Short stop in Bali

Nov 29th, 2019, 10:58 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Mar 2005
Posts: 207
Short stop in Bali


I am taking a cruise to Singapore and our ship stops in Bali. I'd like to hire a driver for the day to go to some of the sights. We should have a full day, so about eight hours. For such a short time, what can I plan to see? I was thinking Ubud and the Pura Besikah temple. I know we could plan a week or more there, but the ship has a set schedule. Should I plan to see anything else? I didn't see any recent driver recommendations posted here, but Tripadvisor has some listed.

Thank you,
carl170 is offline  
Nov 29th, 2019, 02:52 PM
Join Date: Apr 2013
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I think you could probably see those two with the trip back and forth from Denpasar (presumably, I'm not quite sure where cruise ships dock). I don't know that I'd try to do much more than that. Roads are pretty small and winding and goes through lots of small villages with dogs and people in the road, plus traffic nearer the city unpredictable. So you will (or at least could) spend more time in a car than you'd think.

On the other hand, Ubud is a pretty well worn route back to town and there's no shortage of things to see and do, including the chance to take some peaceful, scenic walks just outside town amongst the rice fields. A real slice of Balinese life. So you may want to consider seeing the Besikah temple first and then Ubud where you can leave whenever your driver thinks it best in order to get back to the boat in time.
CounterClifton is offline  
Nov 29th, 2019, 08:25 PM
Join Date: Jun 2003
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I think you're planning too much time in the car. Getting from the port, either Padang Bai or Benoa, to Ubud central or Besikih will take 1.5 hours (maybe a little less) so you will have already used up a chunk of time.

My suggestion would be to concentrate on Ubud town and the surrounding country side. There are no shortage of temples in Ubud. Maybe not as grand as Besikih, but still vibrant. If you're there at the time of a full or new moon most likely there will be a ceremony going on.

Have a Balinese lunch either in town or at one of the holels overlooking the Ayung River valley. Take the Campuhan Ridge Walk (about 1.5 hours). Stroll the Jl. Hanoman & Monkey Forest Road loop. Do some shopping for handicrafts, textiles. Visit a museum, like the Setia Darma Mask Museum. Take in the Jatiluwih rice terraces.

I don't have a recommendation for a driver, but I don't think you'll have any problem finding someone who will help you fix an itinerary.
marmot is online now  
Nov 30th, 2019, 06:48 AM
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Posts: 207
Thanks. Our ship docks at Benoa.

Should I go somewhere thats not as far like Semarapura? Friends who went said that Besikah was one of their highlights.

carl170 is offline  
Nov 30th, 2019, 10:14 AM
Join Date: Jan 2005
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I wonder if your friends were there on vacation or as a cruise port stop?

Yes, there is plenty to see in and around Ubud, even with lots of other people. Possibly the Semarapula temple and Ubud would work (if you don't do the full Campuhan Ridge walk).

If you dock early and can get to Ubud by 9am on a MTFSat, I'd recommend the Bali Bird Walk (not just for birders), but it may take more time than you want. It starts and ends at Murni's and doesn't require a reservation.

Bali Bird Walk
mlgb is offline  
Nov 30th, 2019, 11:08 AM
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My friends were there for a week's vacation so they had a chance to stay in four different places around the island.
carl170 is offline  
Nov 30th, 2019, 06:03 PM
Join Date: Jun 2003
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If Besakih is your top priority then you should certainly go there. It's quite impressive, and depending on your interest in Balinese Hinduism, you could spend a couple of hours there. It's best to go with a driver/guide who can run interference with the persistent hawkers. After Besakih you could still visit Ubud town, but won't have time to see too much of the surrounding area. You could also consider focusing on the eastern side of Bali. I'm not too enthusiastic about Semarapura/Klungkung. The Sidemen area which is about half an hour south of Besakih is very scenic -- rice terraces, mountains. Sidemen is also Bali's main textile weaving center.
marmot is online now  
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