Bali Hidden Gems: The Best Non Touristy Things to Do

Have you heard that Bali has changed a lot over the past years? It’s become an Instagram hot spot. Everything requires an entry fee (even a natural waterfall!) and things are built for photos. I visited the Wanagiri Hidden Hills and it had many photo points: nests, viewing platforms, and swings! They even had a guy with a reflector helping you take the perfect shot.

I actually love how instagrammable Bali is, but where do we draw the line? It’s becoming overcrowded as a result and I’ve had people ask me what I think of Bali. They wonder if it’s worth visiting or if it’s too touristic now.

Well, my answer is, you have to know the right places to go and you need to do it the right way to be able to really fall in love with Bali the way I have! Now let me show you the best Bali hidden gems. Read on for the best non touristy things to do in Bali!

Note: This post may contain affiliate links, meaning I get a commission if you decide to purchase something through the links, at no additional cost to you. Read our Affiliate Disclosure here.

Best Areas in Bali that are Less Touristy

1. Munduk

Munduk is a tranquil mountain village located in the lush highlands of Bali’s northern region. It offers a serene retreat amidst stunning natural beauty and traditional Balinese culture.

Surrounded by dense forests, cascading waterfalls, and terraced rice paddies, Munduk has some of the best hidden gems in Bali. The village has some of the most beautiful natural attractions, including the iconic Munduk Waterfall.

Another highlight of Munduk is its extensive hiking trails, which lead you through the scenic countryside. Since it’s located in the North the climate is much cooler here and the weather can be unpredictable.

The village is dotted with charming guesthouses and eco-lodges, offering cozy accommodations with stunning views of the surrounding countryside. I spent 2 nights in Munduk and stayed at Munduk Moding Plantation Nature Resort. The resort in itself was a quiet escape from the crowds and they have their own coffee plantation on site! You can read my review of the property here.

You can read more about the best things to do in Munduk Bali in my dedicated blog post.

2. Sidemen

Sidemen is a picturesque village situated amongst the lush countryside of Eastern Bali. Here you’ll enjoy an authentic Balinese experience away from the tourist crowds. Surrounded by verdant rice terraces, rolling hills, and towering palm trees, Sidemen offers such a tranquil experience.

The highlight of Sidemen lies in its stunning landscapes, where you’ll see amazing viewpoints of Mount Agung. Not only that, it’s where you’ll find the most bamboo houses. I stayed in both Magic Hills and Camaya and it was the most unique experience ever! The open treehouse-style accommodation offers rice paddy views and are beautifully designed.

The area is pretty remote without Grab working (equivalent to Uber). So you’ll have to drive or depend on local drivers here. You can take the tie to relax in your bamboo house accommodation, ride bicycles to see all the terraced rice fields views, or even go rafting down the river.

3. Amed

Amed, is located on Eastern coast of Bali and offers a tranquil escape from the bustling tourist hubs of the island. Known for its laid-back vibe, pristine beaches, and marine life, Amed is where you can find authentic Bali.

The highlight of Amed lies in its stunning coastline, where stretches of black sand beaches meet crystal-clear waters teeming with colorful coral reefs and diverse marine species. Snorkelers and divers are well attracted to the area and you can also find the Japanese Shipwreck and coral gardens of Jemeluk Bay here.

Amed is also home to the most breathtaking sunrise views over Mount Agung, Bali’s highest volcano.

4. Kintamani

Kintamani is located in the northeastern part of Bali and is best known for its breathtaking views of Mount Batur. Situated along the rim of the vast Batur caldera, Kintamani offers visitors panoramic vistas of the active volcano, its expansive crater lake, and the surrounding countryside.

The best part of visiting Kintamani is undoubtedly its stunning scenery, especially during sunrise when the first light illuminates the mist-shrouded slopes of Mount Batur. Some great activities include leisurely walks or bike rides along the crater rim and soaking in the beautiful views all around.

For the more adventurous, hiking to the summit of Mount Batur (with this tour!) is a popular activity, where you’ll have the chance to witness a spectacular sunrise from the volcano’s peak.

Not only that, there are many cafes facing the edge of the caldera so you can dine with beautiful views of Mount Batur.

