10 Days in Bali – The Best Bali Itinerary for First-Timers

10 Days in Bali

10 Days in Bali is the perfect amount of time to appreciate what this beautiful island has to offer. In this guide, I’ll be sharing a recommended 10 Day Bali Itinerary, including the best places to visit, where to eat, sleep, & party, as well as all of our top tips for visiting.

Before the pandemic struck, Bali was one of the most visited destinations in South East Asia. And with its rich local culture, laidback bohemian vibe, and endless natural beauty, it’s not too difficult to see why.

With the island opening up again to tourists, you might be wondering whether Bali is worth all the hype. So I’ll start by saying that yes, it’s every bit as magical as everybody makes it out to be.

That said, there’s more to Bali than all of those famous Instagram spots.

Take the time to enjoy the warm Balinese culture, seek out hidden gems like Bali’s unique black sand beaches, and escape the crowds for a truly authentic experience.

After spending close to 6-months in Bali, I’d like to think we know the island pretty well. With that in mind, I’ve carefully curated this Bali itinerary to suit first-timers and anybody seeking a highlight reel of the island.

So let’s get into it. Here’s my tried and tested 10-Day Bali Itinerary.

10 Days in Bali – The Best Bali Itinerary for First-Timers

Disclosure: Some of the links in this post are affiliate links. That means that if you purchase through these links, we will earn a small commission, at no extra cost to you. And we can continue bringing you free travel tips and advice. If you found the content helpful and are kind enough to use our affiliates – you are awesome, and we thank you! 

Is 10 Days in Bali Enough?

While Bali isn’t exactly a huge island, there’s a hell of a lot to see and do. It’s impossible to experience it all in 10-days, so we encourage you to plan your Bali itinerary wisely, prioritising what you want from your trip.  

Thankfully, as Bali is a relatively small island, it’s quick and easy to move around from place to place. Meaning, you can split your Bali itinerary between 3 or 4 locations and experience the diversity that Bali has to offer.   

As a guideline, the South of Bali is a favourite amongst the beach worshippers, partygoers, and backpacker crowd. While the northern region is more cultural, laidback, and green.

Then, just to confuse things, you have the islands that sit just off the coast of Bali, such as the Gilis and the Nusas.

Everybody reading this is going to have wildly varied interests. So that’s why I’ve got a suggested Bali itinerary for 10 days, followed by some alternative activities & locations further down the article.  

Follow my itinerary as it is, or mix it up with those alternatives. Either way, I guarantee you will love what this magical island has to offer.

The Best of Bali in 10 Days

Bukit Cinta Bali & Mount Agung Viewpoint 1
Bukit Cinta Bali & Mount Agung Viewpoint

We have a lot to cover in this Bali Itinerary, so if you’re short for time, here are some of the highlights you can enjoy over your 10 Days in Bali.

Top Tip: Book your airport transfer in advance, and avoid hefty fees with the local transport companies at Ngurah Rai airport. This offer is really great value for money but book in advance to avoid disappointment.

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Tips & Advice for this Bali Itinerary

Before I show you how to spend a perfect 10 days in Bali, here are some of my top tips for visiting. 

Best Time to Visit Bali

Bali really only has two seasons – the wet and dry seasons. So the best time to visit Bali will depend on what you want from your trip. 

Naturally, the dry season is the most popular time to visit since you will likely experience dry and sunny days. 

Dry seasons runs from April to late September. And while there is always a chance of an odd rainy day, you have the best chance of bright and sunny days during this time. 

June to August is the high season in Bali, and the island gets incredibly busy. With that comes inflated prices, congested roads, and crowded beaches. We suggest avoiding this time if you can.  

On the other hand, downpours during the wet season are usually short, leaving the rest of the day bright and fresh. 

Being close to the equator, Bali experiences warm, tropical conditions all year round. So if you don’t mind a few morning showers, the wet season can be a great time to go.

