The Best Places to go in Bali 2024

Finn's Beach Bar in Canggu, Bali

Ah the beautiful Island of Bali… It may be small but this place can keep you going for weeks, months, or even years! It’s a popular place to visit not only for its gorgeous beaches, but for its warm culture, wild activities, and lively nightlife. 

Now I assume you’re here because you’re already intrigued by this exciting little island…

Something important to know is that Bali changes all the time. For instance, Kuta was once the place to be but in recent years life has shifted further up the coast. So, make sure your source of advice is always from someone who’s been recently. 

Luckily, I’ve spent several months in Bali on different occasions between 2022 and 2024, and I’m here to give you an easy to read summary of all the best places to go in Bali right now. So let’s get to it…


Beach Bar in Canggu

Canggu is tied (with Gili T) as my favourite place in Bali. In the daytime you could find yourself enjoying some Nasi Goreng (fried rice) at one of its many cafes, or shopping for jewelry at the Love Anchor Market. As the sun goes down, people flock to beach bars with beers in hand and some to the sea to catch some sunset waves! 

A common night out starts at your hostel, followed by a beverage or two at Old Man’s and finishing up at Sandbar! (Note the waves at this beach club sometimes sweep the dancefloor!) 

You’ll probably hear lots of talk about Finn’s Beach bar too (first image), which is definitely worth a visit if you can make a small group and rent out a bed for the day. There’s a minimum spend if you rent a bed between you, although you soon get your money’s worth if you stay there for a while! 

Canggu is also a hotspot for digital nomads since there are an abundance of work-friendly hostels and coworking spaces. So if you’re remote working this could be a great place to meet like-minded people.

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Bintang Beer on a table on Seminyak Beach during sunset

Seminyak has become one of the most popular tourist stops in Bali. It’s a few minutes up the coast from Kuta, and not too far from the airport. There are a nice selection of places to eat, and places to party. 

Check out Motel Mexicola, a lively Mexican restaurant that basically turns into a club later on. I’d recommend booking ahead though because this place is busy!

Also, Seminyak has La Favela, which is probably the best nightclub I’ve ever been to. It’s a restaurant/club which is like an indoor jungle, including several different floors and rooms of great music and good vibes. Every time I’ve passed through Seminyak I couldn’t miss a night at La Favela, it is second to none. 

A good hostel to stay in is My Capsule Seminyak – they run regular events including Barbeques and drinking games, and they have dogs!



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Sunset across the sea beside rocks in Uluwatu

Surfing, surfing, surfing! Yes, you get the picture. Uluwatu is home to some of the world’s most incredible surfing spots. They range from beginner waves up to the most advanced, all year round. 

Oh, and that massive statue that you’ll be able to see from all the way up in Canggu, that’s the Garuda Wisnu Kencana Statue, and it’s 122 metres tall! (taller than the Staue of Liberty). You can go and see it while you’re down in Uluwatu, as well as the Uluwatu Temple. 

Want a nice cafe to eat? Nourish Cafe has some pretty amazing burgers! In terms of nightlife, your best bet for a nightclub is probably Hatch. Also, If you don’t mind spending a few bucks, Savaya beach club is very chill in the day, and pretty lively at night!

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Two people standing on Mount Batur Summit in Ubud

Located further inland, away from the beaches and the parties, Ubud will give you some diversity on your route around the island. It is one of the most popular, and best places to go in Bali.

You’ll find plenty of beautiful waterfalls, temples, shrines and rainforests. Tegenungan Waterfall is only about 20 minutes on the bike, and is pretty amazing to swim in when the weather’s good. 

Ubud is also absolutely packed with activities like white water rafting, ATV quad biking and even hot air balloon rides. 

If you like views, Mount Batur is one of the best I have ever seen, especially at sunrise. If you can drag yourself out of bed for the early start, doing the overnight trek to its peak is definitely worth it to see the sun emerge through the clouds while tucking into a boiled egg cooked in the steam from the volcano! Most people get there via grab car, but if you’re like me and love biking everywhere, you can actually bike there yourself – I’d just recommend wearing some gloves and warm clothes because it gets extremely cold. 

Also make sure to check out the monkey forest, just don’t let the monkeys climb on your head (I have seen this end very badly!)

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These next two are technically not part of Bali, but they’re nearby and you’ll probably want to know about them!

Gili Islands

3 small islands – Gili Trawangan, Gili Meno and Gili Air. You can get to these via ferry from Padang Bai. 

Gili Trawangan is the largest of the three, and has the biggest party scene. Stopping here will give you a nice break from the sound of whizzing moped engines, since everyone gets around via bicycle. You can actually cycle around the entire island in less than half an hour! 

If you like parties, you’ll want to stay at one of the popular party hostels such as My Mate’s Place or Mad Monkey. At night, most people end up at either Jungle or Sama Sama (or both!)



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Nusa Penida

Kelingking Beach in Nusa Penida, Bali

This stunning little island sits just off the South coast of Bali, and can be done in a day or two. You’ll want to get the ferry from Padang Bai (you can even do this on the way to the Gili islands). 

If you’re a nature lover, you may even want to stay a little longer because although it’s small, there are dozens of cool sights to see. The most famous of which is Kelingking beach, commonly known as the one that looks like a T-Rex (I personally don’t think it does but it’s still pretty cool!) When you park up you’ll have to climb down a series of steep (and challenging) sharp rocky steps. I’d recommend some sturdy footwear for this, and definitely don’t wear flip flops – most people I saw wearing these were struggling or even just gave up halfway! It’ll take about 20-30 minutes to get to the bottom. 

Nusa Penida also has some of the clearest water in Bali, so a snorkeling trip is well worth it. Note if you are hiring a moped, you may want to hone your biking skills before embarking on some of the bumpy broken roads around the island!

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Man walking on Kuta Beach in Bali

Kuta is a common passing point for people arriving in or leaving Bali due to its close proximity to the airport. It can be a good place to touch down and spend a night before moving further up the coast to the more lively areas of Seminyak and Canggu. 

Is it worth spending longer? 

Well, on my first time in Bali I spent over a week here. It is still the hotspot for Australian tourists, but has become less popular with travelers, losing some of its popularity to Seminyak and Canggu. 

One thing it does have is a very beginner friendly surfing experience. I had never surfed before and was able to pick it up quickly with the help of a friendly surfing instructor. You can get lessons for as cheap as 200,000 Rp or less. 

If you’re just in Bali for a month or less, I would say a day or two is enough in Kuta. For that I’d highly recommend Lokal Bali Hostel, which I’ve returned to a couple of times. Chill vibes with amazing staff. They also make a killer smoothie!



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Now that you know all about the best places to go in Bali, there are a few extra things that are important to know such as how to get around, book hostels and meet people! So be sure to check out my other post explaining everything you need to know before going to Bali in 2024.

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