How to do Bali in 3 Days: Day 2 (Ubud + Taman Ayun + Tanah Lot)

If you missed Day 1 of our Bali trip, you may click here to catch up.

We’re now on our second day and down with my 5th travel tip on how to do Bali in 3 days and on a budget.

  1. WE VISITED THE CHEEKY MONKEYS OF BALI AT THE SACRED MONKEY FOREST IN UBUD.

From our AirBnb resort in Kuta, Agus drove us more than an hour to Ubud. I don’t know but monkeys seem to be a big deal in nature tourism here in Southeast Asia. I wasn’t really looking forward to visiting this park but when I got there and saw all the peaceful lush greenery they had going on, I thought to myself it wasn’t bad at all. It was actually pretty cool how the monkeys have the freedom to interact with humans and even steal stuff from them.

A few tips to avoid monkey mischief:

  1. Don’t bring any food or water bottles inside. Monkeys have an impeccable sense of smell and you can’t even hide unopened food from them. We saw one monkey steal a banana from a guy’s pocket.
  2. This is not exclusive to food. Zip up your bags ’cause these monkeys know how to work them and steal small stuff from them. One stole a lip balm from a girl’s bag. Good thing, they were able to get it back.
  3. Never panic if a monkey jumps on you. Most are just friendly encounters and they will jump off when they’re done with you. If you panic and try to shoo them off, there’s a higher risk that they will attack you.

One ticket costs 30.000 IDR ($ 2.25/₱ 102).

  1. WE PUT OUR HAGGLING SKILLS TO THE TEST AT THE UBUD ART MARKET.

If you’re on a hunt for cheap Balinese art pieces, this is the place to be. But it’s not just an art market, they sell all kinds of stuff from souvenirs to cheap clothing.

It would be stupid to accept the first price and after all, you are expected to haggle. There is no fixed price in these kinds of markets and they try to take advantage of tourists who don’t know the actual prices. It’s not so different with the markets here in the Philippines so I have an idea more or less how much they actually cost. I go at about half the asking price and if they say no, I smile, say “Okay, thanks” and head to the next store. This is a tried-and-tested trick, they will surely follow you and finally agree with your price.

  1. WE HAD BALINESE FOOD FOR LUNCH AT GEDONG SISI WARUNG.

Just across the Ubud market, along the busy Ubud main street is this quaint Balinese restaurant. Food wasn’t too expensive and they had quite a variety on their menu. Our lunch for two was 260.000 IDR ($ 20/ ₱ 880) – the ubiquitous nasi goreng (fried rice) with skewered shrimps, pork and chicken satay and fruit juice.

  1. WE STOPPED BY THE TAMAN AYUN TEMPLE FOR A QUICK PEEK.

It was along our way from Ubud to Tanah Lot so we said okay why not pop in for 30 minutes. It’s a peaceful place with not a lot of tourists so a quick visit would be a good idea if you want some quiet alone time.

Entrance to the temple is 15.000 IDR ($ 1.12/ ₱ 50).

  1. WE WENT TO THE TANAH LOT TEMPLE TO WITNESS ITS HIGHLY-RAVED SUNSET.

We went there at around 4:30 in the afternoon and paid 30.000 IDR ($ 2.25/ ₱ 100) to get in. Before you get to the beach and the temple, you have to pass through a street with all these souvenir shops which were too commercial for my taste. But anyway, what’s new.

Good thing, there are no more of those when you get to the coast. Yes, it was still packed with tourists but the place was huge, you can find a quiet place to sit and watch the sunset (and a place to take photos without anyone photobombing).

We waited more than an hour to catch the sunset. It was worth it and certainly did not disappoint. Everything was just so picturesque.

Click here for Part 3!

