Solo Traveling Bali: A Two Week Adventure and Wellness Guide

April 13, 2024

A Girl’s Guide to Bali

Alrighty, here it is the ultimate solo traveler’s guide to bali. When I was looking to travel to Bali, I struggled to find a comprehensive guide that balanced partying and wellness, ideal for solo travelers seeking both relaxation and social experiences. So, here’s my attempt to fill that gap and simplify your planning while making solo travel in Bali less daunting.

Bali, nestled among Indonesia’s 17,000 islands, stands out as a breathtaking destination calling out to surfers, yogis, and adventures alike. Although I really wanted to venture to neighboring gems like Nusa Penida, Nusa Lembongan, or the Gili Islands, I opted for a more leisurely pace, dedicating extra days to immerse myself fully in each city. Looking back, I’m so pleased that I did this and I honestly could have easily extended my stay by two or three more days in Ubud and Uluwatu. 

As for solo traveling, honestly I felt so safe everywhere I went. I opted out of renting my own moped because I wasn’t comfortable taking it between cities. I think if I had spent a few more days in Uluwatu, I would’ve gotten one but I actually did the math and it worked out cheaper to just order the Balinese version of Uber (Grab or Gojek) for the whole time. Make sure to download the apps before landing and you can order one at the airport. I would also recommend just booking a taxi through your hostel or hotel so that you don’t have to have the stress of finding a taxi because when you walk out of the terminal you will be hit with a wall of “taxi, taxi”’s. Always carry a portable charger, ensure a reliable phone plan, and stash some cash for instances where ride-hailing services are unavailable. The Balinese culture is so friendly and welcoming and I felt safe the whole time, but obviously, like always, just be aware of your surroundings and keep a portable phone charger on you because a few friends of mine got stranded in the middle-of-nowhere without a ride and that’s not a fun place to be in. 

Now, onto the infamous “Bali belly.” Obviously do what everyone says: don’t drink the water, brush your teeth with bottled water, don’t open your mouth in the shower, don’t get ice if it’s not at a reputable restaurant, no salads or fresh vegetables (higher risk of being washed with tap water)- you know the drill. I really did not want to get sick so I also brought some medicine from home and got some antibiotics from my doctor to have on standby in case I got ill, and that really helped to ease my mind. I will say the “free dinners” at the hostels did make me feel a bit iffy, but I’m not sure if that was the culprit or not, but a few of my friends felt really sick after soooo… do with that as you will. 

Now onto the itinerary! 

 

UBUD

  • Ideal duration: 4-5 days
  • Highlights: waterfalls, temples, rice terraces, monkey forest,  amazing warungs
  • Recommended Accommodation: Arya Wellness Retreat (female-only, great way to meet a lot people)

One of my favorite places of the whole trip. You could honestly spend a whole week here. It felt more authentic than the other locations and the warungs (traditional balinese restaurants) were amazing! Also, a great spot for day trips.

Things to do:

  • Monkey forest 
  • Ubud Palace 
  • Ubud Water Palace (not really worth the money)
  • Waterfalls
    • Tegenungan
    • Kanto Lampo
    • Tibumana
    • Sumampan 
  • Holy water temple
    •  Pura Tirta Empul
    • Pura Mengening temple
  • Ceking Rice terrace
  • Hostel Events:
    • Indo Night (great to meet people pro tip: eat beforehand, some people felt a bit sick the next day)
    • Free daily massage by the pool 
    • Great breakfast and pool-side snacks
    • Cacao Ceremony 

Places to eat:

  • Warung Siam 
  • In Da Compound Warung 
Day trip exploring rice terraces
View of Sumampan waterfall

 

ULUWATU

  • Ideal duration: 4-5 days
  • Highlights: crystal clear water, surfing, Uluwatu Temple, night life
  • Recommended Accommodation: Karma Backpacker (kinda the only hostel in town, definitely not as nice as the Arya and not super social but the family dinners are great way to meet people, walking distance to a lot of places) 

Great spot for surfing and beautiful beaches! It’s a bit more spread out than the other places, but easy to get around with a scooter or a Grab. 

Things to do:

  • Beaches
    • Dreamland (big waves) 
    • Malesti Beach (calm, clear waters) 
    • Thomas Beach (calm, clear waters- not as big as Malesti but closer to town) 
  • Single Fin (day/night club, great spot for sunset) 
  • Boxing class at Bali Fit Corner
  • Shopping 
  • Uluwatu Temple: Kecak Fire Dance Show

Places to eat:

  • Salty Coffee (right next to hostel) 
  • Drifter Surf Shop Cafe & Gallery
  • Nourish Cafe
  • The Place With No Name
  • BGS Uluwatu
  • Uluwatu Motorcyles
Walking down to Thomas beach
Surf shops in Uluwatu
Watching sunset from Uluwatu Temple before watching the Kecak Fire Dance show

 

CANGGU

  • Ideal duration: 3 – 4 days 
  • Highlights: Surfing, coffee shops, social, nightlife, amazing restaurants, lots of great accommodation options 
  • Recommended Accommodation: Rhythm and Rumble

Perfect spot to be based if you’re a digital nomad. Great coffee shops and co-working spaces. Very social and a big nightlife scene if you’re into that, but also tons of more laid-back events as well. It is much more “westernized” than other parts of Bali and the vibrant party scene can be a bit of a shock to the system if you are expecting relaxed, clear water island holiday vibes. But honestly, I found it to be a really fun place to be for a few days and has so many amazing experiences and activities to offer.  

Things to do:

  • Beaches
    • Dreamland (big waves) 
    • Malesti Beach (calm, clear waters) 
    • Thomas Beach (calm, clear waters- not as big as Malesti but closer to town) 
  • Spa day at Espace
  • Guan Yin Yoga Shala 
  • Surfing lesson (organized through hostel
  • Love Anchor Market 
  • Pilates at SAIA
  • Finns (day/night club) / The Lawn / Personal fave (greave some Bintangs for 7-11 and watch sun set on the beach) 
  • Black Sand Brewery
  • Zin cafe (co-workign) 

Places to eat:

  • Inklusive warung 
  • Milk and Madu
  • BGS Bali
  • Copenhagen
  • Canteen
  • Crate Cafe 
  • Gigisusu
  • Bagel It
Sunset from the main beach in Canggu
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