Bali Hidden Gems & The Best Non-Touristy Things to Do

1. Sunda Hill in Sidemen

Located a 10 minute walk from the stunning bamboo house I stayed at, Camaya Bali, is this secret rice terrace with views of Mount Agung. I literally had this place to myself. It is one of the best viewpoints of Mount Agung in Bali.

The location is a bit tricky to find as you wouldn’t realize to pass behind a shop. You can find the Google Maps coordinates here for the entrance.

I came here in the early morning for the sunrise which is the best time to go as Mount Agung stays covered by clouds for most of the day.

📍 Sunda Hill (Google Maps Location)
🏨 Nearby hotel: Camaya Bali

2.  Banjar Mancingan Rice Terrace in Ubud

Bali literally has a rice terrace around every corner. So instead of visiting the most famous one, Tegalalang Rice Terrace, why not try this secret one in Bali. It’s actually not far from Tegalalang Rice Terrace at all! After fighting the crowds there, I visited the Banjar Mancingan Rice Terrace and there was literally no one else there but the farmers.

It is also super unique because it has a pathway lined with palm trees.

📍 Location: Banjar Mancingan Rice Terrace in Ubud (Google Maps Location)

3. Bayad Waterfall in Ubud

Really close to Banjar Mancingan Rice Terrace, you’ll find Bayad Waterfall, a secret waterfall in Bali.

I tried to go to Kanto Lampo and it was impossible to enjoy with so many people. When I went to Bayad Waterfall it was simply magical having these natural wonder to myself!

I went mid-day and no one was around!

📍 Location: Bayad Waterfall (Google Maps Location)

4. Taman Ujung Water Palace

Just 30 minutes away from Tirta Gangga is Taman Ujung Water Palace and without the crowds! This secret water palace is way more quiet than Tirta Gangga which has lost its authenticity due to the major crowds. The fish there are also sadly overfed and it’s become an overhyped Instagram spot.

You won’t find that at Taman Ujung Water Palace! I really loved this stunning place. There were beautiful mountain views and stunning architecture. The gardens were also super pretty. It is also much larger than Tirta Gangga.

📍Location: Taman Ujung Water Palace (Google Maps Location)

5. Villa de Bias Hotel

Wow, what an incredible stay! For only $100 a night you get this villa with the most insane views of Mt. Agung.

The bedroom is huge and there’s a beautiful bathtub with even more views out the window. 

There’s a private pool (this one is actually shared with one other villa but there’s an option for a private pool too for $50 a night more). 

The sunset was purely magical. It made this place worth every penny in my opinion. Being able to enjoy the views of Mt Agung from the comfort of my villa was just amazing!

Plus, the staff were so kind. They took me at 6am to a nearby viewpoint called Bukit Cinta. I actually found this place by chance as I was looking for hotels near Bukit Cinta as I wanted to go there for sunrise.

This place is pretty remote and grab (the equivalent of Uber) will not work here. 

📍Villa de Bias (Google Maps Location)
💲USD 100-150 a night
Book this hotel

6. Tembeling Beach in Nusa Penida

Nusa Penida is an island located near the southeastern Indonesian island of Bali. I was surprised by how busy it was during my travels. Even more so than the popular areas of Bali like Canggu and Ubud. 

However, I managed to escape the crowds when my local tour guide took me to this off-the-beaten-track spot. 

Tembeling Beach and Forest is a stunning hideaway bay. 

To get here was super insane. You have to either walk down a very steep pathway for over an hour or take a motorbike there. 

I opted for the motorbike which can be quite dangerous in Nusa Penida due to the small rough roads. But I hopped on the back of one with a very skilled driver. After praying I didn’t fall off (as clumsy as I am) onto the winding roads, I was happy to make it to this secluded spot. 

The dramatic cliffs and beautiful landscape was well worth the trek and escape from the many crowds. 

7. Yellow Flower Café in Ubud

This cafe is a hidden gem in Bali located just up the Penestanan Stairs. The beautifully designed space had me in awe as soon as I found it. It’s decked out in traditional Balinese style, with cozy corners perfect for curling up with a good book or catching up with friends.

And the food? Oh, it’s a wonderful mix of Balinese and Western dishes, with plenty of options for vegans and vegetarians. But the real star here is the coffee – seriously, their latte with homemade cashew nut milk is to die for.

They’ve got desserts sweetened naturally, like with dates or coconut, so you can indulge guilt-free. Plus, the place is spotless, with spacious seating and friendly staff who know their stuff when it comes to the ingredients.

