12 September 2012
Bali: The Best of Both Worlds
Our twin resorts on Bali bring together two great holidays in one - a relaxing beach sojourn teamed with brilliant sightseeing in this beautiful island's cultural heartland.
For an island so small you could drive around its coastline in a single day, Bali is an extraordinary concentration of surprises. A lush-green nugget of rainforest and rice terraces, it brings together spectacular scenery that cascades down from the heights of awesome volcanoes to sublime beaches.
Discover BaliStay at Jimbaran Puri Bali on Jimbaran beach and at Ubud Hanging Gardens in the heart of the tropical forest, for six nights, and discover the best that Bali has to offer.
Package includes: round-trip airport transfers, one restaurant dinner and a special private dinner in each resort, a catamaran cruise experience with gourmet lunch, private car and driver for 6 hours at Jimbaran Puri Bali, a full-day Jeep safari including gourmet lunch, private car with driver for 6 hours and a picnic or cooking class at Ubud Hanging Gardens and guided morning walk in Ubud's rice terraces and forest.
Click here for the full itinerary. All our journeys are flexible and can be tailored to your own personal interests. Enquiries >
This little Indonesian paradise eight degrees south of the equator has earned the title of Ultimate Island thanks to the diversity of its attractions: arts and crafts, leisurely days by the beach, a wealth of sporting activities and captivating cultural treasures. Bali, it seems, can be whatever each of its two million annual foreign visitors wants it to be.
The young and adventurous have long flocked here to shoot around on scooters, surf the seas and let off steam in nightclubs. Now, encouraged by American author Elizabeth Gilbert's bestselling autobiography, Eat, Pray, Love, Bali is luring increasing numbers of visitors in search of peace and spirituality.
On Your Best BehaviourWhen in Bali remove your shoes before entering a private home; do not touch anyone, especially a child, on the head (it is regarded as sacred) and use your right hand (or preferably both hands) when giving something to another person.
Split your stay between our two secluded retreats and you can expect to be fully rejuvenated in body and soul. This is the best of both worlds: rest and relaxation in an idyllic beach resort and sensational sightseeing from a heavenly hideaway at Ubud in the island's cultural heart (pictured second from left, above).
Your First QuestionUpon arrival in Bali always ask: where's the nearest festival happening? With regular celebrations at each temple and village; individuals marking births, marriages and deaths; island-wide events such as Des Bersih (rice harvest/April) and Nyale (fishing/February or March), there's always something unmissable going on.
Stay Beside the Sea
First then, a blissful combination of sun, sea and sand. Jimbaran Puri Bali has a great location beside one of the island's best beaches (pictured above right), just 15 minutes' drive from the airport. Scattered among fragrant frangipani trees and hibiscus bushes are a cluster of pretty cottages and a new collection of luxury villas each in its own Balinese garden with a vast daybed and private pool large enough for a proper swim.
This is the place for a do-as-you please holiday, whether that means enjoying water sports or simply chilling out with a book beside the ocean. If you need help to switch off, the spa should be your first stop. The Balinese Spice Boreh, a traditional body scrub made from aromatic spices and herbs, is great on stressed muscles and jet lag.
You don't even have to leave the resort to soak up the island's rich culture. The beachside restaurant stages a special night when you can feast on seared sea scallops and roasted Pacific cod while watching the mesmerising Balinese Kecak, a dance performed on the sand by 60 local men and strikingly beautiful girls in exquisite costumes. The dancers represent an army of monkeys, chattering and waving their arms to the music.
Magical MusicThe gamelan orchestra (pictured above left) creates a hypnotic, rippling range of melodies through gongs, drums and xylophones. A little tuition will enable you to join in and play simple tunes: but at least ensure that you attend a concert, ideally accompanied by traditional dancers.
Sightseeing further afield includes Pura Luwur Uluwatu, a sacred temple perched on a cliff top with fantastic views out to sea. Close by are surfing beaches where you can sit and sip a local beer while you watch the action and, later, one of Bali's awesome sunsets.
By Wendy Gomersall, who writes on travel for a wide range of UK publications
What were your best experiences in Bali?