Greetings from the islands of God, Bali! This paradise island has everything to justify this fame with its impressive temples, lush green rice fields, tropical flora, and beaches offering the most magical sunsets. As many people have (I am one of them), you will want to come back to this tropical island again and again!
I first visited Bali years ago and fell in love not only with its amazing nature but also the local culture and the infinite activities that you can do. I now proudly call this place HOME and I am writing these lines from Bali! Imagine an island where you can hike volcanoes one day, then surf in the world’s famous spots the next only to end up in monkey forests the same afternoon.
Don’t worry if you think you might miss city life, there are more than enough shopping malls, upscale restaurants, and lively nightlife. That’s why Bali is a destination for everyone from backpackers to luxury travelers and honeymoon couples!
In this blog post on where to stay in Bali, I will help you to discover the best areas of the island and give you the best hotel options in each. I’ve been living in Bali for quite some time and have done a lot of research to find a place for myself so you will be in safe hands!
Just a quick reminder, as Bali is a very popular destination, hotels are selling faster than you think, so be quick and make a reservation in advance!
Are you ready to discover the best areas of Bali?
If you are in a hurry
Here are the best places to stay in Bali from luxury to budget. They all have great reviews and great locations!
Double-Six Luxury Hotel
Best luxury resort
Apartment Villa Oceans
An Airbnb with amazing reviews
Kanvaz Village Resort
Best value for money
Grandmas Plus Hotel
Best cheap accommodation in the center
Here is a map of Bali with all the 9 areas I will be talking about in this blog post, so you can easily visualize them:
1. Seminyak – where to stay in Bali for the first time
Even though there are so many nice areas to stay in Bali, you won’t be able to find a place that is more modern and developed than Seminyak. Personally, whenever I need to go shopping, crave good food, or feel like partying, Seminyak is my first option! But that’s not even the best bit, the most magical part about this area is the beaches!
Once you step into Seminyak Beach you will be amazed by the scenery of these long sandy beaches surrounded by palm trees. You can go to a fancy beach club to swim in the oceanfront pools and party, or simply sip a coconut in one of the local spots by the beach to enjoy the most magical sunsets. Believe me, I’ve never seen a more pink sunset in my life!
If you want to enjoy the nightlife in Bali you will find the island’s best bars and nightclubs in Seminyak too. As you see, if you stay here you will have access to everything you could possibly need, plus, Seminyak is in great proximity to the airport and other popular areas making it a great base for day trips to explore the island.
Before I talk about the amazing hotels I’ve picked for you, I just want to remind you that you have to be quick to make a reservation as Seminyak is one of the most popular places to stay in Bali. Here are the top four places but if you want even more accommodation options check out this post for the best Airbnb in Bali.
This is one of the best five-star resorts in Bali that is located right on Seminyak Beach. You will fall in love with the large swimming pool overlooking the ocean and sun terrace where you can watch the stunning scenery. There are 2 restaurants offering traditional Balinese food as well as gourmet foods from international cuisine. The hotel rooms have luxury amenities and ocean views and Ngurah Rai International Airport is just 8 km (5 miles) away.
Other accommodation options in Seminyak, Bali
This five-star hotel offers spacious air-conditioned rooms, a luxury spa, a pool and is just a 5-minute walk to the beach
Grandmas Plus Hotel offers cheap accommodation and has comfortable rooms, a spa, a swimming pool, free wifi, and an airport shuttle
This villa is one of the best villas in Seminyak that features a private pool, spacious rooms, free wifi and is less than 10 mins walk to the beach
Things to do in Seminyak, Bali
- Enjoy swimming in the oceanfront pool at Potato Head Beach Club
- Have a sunset coconut on Seminyak Beach
- Go shopping at Seminyak Village
- Party till the early hours of the morning at the Shi Shi nightclub
- Have a delicious Italian meal at Bottega Italiana
- Go shopping at Seminyak Flea Market
- Take a day trip to hike at Mount Agung and witness the most amazing sunrise
- Check out Double Six, one of the many surf schools where you can take your first surf lesson
2. Canggu – the coolest places to stay in Bali
Canggu is located 9 km (6 miles) northwest of Seminyak and is the neighborhood where I currently live in Bali! I’ve always had this thing for rice fields in Bali, and if you want to see that epic scenery and find cool cafes and restaurants, I promise you will fall in love with Canggu!
