`It took 3 flights, 42 hours, and a time change of twelve hours for me to arrive in Bali, but it was oh so worth it. Not just because I was in Bali, but because I was meeting two friends, Robyn and Chantae, for a three day girl getaway. It had been nearly a year since I had last seen these two travel girls and we had a lot to catch up on. We planned on a three day get-together; time to explore the area but more so to relax and enjoy.
Being a fairly large island, Bali had many places to go. But with time constraints and other travel plans we figured to stay in Seminyak; a stylish area close to the beach and airport. With our destination in mind next came deciding on accommodation. All three of use are solo female travellers and used to the hostel life, but that wasn’t going to cut it for what we had planned. We wanted something special to celebrate the occasion; we wanted to be spoiled. Thanks to a gorgeous three night stay in local Bali Villa, we were.
Seminyak is located in south west Bali, only about 10km or so from the international airport. However, depending on what time your flight lands, you can expect to spend up to an hour getting there in high traffic times.
Seminyak is a great place to start you Bali adventures as it’s close to the airport, many major attractions and temples, and is on a beautiful beach perfect for swimming, sunning, and surfing. Seminyak is a classier, upscale neighbourhood, much different than the party area of Kuta just a little further south. But with the variety of restaurants, shops, and clubs it’s a great area to stay in and absolutely perfect for a girls getaway.
Villa or Bust
Girls getaway calls for a bit of luxury, especially in Bali. There are plenty of luxury hotels in the area but for the same price or less. When you consider the space, the privacy, and the relaxation factor that a villa offers over a hotel, there’s really no contest. Bali has plenty of villas on offer around the island. Some are centrally located, allowing for easy access to the city or nearby, while others are a little further out allowing travellers to really embrace natural Bali. From super swanky modern homes to more traditional homey options, there’s something for everyone.
Another major perk to villa life is that many come with a small staff team. For an extra fee you can have meals prepared and cooked for you, drivers to/from airport, and tours to nearby attractions or sights. The extra support team makes it easy to kick back, relax, and enjoy the Bali life.
We stayed in the beautiful Villa Lisa; a modern property tucked away from the noisy crowds but within easy walking distance from the main streets (including Oberoi road, aka ‘Eat Street’ and only a fifteen minute walk to the beach. That is, if you ever felt like leaving; and trust me, as much as I was keen to explore, it was hard to leave this little slice of heaven. Especially since there was a private pool, prepared breakfast, comfortable beds, and an in-house massages were an option.
Be sure to check out Villa-Bali.com for the island’s most drool-worthy villa selection.
What to Do
If you can peel yourself away from your heavenly villa and private pool (yes, it’s hard) there is plenty to see and do around Seminyak.
Seminyak is best known for it’s upscale shops and spas. You can easily spend and afternoon strolling through the shopping streets picking up some local clothing, surf gear, or even just colourful beach sarongs.
Of course you must also spend some time on the beach. Stunning white sand lines the shores of double six beach where beach goers can rent a chair to sunbathe, swim in the ocean, and even take a surf lesson.
Seminyak is also home to many popular bars and clubs, perfect for a girls night out if you are feeling up for a party. Some of the most popular places to dance the night away include the Potato Head Beach Bar, Cocoon Beach Club, and Ku de Ta Bali.
Where to Eat
Seminyak has no shortage of restaurants, from traditional Balinese Warungs to western style options there is plenty to choose from. We loved the following places, all of which were within walking distance from our Bali villa:
– Made’s Warung: A large restaurant that caters towards tourists with traditional balinese dance
shows. Plenty on offer on the menu from Balinese to Thai and even some Western options.
Located on Jl. Ray. Tip: if you want to see the dancing show, make a reservation so you can
get a seat up front.
Warung Nevi: A small, local warring offering traditional Balinese food. Everything is super fresh and made to order- you can even watch them prepare it if you want to. Located on Oberoi Road (aka Eat Street).
Wild: a charming spot located on ‘Eat Street’ very popular for breakfast. Fresh fruit smoothies and juices along with poached egg dishes with salsa and veggies are the perfect start to the day.
MacCheese Cafe: A western style restaurant best known for the variety of mac and cheese options. There’s also sandwiches and burgers but make sure you leave room for dessert because the show-stopper here is the ridiculous milkshakes.
Get Out and Explore Bali
There are plenty of day trips you can talk from Seminyak, but with only three days we limited ourself to a sunset trip to Tanah Lot temple. Tanah Lot is one of four major temples in Bali that was created to help protect with island against natural disasters. It’s also the most photographed temple in Bali, especially for sunset.
Tanah Lot is only about 45 minutes to one hour away from Seminyak. There are plenty of tour companies and drivers that will offer to bring you there, and even stop at a coffee plantation along the way. You can expect to pay somewhere between 40-50USD for approximately 3-4 hours including travel time.
If you have more time, other great places to check out include:
-Uluwatu: another temple in the south of Bali. Best known for it’s fire dance show.
-Ubud: a city in central Bali, known for it’s beautiful rice paddies, cafes, and shops.
-Mount Bromo: Bali’s most famous volcano to hike. If you are extra adventurous get up early for sunrise.
-Kuta: Not too far from Seminyak, Kuta has tons of shops and a big party scene.
**If you need a friendly, reliable driver try Putu: +62 811-3939-161 (whatsapp)
Whether you are in Bali for a couple of days, or a couple of weeks, a villa is the best way way to enjoy a girls getaway to Bali!
PS: If you are going to Bali and looking for a guide book, my good friend and travel journalist Chantae Reden recently wrote this Bali Travel Guide for Moon Guidebooks.
Note: Our wonderful villa stay is thanks to the great team behind Villa-Bali.com and the staff at Villa Lisa. As always, all opinions are my own.