Welcome to our complete Bali honeymoon itinerary, 7 days of traveling the Isle of the Gods with your other half. We have to say, we think you’ve made a spectacular decision to make this corner of Southeast Asia the place where you come to mark the big day. It’s a real bucket-list spot that we don’t think you’re going to forget in a hurry…
The island of Bali has all sorts up its sleeve. From evocative Hindu temples by the roaring Indian Ocean to stunning vistas of lush rice paddies on the slopes of smoke-belching volcanos, it’s a land of human curiosities and natural wonders alike. It also happens to be perfect for honeymooners and minimooners on the hunt for something romantic, what with gorgeous sunset lookouts and more five-star hotels than you can shake a gamelan at.
Our Bali honeymoon itinerary, 7 days of loved-up travel on the famous Indonesian island, is a curated package of beaches and immersive destinations. You’ll see macaques in the jungles, get to ride your first surf waves together, and stay in some seriously gorgeous hotels on the white-sand beaches of southern Bali. Let’s begin…
Day 1 – Canggu
We think Canggu is a cracking place to begin your honeymoon on the Isle of the Gods. Not that long ago it was a simple fishing village backed by rice paddies. But the last decade has seen it transform into an upscale corner of Bali, with boho hotels by the ocean and loads of vegan and organic cafés. Lots of that has been driven by the digital nomad crowd, but there’s also a good cohort of honeymooners and couples coming Canggu’s way.
The transfer from the airport to Canggu should take just over 40 minutes, but it can take much longer because of the awful Bali traffic. Either way, we’d recommend starting down on the sands of Batu Bolong Beach. It’s the main stretch in Canggu and joins Echo Beach, which has some wedgy surf breaks for intermediates and longboarders that you can sample before breakfast.
Talking of breakfast…there are loads of places to refuel after the flight here. We especially love The Avocado Factory, which serves poke bowls and beautifully presented morning meals – think meticulously carved avo slices with scrambled egg on muffins.
For the afternoon, head down to Pantai Berawa. It’s the second most popular beach in Canggu and is rarely as bustling as Echo Beach or Batu Bolong, so you should find plenty of space to relax and unwind (and cure the jet lag!).
For sunset, hop in a taxi or rent your own scooter to whizz out to the Tanah Lot Temple. The drive is 20-30 minutes in all. What you’ll see is a stunning Hindu shrine perched on its own craggy rock a stone’s throw off the coast. At the golden hour, it’s a truly romantic sight, as the sun dips and the smells of incense roll across the bay. After that, we’d recommend high tailing it back to Canggu, where edgy beach clubs like Sand Bar offer the perfect spot to glug cocktails and beers until later on.
Day 2 – Seminyak
Seminyak isn’t far from Canggu at all. Just a short transfer down the coast of the island can take you there – you’re looking at about 20 minutes in a taxi in normal traffic. What awaits is perhaps the most upscale corner of the whole of the tourist area that spans the southwest side of Bali…
Honeymooners with a bit of cash to splash should make the most of that by booking into the Oberoi Beach Resort. It’s a gorgeous five-star lodging with lovely Balinese villas up for rent, not to mention a large garden pool lined by sunbeds that face the curling waves of the Indian Ocean. If the budget doesn’t quite push that far, then don’t worry, there are plenty of more affordable options, but you might need to look a few blocks back from the beach.
Either way, once you’ve dropped the bags, we’d recommend going straight for the Potato Head Beach Club. It’s now a legend of the Bali bar scene. It’s open from 12pm every day and has sunbeds strung around a gorgeous infinity pool. There’s a swim-up bar in the middle of it all, staffed by trained mixologists that make a mean Bloody Mary. It’s possible to buy day passes that let you hang out from opening to close here. They should be reserved in advance on the Potato Head website and do incur a minimum charge at the bar.
Later on, you’ll hop over to another of the iconic venues on this chichi side of the Isle of the Gods. Cue KU DE TA. It’s a big name on the nightlife scene in Bali and the perfect place to watch the sunset as the surfers carve up the waves. There’s also a fantastic food menu complete with rich wagyu beef and lobster dumplings.
Day 3 – Ubud
Day three of our ultimate Bali honeymoon itinerary 7 days whisks you away from the frothing Indian Ocean and up to the misty jungles in the heart of south-central Bali. The drive is about an hour or so but can be more in heavy traffic. You’ll want to stay alert though, to watch as the urban sprawl of Kuta and Denpasar fades away and the rice paddies start to take over.
The aim is Ubud. It’s Bali’s cultural and artistic center point. There are some seriously romantic hotels on offer in these parts. The crème-de-la-crème are usually located in the jungles on the outskirts of town, like the incredible Kayon Resort Ubud, where you’ll find private dining decks for couples strewn in rose petals, along with lookout balconies over gushing riverways.
After leaving the bags in your suite, catch a ride into the center of Ubud. It’s a town made up of just two or three main streets. At the top of one, you can find the Ubud Bazaar, a ramshackle medley of stalls selling all sorts of arts and crafts, from batik fabrics to traditional Balinese masks. Next door, you should drop in to see the Saraswati Temple, which is fronted by a beautiful lily pond and rows of gnarled banyan trees. Some say it’s the prettiest on the whole island.