FUN FACT: 10 km (7 miles) west of Canggu, you will find one of Bali’s most famous temples in the water, Tanah Lot, which is believed to be protected by a holy snake. Some people say that during the low tide you are able to see the snake on the rock at the base of the temple. 😉
Canggu is a surfers paradise thanks to its famous beaches like Echo Beach and Berawa Beach. Don’t worry, you can still enjoy these beautiful beaches even if you are not into surfing. Here you will find some of the best beach clubs in Bali such as La Brisa and Finn’s Beach Club with epic swimming pools overlooking the Indian Ocean and the most fun beach parties. Yes, the nightlife is also amazing here!
In Canggu I love spending my time having a sunset stroll, petting tons of cute puppies, and sipping coconuts in local restaurants while enjoying the amazing scenery. Ah, not to forget I have good news for you foodies! Canggu is known for having the best selection of local and international restaurants with everything from hipster cafes to amazing breakfast clubs featuring spectacular rice field views.
Canggu is my personal favorite place to stay in Bali, this is where I live currently, and I even have a post on where to stay in Canggu specifically if you want more villas and guest houses options.
This luxury resort is located right on the beach and has an epic swimming pool overlooking the ocean, a chic restaurant, romantic rooms with pool and ocean view and a very good fitness center. You can pamper yourself with a traditional Balinese massage and chill in the nice garden area surrounded by palm trees. In the morning you can enjoy a very good breakfast with a nice view.
Other accommodation options in Canggu, Bali
Eastin Ashta Resort is a great place to stay for a honeymoon with its romantic rooms, nice swimming pool, and great breakfast
This affordable hotel is within walking distance of the beach and restaurants and offers a pool, a spa, and comfortable rooms
This is one of the best villas to stay in Bali with its private pool, beautifully decorated rooms, and kitchen
Things to do in Canggu, Bali
- Take a surf lesson at Canggu Beach or Batu Bolong Beach
- Have a coconut at Echo Beach
- Swim in the oceanfront pool and join a beach party at Finn’s Beach Club
- Have delicious foods at La Baracca and The Avocado Factory
- Take a day trip to the amazing temple, Tanah Lot
- Go for a walk to black sand beach, Seseh
- Have a drink and see the amazing Indian ocean views at La Brisa
- Take a pint at Black Sand Brewery
3. Uluwatu – where to stay in Bali for surfing and cliff views
Uluwatu is located on the West side of a peninsula called Bukit, it is a funny little appendix on the South of Bali, you will see it right away on the map. The coolest part? It is only 20-30 mins drive from the airport depending on where you are going on the peninsula.
Once you arrive in Uluwatu you will be speechless when you see the spectacular cliff views overlooking the ocean and surrounded by beautiful nature. I know I was! My phone’s wallpaper is still one of the photos that I took here so I assure you, you will have the most Instagrammable photos in Uluwatu!
Uluwatu is home to some of the best beaches in the world for surfing. It is so much fun to go to a clifftop restaurant and watch pro surfers during sunset. There are also so many secluded beaches where you can simply enjoy relaxing and swimming in the turquoise water.
Here you will also see one of the most famous temples in Bali, Uluwatu Temple. Situated at the edge of a cliff, this temple offers the most amazing views and is a great place to learn about Balinese culture. Watch out for cute monkeys though. They might open your bag and try to steal your food or even your sunglasses (learn from my mistakes)!
For those who want to enjoy spectacular landscapes, surf, and chill on the beach, here are the top hotels to stay in Bali, Uluwatu that I delicately picked for you:
I would give 6* to this hotel if I could! You will love the large swimming pool surrounded by palm trees and a chic sun terrace where you can watch the ocean.There is also a well-equipped fitness center and an upscale spa where you can have a traditional Balinese massage.