How to do Bali in 3 Days: Day 1 (Pura Uluwatu + Jimbaran Bay)

Bali is not a very typical Filipino budget travel destination mainly because even the promo fares are not that cheap let’s say compared to Hong Kong, Singapore or Malaysia. I wasn’t planning on spending a lot on this trip since I have a major one this coming September and I needed to save. Still with my budget woes, I decided to go ahead and book a plane ticket to Bali, Indonesia as my last out-of-the-country destination in Asia before I move to another continent. I have visited many cities in Asia but I wanted this trip to be different. I mostly explored cityscapes in my past trips but now I longed for beaches, waterfalls and sunsets… and Bali is blessed with them.

I spent about P 20,000 ($ 440) on this trip, airfare and accommodation included. This could be actually cheaper if I went with more friends since we could have shared the transportation and AirBnb expenses. Anyway, here’s how we did it:

  1. We booked this Balinese-style villa via AirBnB.
    We got a sweet deal of three nights for 2 persons for € 84 ($ 93) in Villa Surya Abadi. It’s not a typical AirBnB listing since it’s not a private house or flat but a legit Balinese resort with a swimming pool, resort staff and free breakfast.

The room was huge for two persons and it has a very rural feel. You can hear chickens crowing and lots of birds and crickets. The property is surrounded by rice fields so you can enjoy your breakfast with this view.

It’s located in Kuta, 40 minutes from the Ngurah Rai Airport and 30-75 minutes from the major tourist spots in Bali.

  1. We hired a private driver.
    This is the most convenient mode of transportation to get around Bali. Other options are 1. taxis, 2. renting a motorcycle, or 3. riding their public buses. We didn’t dare to try those since 1. we didn’t want to be ripped off by taxi touts, 2. you need to have a license, 3. I read that it will take forever.

Agus was referred to us by Morgan, the owner of the AirBnB villa. We paid 250.000 IDR for the airport pick up + 500.000 IDR daily driver rate + 250.000 IDR for the airport drop off. We paid him 2.000.000 IDR in total or ($ 133/ ₱ 6000) plus tip.

Our driver was very nice and most importantly, punctual. His arms are all covered in tattoo but he has the most high-pitched laugh, he’s so adorable.

  1. We visited the Pura Uluwatu sea temple and watched the Uluwatu Kecak Dance.
    Pura Uluwatu from Kuta is a 1 and a half hour ride. We left our villa at 2:30 in the afternoon so we could roam around the temple before the Kecak dance.

Entrance to the temple is 20.000 IDR ($ 1.50/ ₱ 68).

The cliff and ocean view was just stunning, all the more during sunset.

At 5 PM, they started selling tickets to the Kecak dance show but it actually started at around 6. We bought ours early so we could get good seats. One ticket costs 100.000 IDR ($ 7.53/ ₱ 340). We were given a paper with the summary of the story of Ramayana. The show lasts about an hour but don’t be like the other tourists who arrive late and leave early. That’s just rude.

I totally loved it and it gave me a serious case of last song syndrome. Towards the end, it became partly funny and interactive as they made the audience participate a bit.

  1. We had dinner at Jimbaran Bay.
    I admit this one you could (or should) skip. Restaurant prices of average food are inflated. The ambience was pretty cool but we had an unpleasant experience. I’m not sure if they forgot our order but we had to wait an hour for our food.

Sweet Bali High (Video Travel Diary)

I went to Bali two weeks ago for a glorious 4-day getaway. I know 4 days wasn’t enough but we tried to make the most of it. Still so many places I wish I was able to visit but no worries, I’ll definitely go back.

Before sharing my written travelogue and travel tips, I want to start off with a sort of travel diary in motion. I shot most of the clips with my Fujifilm X-A2 and borrowed some from my friend’s GoPro 3+. I shot video clips of the spots we visited – Pura Uluwatu, Jimbaran Bay, Ubud Sacred Monkey Forest, Ubud Market, Taman Ayun, Tanah Lot, Tirta Empul, Tegunungan Waterfalls, Sanur Beach and Villa Surya Abadi.

It’s my first time to make a travel video so bear with me.