At the far end of the town is the Sacred Monkey Forest. That’s a must see; an ancient set of Hindu-Buddhist temples that are now half in ruins and overtaken by the jungles. Wander around but watch out for the cheeky macaques – they’ll take your camera or wallet without warning!
Day 4 – Lovina
It’s a drive of about two hours from Ubud to Lovina, which sits right up on the distant north coast of the island. However, this isn’t just an A-to-B. There are plenty of awesome things to see along the way, so it’s a good idea to negotiate a price with a driver who doesn’t mind stopping a couple of times en route.
The first place to pull up will be the Leke Leke Waterfall. It’s one of the most gorgeous on the isle, looking like some hidden Shangri-La between two bluffs of fern-covered volcanic rock. It’s 50,000 IDR ($3.50) per person entry, which is more than worth it to share a swim together in the turquoise-tinted splash pool at the bottom.
The temple at Pura Ulun Danu Bratan sits a little further along the road. It’s a revered shrine used by both Hindus and Buddhists, with a stunning location on the side of Lake Bratan between soaring mountains. The photo opportunity beneath the 11-stepped Meru tower out the front is one of the most iconic going, too.
Keep driving north from there and you’ll come to the Gitgit Waterfall. Arguably the most dramatic of all on the island, it clocks up 35 meters in height and sprays over a jungle ledge onto a series of rock terraces. Be careful though, as the waterfall is steeped in myth, and some say any couples who bathe in the water are doomed to break up – not ideal for a honeymoon, eh?
Lovina itself finishes things off. It’s a low-key town with a lovely beach on the Bali Sea. However, the main reason to be here is out in the ocean: Dolphins. And they neatly lead us into Day 4…
Day 4 – Uluwatu
Day 4 begins real early. You’ll have to rise in Lovina before 5am to be able to join one of the regular dolphin-watching tours. They last about 30-45 minutes and take you out to see the swimming pods off the north Bali coast. The best time to spot the majestic sea swimmers is between May and January when the seas are at their calmest.
After that bucket-list experience, it’s time to head back south again. This time it’s a straight 2.5 hours’ ride through the very middle of the island. We think you should arrive sometime around midday or the early afternoon, but again, there are plenty of spots left to check out if you want to break up the ride – the Jatiluwih Rice Terrace and the bathing hot springs at Penatahan Kaja are both roughly on the way.
Your place for the rest of the day is Uluwatu. It’s legendary in the world of surfing for having some of the most epic left-hand point breaks on Earth. You’re best leaving that to the pros. However, there’s a glassy reef break for intermediate surfers at nearby Bingin Beach if you happen to be a surf-hungry couple. Or you can simply go and laze in the cove at Padang Padang – one of our favs on the Bukit Peninsula.
At night, go straight for the Uluwatu Temple. It’s the home of the enthralling Kecak Fire Dance, which takes place each evening at sunset and tells the mystical story of a great battle between the gods from the Hindu Ramayana.
Day 5 – Nusa Dua
Nusa Dua is a fantastic place to slow down the pace of your travels. It’s also a great option for capping off our Bali honeymoon itinerary, mainly because it’s known for hosting some of the finest resort hotels this side of the Maldives. Seriously…they are divine. The Luxury Collection Laguna and the beautiful The St. Regis Bali are up there with the best of the bunch – the latter even has its own Zen Garden with swinging hammocks!
Wherever you decide to bed down, you’re going to be on the doorstep of Nusa Dua’s white-sand beaches. They are some of the loveliest on the mainland of Bali because they offer a rare taste of perfect sand and pure turquoise water. The waves and the currents can still be powerful, though, so be cautious when you swim.
A jaunt to the north to see the Waterblow on the Peninsula Island is great for breaking up sunbathing sessions, and you sedulously have to pay a visit to one of the town’s spas. There are loads to pick from, most connected to one of the hotels. We especially like the Kriya Spa at the Hyatt for its al fresco massage baths, and the arabesque-style Mandara Spa. Both of those offer couples’ packages and traditional Balinese treatments.
Day 6 – Nusa Penida
The last step on our ultimate Bali honeymoon itinerary means ditching Bali itself altogether. Yep, today you’ll be whizzing across the strait to Nusa Penida. It’s one of the most-photographed isles in the region, an Instagram favorite, and a great place to explore less-trodden beaches and coast forests.
To get there, you’ll need to catch a boat from Sanur Beach. The port is only 25 minutes’ drive north of Nusa Dua, so you should be able to make it in time for the very early ferries. In all, the crossing is just 45 minutes.
As soon as you’re on Nusa Penida itself, there’s no time to waste. This island is riddled with incredible spots and there’s just 24 hours left to pack them in. Truth be told, you’re probably not going to manage to complete the lot, but at least a few of the following should make it onto your itinerary if you’re chasing a touch of romance:
- Atuh Beach – A eye-watering, white-sand bay framed by a rock arch. Often not busy at all.
- Kelingking – Also called T-Rex Beach for the way the headland is shaped, this one’s probably the most iconic Instagram frame in all of Indonesia!
- Toyapakeh – Pull on the snorkels and dive under at Toyapakeh to see blooming coral reefs and even, potentially, manta rays.
You can choose to hang around Nusa Penida to extend our Bali honeymoon itinerary to longer if you like. Alternatively, it should be easy to book a transfer back to the airport in Denpasar that includes the ferry return to Sanur.