Other accommodation options in Uluwatu, Bali
This resort has a swimming pool surrounded by tropical gardens, spacious rooms, a bar, and free parking
This affordable hotel has 2 swimming pools, comfortable rooms, free wifi and is within walking distance to the beach
Bamboo Bungalows has a nice swimming pool, an air-conditioned room, a yoga area, and a restaurant
Things to do in Uluwatu, Bali
- Visit the magical Uluwatu Temple to learn about Balinese culture and see the incredible cliff views
- Watch pro surfers at Uluwatu Beach
- Have a drink and join a party at Single Fin
- Chill and get a suntan at the beautiful Thomas Beach
- Check out the surf schools at Padang Padang Beach
- See the amazing views and a DJ Performance at Savaya
- Swim in the crystal clear water and have coconut at Bingin Beach
- Watch an epic sunset at Sunset Point Uluwatu that offers the best view of Bukit Peninsula
4. Ubud – where to stay in Bali for yoga and nature lovers
If you have seen Eat.Pray.Love, you already know that Ubud is a mecca for yogis! 🙂
Ubud is located in the very heart of the island about an hour away from the airport (or 2, depending on the traffic). I am sure you have seen those beautiful Bali photos of amazing waterfalls and infinite rice fields – this is where you will find all that stuff! 🙂
Ubud is that place where you will find an abundance of green color, epic waterfalls, and typical Balinese crafts.
Start your day exploring the famous Tegallalang Rice Terraces and Tegenungan Waterfall. Then, head to the impressive jungle of the Sacred Monkey Forest Sanctuary to see dozens of monkeys in their natural habitat. Do not forget to take a monkey selfie. (Yes it is possible there!)
Ubud is known for being one of the most spiritual places in Bali and here you will see so many interesting temples where you learn about Balinese culture by joining a ceremony. And of course, Ubud is the best place to practice yoga as you will find the most famous yoga schools here. So, do not forget to bring your yoga pants and get ready to have the best yoga class in the most beautiful nature!
Yulia, the founder of this site, LOVES Ubud, she lived there for a long time and she wrote a dedicated post on Best places to stay in Ubud – she stayed in some amazing hotels, so check out her post!
In Ubud, there are so many nice accommodation options overlooking the rice field or surrounded by a jungle, here are the once I picked for you:
Plataran is one of the best luxury hotels to stay in Ubud. This luxury hotel has an amazing pool overlooking the rice fields and a sun terrace inside a jungle. The hotel rooms are spacious and have a private terrace with a nice view and you will love the luxury spa that offers traditional Balinese massage and free yoga classes in nature! While you’re here, don’t forget to eat authentic Indonesian foods in the on-site restaurant while watching the beautiful landscapes.
P.S. if this one is full/you are not happy with something, try Four Seasons Resort Bali at Sayan – the service and décor is top notch, I promise you won’t be disappointed!
Other accommodation options in Ubud, Bali
This hotel has a stunning garden area, a swimming pool, comfortable rooms, a spa, a bar, and free wifi
Taman Amertha Villa has 2 swimming pools surrounded by palm trees, a restaurant, spacious rooms, and an airport shuttle
This treehouse-style villa has an epic pool overlooking the jungle, spacious rooms, a kitchen with a terrace, and free wifi
Things to do in Ubud, Bali
- See monkeys in their natural habitat at the Sacred Monkey Forest Sanctuary
- Take yoga classes at The Yoga Barn
- Visit the impressive Tegallalang Rice Terraces and Tegenungan Waterfall
- Go shopping at Ubud Traditional Art Market
- Visit the amazing temples, Goa Gajah Temple and Pura Tirta Empul
- Try delicious coffees and teas at Satria Coffee Plantation
- Have a photo in one of the swings overlooking the rice fields
- Take a day trip to North Bali to see Pura Ulun Danu Bratan Temple that is located in the middle of the lake
5. Nusa Dua – where to stay in Bali for families and luxury
Remember we spoke about Uluwatu earlier? Nusa Dua is located on the other side of the same peninsula (the little appendix on the South side of Bali). Uluwatu is the West coast of the peninsula, Nusa Dua is the East coast.
