Sometimes you don’t want to go sightseeing, you don’t want to learn to surf, you don’t want to climb a volcano, but you do just want to have some down time. Here are a few of Travelfish.org picks for places to stay for some down time in Bali. These are mid-range to upper end places, so if you’re on a budget, dream a little here then check back in a few weeks — we’ll do a budget getaway wrap as well.
Magical Desa Seni is one of our favourite spots in Bali, though it certainly comes with a price tag attached. The eco-friendly resort is a collection of antique-filled houses from around the Indonesian archipelago nestled into lush, colourful gardens. Loads of yoga is on offer at their beautiful open-air studio, with retreats held intermittently and plenty of other alternative-style events scheduled as well. The food is organic and scrumptious, and the pool deliciously cool. It’s a bit of a hike to get down to the beach or anywhere else, so this is a great spot to just chill and do nothing.
Desa Seni Jalan Subak Sari 13, Berawa T: (0361) 844 6392 www.desaseni.com US$150 – $385
This simple little spot off Monkey Forest Road manages to combine tranquility with being in the centre of things in Ubud. Go for one of the new rooms out the back with paddy and pool views. Though the rooms have all the amenities you could want: air-con, hot water, fridge — don’t expect any frills on the service front. A simple (um, think white bread and cowboy coffee) breakfast is served on your terrace, but with such great cafes a stone’s throw away you may want to skip it and head out instead. For the price, this place is exceptional.
Ubud Lestari Monkey Forest Road, Ubud T: (0361) 972 797 www.ubud-lestari.com 300,000 to 600,000 rupiah
Life in Amed
Grab a few friends and rent the stunning house at Life in Amed for a quiet getaway just a few hours’ drive from the south of Bali (or try one of their smaller rooms if that’s not in your budget). Hanging around doing not too much is the name of the game here, though the snorkelling directly off the black sand beach is good or you can hire a jukung to take you for a scenic or fishing trip. Lounge by the small pool if that’s too much to contemplate. Their restaurant is good, but Sails is also just a short walk away for something different.
Life in Amed Lean Village, Bunutan, Abang, Karangasem T: (0363) 23152 www.lifebali.com 600,000 to 3.2 million rupiah
This little spot looking out over Bingin Beach and along the coast of the Bukit is a great relaxing hideaway. Fantastic views, fantastic food, fantastic peace and quiet — it’s got a sort of hippy-gone-upmarket feel to it. The Coral Cliff room is actually carved out of the cliff. You won’t find a loo towering more highly over the Bukit, we don’t think. Watch the waves or read by the pool, but the place is quite isolated so you probably won’t want to leave.
Temple Lodge Jalan Pantai Bingin T: (0857) 3901 1572 www.thetemplelodge.com/ $60-$160
Like many of the larger resorts in Pemuteran, Pondok Sari runs from the road all the way down to the beach where it empties out to a near-beachside pool and a restaurant bar area . The star attraction here are the deluxe rooms, but they’re better described as two floor suites, with the living area downstairs and a layabout sala, day bed area area upstairs. The decor is heavy on the decorative wooden panel side of things but it didn’t strike us as overdone. The standard rooms are, well, standard Bali-style cottages and immaculate inside. They’re more than comfortable and, for the price, excellent value.
Pondok Sari Western end of the beach, Pemuteran T: (0362) 94 738, (0813) 379 44333 www.pondoksari.com/ 500,000 to 1 million rupiah
By Samantha Brown
Last updated on 21st April, 2015.