Bali is Indonesia’s great and grand tourist destination, which derives 80% of its economy from tourism. The Indonesian island of Bali is well known and equally well-loved for its extensively fascinating sea temples and towns teeming with nightlife. Bali is also rich in art scenes and beaches, followed by many other cultural treasures. The beauty that this island possesses never fails to disappoint you. Keeping in view that Bali is not a country, it is worth noting that presence in Bali instills in you a feeling of being in a completely different world. It is worth taking a trip to Bali, but keep this list of things not to do in Bali in your mind or hand all the time.
- Avoid drinking tap water:
Unfortunately, Indonesia lacks the best infiltration systems in place, so the water being flowed from taps may not be recycled property. It might consist of germs or bacteria, which might ultimately lead to stomach upsets. It’s not worth risking your vacation, so it’s better to have packaged drinking water by a reliable brand. One of the major reasons to avoid tap water in Bali is the presence of chlorine, which can be harmful to your health. So, you and your family must make a healthy choice when it comes to water in Bali.
- Say no to drugs:
The laws regulating the possession and consumption of drugs in Indonesia have to be the strictest in Southeast Asia. Two Australian men were executed in Bali in 2015. So, it’s palpable that any drug that is even a slightest of a threat to existing natural beauty and marine life in Bali can get you in great trouble. You will be offered drugs, but it’s highly urged to refuse. Bali is in Indonesia, whereby all means exists the death penalty, and there have been witnessed very little tolerance towards drugs. Keep yourself clear and out of jail, and enjoy your trip.
- Don’t spend all your time in Kuta:
Kuta is where the modern era of tourism prevails. It is without any long imagination of the mind, popular for its long and lengthy sand beaches followed by great waves for surfing. There are a large number of people out there who believe that if they have been to Kuta, they have seen Bali are highly mistaken. Travelers have been across people who have spent a lot of time in Kuta and now do not have a perfect image of Bali, which is sad as Bali has so much more to offer.
- Watch your steps down:
It is imperative to look down when you are walking. In Bali, you may notice squares made out of palm leaves, filled with flowers, rice, incense, and herbs laying on the street. These are known as canang sari and are daily offerings from Balinese Hindus to God. The fact that they have a religious emotional attachment, it is considered deeply disrespectful to the Balinese culture and religion.
- A week isn’t enough:
Bali is an archipelagic nation with so many stories to be told and adventures to experience, so one week for exploring might not suffice. Make sure to make most out of your both time and money. And, for that, if you plan your trip in summers or to be more elaborative in June, July and August, one week would not be enough. A simple answer to this is the horrendous crowd. You will come across tons of tourists who reside there in the following months to escape the southern hemisphere’s winter months. This extreme crowd may result in you exploring the island and appreciate the existing natural beauty a little less than it deserves.
- Do not point your feet towards someone:
When in Bali, take into account that you are not supposed to point your feet at anyone or touch anyone with your feet. If you do so unintentionally, don’t forget to apologize as such an act constitutes an insulting behavior. Otherwise, make sure that you follow this rule and be respectful to the norms of the Bali people.
- Do not point your feet towards a Buddha statue:
There exists almost 20,000 Pura – a Balinese word for temple around in Bali. This figure makes it obvious that you will see a temple almost in every corner of the island. They vary from a small family to grand community temples. Statue of Sleeping Buddha is in Vihara Dharma Giri, in the village of Pupuan in Tabanan in West Bali, Ubud. Do not sit with your feet pointing towards the shrine of a god in a temple since you might end up offending the locals. They like every other human hold special affiliation towards their religion and consider it as seriously disrespectful, so therefore this one is worth remembering of things not to do in Bali.
- Do not leave your drink unattended:
Crazy nightlife is another thing that grabs the attention and excitement of a lot of people. There is an extensive number of bars to have a fun night out like Smoqee Lounge and Sky Bar, Moonlite Kitchen, and Bar, Pretty Poison with many others. When in a bar, you need to be smart and attentive. Stay within a group of people you know, order things you are aware of and do not leave your drink unattended. Your safety should be your foremost priority.
- Do not haggle at the market for 30 minutes with no intention of buying:
Bali’s shopping districts are popular for buying both international brands and Balinese arts and crafts, for instance, jewelry and wood carvings. South Bali favors western-style malls; therefore, in case you are questing and craving artisanal shopping, you will have to head further afield like crafts village around Ubud and Central Bali. Whatever you want to buy, don’t haggle at the market for more than half an hour with no intention of buying. It is exhausting, time-consuming, and, most importantly, very rude. Abide by the norms and values of people already residing there and stick to good haggling etiquette.
- Honking without reason is to be avoided:
It is highly likely when you are in Bali, and you will hire a car, bike, or a scooter to get from one place to another. However, one thing should be in mind that extensive or unnecessary honking will create a negative impression on other people. Therefore, a couple of horns will suffice to make sure that the person ahead is aware of the presence of your vehicle.
- Maintain decorum during Nyepi:
Nyepi is a Hindu celebration that occurs on Isakawarsa in the Balinese calendar. It takes place between 24-hour duration ranging from 6 am on 25th March to 6 am on 26th March. On this day, they observe fast and perform other religious rituals. So, its best advised to respect their religious practices and not to cause any disturbance that would affect them even if it is resulting in heavy traffic on roads. Remember not to interrupt their processions. Similar respect is to be given and observed during other Balinese festivals like Galungan. Try to be a part of these ceremonies, as it is a spiritual country and enhances its beauty.
- Make efficient use of the right hand:
Subject to traditional norms and values, people in Bali consider the left hand as an impure part of the body just like they do not touch or hit someone on the head as people consider it a sacred part of the body. Therefore, they use the right hand to do some of the things, for instance, eating, pointing, or give someone something. You should also consider this when in Bali.
- Dress appropriately in temples:
The fact that Bali is a Hindu majority province, explains why there exists a lot of temples. To dress decently when going to a temple is just a way of showing respect. It applies equally both to men and women. In mosque or temples, men should not come wearing shorts while it is advised to women to wear something that covers their entire body. It would be best if women cover their heads too. Also, before entering temples, take off your shoes, or you might anger the locals and may even ask to leave. If you leave a donation, that will be highly appreciated.
- Drive safe:
Bali is a big island, and if you think you can walk from one place to another, you’re wrong. You will see metered taxis at the southern end of Bali, especially in the surroundings of tourist areas like Kuta, Tuban, and Denpasar. If you plan to rent a car or drive a motorbike, you should realize Bali is a very challenging place to drive around. Therefore, metered taxis or a private tourist shuttle bus sounds like a good idea.
So, book your tickets today and enjoy your trip to the fullest, but as mentioned earlier, do not forget to keep these things in mind or handy – whatever is feasible. Be respectful towards the locals and the culture of Bali, and you will definitely fall in love with this heavenly destination and you won’t have to worry about the things not to do in Bali.