Blissful Bali sits just south of the Equator, nestled in the idyllic Indonesian archipelago between the Indian and Pacific oceans. The most visited of Indonesia’s islands, this heavenly enclave with volcanoes at its heart is known for its unique and soulful Hindu culture. Take advantage of the wide range of cheap flights to Bali to experience the island’s renowned balance between adventure and relaxation, from the soft sandy beaches and party buzz of south-lying Kuta to the spiritual vibes of rustic villages like central Ubud. Teeming with tropical paddy fields, coconut trees and desolate volcanic mountainsides bordering aqua-blue waters, it’s little wonder that Bali is known as the Island of the Gods.
Temperatures are steady year-round in tropical Bali, usually hovering somewhere between 25 and 30°C. The best times to take advantage of airline deals are during the island’s off-peak periods of October-November and January-March. These mark the island’s wet season, which brings high humidity and low prices. The chance of nabbing a bargain on a luxurious resort is also higher during April, May, June and September: these quieter periods coincide with the island’s dry season, while still avoiding the tourist-trap prices of the school holiday period.
Bali is served by a host of airlines from the UK, most of them arriving in Denpasar Airport – also known as Ngurah Rai International Airport – on the south of the island. You can jet off from London, Manchester and Birmingham all year round, though your best bet for good deals and frequent departures is guaranteed from Britain’s busiest international airport, London Heathrow. Although there are no non-stop routes from the UK to Bali, carriers like Singapore Airlines, Emirates, Cathay Pacific and Philippine Airlines provide short changeover stops in various destinations including Singapore, Dubai, Hong Kong and Manila. Shortest overall journey times vary between about 17 and 20 hours in total.
The best way to get around Bali depends on whether you’re up for a challenge. Car hire is available from the airport, as is moped hire for more intrepid adventurers. The roads around southern Bali tend to be jam-packed, and accident rates are high, so if you’d rather someone else negotiated the roads then head to the official taxi booth outside the arrivals hall. There are a few reliable taxi companies with meters; it’s best to research these in advance to avoid paying exorbitant fares. Shuttle bus companies also provide transport to and from the main tourist destinations on the island.
Swathed in colour from the majestic landscapes to the native dress, Bali will assault the senses in the best way imaginable. Head north to truly experience the traditions that shaped this island, from the seat of the Dewa Agung dynasty at Klungkung Palace to the magnificent carvings at the Goa Gajah cave. Don’t miss the sacred temple of Pura Luhur Batukaru, built on the slopes of a volcano and surrounded by serene forest and paddies.
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