Personally, we love visiting Bali during the rainy season, which runs from October to March. Prices are lower, fewer tourists are around, and the lush Balinese nature is at its peak. 

The only downside is the humidity, which can be abundant during this time of the year.  

Getting Around in Bali

The best way to get around in Bali is on two wheels. 

Being able to ride a motorbike in Bali is a valuable skill. Not only will you save some serious cash, but you’ll get to experience a sense of freedom that’s hard to achieve without one. 

If you’ve never driven a scooter before, I don’t suggest trying it out for the first time in Bali. The roads are in good condition, but the Bali traffic can be intimidating to even the most experienced drivers.  

If you are a safe and confident driver, however, cruising the scenic roads of Bali is an adventure all on its own. 

Renting a scooter in Bali will set you back around 60,000 IDR ($4) per day. And it is usually possible to negotiate a discount if you rent for more extended periods.  

Of course, we advise exercising caution when driving in Bali. Always wear your helmet, and carry an international license should you be pulled over by the local police.

If renting a scooter isn’t an option, you can opt to use GoJek or Grab, which work similarly to Uber. You can even get motorbike taxis in Bali, which is a great way to avoid the inevitable traffic.  

Alternatively, if you need a driver for the whole day, this offer for a Private Car or Minibus Charter is highly competitive relative to local transport companies. 

Click the link to read thousands of positive reviews, check the latest prices, and make a booking.

Staying Safe in Bali

We have always felt safe while travelling in Bali. We’ve covered most corners of the island, and the locals are some of the most friendly and welcoming people we’ve ever met.

Other than the odd pickpocketing incident, crimes against tourists are extremely rare. You’re more likely to be targeted by a monkey at the monkey forest than you are an actual criminal.

Of course, it’s always wise to exercise precaution when travelling in unfamiliar territory. Be pragmatic with your choices, follow these steps for staying safe in Bali, and you’ll be just fine.

Are you an LGBTQ traveller heading to Bali? You might want to check out our Gay in Bali Travel Guide, plus these helpful safety tips for LGBTQ travellers.

Travel Insurance

There are a lot of fun activities to do in and around Bali; however, with adventure always comes risk. With this in mind, you will want to have adequate travel insurance that covers you for any tricky situations.

We always recommend World Nomads for travel insurance. They are affordable, offer a variety of packages and add ons, and allow you to make amendments to your policy while travelling. 

If you need further convincing, read our article on why you need travel insurance. Or get an on-the-spot quote from World Nomads using the link below.

Get a Quote Now

Internet in Bali

While taking a trip to Bali is the perfect time to unwind and disconnect, it’s also handy to have online access when you need it.

In our experience, most accommodations, cafes, and restaurants have free wifi available. However, we also like to access the internet when out exploring to access maps, find local restaurants, etc. 

We always travel with a GlocalMe portable wifi hotspot that allows us to access the internet pretty much anywhere in the world. We also buy a local Bali sim card for our phone as a backup.

Finally, we always use a VPN when we travel. Using a VPN is very important these days to make sure that all your data is safe and secure.

Also, it helps while travelling for safety reasons and unlocks geo-restricted content such as Netflix and helps avoid demographic price discrimination while looking for a flight or a hotel.

In my experience, Surfshark is the best VPN for travel.

Travel Responsibly

As travellers, it should always be a top priority to travel responsibly. We already leave a substantial carbon footprint by travelling, so that’s even more reason to make a positive impact when we get there. 

There are many small steps you can take to becoming a responsible traveller. Please read our guide on eco-travel to learn more and Trip Savvy has some great advice on social etiquette in Bali.

Suggested Bali Itinerary for 10 Days

  • Days 1-2: Beaches, smoothie bowls, and yoga in Canggu
  • Days 3-4: Surfing, beach clubs, and sunsets in Uluwatu
  • Days 5-6: Temples, Waterfalls and Nature in Ubud
  • Days 7-10: Paradise beaches and snorkelling on the Gili Islands

Days 1-2: Canggu

Located no more than a 90-minute drive from the airport in Kuta, Canggu is the perfect place to ease yourself into the Bali lifestyle. 