Oh, and did I mention the views? They’re absolutely stunning. It’s the kind of place you want to linger, whether you’re working solo, meeting up with friends, or bringing the whole family along.

☕ Why go: A great place to catch up with a friend or work
💰 Price Range: $
⭐ Rating: 4.4
⏰ Hours: 7AM-9PM daily
📍 Yellow Flower Cafe (Google Maps Location)

8. Sweet Orange Walking Trail in Ubud

I was wandering around Ubud and stumbled upon the Sweet Orange Walking Trail when I saw a sign that said secret rice terraces.

Intrigued, I followed the trail, and was happy I did! The Sweet Orange Walking Trail winds through lush greenery, revealing hidden corners of pristine rice terraces and serene landscapes.

After the scenic stroll, I popped into the restaurant Sweet Orange. This adorable little spot nestled right in front of the rice paddies.

Here I enjoyed a Mie Goreng for lunch and mixed juice while soaking in the breathtaking views of the rice fields. It’s the perfect way to unwind and relax in Ubud. This here proves that Ubud is not always busy and full of tourists. There weren’t many people at all on the trail!

📍Location: Sweet Orange Trail (Google Maps Location)

9. Satria Swing

Alright, I know the Bali swings might be a cliche and are overhyped and touristy. If you must do one, then I’d recommend the Satria Swing and Coffee Plantation. Here you’ll be greeted with the most epic swings dangling high above the treetops, offering jaw-dropping views of the surrounding jungle and rice terraces. You can even rent a dress to wear for your swing time!

Bali is known for its coffee so you can also join in on the little coffee plantation where you can explore rows of coffee trees and learn all about the fascinating process of coffee production.

📍 Location: Satria Agrowisata (Google Maps Location)

10. Warung Gauri in Ubud

Warung Gauri is one of my favorite restaurants in Ubud, Bali. I found it while staying at the nearby budget-friendly homestay, Soka Homestay. It was around the corner in Central Ubud but off a really hidden street. The ambiance is romantic as it’s set in a garden with lights all around. The food was just as good as the setting. I only paid $5 for my pork belly rice bowl and mixed juice drink.

🌹 Why go: Balinese cuisine in a romantic garden setting
💰 Price Range: $
⭐ Rating: 4.7
⏰ Hours: 10AM-9:30PM daily
📍 Location: Google Maps

11. Wanna Jungle Pool & Bar in Ubud

Next time you’re looking for a really cool pool to relax at in Bali, skip popular Creyta and check out the Wanna Jungle Pool and Bar! The pool is layered in 3 tiers to mimic the famous rice terrace of Tegalalang Rice Terrace (Aka Ceking Rice Terrace). There are also jungle views behind which is super nice.

It’s part of a luxury hotel called the Kayon Jungle Resort. If you’re not a guest, you can visit by paying 500k IDR ($31). This includes a towel, free alcoholic welcome drink, and 300k IDR in food and beverage credit. So you’re left spending $6 to be in this amazing oasis. 

📍 Wanna Jungle Pool & Bar in Ubud (Google Maps Location)
💲 Entry is 500K IDR ($31) with F&B credit if you’re not a hotel guest
Book this hotel

12. Vedzpresso Coffee in Kintamani

Alright, brace yourself for another Bali hidden gem! Vedzpresso Coffee in Kintamani, has the most incredible views Mount Batur. As you drive through the winding roads of Bali’s highlands, soaking in the scenic views, add Vedzpresso to your epic Bali itinerary.

Perched on the edge of the caldera, this cozy little cafe offers panoramic vistas of Mount Batur and its surrounding landscapes that’ll leave you speechless.

📍 Location: Vedzpresso Coffee in Kintamani (Google Maps Location)

13. Champaka Spa at Jannata Resort in Ubud

Everyone knows Kaveri Spa for their famous floral bath, but did you know Champaka Spa is located in Jannata Resort? They offer an amazing flower bath and you can choose from a few designs. I had to pick a heart as I love hearts! So if Kaveri Spa is booked up, why not try this lesser-known spot!?

📍Location: Champaka Spa at Jannata Resort in Ubud, Bali (Google Maps Location)
💲a 30 minute bath is 726,000 IDR ($45)
Book spa appointment by Whatsapp
Book this hotel

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