Indonesia travel is ideal for a long weekend away, whether you head to Bali, Lombok or Yogyakarta, or go by boat to Bintan or Batam or other island resorts near Singapore. With over 17,000 islands, there’s obviously plenty to explore! And there’s also plenty to do, from diving, golfing and dining to relaxing in a luxury Bali villa. We’ve done some research for you and compiled a mini Indonesia travel guide on where to stay in Bali plus an island resort nearby. You’ll also find our tips on visas, food, money and some language phrases to get you started.
Bali villa in charming Canggu
This private villa is a hidden gem in the heart of Canggu. What makes Umbala House unique is that it feels like home, and yet is only a stone’s throw away from some of Bali’s best restaurants, shopping and family activities.
Umbala comprises five suites, including a bunk room accommodating up to seven children. The home’s open-plan design is perfect for gatherings of families and friends – the elegant sunken lounge area surrounded by the pool draws everyone into the tranquil outdoors.
Hospitality and service are a major focus here, taking the pressure off hosting dinner and entertaining kids. This Bali villa is staffed with a professional and dedicated team consisting of a villa manager, butlers, in-house chef and housekeeping.
A stay here also includes a range of relaxing thing to do in Bali, including Finns VIP passes, a dedicated toy room, pool floats, a jumping castle for little ones and tailored menus for vegans and children. Oh, and if you’re looking for where to stay in Bali offering some well-deserved spa-time, you’ll definitely find it here!
+65 9038 4203 | umbala-thehouse.com
Family-focused vacation villa in Bali
Designed to reflect Singapore’s historical black-and-white houses, Villa JOJU in Canggu takes its reputation as a “home away from home” seriously. However, inside it’s all fun and relaxation, with plenty of space for high-energy little ones too.
This is an ideal Bali villa for families; it’s equipped to sleep up to 14 people, or you can also book the adjoining Villa JOJU Alit to bring that number up to 22. It comes fully staffed with a private chef, housekeepers, butlers and nanny services.
Inside the kids’ bunk room is an array of toys and books, which they’ll enjoy after making the most of the pool, bouncy castle, pet bunnies, fish spa, and games and activities – including making slime! Exploring outside the villa is a treat, and each stay comes with complimentary access to the nearby VIP beach club and water park – you can watch the sunset on the beach or try surfing some waves.
Canggu itself has plenty of opportunities for retail therapy, tasty bites and pampering, or you can hire the villa driver to explore other areas of Bali.
+65 8737 2325 | firstname.lastname@example.org
A boat ride away to this island resort
If you’re dreaming about travel to Indonesia’s soft sand beaches with emerald waters lapping at the shore, the good news is you don’t need to get on a plane to experience them! Just a short boat trip from Singapore, Telunas Private Island and Telunas Beach Resort offer tranquil escapes for couples, families and also groups.
On the private island resort, five Ridge Villas are set high up in the jungle for couples to enjoy some alone time with spectacular ocean vistas. There are also 15 family-friendly Overwater Villas where you can open the doors and let the sea breeze in. Activities here include kayaking, village tours and hikes to jungle waterfalls. Or for a more relaxed approach, lounge by the pool with a drink in hand and book a massage or treatment at the overwater spa.
Telunas Beach Resort, meanwhile, has spacious Overwater Bungalows perfect for families and large groups. Think sunset views, evening beach bonfires and adventurous activities. At both properties you’ll be entranced by the area’s natural beauty: starry nights, sunny days and island serenity – and so close to Singapore!
Luxury beach resort in Bali
If you’ve been researching where to stay in Bali, you’l likely have come across this iconic property. Whether you book a beachfront sanctuary for two or a multi-bedroom suite for the family, you’ll start each day at The Legian Seminyak with an eyeful of unspoiled ocean views. For weddings and special events, the three-bedroom Beach House also has direct beach access and a private pool.
Your taste buds will be well looked after, too, with The Restaurant offering a menu of Asian, Western and local cooking techniques and influences. It also overlooks a three-tiered infinity pool! Alternatively, you can enjoy quick bites and cocktails throughout the day at the relaxed Pool Bar and Ocean Bar, with live sunset jazz sessions on weekends. Proof Creative, the creative cocktail team behind some of the Asia’s 50 Best Bars, is now curating elixirs for both bars.
For a more exclusive stay, near the resort’s main entrance is The Club by The Legian Seminyak. This estate has 13 villas surrounding a private 30-metre pool. Each comes with a personal butler, private chauffeured limousine, laundry services, daily afternoon tea, cocktails and canapés and more.
