As a family who have well-and-truly got the travel bug, we have a long list of places we’d like to visit over the next decade, both with without children, and one of these dream destinations is Bali. Having had several friends who have visited previously, and a close friend of mine who lives in Indonesia and ‘hops over’ all the time, they have reassured me that Bali is extremely family friendly. As a result it’s now on the holiday ‘bucket list’, and I’ve enlisted some of these pals to help me research and give their opinion on the best things to do in Bali with kids.
Where as once I might have been concerned about where would be a good place to stay with our tribe, I have seen that there are fantastic range of hotels, and some of the best villas in Bali that can be booked in this tropical paradise and that are still suitable for families.
So, without further aduei, here are the top things to do in Bali with kids – and I sure hope that someday we get to experience them!
Agrotourism in Ubud is supposedly an incredible experience for grown ups and children alike (that’s visiting working farms there if like me you had to Google #embarrassed). The Balinese jungle gives visitors access to some of the planet’s most amazing nature, with children enjoying feeding the animals whilst being amazed by the tall trees. Adults can enjoy the stunning views and the coffee and tea offered (definitely my kind of place). I know my little ones would enjoy feeding the civet cats that “produce” the Kopi Luwak, and we would all learn something by watching the traditional coffee making processes
and wishing I could replicate it at home for coffee on tap.
I don’t know about you, buy Freddie and Sasha adore monkeys (much better and less scary than dogs, apparently), and think they are hilarious. In Bali, there are monkeys galore! Monkey Forest is a beautiful forest whose main residents are monkeys! Tickets cost 20,000 rupiahs (the equivalent of US $2,) and you can then buy bananas to feed the monkeys just outside the sanctuary. Walking through the forest the monkeys approach you, on the lookout for your bananas! Quaint cobbled lanes (so bear this in mind if you bring a buggy) lead you through maze-like paracours that finishes at a stunning temple. The monkeys roam free and so can your children – it’s a win-win.
Something I never considered about Bali is the fact it has a very trendy and upscale shopping centre in Kuta Beach, and as you approach the Beach walk you could easily be in South Beach, Miami (or so says my friend). As well as being pretty cool, it’s actually beautiful to look at, with great architectural details, but most importantly it’s extremely kid-friendly. You can feed your ankle-biters in the very authentic and varied food-court, and they will absolutely love the floor that’s devoted to them. With fun playgrounds like Minneapolis, an arcade game area and even a Beach Walk, it means that all tastes are catered for.
As a bit of a thrill-seeker when it comes to water slides, Freddie would be in his element at the Waterbom WaterPark (and I might be able to squeeze in some sunbathing too). There are dozens of slides and pools that would keep everyone (even little Arlo) entertained for hours. There’s a water play area for tiny tots, and speedy slides for the rest of us. A BIG bonus for me is that they have a fish spa here (so long, rhino trotters), as well as a whole area devoted to reflexology and foot massages. This place flies to the top of the visiting list straight away!
With a Safari, Aquarium, Dolphins, roller coasters and a Cultural Show (seriously, everything in one place), the Bali Safari & Marine Park is one we need to put on our list. You can ride well-looked-after elephants, take pictures with all sorts of animals, and get to know over 300 species of animals a little better.
Our family are already confirmed fans of British active family attraction, Go Ape, so I know that we would have a blast at Bali Tree Top, which is similar zip-lining park. Circuits are suitable for children as young as four years old, and there is a special adrenaline circuit for those who want to be challenged a little bit more. Bali Tree Top is on the outskirts of Bali, but still worth a visit if your family is of the adrenaline-junkie variety.
In Bali there are literally a gazillion temples to choose from to visit (well, I maybe exaggerating but you get the picture). It doesn’t really matter which temple you decide to visit. They are all very similar and will give you a clear glimpse of Hindu sanctuaries. You will usually have to pay a small fee to have a sarong wrapped around your waist (essential for visiting temples for covering up), plus you are able to buy flowers and other offerings there. The one temple that is definitely unique is the Uluwatu temple that lies by a cliff and is home to hundreds of monkeys (again, another one for monkey lovers!). There’s also a one-of-a-kind fire show that you can stay and watch that will leave you and the kids mesmerised.
Have you been to Bali, in particular with kids? Is there anywhere else that should be visited and that I can add to this list?
I’d love to know!