This part of the island is famous for three things – Great surf, better food, and for being an ideal location for digital nomads. 

Surrounded by lush rice fields, it’s also incredibly beautiful.  

The vibe in Canggu is super laid back, and we can understand why so many nomads look to settle here long term. 

From the hipster cafes and trendy restaurants to great nightlife and boutique stores, it feels like a little community.  You’ll probably want to live here too after you’ve seen all it has to offer.

Top Things to do in Canggu

Here are some of the highlights when exploring Canggu, but for a more comprehensive list see this article on the best things to do in Canggu.

1.  Check out the Beaches
10 Days in Bali Itinerary

Some of the best beaches in Bali can be found in Canggu. 

What makes the beaches unique here, is the surf culture and generally relaxed vibe. 

As I mentioned earlier, Canggu feels like a community, and the beaches are a great spot to get in amongst it all.  

Batu Bolong, Berawa and Echo Beach are the 3 main beaches in Canggu; although technically, they are a continuation of the same stretch of coast.  

All of them are popular spots for surfers, and all make for a great sunset spot too.

2.  Take part in a Yoga or Fitness Class

If you fancy a workout during your holiday, there are plenty of places you can do so in Canggu.  Fitness classes and health retreats are all the rage in this area of Bali. 

You can find fitness centres, cross-fit, yoga, swimming pools – the list goes on.  

Check out this Health and Fitness Guide to Canggu for more info!

3.  Visit the Rice Fields during Golden Hour

After spending 10 days in Bali, you will forever remember the island for its sweeping rice fields. 

The famous rice terraces are located in Ubud;  however, there are countless others to be discovered all across the island.  

Canggu is home to some incredible spots, and you’re never further than a stone’s throw away. 

We recommend visiting in the early morning or late afternoon, for a truly magical setting at the rice fields.

Places to Eat in Canggu

Healthy eating is made easy with Nudes delicious and colourful menu. Located in the heart of Canggu, it’s perfect for breakfast, lunch, or dinner.  

You cannot miss this incredible Cafe in Canggu.  It’s our favourite brunch spot in Bali.  The food is delicious, and the smoothies are some of the best we’ve had.

The local food is often overlooked in Canggu; however, you won’t regret a visit to Warung Bu Mi.  Not only is the food delicious, but it’s unbelievably cheap too.

Where to Stay in Canggu

Budget PrivateSerenity Eco Guesthouse
LuxuryVilla Verano

For other places to stay in Canggu you can check the latest prices here.

Days 3-4: Uluwatu

The next 2 days of our Bali itinerary will be spent in the very south of the island – Uluwatu. 

Uluwatu is arguably the coolest spot on the island. And yes, I realise how completely uncool I sound saying that. 

Here you will find some of the best beaches in Bali. Famous for their azure waters, towering limestone cliffs, and world-class surf breaks that attract surfers from all over the world.  

You can also find a trendy party scene in Uluwatu. With lavish beach clubs such as Savaya (previously Omnia) and Ulu Cliffhouse hosting international DJs, it reminds us a lot of Ibiza. 

We loved that we could have the best of both worlds here. Relax in the day and party at night. And that is why Uluwatu is an essential addition to your Bali Itinerary.

Top Things to do in Uluwatu

Here are some of the highlights when exploring Uluwatu, but for a more comprehensive list see this list of Unmissable Things to do in Uluwatu.

1.  Explore the Beaches
Suluban Beach

Uluwatu has many breathtaking beaches, but which to choose from will depend on how you like to spend your beach days.

Here are some of our favourites with a short description of what to expect. Hopefully, this will help you determine the best beach for you.

