Bali is a world away from the rest of Indonesia, and a longtime favorite with international travelers. Surfers have been coming here since the 1930s, but it wasn't until the 1960s that surfing vacations to Bali became the popular thing to do. Today, the trend continues and Bali sees as many surfers as it does affluent resort tourists.
Indonesia may have the world's largest Muslim population, but Bali fosters its own distinct culture. Hinduism has flourished here for nearly 2,000 years. Away from the beaches are fascinating Hindu temples, cultural exhibitions, terraced rice fields, and colorful festivals. Kuta
is the busiest resort district in Bali, featuring some of the top luxury hotels in Bali. Behind the main waterfront is a spread of budget guesthouses that are still within easy walking distance of the beach. From here it's a short trip by taxi or rented motorbike to Uluwatu
, a massive limestone peninsula jutting out in the sea. Tourists visit Uluwatu to see the temple, go surfing, or watch the sunset over the majestic cliffs.
Legian is another must-see, as it offers an excellent surf along with exciting nightlife along the beach. Life in Legian begins and ends on the beach. Surf shops give lessons by day, and then give way to lively bars and live music venues after sunset. There is a reason that Bali is often referred to as paradise, and much of it is evidenced by a visit to the many beaches.
Find out where the rest of the hotels, attractions, and must-see destinations of Bali are located by exploring the interactive map on this page.