You can get to Nusa Dua in only about 20 minutes from the airport (they have built this super good new road, so, almost no traffic jams!
Here you will find the most family-friendly hotels that have kids facilities such as kids pools and aqua parks. Plus, Nusa Dua has calmer water compared to other parts of the island so you can enjoy swimming in the shallow waters and do water sport activities with your families.
If you are looking to stay in a big chain luxury hotel, Bukit peninsula is THE place to go. It was built out later and many well-known hotel brands were able to take up a spot here (Anantara, Radisson, Bvlgari, Hyatt, Marriott, Melia, Hilton and Mulia – my absolute favorite!).
Let’s have a look at the best places to stay in Nusa Dua area:
Hyatt is the best place to stay in Bali for families thanks to its family-friendly rooms and kid pool with water slides. There are two upscale restaurants that serve delicious Indonesian food as well as international gourmet foods with a kid buffet. You can enjoy water sports activities such as scuba diving and canoeing and there are also tennis courts and a well-equipped fitness center inside the hotel.
Other accommodation options in Nusa Dua, Bali
Located right on the beach this hotel offers a private beach, a large swimming pool, spacious rooms, and a fitness center
This hotel offers spacious rooms with a private terrace, a swimming pool, a spa, good breakfast, and free wifi
This beautiful villa has a private pool, a jacuzzi, beautifully decorated rooms, a fully furnished kitchen, and a garden area
Things to do in Nusa Dua, Bali
- Take a golf lesson at Bali National Golf Club
- See the natural beauty of Water Blow
- Enjoy spending time at the powdery white sand, Nusa Dua Beach
- Visit the cultural Museum Pasifika
- Go shopping at Bali Collection
- Visit the beautiful temple, Puja Mandala
- Have a family dinner at the pirates themed restaurant, Pirates Bay Bali
6. Kuta/Legian – where to stay in Bali on a budget
Kuta and Legian are the villages that started to develop first in Bali and this is because that is where the airport is located too. Kuta is probably the most touristy place to stay in Bali and that is where you will find both large luxury resorts as well as cheap accommodation options.
Thanks to the abundance of hotel options it is the best area to stay in Bali on a budget as you can even get better deals on luxury hotels. Sounds tempting, right?
Kuta is known for its lively nightlife, large shopping malls, and beginner-friendly surf spots. If you want to start surfing you can get cheap surf lessons here from one of many surf schools at the Kuta and Legian beaches and thanks to the sand bottom, it is one of the safest spots to learn surfing so, why not give it a try?
During the sunset, you should check out the local restaurants on the beach, have some local dishes, and if you feel like partying you will find tons of bars and nightclubs here.
Kuta has a very central location in Bali for those who want to discover other parts of the island, be close to the beaches, and want to stay in a modern hotel without paying a fortune. If you like the idea, here are the places for where to stay in Bali on a budget.
Anvaya is the best place to stay in Kuta, Bali located right on the beach. I love the hotel rooms that have modern amenities and private pools access. There is a chic on-site restaurant where you can have authentic Indonesian foods as well international dishes. You can enjoy a sunset drink by the fancy swimming pool and have a traditional Balinese massage in the luxury spa.
