Of all the places you can visit, Bali has to be one of the most visited by foreigners. Here are ten ways to experience Bali and a Komodo sailing trip like a local:
Shop in an authentic market
To get yourself acquainted with how the Balinese live, go shopping at their markets and take it all in. Sitting and watching what they buy and eat will teach both your hands and eyes what popular foods and how they prefer to cook them.
Watch a Kecak dance performance for free
Every night, there are free Kecak dance performances at Uluwatu temple. Kecak is a Balinese trance dance that tells the Ramayana story. The performance is quite a spectacle and a great way to experience a religious event in Bali for free.
Have a meal with host families
While staying in a homestay or hotel is fun because you have your room and bathroom to yourself, nothing brings you closer to your hosts than inviting them over for dinner. Having them cook food from their hometown teaches you both about their culture and gives you authentic Balinese cuisine straight from the source. It’s also widespread for guests who have just arrived to be invited by their host family to eat with them before they have settled in.
Swim at a black sand beach
No one ever mentions this, but there are black sand beaches in Bali. While Kuta and Sanur’s white sand beaches are the most popular, if you look around enough, you can find gems like Pura Tanah Lot near Tabanan, where the water is quite cold and offers fantastic views of the famous rock formation set against a deep blue sea.
Participate in fire ceremonies
It isn’t hard to stumble upon these little rituals- from lighting incense sticks for family members who have passed away to celebrating full moons by lighting candles on the beach. If you want an immersive experience with Balinese Spirituality, try attending a ceremony and seeing what you can learn from it.
Enjoy the cultural artistry of Kecak Dancers
Every night at Uluwatu temple, free Kecak dance performances tell the Ramayana story through trance-dancing. If you’re up for a once in a lifetime experience and some good local entertainment, this is your chance.
Talk to strangers
Bali has an incredibly friendly population and very few dangers compared to other places worldwide. The best way to get to know locals better is striking up conversations with them which will give you insights into both Balinese culture as well as Bali tips such as where the safest beaches are, how to get there, and local hangout spots
Participate in a fruit ceremony
Every time you visit your host family or relatives, expect to participate in a fruit ceremony where you will be given at least one piece of fruit for every person present around the table. If you don’t eat all of it, they will tell you that the earth has taken back its share and that you will not have good luck for seven years. It is just Balinese culture, so go ahead and indulge.
Try new things, especially street food
Bali offers some unique fruits that you can find at traditional markets and on the side of the road. Get to know local street food and fruits by trying new things every day.
Take a bike ride around town
Bali is full of hidden gems waiting to be discovered on your own, so get out there and explore with your camera in hand or on a rented bike. Every time you turn a corner, take out your map because it’s always rewarding when you stumble upon something beautiful that wasn’t even listed in any guidebooks.
The best way for tourists to experience Bali as locals do is to go shopping at their markets, try Balinese cuisine straight from the source or have dinner with host families, which will give a more in-depth look into the Balinese culture.