Bali is a favourite destination for many people around the world it’s easy to know why if you see photos on social media. However, I was pretty disappointed, but everyone has different views! Explanation down below.
There is an activity to suit every soul. Experience surfing, yoga, mediation, trekking, delicious food, and nightlife. The food was honestly the highlight of the whole trip!
Language: The main languages spoken in Bali are Indonesian, Balinese and English.
Currency: The currency of Bali is the Indonesian Rupiah. $1 CAD is equivalent to about 10,690.04 IDR
Credit Cards and ATM’s: There are plenty of ATM’s around in Bali. You can for the most part pay with credit cards, unless you eat at a local Warung, where they only take cash. Cash is definitely better though.
Plugs: The plugs in Bali are type C and F. The standard voltage is 230 V and the standard frequency is 50 Hz. I recommend buying a universal adapter.
Time To Visit? April to October is the best time to visit. We we’re here for a month Sept/ Oct, and we didn’t have any rain!
The wettest months are December/ January, but you can expect warm and humid climates all year round.
Rent A Scooter
My recommendation is to avoid the traffic of Bali by renting a scooter. Traffic is a BIG problem here in Bali. Having a scooter helps you zip through traffic much quicker. Driving in Bali is is very chaotic and aggressive, it does take some time getting used to it. It’s important to always wear a helmet! If you’re afraid of driving you can download an app called GO- JEK. It’s like an Uber, just on the back of a bike instead. Renting a scooter is the best way of getting around and it’s very cheap.
- Per day is usually around 30,000IDR = $2.81 CAD / 50,000 IDR = $4.68 CAD
- Gas is also very cheap. On the streets 1 litre bottles of fuel sell for 7,000 IDR = $0.65 CAD
Taxi’s are the most expensive and Uber is supposedly banned. You can download an app called Blue Bird for easy cab rentals.
The Truth About Bali
Bali is listed on everyones bucket list and it’s pretty much every photo on Instagram these days. We just learned that Instagram totally made Bali everything that it’s not.
I was so excited for our trip to Bali, I was raving about it before we even quit our jobs. It looked so magical, so romantic, and just breathtaking. Not going to lie I was pretty disappointed. Don’t get me wrong, Bali is beautiful, but we got to know the real Bali and it definitely changed our perspective about this place. Here are some things we wanted to be real and honest about, things that no-one really talks about. Not trying to be negative about Bali, just wanted to be open, because it seems like no one really talks about it. Everyone has their own opinions, and this was mine.
First thing, EVERYTHING is Instagram related here. We got to our villa in Ubud and around the whole resort were picture frames with saying “Tag us on Instagram” for when you take your pictures here. I get the Tripadvisor reviews though, but Instagram for a hotel?
Swings, nests and “cute” little signs are set up EVERYWHERE to take that “Instagram” photo. Which you obviously need to pay for. Oh, and get this, you can RENT your own DRESS at locations so you can have your dress flowing when you swing away… I wanted to explore and experience the place for what it is, not just to take photos for social media. Don’t get me wrong I love pictures, but, I just felt like it was a bit too much.
Some of the places like a golf course, which is named Handara, you have to pay, and get a “Selfie” ticket.
People have mentioned that they waited in line for a couple hours just for one photo.
The Gate of Heaven. I’m sure you’ve seen this photo quite often and it’s not what it seems. It’s sort of fake, they use a mirror to get that reflection. It’s a neat idea, but it’s just kind of ridiculous. You also need to wait in line for 6-8 hours…
The pollution is very bad, especially in Nusa Penida. A whole forest is just filled with garbage and plastic waste. Which isn’t just the tourists, since the local’s drink bottled water as well.
If you come anywhere in Bali you will notice small fires everywhere. At first it smelled good because it brought back memories about camping when I was a kid, but when Jamie and I asked our host why they had fires everywhere, he said the villages simply burn their garbage. Very unfortunate. Supposedly Vietnam and other SEA countries burn their garbage as well, but when we were there, we didn’t notice it.
The driving is pretty bad here, cars constantly in the middle of the road when they have room on their own side. They are pretty aggressive, since they are literally no stop signs or hardly any stop lights. (BE CAREFUL). Roads are also very bad in Nusa Penida, so please do your research before going there. Hiring a driver is the best bet!
Police corruption and bribery are a real thing here, just like Thailand, so just beware that you will most likely get pulled over and get a ticket, even if you have your international drivers licence.
There are NO real elephant sanctuaries in Bali, so PLEASE DON’T GO TO ELEPHANT PARKS HERE! If you look on TripAdvisor, they are all tied up with chains and look very sad. Always do your research, no matter where you are.
These were just our opinions, but wanted to be open and honest. If you want to party for cheap, then this is the place to go.
We did do some of the popular stuff, but we didn’t wait in line at all, but please if you do come here, check out other places in Bali that aren’t so touristy. So maybe you can get the more local experience.
Jamie and I stayed in Bali for a month. Started out trip in Canggu, Nusa Penida, then Ubud.