Thomas Beach – This beach is one of the most beautiful in Uluwatu, thanks to its azure turquoise waters and pristine white sand. 

It’s a bit of a trek to get down to the beach itself, but it’s a great place to chill for the day once you’re down there. There are some beach bars selling drinks and surf lessons, but other than that, it’s a tranquil spot.  

*Tip – The best time to visit is at high tide.  See Bali tide timetable.  

Suluban Beach – This is one of the most popular surf spots in Bali. But even if you’re not a surfer, I think you’d enjoy checking it out anyway.

The beach sits nestled among a cove and has a shipwreck; so it’s really cool to see.  But the best spot to watch the surfers is from one of the bars above.

Pantai Tegal Wangi – If you are looking for a perfect sunset spot, Pantai Tegal Wangi is a favourite among locals and tourists alike. 

Most will stay at the top to enjoy the view;  however, the beach below is worth the short hike down.  Here you will find some cool rock pools and caves, which make for a great sunset shot.  

2. Uluwatu Temple & Kecak Fire Performance
Uluwatu Temple Kecak Fire Performance

Considered one of the most significant cultural sites in Bali, the impressive Uluwatu Temple is a must-visit during your time in the South.

The temples date back as early as the 11th century, and the intricate and ornate details of the ancient architecture are mesmerising.

What’s more, perched upon the top of a 70-metre cliff, the vistas along the coastline are truly breathtaking.

I recommend visiting the temple during the late afternoon, so you can stick around to watch the Kecak Fire Performance. It’s one of Bali’s most iconic art performances and not to be missed!

3.  Karang Boma Cliff (Uluwatu Cliff)
10 Days in Bali Itinerary

Karang Boma Cliff is one of our favourite sunset spots in Bali.  The 70m limestone cliff looks right out over the ocean and allows you a beautiful view of the southern coastline.  

If you’re scared of heights, you probably shouldn’t get too close to the edge.  With a sheer drop to the ocean and rocks below, it’s not a place you want to get wobbly!

The same goes when attempting the famous cliff edge shot like the one you see above. Please do so safely!

4.  Savaya Beach Club

Savaya (previously Omnia) Beach Club is one of the trendiest members of the Uluwatu party scene.

Not only does the club host world-class DJs such as Martin Garrix and Above Beyond. But no expense has been spared in the lavish design of the open-air club.

The sky bar is the centrepiece of the club. Seemingly floating over the Indian Ocean, it’s designed to be a show stopper.

It’s by no means a cheap place to hang out for the day, but if you have the budget, the views and atmosphere are incredible.

Where to Eat in Uluwatu

One of our favourite cafes in Bali.  The food at The Loft is like having a cheat meal, but healthier.  Delicious, nutritious, and exciting!

The perfect spot for the health-conscious.  Buddha bowls, smoothie bowls, and all that other healthy deliciousness.

This iconic surfer bar is the perfect spot to enjoy sunset drinks and food.

Where to Stay in Uluwatu

For more places to stay in Uluwatu, you can check the latest prices here.

Days 5-6: Ubud

Ubud is the cultural and creative hub of Bali. It’s one of the most touristic places in Bali but at the same time one of the most authentic. 

Ubud represents the true meaning of Balinese culture – sacred and healing. That’s why many tourists come here to connect spiritually through yoga, meditation, or spending time in nature.

In addition to its culture, Ubud is famous for its unique and verdant nature.  Steaming jungles, sweeping rice paddies, and majestic waterfalls, all help to create a beautiful wonderland. 

To experience the true essence of Bali, Ubud is an essential addition to your Bali Itinerary.

Top Things to do in Ubud

Here are some of the highlights when exploring Ubud, but for a more comprehensive list see our 3 Day Ubud Itinerary.

1.  Chase some Waterfalls

Bali is famous for having some of the best Waterfalls in Asia, and in Ubud, you’re never too far away from one. 

