Travel Guides By Destination

This page is intended to be ever-evolving as we continue to travel as a family.  Everytime we visit a new destination or revisit a place we've been before, this page will be updated.

 

Bali

Our ever-evolving travel guide to Bali

Sedona

A magic place with magical energy

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Australia, Singapore, Thailand, Kuala Lumpur

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Bali

Bali is 1 of 13,000 islands within the country of Indonesia.  It is very different from the rest of Indonesia in that most of Indonesia is predominately muslim whereas Bali has a heavier Hindu presence.  This has a major affect on making it culturally different from the rest of Indonesia.  Bali currently ranks as our #1 choice for traveling families.  But make no mistake, Bali is a great place to travel for ANYONE whether you're single, married, or have 3 crazy kids like us.

It checks all the boxes for things we look for in a great place to visit.  It's beautiful.  Its warm with endless amounts of beaches to explore.  The people are genuinely happy and friendly and love children.  There's so much to do for all ages.  And maybe best of all...it's incredibly affordable.

We still plan to explore so much more of Bali and Indonesia, but here is our advice from our travels so far...

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Contents

  1. When To Go
  2. Accommodations To Stay In Bali
  3. Where to stay in Bali
    1. 1 Ubud
    2. .2 Canggu
  4. Eating in Bali
    1. Family friendly restaurants
  5. Top 10 things to do in Bali with kids
    1. Get wet at Waterbom Bali
    2. Get up close to monkeys at Sacred Monkey Forest
    3. Have a manicure/pedicure/massage
    4. Visit the Elephant Cave in Goa Gajah
    5. Learn to surf
    6. Have a family adventure at Green Camp
    7. Play on the beach
    8. Take advantage of a kids club
    9. Visit a temple
    10. Get an adrenalin rush at Bali Treetop Adventure Park
  6. Doctors in Bali
  7. 11 Getting Around Bali
    1. Renting a car
    2. Renting a scooter
    3. Hiring a car and driver
    4. Taxis
    5. Uber/Grab
    6. Car seats
    7. Getting from the airport
  8.  

The best time to visit Bali depends on what you consider the "best time".  Are you looking for the best weather? OR are you looking for it to be less crowded?  Or maybe the best combo of both?

So there's really two things to consider when figuing out the best time to visit Bali. 

The first is the weather which can be summed up in two seasons: Wet & Dry.

Dry Season: April – September (best time to visit weather wise) 

Wet Season: October – March
In general you will see rain more often then not.  But the good news is that it usually doesn't rain all day, just for a few hours and it never gets cold.  If you're on a short timeline we completely understand why you would want to avoid this, but if your schedule is a little bit more flexible, the wet season really isn't that bad.  The other downside to the wet season though is that there are more bugs which means more bites.

The second thing to consider is the holiday schedule.

Busy Season*: 
July & August
Easter Holidays
Christmas / New Year (December till 1st week of January)

*Even at busy times though, there is plenty of room for everyone and there is plenty to do in Bali for families at any time of year.

So if you are looking for both the dry season and for it to be less busy (and less expensive), the best time to come to Bali would be :

Best Time To Visit:
April-June (just trying to avoid Easter if possible)
September

Shoulder Season:
October & March would be considered the "shoulder" season and would not be a bad option either.  You may see a little rain but the prices and affordability will be better.

 

We see there being 2 main options for family accommodations in Bali and then some sub categories beneath them.

1. Family Hotel or Resorts

When it comes to hotels and resorts, Bali is tons of family friendly options to choose from.

The advantage to the resorts is that they typically have everything you need to entertain you and your kids and technically you don't even have to leave.   Most of them have multiple pools and restaurants, a kids club,  fitness gym and many other amenities and activities at your disposal. 

2. Entire Family Villa Rentals

Family villas in Bali can be an excellent option for bali holidays with kids. This generally means an entire house with a private yard which often includes a private pool. Some even come with staff.

These are an excellent option but keep in mind that the pools are rarely fenced and many of the villas are open air meaning there may be no wall between your living area and your pool. This may not be a concern with older kids but can cause headaches for those of us with younger kids. Thankfully, you can hire a pool fence – check out services such as this. Or you can just do what we did and hire a villa that is fully enclosed so that the kids can’t accidentally end up in the pool.

For specific bookings you also have multiple options.

Pre-Booking: Having the peace of mind that you have a home secured for your family is usually a top priority but if you're willing to wait until you get to Bali you can get a WAY better deal.  However, we recognize that this isn't always realistic for an entire family like it might be a single person or a young couple.  We tend to recommend doing what we did which is to book the first few days or week ahead of time and then find cheaper accommodation when you arrive.  Sites like Airbnb, booking.com, and agoda.com have some great villas but the reality is, you can get the same quality of villas for much cheaper when you arrive.  Alternatively, you can look at a few Facebook sites online for people listing their villas directly.  If you're looking for a 2 week stay or longer, there are some great deals to be had.

What Area of Bali To Stay In

We currently have 2 top picks for this.  Ubud and Canggu.

Ubud

Ubud is the unofficial spiritual capital of Bali.  It is home to the most healers, wellness centers, and other people genuinely looking to better themselves.  It also is home to amazing restaurants, yoga centers, temples and very close to so many of the great natural wonders you'll want to visit while in Bali.

Canggu

We love Canggu because we feel its the perfect blend of having some of the more "trendy" restaurants and shops while still not being completely overrun by tourism.  You get the benefit of eating great meals and a stylish environment while not dealing with the over commercialized aspect that other parts of Bali (*Cough* Seminyak, Kuta, Legian *Cough*) have.  Canggu also has more family-friendly restaurants than any other place in the world (at least that we know of).  We're talking jungle gyms, trampolines, or skate parks built right next to the dining tables.  

What Area of Bali Not To Stay In

Seminyak, Legian, Kuta

Put simply, these areas are over-developed and have turned into toursist centers.  They lack the true identity of Bali that you will find in the rest of the island.  Don't get us wrong, there are some amazing resorts there and if your plan is to just stay on resort property the whole time, by all means go for it.  But if you want to experience a little more of "real" Bali, we would suggest avoiding them.

Eating In Bali

Arguably our favorite thing about Bali: the food.  Bali makes it SO easy to eat healthy because there are an endless amount of options that taste amazing.  We've had some of the best vegan burgers of our lives in Bali.  Not to mention the endless amount of asian, indian and balinese dining options, all of which have vegan, vegetarian and gluten-free otoons.  We could go on and on about how amazing the food is.  Do keep in mind though that Bali has tons to offer.  So if eating healthy isn't your thing, you can easily find "the bad stuff" too.  What we like though, is that Bali makes it easy to find healthy options which makes it easy to stick to your ideal diet.

Here's a list our our favorite healthy and family friendly restaurants.