ABOUT BALI

ABOUT JIMBARAN BAY

Jimbaran Beach and the famous Jimbaran Bay are on Bali's southwestern coast. The beach is part of the narrow isthmus connecting the Bali mainland and the Bukit Peninsula. The beach and the bay offer small secluded areas of peace and quiet. The tranquillity you can find here can be a perfect antidote to a stressful world. 

Some of the best things to do in Jimbaran encompass the beautiful limestone cliff-fringed coastlines that are home to some of Bali’s best surf spots and reef breaks. These beaches, some considerably far-flung with rugged terrains, have continuously lured in wave riders and travelers with a penchant for adventure from around the globe. The south-western coastline of Jimbaran (and further south to the Bukit area of Pecatu, Ungasan, and Kutuh) is also home to ancient sea temples and magnificent landmarks, with the most notable being the picturesque clifftop Uluwatu Temple and the Garuda Wisnu Kencana cultural park.

ULUWATU TEMPLE IN BALI'S SCENIC CLIFF TEMPLE

Uluwatu Temple, or Pura Luhur Uluwatu, is renowned for its magnificent location, perched on top of a steep cliff approximately 70 meters above sea level. As one of the 6 key temples considered to be Bali's spiritual pillars, Uluwatu also shares the splendid sunset backdrops as that of Tanah Lot Temple, another important sea temple located in the island's western shores. Pura Luhur Uluwatu is definitely one of the top places on the island to go to for a delightful sunset, with direct views overlooking the beautiful waves of the Indian Ocean and daily Kecak dance performances held at an amphitheater nearby. Balinese architecture, traditionally-designed gateways, and ancient sculptures add to Uluwatu Temple's appeal.

The spectacular setting of Uluwatu Temple Without a doubt, what makes Uluwatu Temple spectacular is its cliff-top setting at the edge of a cliff and overlooking the waves of the Indian Ocean. Ulu means the ‘top’ or the ‘tip’ and watu is ‘stone’ or ‘rock’ in Balinese. Several archaeological remains found here prove the temple to be of megalithic origin, dating back to around the 10th century. There are 2 entrances to Uluwatu Temple, one from the south and the other from the north. A small forest surrounds the temple where hundreds of monkeys dwell. They are believed to guard the temple against negative influences. The serpentine pathway to the temple is fortified by concrete walls on the cliff side. It takes about an hour to get from one end to another as there are several fenced points along the way where you can take a pause. The views from the bottom of the water surging up against rocks and the ocean horizon are breathtaking. The Balinese Hindus believe that the powers of the Hindu Trinity: Brahma, Vishnu, and Siva, merge here. That belief results in making Uluwatu Temple a place of worship of Siva Rudra, the Balinese Hindu deity of all elements and aspects of life in the universe. Pura Uluwatu is also dedicated to protecting Bali from evil sea spirits.

GARUDA WISNU KENCANA IN BALI

Garuda Wisnu Kencana, or GWK for short, is the name of a cultural park on Bali’s hilly southern coast famous for the ongoing construction of a gigantic statue of Vishnu riding on the back of a ‘garuda’ (a supernatural eagle-like being). The completed part of the statue is of the upper part of Vishnu’s body, the head of the ‘garuda’ and Vishnu’s hands. The cultural park has become one of the favorite places in Bali for art and cultural performances, exhibitions, and conferences. GWK, once completed at 145 meters, will be one of the world’s tallest statues and erected on the top of the hill, with a magnificent panorama of Bali.

Garuda Wisnu Kencana Cultural Park is set in 250 hectares of land in Ungasan, south of Bali, and is dedicated to embrace as well as preserve the art, cultural, culinary, and spiritual aspects of the island. The Garuda is a Hindu mythical bird, Wisnu is the Indonesian for Vishnu and kencana means a carriage. Bali’s future landmark of a 145-meter tall copper-steel-brass statue is planned to be placed here; it is of Vishnu riding on the back of his ‘garuda’ with 64-meter long wings. Nyoman Nuarta, a Balinese sculptor, started the project in 1997 and it has instantly become one of Bali’s points of interests even though it is currently only around 25% complete with the existing upper part of Vishnu body, garuda’s head, and Vishnu’s hands. Eventually, the Garuda Wisnu Kencana statue will be able to be seen within a radius of 20km from Kuta, Sanur, and Nusa Dua. GWK Cultural Park is about 260 meters above sea level, resulting in must-see spectacular views overlooking the island and the ocean. Facilities here include an amphitheater, an exhibition gallery, open-air venues, two restaurants, a souvenir shop, an art market, a massage center, ATV and Segway rentals, as well as adventurous activities.

SHOPPING

Best Places to Shop in Jimbaran The shopping scene in Jimbaran is an eclectic one. There are fashion boutiques, jewelry shops and specialty stores lining its main streets. You’ll also find a bustling traditional fresh market in the heart of the village. That means you can get both first-class products as well as a taste of local life, depending on where you go.

