Bali with the Kids
Bali is a Paradise not only for adults, but also for kids. In Balinese culture, children are kings and queens and the Balinese always make families welcome.
Bali is a magical, tropical wonderland for kids, an exotic setting of temples out if an Indiana Jones' movie, monkeys rambling through the jungles, colorful local cultures, and multitude of pool, beach, and ocean adventures. Activities with the kids include exploring the Monkey Forest where children will delight feeding monkeys close up (below).
At Pirates Bay in Nusa Dua, children can enjoy dinner in a tree house or pirate ship with other activities including flying by zipline and treasure hunting.
Traditional puppet theater, as in Vietnam and Myanmar (Burma), is still practiced for entertainment as well as ritual purposes in Bali. In Bali, often called "shadow puppets," Wayang means traditional puppet. and it is also spread over most of Indonesia as a theater show since ancient times. Based on old manuscripts in Bali, Wayang has been performed since around the 9th century.
Children may also learn traditional painting and wood carving, hands-on with local artisans or playing the Gamelan with instruction from a musician. Children from a local village may also come to the teach your children Legong dance lessons, a delightful experience.
Family biking in Bali is a must with gentle to more moderate rides through the magnificent scenery on small, quiet roads, dirt paths, passing palm fringed rice villages, terraced fields and jungle canopy. During our bike trip, stop to visit a local chocolate factory!
At Pondok Pekak children can learn learn traditional crafts and arts, including wood carving, batik painting, and Balinese style dancing. The aqua park Aqualoop in Waterbom boasts 17 water slides (best on weekdays to avoid crowds).
Whether diving in Sanur, Nusa Lembongan, Tulamben, Pemuteran or with giant turtles in Gili Trawangan, if you want your kids to start to share your diving experience with you, there are diving programs from 8 years of age, and can take their Open Water Diving license from 10 years of age.
Animals abound at Bali's Elephant Park, Safari Park, Bird Park, and Reptile Park. At the Elephant Park, get up close and personal with these incredible animals in a beautiful tropical park setting. Elephants can be seen immersing themselves in the park lake, in between riding, painting or other activities. Hand feed them, touch them, take photos with them, then learn more about the elephants ancestry and diversity at the Park's historical and graphic displays. Location Map A 200-seat restaurant over looking the lake, ideal for large groups or wedding, features an international menu, and the park Gift Shop offers an extensive range of elephant-theme products, including elephant paintings, elephant ivory, mammoth ivory, carvings, clothing, souvenirs and jewelry. Displays of elephant intelligence and their capabilities can be viewed at the Park Arena and elephants can also be seen painting at selected times daily.
Surfing Bali. Surf's up. Bali is legendary on the world surfing circuit, and one look at the ever-changing seas below will tell you why. The world-famous Bukit Peninsula boasts over 20 top-quality breaks on the southwest and southeast coasts of the island.
Some of these, like Padang Padang and Bingin, are world-class reef-breaks. Lessons are provided for those who want to give this thrilling sport a try for the first time. Like Hawaii, Bali offers many gentle waves to learn surfing or to challenge you and you children on bigger sets.
Recommended Private, Custom Family Tours
Village Cycling, Fun Factory & Chocolate Making
A fun cycling trip on the scenic back roads outside of Canangsari village which winds through the lush countryside on quiet footpaths. During our ride, pause to visit the wonderful Elephant camp, where we can see a baby elephant or two.
Afterwards, spending time at the fun factory where we will sample chocolate and cocoa treats while learning about how chocolate is made. Children will also create chocolate elephants.
After the Fun Factory, continue cycling through farms and local villages to reach the Sangeh Monkey Forest. After playing with the monkeys, enjoying lunch overlooking the picturesque Ayung River. (1/2 day)
Elephant trekking and horseback riding can also be arranged for a differing experience.
Off The Beaten Trek and School Visit
This family trek heads into secluded and picturesque highlands of Bali's countryside, where the village life remains unaffected by mass tourism elsewhere on the island. At the beginning of the trek, visiting an elementary school in an isolated remote village, watching in the classrooms and speaking with the teachers and children. Here, your children are welcome to give an informal English lesson.
The trail hiked features both highland dry and wet agriculture, which your children will learn about while passing crops and plantations of vegetables, coffee, oranges, clove, vanilla beans, cacao, and more. We will enjoy beautiful views of the old city and northern coast of Bali, before descending through the jungle to visit Bali's largest waterfall, rarely visited by both locals and tourists.
