Bucket List: 25 Must-Do Experiences in Paradise
The Campuhan Ridge Walk. Photo by Minh Trần on Unsplash.

A pro tip from me: bring water and maybe a snack, because once you’re up there, you won’t want to come down anytime soon.

21. Get a Balinese Massage and Spa Experience

A Balinese massage and spa experience is like the cherry on top of a tropical vacation sundae! Now, if you’re thinking, “But hey, I can get massages back home,” trust me, it’s not the same. 

Balinese massages are an art form that mixes traditional techniques with that magical Bali vibe, and they’re known for melting away every bit of stress like ice cream on a hot Bali day.

Best Spots for That Bliss-Out Balinese Massage

First off, Ubud is your go-to for that enveloped-in-green, serene spa setting. This is the most densely packed area with spas for your bucket list. They will have you buzzin’ with positive energy and feeling like Balinese royalty. And the good news is the prices won’t have you eating instant noodles for the rest of your trip!

Next, Seminyak isn’t just about chic restaurants and sunset drinks; it’s also home to some top-notch spas. Think sleek, modern settings with that laid-back Bali touch. 

For those by Canggu, don’t you worry. You can get pummeled (in the best way possible) and then plunge into a pool for that chillaxed, just-got-massaged glow.

Now, pro tip! While walk-ins can sometimes score you a spontaneous spa sesh, booking in advance is your best bet during the busy season. 

And hey, why not make it a whole-day affair? Many of these places offer packages where you can combine a massage with a facial, body scrub, or even a flower bath.

I go into a ton of detail and list out some of the best spas in my Bali Flower Bath Guide

Alright, I’m about ready to book my next Bali trip just talking about this.

Massage Deals for Your Bali Bucket List

Bali Massage Cost

And now we talk about how cheap these slices of heaven are? 

I come from the US and have to cry during my massage with how expensive some of these prices are! Over in Bali? No way! I got a massage in Ubud for $14

I mean, where else can you spend what you’d pay for a coffee back home and get a massage that makes you feel like you’ve been reborn into Balinese nobility? 

It’s like they’re practically giving away relaxation over there!

22. Attend a Traditional Bali Basket Weaving Class

And hey, if you’re feeling a bit crafty or just wanna dip your toes into some traditional Balinese culture, you’ve gotta try your hand at a basket weaving class

This was one of the coolest things I did in Bali! And I still use the tiny basket I made to hold my content lens when I travel. 

These baskets, made from the lontar plant, are deeply engrained into Balinese culture and serve a wide variety of practical purposes. 

Plus, this makes for an amazing souvenir! Showing off a basket that you weaved yourself, and it looks good – come on, that’s instant cool points. 

Don’t worry if you’re all thumbs; the locals are super patient and have a way of teaching that’ll have you weaving like a pro in no time. 

Bali Basket Weaving Lessons for Your Bali Bucket List

bali bucket list, Bali Bucket List: 25 Must-Do Experiences in Paradise
Traditional baskets made in Bali. Photo by Pier Francesco Grizi on Unsplash

23. Eat an Iconic Floating Breakfast

Oh, and just when you think Bali can’t get any more Instagram-worthy, I present to you the iconic floating breakfast!

Imagine waking up, slipping into your swimwear, and wading into a pool with the most scenic view you’ve laid eyes on, only to be greeted by a bamboo tray loaded with tropical fruit, fluffy pancakes, and the freshest juice you’ve tasted.

It’s not just breakfast; it’s an experience—one that says, “You’ve officially arrived in paradise, my friend!”

And trust me, trying to balance your coffee on a floatie while snagging that perfect sun-kissed selfie is the kind of challenge we live for. It’s a feast for your stomach and your feed.

24. Get Scuba Certified on Paradise

For those of you who don’t know me and couldn’t guess by my name (The Bucket List Mermaid), I have to be a scuba enthusiast. 

However, I got certified in Colorado in a reservoir where the visibility was 2 feet. It wasn’t great. 

I do wish that I would have gotten scuba certified someplace incredible and I think it would have made the process more enjoyable. 

Fortunately, Bali is one of the best places to get your open water certification. Bali is a diver’s paradise, and the instructors there? Absolute legends. They’re patient, super skilled, and know every nook and cranny of the best dive sites.

Open Water Certification Programs in Bali

bali bucket list, Bali Bucket List: 25 Must-Do Experiences in Paradise
A scuba diver in Bali. Photo by Sebastian Pena Lambarri on Unsplash.

25. Shop at the Ubud Art Market

Another Bali bucket list idea is the Ubud Art Market – it’s a kaleidoscope of colors, crafts, and creativity crammed into every nook and cranny! 

Walking through, it’s like every stall is shouting “look at me!” with vibrant fabrics, intricate carvings, and those oh-so-fancy handmade knick-knacks that you won’t find anywhere else. 