NIGHTLIFE

Best Places to Go at Night in Jimbaran Right before sunset, head to the famous restaurants that line this part of Bali’s coast, either in Jimbaran or the neighboring fishing village of Kedonganan. These seafood restaurants are laid out right on the sand and some offer live entertainment. For actual bars and clubs, the scene here leans towards a more luxurious vibe. The stunning cocktail bars on top of rocky outcrops are unlike any other in the world!

OTHER DESTINATIONS IN BALI

When it comes to things to do in Bali, your holiday can be filled with culture, nature, art, and the spiritual. The spectacular beaches of Kuta, Nusa Dua and Seminyak offer hours of swimming, surfing and sunbathing, while the cultural area of Ubud is known for its picturesque rice terraces. Get away from the crowds by visiting the north-eastern coast and neighboring Lombok, where hidden waterfalls are waiting to be discovered. Bali's west coast has tapering ranges of mountains covered in lush forests, rice fields, and bountiful vegetation. The island also has hundreds of historical sites that have stood the test of time. From royal palaces to holy temples, you get to see a different glimpse of Bali at these spots.

Tegallalang Rice Terraces

The Tegallalang Rice Terraces in Ubud are famous for their beautiful scenes of rice paddies and their innovative irrigation system. Known as the subak, the traditional Balinese cooperative irrigation system is said to have been passed down by a revered holy man named Rsi Markandeya in the 8th century. Tegallalang forms the 3 most splendid terraced landscapes in Ubud's shared region, with the others being in the villages of Pejeng and Campuhan. The Tegallalang rice terraces alone offer a scenic outlook that spreads down before you and away to the far side of the valley. The high roadside location is cool and breezy and it’s a well-known spot for tourists to stop and take photos. Painters and nature lovers also enjoy visiting this spot, and there are numerous art kiosks and cafés near the ledge.

Mount Batur Volcano

Mount Batur (or The Kintamani Volcano) is an active volcano and a very popular trek. The captivating Mount Batur surrounds the 13-square kilometer Batur caldera lake. Those with a penchant for adventure can take a winding road down to the lake shore. This leads you to Toya Bungkah, Ulun Danu Batur temple, and a collection of hot springs. The Kintamani area consists of 3 main villages, namely Penelokan, Batur, and Kintamani. There are also some old Balinese villages around Batur Lake, often referred to as Bali Aga villages. Penelokan is a popular stopover. It serves as a vantage point at the southernmost part of the crater rim. From here, you can enjoy the sweeping views over the magnificent Bali volcano.

Ubud Monkey Forest

Ubud Monkey Forest, also known as the Sacred Monkey Forest of Padangtegal, is one of Ubud’s most popular attractions; a natural forest sanctuary that is home to a horde of grey long-tailed macaques. The site is well-preserved thanks to a community-based management program. The forest is also conveniently positioned near Ubud Town Centre, and within easy walking distance from guesthouses and resorts along the main roads of Jalan Hanoman and the namesake Jalan Monkey Forest. Besides watching playful monkeys in their natural habitat, swinging through canopies, lazing along pathways or feeding on bananas, the site offers cool walks along paved pathways through a leafy nutmeg forest. Beautiful ancient temples with guardian statues covered in moss also feature throughout the forest. Those staying outside of Ubud and coming for a day tour usually have the Ubud Monkey Forest as a must-visit, combined with sightseeing highlights at the Ubud Royal Palace and shopping sprees through the expansive Ubud Art Market, all only a 10-minute drive away.

RELIGIOUS CUSTOMS

Always dress modestly (covering the shoulders and knees) and conduct yourself appropriately when visiting temples and holy sites. 

Places of worship - Be respectful in sacred places. Remove shoes and dress modestly when visiting temples and mosques.

CURRENCY

Rupiah (Rp)

Cash

The unit of currency is the rupiah (Rp). Coins of 50Rp, 100Rp, 200Rp, 500Rp and 1000Rp are in circulation. Notes come in 1000Rp (rare), 2000Rp, 5000Rp, 10,000Rp, 20,000Rp, 50,000Rp and 100,000Rp denominations.

Tipping

Restaurants - Tipping a set percentage is not expected in Bali, but if service is good, 5000Rp or 10% or more is appropriate.

Services - Hand cash directly to individuals (drivers, porters, people giving you a message, bringing you a beer at the beach etc); 5000Rp to 10,000Rp or 10% to 20% of the total is generous. 

ATMs

There are ATMs all over Bali. Most accept nonlocal ATM cards and major credit cards for cash advances. The exchange rates for ATM withdrawals are usually quite good, but check to see if your home bank will hit you with outrageous fees. Most ATMs allow a maximum withdrawal of one million to 2.5 million rupiah per transaction. ATMs have stickers indicating whether they issue 50,000Rp or 100,000Rp notes (the former are easier to use for small transactions). Most ATMs return your card last instead of before dispensing cash, so it's easy to forget your card. Card skimming is a widespread problem in Bali – try to use ATMs attached to banks if possible and keep an eye on your bank balance after making withdrawals.

Credit Cards

Accepted at midrange and better hotels and resorts. More expensive restaurants and shops will also accept them, but there is often a surcharge of around 3%.

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