Bali has to be one of the most photogenic places. Among the stunning Indonesian archipelago, Bali (province) is quite extensive and I was fortunate enough to visit its touristic pockets- Kuta, Ubud, Pura Luhur Uluwatu and Nusa Penida.
My visit was constantly disrupted by seasonal rains, strong winds and grey gloomy clouds, I got sunshine rarely and when I did, it unfolded a different hue of the island. However, even with these intrusions, I was quite smitten by the Indonesian island’s landscapes.
Even though I haven’t been to some of the places I would have loved to experience (like Rock Bar), what I witnessed during my short stay was admirable. These are the places I thought are most ‘Instagramable’ on the island.
Tanah Lot Temple
The sacred Tanah Lot temple is perhaps the most photographed temple on the island. The name loosely translates to ‘the floating island on the sea’ which is the impression it gives during a high tide. During low tides visitors can walk to the foot of the temple. Only local Balinese are allowed to enter it though.
Tanah Lot unravels different hues throughout the day but sunset is considered the best time to visit. Silhouette of the temple against the fiery orange sky, with the crisp white waves always adds to its palette.
I really wish I had more time in Uluwatu. We made it just in time to the Kecak dance’s venue, which overlooks the Uluwatu Temple from a distance. This sea temple perches at the edge of a 70-metre cliff, pronouncing its traditional architectural features.
During the engaging performance, my sight kept going back to the temple. As the sun set, the temple’s silhouette grew pronounced though its featureless pinnacle stood out against the skies. Soon I saw the dark grey clouds bringing in heavy rains, as the performance continued at the foreground.
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Rice paddy fields complete Bali’s landscape in most postcards. Just a short drive away from Kuta towards Ubud, we drove past many fields which were radiant after the rains. The terraces of Tegallalang are perhaps the most popular in Central Bali where visitors can access the fields closely. If you’d like to explore further, drive to West Bali and spot the fields of Jatiluwih or seamless Pupuan.
A cruise away from mainland Bali, Nusa Penida is the largest of the three Nusa islands. There is much to explore and capture here. Start with Crystal Bay and head to the much-loved Kelingking. The cliffs here form an exquisite frame with the white sands and the turquoise waters. A challenging walk down to Kelingking beach may be worth the time if you’re geared up.
Manta Bay is another favourite in Nusa Penida, where visitors are welcomed to swim or ideally sit to spot the exotic Manta.
Ubud has to be my favourite neighbourhood in Bali. As we drove past on Jl. Raya Ubud, I was trying to grasp the characters of many cafes and boutique shops. These narrow entrances sometimes led to B&Bs in a traditional setting or vast private temples. There was a frame everywhere!
Ubud Art Market also makes it to the most photogenic places on the island. When I visited, most shops were covered with plastic because of the rain. I can only imagine how colourful and vibrant it would be on a clear day.
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Celuk village in Gianyar
Celuk is a quiet artsy neighbourhood in Bali. As I explored the creative locality, I was amazed at how skilled the locals here were. From wood carving, silversmiths work to textile painting and weaving, Celuk has a lot to offer those who seek. Take a stroll around the neighbourhood to get the best shots for your Instagram feed. What’s better is that the streets have intricate stone carvings on them, as the crafts indoors.
If I were getting second time lucky, I’d haunt Seminyak beach, Gili Trawangan Swings, La Laguna Bali and Rock Bar.
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What fills your Instagram posts on Bali?
Note: I was invited by Wonderful Indonesia on this trip.
Tag me on your favourite Instagramable destinations. This is me on Instagram.