Special Offer: Find out the best things to do in Bali and must-try foods with the Seminyak Neighbourhood Guide. It’s available on arrival for guests.
A hidden gem in West Bali
If you’re looking for a private and tranquil stay steps away from the beach, this contemporary boutique hotel will tick all your boxes.
Away from Bali’s major hotspots, The Kelapa Retreat and Spa is a hidden gem offering a peaceful and luxurious escape by the beach. Set within a lush tropical landscape in West Bali, all the retreats’ villas have a private terrace with beach, garden or ocean views and some also have their own private swimming pool.
The Kelapa Residence’ is the jewel of the accommodation offerings with two bedrooms, a generous living area, private pool and expansive gardens to enjoy. The property also has a restaurant, bar and spa on site, along with a space for guided yoga and meditation sessions overlooking the ocean.
A beachfront escape
This Balinese refuge is set on the stretch of a volcanic black sand beach between the majestic Batu Karu Mountain and green terraced rice fields. Like its surroundings, the Soori Bali provides a rejuvenating and peaceful stay that reflects Bali as it should be.
Designed, and owned by the renowned architect Soo K Chan (design firm SCDA,) the property is inspired by nature and incorporates a holistic approach, using locally sourced materials. The result is a space that harmonises elegance, comfort and environmental preservation. For this and their dedication to supporting the local economy, Soori has been recognised with a Change-Makers Award and also named a Sustainability Leader by the Leading Hotels of the World.
A range of experiences are on offer at Soori to allow you to create a deeper connection to Bali’s beauty and local culture. These include exclusive access to the Tanah Lot temple, sea turtle rescue initiatives, private waterfall picnics and more.
An Indonesia travel guide
# The basics
Population: 277 million
Religion: Predominantly Muslim, but Hinduism is dominant in Bali
Emergency number: 112 (standard GSM number)
# Some trivia
- Indonesia is one of the largest producers of nutmeg in the world.
- There are over 700 indigenous languages across the country.
- Indonesia’s Komodo dragon is the largest living species of lizard, growing to three metres.
- The Indonesian flag has identical features to the flag of Monaco; it’s just a tiny bit wider.
# Indonesia’s travel hot spots
Popular destinations include Bali, Jakarta, Yogyakarta, Surabaya, Lombok, Aceh and Bintan, with Borobudur temple, Komodo National Park and Sumatra’s rainforests among the World Heritage Sites.
# Important questions
Do I need a visa?
Rules have changed in recent times, and most visitors are now required to apply for a visa on arrival, either online or at the airport. A few ASEAN countries are exempted, including Singapore and Malaysia.
How long will it take me to get there?
2 hours (Jakarta) or 2.5 hours (Bali) flying time from Singapore. Nearby islands can take 40 minutes by boat. Indonesia is between 7 and 9 hours ahead of GMT.
What’s the money situation?
The official currency is the Indonesia rupiah (Rp) – currently, $1 million rupiah is worth approximately S$88. There are ATMs throughout the country.
When’s the best time to travel Indonesia?
While it’s warm year round, rainfall is common from November to March. May to September is considered the driest time, but the north can also be wet throughout the year.
What’s the lingo?
The official language is Bahasa Indonesia (though English is widely spoken) – try “Selamat” for “hello” and “Terima kasih” for “thank you” for starters!
# Staying safe and healthy
- Malaria and dengue fever exist in parts of the country – use adequate protection and carry antimalarial medicine.
- Avoid swimming in freshwater streams and lakes as disease-causing organisms can be present.
- Unlabelled bottles of the locally distilled rice spirit called arak can have dangerous additives.
# Cultural things
What to read: This Earth of Mankind by Pramoedya Ananta Toer. This love story takes place at the end of the Dutch colonial period.
What to watch: Laskar Pelangi (“The Rainbow Troops”), telling the story of 10 school children and their two teachers on a Sumatran tin mining island
- “The firm tree does not fear the storm.” – Indonesian proverb
- “Because Indonesia is made up of thousands of islands, hundreds of languages and people from scores of regions and ethnic groups, my time here helped me appreciate the humanity of all people.” – Barack Obama
# Last but not least
What’s a must-try dish?
Gado gado – a salad of boiled vegetables served with a peanut sauce dressing. Also, on the Hindu island of Bali you mustn’t miss babi guling, or roast suckling pig.
What should I buy as a souvenir?
Puppets! Look for shadow puppets (wayang kulit) and also wooden doll puppets (wayang golek).
Like reading our article on Indonesia travel? Read more stories about where to stay in Bali and other destinations around the world in our Travel section.