It’s the perfect spot to snag that unique souvenir that screams “I’ve been to Bali and got something cooler than a fridge magnet.” 

Trust me, bargaining is part of the fun here; it’s like a dance between you and the vendor, and when you nail it, oh boy, the sense of victory is sweet. 

Just remember to go in with a smile and an open heart – it’s not just about the haul, but the stories you’ll gather along the way. 

26. Hop Over to the Gili Islands

If you haven’t heard of the Gili Islands, they are a perfect addition to any Bali Bucket List. 

These three tiny islands are the epitome of paradise, each with its own vibe, making sure there’s something for every soul out there.

To get here, I took a (pretty rocky) ferry ride. However, the sea sickness with worth it when I was basking in the idyllic island escape of the Gili Islands.

Gili Trawangan

First up, Gili Trawangan – or as the cool kids call it, Gili T. 

This is the largest of the trio and the go-to spot if you’re looking to party with new friends from around the globe. Imagine dancing barefoot on the beach, with fire dancers lighting up the night. 

But hey, it’s not all about the party; there’s also this killer snorkeling spot where you can swim with turtles. Yes, actual turtles!

This was the island that I stayed on (and I just visited the other two) and let me tell you that it is the epitome of small island paradise! Drinking a smoothie every morning on a table on the beach was unreal

Keep in mind that even though this is the largest island, I took a bike ride around the entire island in about a half hour. 

Gili Meno

Then there’s Gili Meno, the middle child that’s all about that chill life. It’s the least developed island, making it perfect for those seeking tranquility or a romantic getaway. 

When I went to Gili Meno, it was all about the water! Our group left for snorkeling, diving, and a glass bottom boat. I even got to snorkel with some epic underwater statues! It was a mermaid’s dream!

Gili Air

And last but not least, Gili Air, the perfect mix of its two siblings. It’s got a laid-back vibe, with enough nightlife to keep you entertained but without the full-on party scene of Gili T. It’s your go-to for that authentic island lifestyle – think yoga at sunrise, hammock naps, and yes, more turtles!

Bali Bucket List Things to do on the Gili Islands

Bucket list activities? Where do I start! Snorkeling with the sea turtles is a no-brainer. 

Then there’s the island hopping – because why settle for one paradise when you can have three? 

And for those of you looking to up your travel photography game, catch that magical Gili sunset with the iconic Gili swing in the frame. 

My only complaint? The ATM ate my card on Gili T. Boo😒 

Each island serves up its own unique cocktail of experiences, so whether you’re here to party, chill or explore, the Gilis are your oyster. Take it from me, a hop over to these islands might just be the highlight of your Bali adventure. 

Who knows, you might even find me chilling in a hammock, cold Bintang in hand – don’t be a stranger!

Gili Island Tours

bali bucket list, Bali Bucket List: 25 Must-Do Experiences in Paradise
An epic yoga shot taken on the iconic swing on Gili T during sunset.

Final Word on this Epic Bali Bucket List

With this extended list of captivating experiences, your Bali itinerary promises to be as diverse as the island itself. 

Whether you’re drawn to the spiritual mystique of its temples, keen on hiking through lush landscapes, or simply looking to indulge in culinary delights, Bali offers an adventure for every type of traveler. 

It’s time to tick off these must-see experiences from your bucket list and create lasting memories in the Island of the Gods.

More Indonesia for your Bucket list

bali bucket list, Bali Bucket List: 25 Must-Do Experiences in Paradise

Indonesia Bucket List

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Want a simple and list style bucket list of all things Indonesia? Then look no further than this bucket list destination guide!

Adventure Bucket List Resources

I am here to help your travel adventures go as smoothly as possible! That way you can check off that bucket list with minimal complications and spending!

AIRFARE – It is no surprise that like many travelers, I have found that Hopper is one of the best resources to use when finding cheap flights. 

ACCOMMODATION – My two favorites are Booking.Com for hotels and VRBO for rentals. 

GUIDED TOURS –  If you are looking for quick and easy tours, check out GetYourGuide and Viator

MULTI-DAY TOURS –  For more in-depth tours that span several days, TourHub has many great options with reputable travel companies. Use my code (ALEXANDRA1GURU) for up to 5% off your next bucket list adventure. 

TRANSPORTATION –  You can either rent a car yourself with Discover Cars or do a guided bus tours like Big Bus Tours

CREDIT CARD –  I always use my Chase Freedom Unlimited card for all of my purchases. There is no annual fee and you get 1.5% cash back and 5% cash back on travel purchased through Chase Travel. 

SIM CARDS –  Avoid expensive roaming charges with an eSim card with Airalo.

TRAVELER’S INSURANCE –  Check out VisitorsCoverage for affordable insurance plans.

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