No matter how much we love hanging around in our private pool villa in Seminyak (or any other tourist town on the island of Bali, for there matter), at some point, it is time to out of the pool and travel off-the-beaten-path, exploring natural wonders and secret locations. It is time for some adventure! Here are 5 places you don’t want to miss:
1. Nyang Nyang Beach: dreamy and desolate
Everybody knows that Uluwatu has got the best beaches in all of Bali. Picture-perfect bays with perfectly white sands and the bluest waters are hidden away at the bottom of steep limestone cliffs. It is no wonder all the 5-star luxury villas and resorts settled in the southern tip of Bali! We love Dreamland Beach, Balangan, Bingin and Padang Padang but there are still many secret beaches to be explored in the area. Paradise-like places that are desolate and completely unspoiled – not 1 sunbed to be spotted nor vendors presenting you with drinks and snacks.
One of these off-the-beaten-track beaches you will love is Nyang Nyang Beach, located just a 10-minute scooter drive from the Uluwatu Temple. This beach has kept its unravelled beauty thanks to the inaccessibility. You need to walk down a steep cliff road and make your way back up again at the end of the day. Time for a little workout! Bring a picnic basket with food and drinks. Pack a large picnic blanket and a sarong and you are in for the perfect beach time, far away from tourist crowds and noisy beach clubs. This is paradise – just you, sand, sea and sun. Perfect!
2. Nusa Penida: #1 destination for adventurers
Nusa Penida is an island located just a 30-minute boat ride from Sanur, next to the more popular island of Nusa Lembongan. Penida is already attracting more and more tourists every year but if you love to travel off-the-beaten-trail, you will adore Penida Island! This island, a place of raw, wild, untamed beauty, boats a number of incredible off-the-beaten-trail places that you must visit. From temples inside hidden caves to natural jacuzzis, magical viewpoints at inaccessible places and sacred waterfalls at impossible places – Penida is a place for true adventurers. Rent a scooter and prepare for unpaved roads and incredible sites. Please do remember, your safety is the most important – don’t do crazy things for that impossible Instagram photo. Be smart and let your inner adventurer guide you to explore the island in a safe, responsible way.
3. Marigold fields forever: a change from the rice terraces
Where do the Balinese people get their hands on those beautiful orange flowers that you see on their street offerings, on the street and at temples? They come from the Marigold Fields at Desa Temuskus. Wander through endless marigold fields, far away from tourist towns and traffic roads, it’s an amazing experience. A completely different scenery from the lush rice paddy fields.
My oh my, how stunning Bali is! Not many people know about the Marigold fields, captured in between the mountains in central Bali. You can take gorgeous photos for your Insta-feed. The Marigold Fields are located in between Bedugul and Kintamani and they shouldn’t be hard to spot!
4. Slide off a waterfall in The Secret Garden of Sambangan
Always wanted to slide off a waterfall? Every thought it was even possible? When you face this natural water slide in the jungle of North Bali, you may want to reconsider. Is it really safe? But, as the guide shows how it’s done, it does look like an experience you don’t want to miss out on. The Secret Garden of Sambangan is not that secret anymore and many tourists have come here before you in the last couple of years but that’s doesn’t mean this place shouldn’t be on your bucket list. Surrounded by stunning rice terraces and wild jungle, there are many (7) waterfalls to be explored in this area and one of them is the famous Aling Aling Waterfall, reaching a height of 35-metres. Cliff jumping, waterslides and swimming in natural spring pools is part of this amazing Bali hot spot.
5. Tukad Cepung: the cave of light
Also known as ‘the cave of light’, Tukad Cepung is a unique spot in Bali, well off-the-beaten-trail. Tukad Cepung is a waterfall inside a cave and as sunbeams gently shine in from above, reflecting their light on the water, a mirror-effect takes place and it is magical. The cave is located 30 km northwest of Ubud and you need to follow a jungle trail to get there. This sounds more challenging than it is – it is just a 15-minute walk :).