Some of our personal favourites are around an hour’s drive from Ubud, so we recommend renting a scooter or hiring a driver for the day. 

Here’s a list of the best Ubud waterfalls that you can easily cover in one day.

Tukad Cepung Waterfall – Located within a cave, this waterfall is unlike any others in Bali.  When the morning sunlight hits the cave, it creates magical sunbeams on the falls. 

Tibumana Waterfall – Another one of our personal favourites, Tibumana Waterfall is as beautiful as they come.  You can expect a bit of a walk down to this one;  however, it’s worth it for the promise of a swim at the bottom. 

Nungnung Waterfall – This waterfall is one of the most powerful you will come across in Ubud.  It’s quite a trek down to reach the waterfall, but it’s worth the hike. 

Leke Leke Waterfall – Leke Leke is one of the most instagrammable waterfalls in Bali.  There is no swimming here, but it’s a pretty hike down and well worth a visit.

2.  Go Shopping at Ubud Market

If you’re only spending 10 Days in Bali, you will want to take some souvenirs home to remember the time you spent there. 

Ubud Market is one of our favourite places to shop, as many of the items are locally produced. 

A traditional Balinese souvenir would be locally made silver jewellery or wood carvings. Or perhaps a handmade Bali Sarong or Batik. 

You can also find some beautiful clothes and home decor, so it’s easy to get carried away.  

It’s nice to give something back to the community, but don’t be afraid to haggle if you feel you’re being overcharged.  

3.  Visit some Balinese Temples
Tirta Empul

As the cultural centre-point of Bali, naturally, Ubud has temples and historical sites aplenty.

Some such as the Saraswati Temple and Puru Gunung Lebeh are easily accessible when meandering Ubud Centre.

Others like Goa Gajah and Tirta Empul are further afield, however, well worth the short trip out of town.

*Tip – Most temples require that you wear the customary Bali sarong to enter.  They usually supply them at the temple, but it’s worth having your own just in case.

Places to Eat in Ubud

A fine dining experience in the heart of Ubud.  Delicious food, incredible cocktails, and live music at the weekends.  

Famous for having the best pizza in Bali.  And after trying their mouth-watering 4 Cheese Pizza, we would have to agree!  

One of our favourite restaurants in Bali.  We have never actually been to the restaurant itself.  But we would order take out every week when we lived in Ubud.

Where to Stay in Ubud

Budget PrivateGatra Ubud Inn
LuxuryKamandalu Ubud

For more places to stay in Ubud you can check the latest prices here. 

Days 7 -10: The Gili Islands

From Ubud, you can organise a transfer to Padang Bai in Eastern Bali where you will catch the ferry to the Gili Islands.

Geographically, the Gili Islands aren’t actually in Bali. Instead, belonging to Bali’s neighbouring island Lombok.

Nonetheless, the three tiny islands, tend to make their way onto many Bali itineraries. Mostly down to their palm-fringed beaches, azure waters, and world-class diving opportunities.

Not to mention the chance of seeing sea turtles, which often frequent the waters just metres out from the bay.

It’s safe to say that each of the Gili Islands is the epitome of paradise. That said, you’ll want to choose wisely which of the 3 islands you visit since each offers a completely different vibe.

  • Gili Trawangan is considered the party island and is where most of the action happens.
  • Gili Meno, on the other hand, is almost remote and provides an idyllic paradise getaway.
  • Then you have Gili Air, which is a fine balance between the 2.  

Would you believe that out of all the time we’ve spent in Bali, we’ve shamefully never made it over to the Gili Islands. It’s not out of not wanting to; it’s just never worked out.

We aren’t too worried, as we will know we will be back in Bali in the near future. In the meantime, you can check out this ultimate guide to the Gilis, to help plan your trip or book a tour below.

Alternatives to this 10 Day Bali Itinerary

If you feel like shaking up my suggested Bali itinerary, here are some of my other favourite spots on the island.