The trek then continues to a vantage point for one of the most stunning views in Bali—the vaulting and intricate rice field terraces, one of the most sophisticated and oldest irrigation systems in Bali that have been used by Balinese farmers for thousands of years. At trek's end , enjoying lunch in a local restaurant. (1/2 day)
Balinese Village Day
Spend a day in a real Balinese village! A full day once in a lifetime experience of mingling with famously friendly Balinese villagers, sharing their daily routines. Activities include farming fields, herding armies of ducks, planting crops, and harvesting greens and other crops for a delicious lunch. Share time with local children and understand their lifestyle while they will be curious to discover more about your.
Where else to experience such a day but on Bali's most fertile soil of Tabanan below majestic Mount Batukaru, an area that for hundreds of years has been the island's main producer of finest varieties of rice. (1/2 day)
An exciting trek suitable for all ages and abilities through a protected Rainforest Nature Reserve on the slopes of Mount Batukaru. A trained guide will lead this two-hour trek, sharing information about the diverse topical flora & fauna of the island, while passing giant bamboo, tall ferns, strangling trees, wild orchids, spiky rattans and more.
After exploring Bali's nature, enjoying a delicious BBQ lunch at The Giri, a deluxe rainforest camp where we can shower after the trek. On the drive back, pausing to admire terraced rice fields in the area with time for photos and a short walk.
Balinese Art School
Not far from Ubud, this quiet art school and studio in a pleasant setting where we can meet with the artists and watch them painting, meticulously creating art depicting Balinese Hindu gods, as well as agricultural and cultural themes. Small pieces may take a few days to complete and larger works will take several months.
After touring the studio, meeting with young artists children will learn to paint their own small artwork with hands-on instruction. (3 hours)
Summer Bali Arts Festival
Balinese festivals are exciting and colorful events, including celebrants of all ages. The Balinese Arts Festival is every June and July (above). Have your children be a guest of honor in this delightful cultural celebration. The festival features hundreds of national and international cultural groups with daily performances of dance and music as well as numerous activities, during which literally the whole of Bali will be drawn to Denpasar to present their offerings of dance, music, and friendship. Ancient forms of classical Balinese dances will be resurrected during the festival. Also featured are culinary exhibitions, competitions, fashion shows, flower shows and displays of traditional handicrafts.
Well being enthusiasts, plenty of whom come to Ubud, might like to check out the four-day Bali Spirit Festival (www.balispiritfestival.com). With yoga and healing workshops, massage, a Dharma market and music in the evening, it attracts some of the best teachers and spiritualists from around the globe. March or April The whole of the island closes down for 24 hours on Nyepi, the last day of the Hindu saka calendar, so avoid arriving or departing at this time. For the Balinese it's a day of introspection and no one is allowed on the street. It's believed evil spirits will think everyone has deserted the island and will move on. Use it as a day to catch up on sleep or reading. The night before though, there are street parades as well as people banging on drums and letting off firecrackers to scare off any demons. October Emerging and established authors from around the world descend for the Ubud Writers and Readers Festival to share stories and ideas with one another and festival guests.
The Bali Arts Festival runs approximately mid-June to mid-July with performances, exhibits, crafts such as jewelry, paintings and fabrics on display and for sale. At the Art Center in Denpasar and elsewhere around the island.
The Ubud Writers & Readers Festival Held annually in Ubud, Bali's artistic and cultural heartland, the UWRF has become South East Asia's largest and most renowned cultural and literary festival.
Leading writers, thinkers, artists and performers from across Indonesia and all corners of the globe will come together over five full days of events to celebrate knowledge and the arts, education, wisdom and science. An innovative program of arts and music, panel discussions, workshops, literary lunches and dinners, book launches and much more will be revealed in mid-2014. Website: http://www.ubudwritersfestival.com
A short one and half hour flight to Yogyakarta in Java lies the symbol of Indonesia—the eighth-century Buddhist temple complex built in the form of a mandala, or sacred diagram. Now a World Heritage, Borobudur is astonishingly impressive as are the landscapes surrounding the temple. After Borobudur, visiting Prambanan, the largest Hindu temple in Indonesia with towers resembling Angkor Wat.
Lying a mere couple of miles off the west coast of Lombok just north of Senggigi beach are three isles no more than one or two miles in circumference surrounded by crystal clear blue waters. These isles are special for the diversity and abundance of marine life in the extensive coral waters that around each of the them.