Other accommodation options in Kuta/Legian, Bali
This hotel has a very nice infinity pool, modern rooms with a balcony, a fitness center, and free wifi
This is one of the best affordable hotels located in Kuta with its comfortable rooms, large swimming pool, and free parking
Kuta Beach Villa offers 4 spacious bedrooms, a fully furnished kitchen, a swimming pool, and a nice garden
Things to do in Kuta/Legian, Bali
- Take a surf lesson at the beginner-friendly surf spot, Kuta Beach
- Go shopping at Mal Bali Galeria and Beachwalk Shopping Center
- Have fun at the waterpark, Waterbom
- Get a suntan at Legian Beach
- Have a drink with a beautiful ocean view at Azul Beach Club Bali
- Try Balinese foods at Warung Ayam Betutu Gianyar
- Have a coconut at the local restaurants at Padma Beach
- Join a hiking tour to see spectacular views at Mount Batur
7. Jimbaran – where to stay in Bali for the best white sand beaches
Jimbaran is a cute fishing village that is located 15 km (10 miles) south of Seminyak. This part of the island is called Bukit Peninsula and has a lot of nice white sand beaches. So, by staying here you can chill on the long secluded beaches, watch amazing sunsets and have local foods by the beach.
Jimbaran is famous for dining on the beach with your feet touching the sand and even the waves sometimes, how cool is that? Ah, so romantic!
Jimbaran is famous for its fish market where you can eat freshly grilled delicious fish and sit on the powdery sand while watching the beautiful views. Personally, I love this kind of local market a lot where you can have real experiences and learn about their culture.
The fishing village vibe of Jimbaran shouldn’t fool you though because here you will find some of the best beachfront hotels with amazing facilities.
Here are the best places to stay in this lovely village:
Located right on the beach, InterContinental Bali Resort offers amazing scenic views and has glamorous facilities. I love the infinity pool by the beach and sun terrace under the palm trees. All of the hotel rooms have luxury amenities and a large private terrace. There is an on-site restaurant that offers gourmet food and a great breakfast. You can attend free yoga classes and pamper yourself at the upscale spa which has hot tubs and a sauna.
Other accommodation options in Jimbaran, Bali
Jimbaran Private Villas offer a nice swimming pool, a spa, rooms in a private villa, and free wifi
This resort has a swimming pool surrounded by palm trees, spacious rooms, an airport shuttle, and a nice bar
This is one of the best villas to sat in Jimbaran that offers 3 bedrooms, a private pool, and a large dining area
Things to do in Jimbaran, Bali
- Get a suntan at Jimbaran Beach
- Visit the cultural park, Garuda Wisnu Kencana
- Buy fresh seafood at Kedonganan Fish Market
- Go shopping at Samasta Lifestyle Village
- Chill at Balangan Beach and Honeymoon Beach
- Have a drink with an ocean view at Rock Bar
8. Sanur – best area to stay in Bali for a local experience
Sanur is located in East Bali 20 mins from the airport. This part of the island is less touristy and offers more pristine beaches as well as local restaurants and markets. If you want to have a local Bali experience, you will enjoy your stay in Sanur.
The best way to discover Sanur is simply by getting lost in the streets, checking out some interesting shops, art galleries, and spotting cute temples. It is also an amazing place to discover Indonesian flavors as you will find more than enough good warungs (local restaurants). Sounds yummy, doesn’t it?
Oh and the beaches – you will love the long stretch of sandy beaches which are perfect for chilling! Since you will be very close by staying in Sanur, I also recommend taking a boat to the famous Gili Islands to check out magical landscapes.
Now, let’s have a look at the best hotels to stay in Bali, Sanur.
Maya Resort & Spa is located right on the beach and has amazing swimming pools overlooking the ocean. You will love the spacious rooms with a large terrace surrounded by tropical flowers and you can even have a floating breakfast in the pool. There is a very good fitness center, full-service spa, a chic bar, and an on-site restaurant. You can also arrange boat tours to Nusa Penida and Gili Islands.