Amed

A far cry from the bustling streets of Ubud and Canggu, Amed is a sleepy fishing village.

It’s the ideal spot to add to your Bali itinerary if you’re looking to escape the crowds and explore an alternative side of the island.

There are tons of things to do in Amed. From hanging out on the beach sipping Bintangs to more adventurous escapades like snorkelling and scuba diving.

Another thing to love about Amed is that it’s a volcanic village. Mount Agung looms over the town, resulting in unique black sand beaches and a mysterious vibe that you can’t find elsewhere in Bali.

North Bali

Another area that escapes most Bali itineraries is the island’s northern area. Which is a pity as it happens to be one of our favourite spots on the island.

From countless waterfalls and hiking opportunities to gorgeous beaches and lush greenery, the north of Bali is a dream for nature lovers.

It’s also the perfect spot to get a real taste of Balinese culture away from the hoards of tourists.

Nusa Penida

For a true off-the-beaten-path adventure, you’ll want to consider including Nusa Penida in your 10 Day Bali Itinerary.

Until a few years ago, very few had even heard of the island. Oblivious to the wonder and beauty that now makes it one of the most Instagrammed locations in Indonesia.

Don’t let that deter you, though. Sketchy roads and little tourist infrastructure mean that a lot of the island remains untouched.

Leaving it down to the real adventurers to get their hands dirty and enjoy what this magical location has to offer.

Costs & Budget for 10 Days in Bali

Despite its popularity, Bali is suitable for all budgets.  If you are sensible with your cash you can comfortably live on £20/25$ a day. 

Decent hostels can be found for as little as £5/7$ and often include breakfast (Balinese pancakes – yum!), while budget private rooms are available for £10-20/15-25$.  

Food can also be pretty cheap in Bali.  You can eat for as little as $2 if you stick to the local warungs. However, if you eat at the trendy cafes, meals are usually between $5-8.  

There are also plenty of fine dining options in the major tourist hubs such as Canggu, Ubud, or Uluwatu.

Most attractions come with a price tag in Bali, ranging from $2-5 to access a waterfall, $10-15 for a Balinese Massage, and $50-60 for excursions.  Choose your itinerary wisely so as not to max out your budget.

One of the biggest expenses to consider in Bali is transport.  With no local bus network or tourist coaches, you will have to organise taxis to travel across the island.  

We use Grab Taxis in Bali as the local taxi services charge extortionate rates.

Alcohol in Bali is accessibly cheap, so long as you stick to the local brands.  The local beer is Bintang and the local wine is called Arak – both pack a punch!

Enjoy Your 10 Day Bali Trip!

Well, that concludes our recommendations for a 10 day Bali itinerary. I hope you’ve found it helpful and that you’re looking forward to your trip! 

We love hearing from you! If you have any questions or feel that we’ve missed anything, don’t hesitate to reach out. You can drop us a message or leave us a comment in the comment section.

Planning a trip to Bali? Check out our other articles to help plan your trip.

Don’t forget to follow us on Instagram here where we share more travel tips and advice.

Stay adventurous and happy travels.

Charlotte & Natalie x

Disclosure: Some of the links in this post are affiliate links. That means that if you purchase through these links, we will earn a small commission, at no extra cost to you. And we can continue bringing you free travel tips and advice. If you found the content helpful and are kind enough to use our affiliates – you are awesome, and we thank you! 

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15 thoughts on “10 Days in Bali – The Best Bali Itinerary for First-Timers

  1. This looks amazing and sounds like an AMAZING trip! I’ve always wanted to visit Bali, so I will definitely save this to look back on in the future.

  2. Pingback: We Asked Travel Influencers Which Popular Destinations Live Up To The Hype – I Rite 4 U
  3. Bali is a really amazing travel destination. Your travel guide will be really helpful to everyone. Thanks for sharing. The photos are also really beautiful.

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