Trekking can be quite challenging as it normally requires long, sometimes arduous routes through rough terrain. But if you’re ready to spend time outdoors there’s nothing more exciting than trekking to better explore the island. The most convenient way to do this is to go with adventure tour operators that offer various different…
Text by Eric Tiwa Photos by Mehd Halaouate & Namhar
Trekking can be quite challenging as it normally requires long, sometimes arduous routes through rough terrain. But if you’re ready to spend time outdoors there’s nothing more exciting than trekking to better explore the island. The most convenient way to do this is to go with adventure tour operators that offer various different trekking experiences throughout Bali. Popular trekking sites are mainly located outside the tourist area in the south. Trekking tours should include transportation, food, and equipment like flashlights and compasses. Choices of destination vary but include mountains (Batur and Agung, among others), forests, national parks, and waterfalls.
Hiking is less demanding and time consuming with shorter distances being covered over more accessible terrain. You can hike leisurely through plantations, villages, national parks or rice fields, among others. Hiking gives you the opportunity to interact with local people and experience the unspoiled nature of Bali. We recommended you join a guided hiking tour; that way the guide will keep you on track and you won’t waste time getting lost.
Cycling is arguably the best way to enjoy Bali’s natural beauty. You can cover more ground than hiking, although some rather difficult terrain becomes inaccessible on bike. Ubud is a popular place for cycling. Kintamani and Jatiluwih are also great destinations with cooler climates and well-paved roads. Some cycling tour operators also offer cycling trips to the more remote areas of Bali. Although you would have to be fairly fit for these trips, they are still a fun activity for the whole family.
If you want to get down and dirty in one of Bali’s famous rice fields, try farming. Farming adventures involve plowing and planting the land the way it has been done for hundreds of years in Bali. This also means you will get the chance to man the plow (pulled by buffalos) to prepare the field. Although you won’t be out in the field all day like real farmers, you will get a sense of what they have to go through to produce the sweet Balinese rice.
balinese cooking class
Balinese cooking lessons are the next logical step after the farming adventure. There are many cooking classes in Bali with various different activities involved. Some offer a trip to the village market before the actual cooking begins. Some hotels and resorts like Maya Ubud Resort & Spa organize their own cooking lessons for in-house and outside guests, which include tours to the garden where they grow vegetables and spices for Balinese style dishes. This can be a fun experience for those who are interested in local cooking, offering a glimpse into the whole process of preparing Balinese dishes.
Camping in Bali’s lush natural surroundings provides a great base from which to try other activities like hiking, cycling and sailing. There are many camping tour operators who offer various camping trips. You can camp in the mountains, on an island, by the lake, or beside a waterfall. It’s a great way to enjoy natural Bali outside the crowded South of the island. You don’t have to worry about all the necessities required for a great camp since everything will be provided by operators.
bird & butterfly watching
Bali is home to some rare and beautiful species of birds. The island is a paradise for enthusiasts with Bedugul Botanical Garden and West Bali National Park as the most popular destinations for bird watching. If you stay in south Bali, Bedugul Botanical Garden is the place to go. The best time to go there is early in the morning or during the week to avoid the weekend crowds. Bali Bird Park in Gianyar is also a great option for bird watching, boasting lush natural landscapes. Not far, you will find Bali Butterfly Park, where you will encounter exotic species of butterflies in a 3500 square metre controlled environment. Trips to butterfly and bird parks are usually integral to tour packages which include visits to other attractions.
Another great way to enjoy the vast beautiful landscapes of Bali is from the back of a horse. You will get to traverse the beach, meander through the village roads or even enjoy some cross country action for more skilled riders. There are many operators offering horseback riding trips. Safety is always a priority although to enjoy the experience doesn’t require any level of proficiency as a guide will always be on hand to lead the journey. Individual guides are available upon request. Certain operators also provide ponies for children. Horseback riding can include other activities too, especially upon visiting a village or places of interest, like waterfalls and plantations.
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