Other accommodation options in Sanur, Bali
This resort has a large swimming pool, spacious rooms, airport shuttle, and is just a few minutes walk to the beach
This resort offers affordable accommodation for backpackers with comfortable rooms, a swimming pool, and free wifi
This is one of the best villas in Sanur that features spacious rooms with luxury amenities, a fully furnished kitchen, and a private pool
Things to do in Sanur, Bali
- Take a boat to Gili Islands
- Visit the Museum Le Mayeur
- Marvel artworks at the Griya Santrian Gallery
- Get a suntan at Sanur Beach
- Take a golf lesson at Bali Beach Golf Course
- Have local foods at Warung Krishna
|👑 Luxury price:||$250|
|💵 Mid-range hotel:||$140|
|💰 Accommodation prices:||Low|
|📍 Best Area:||Seminyak|
|🛎️ Best luxury hotel:||Double-Six Luxury Hotel|
|👛 Best budget hotel:||Grandmas Plus Hotel|
BONUS: Nusa Lembongan – the best area to stay in Bali for a chilled holiday
Nusa Lembongan is technically not part of the Island of Gods, but it is close enough so I decided to include it too! It is a very beautiful island 30 min ferry from Sanur city. If you want to have a laid-back holiday and enjoy beaches without the crowds, Nusa Lembongan is exactly what you are looking for.
Once you arrive in Nusa Lembongan you will go crazy when you see the epic scenery with beach views from cliffs and turquoise-colored water. You can hike a bit to capture the best Instagram photos and then it is time to enjoy these secluded beaches.
Nusa Lembongan is one of the best places to do snorkeling and scuba diving. So, make sure to add water sport activities to your Bali travel itinerary if you’re staying here!
In Nusa Lembongan, there is no good luxury hotel option but I recommend Grand Hyatt Bali in Nusa Dua for those looking for a luxury place by the beach with a chilled vibe. For the other price points, here are some great options:
Other accommodation in Nusa Lembongan, Bali
This beach resort offers a swimming pool overlooking the ocean, spacious rooms with a nice view, a great breakfast, and a bar
Mamamia Island Villa features 2 swimming pools, a spa, comfortable rooms, and a nice garden area surrounded by palm trees
This beautiful villa has an epic view overlooking the beach, a swimming pool, and a spacious room with a private terrace
Things to do in Nusa Lembongan, Bali
- Check out the amazing views at Devil’s Tears
- Enjoy swimming in the crystal clear water at Dream Beach
- Take a boat to beautiful Nusa Penida and Nusa Ceningan Islands
- Get a suntan at Jungut Batu Beach
- Join a boat tour to discover the best snorkeling spots on the island
- Go for a walk at Mangrove Forest
Frequently asked questions about Bali
🗺️ Where should I stay in Bali for the first time?
❌ What places to avoid in Bali?
Bali is a very safe and touristy island to travel to. You will safely travel in all touristy areas without worrying. Just try not to leave your valuable things unattended on the beach.
🏝️ Which part of Bali is most beautiful?
🤔 What is the best area to stay in Bali for expats?
📷 What is the most instagrammable hotel in Bali?
🎯 What should I not miss in Bali?
Here are some of the most famous attractions that you should not visit during your trip to Bali:
● Tanah Lot Temple
● Beautiful fishing villages in Jimbaran
● Sacred Monkey Forest Sanctuary in Central Bali, Ubud
● Black Sand Beach, Seseh
● Tegallalang Rice Terraces
● Tegenungan Waterfall
● Uluwatu Temple
We’ve come to the end of our island tour, the place I call home. I am sure you will love the tropical paradise Bali as much as I did and will be looking forward to coming back. In this blog post, I talked about the best areas to stay in Bali, the best villages, and Bali hotels for all budgets.
As there are so many different activities to do in each area I recommend splitting your holiday between 2 or 3 places and renting a scooter to do day trips. Also, you can find very luxurious Bali Hotels and villas for good prices simply just by making an early reservation.
If you are having difficulty choosing among so many nice hotels, let me help you. Here are my absolute 2 favorite hotels in the best areas of Bali that have amazing reviews:
- Double-Six Luxury Hotel – One of the best hotels in Bali that is located right on the beach with an epic swimming pool
- Mule Malu Tropical – A very nice resort in Uluwatu that has Balinese style rooms with a private terrace
I am sure you’ll have an amazing time in Bali and maybe we’ll bump into each other somewhere on the island while sipping coconuts and watching the sunset! If you have questions about areas to stay in Bali or any suggestions don’t be shy and leave a comment below. I will be more than happy to answer them.
Enjoy your trip to Bali,
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