Steeped in a deep spirituality accentuated by promises of sensual, technicolour experiences, there is perhaps no island on this earth quite like Bali. With its breathtaking natural landscapes and awe-inspiring culture, Bali brims with a myriad of exciting things to do.
That said, the wet season in Bali often threatens to ruin a perfect stay on the island. Indeed, from October to April, heavy downpours might mean a day away from Bali’s pristine beaches, its famous rice terraces or its stunning mountainscapes. Contrary to popular belief, however, Bali still offers plenty even on a rainy day. Here are some activities for you to partake in even when it’s pouring outside!
1. Treat yourself and that special someone to a rejuvenating spa
Often featuring traditional Balinese massage, a spa experience in Bali is an excellent addition to any itinerary, and is the perfect way to end a day exploring the island. But a spa is perhaps an even greater idea on a rainy day, as the sound of gently falling rain, complete with aromatic scents, makes for an indulgent time relaxing at the hands of experienced masseurs.
Have your spa experience kicked up by a full notch at the award-winning luxury resort InterContinental Bali. Raining outside? Be drenched instead in a Sea of Love at the resort, a romantic spa package offering made exclusively for you and your partner. Spend four leisurely hours experiencing a full range of sensuous baths and luxuriant massages, and who knows, the clouds might just clear up after for an unforgettable evening walk by the Indian Ocean.
|For IDR 4,000,000 (~SGD 380), the Sea of Love spa package promises a leisurely swim for two in the ultimate spa experience Bali has to offer, all complete with revitalizing, head-to-toe treatments that feature traditional Indonesian elements.
2. While time away with a delectable brunch
Everyone can probably agree on this: sweater weather is great for a good sleeping in, before waking up in time for some wholesome brunch. A cosy hot cuppa and a delightful meal make for a leisurely hideaway from the wind and rain. Do just these and more in Bali’s plentiful brunch offerings. If you wish to suss out great dining options, the trendy and chic Seminyak neighbourhood sports a number of cool bistros and cafes while seafood is always available by Jimbaran Beach.
Taman Gita at the InterContinental Bali probably takes the cake when it comes to Sunday brunch — nothing beats drinking free flow champagne in a heavenly garden of music. Taman Gita promises just that with its snazzy contemporary decor, complete with plaques of traditional gamelan orchestras adorning a lush garden setting. And let’s not forget about the food — take your pick from gourmet renditions of classic dishes like eggs benedicts and traditional Balinese breakfasts, or treat yourself to some seared foie gras and freshly caught mahi mahi.
|From IDR 650,000 (~SGD 60) per adult, the Sunday Brunch package is sure to perk you up amidst a rainy day’s gloom. Tantalise your tastebuds with a refined selection of dishes drawn from international cuisines.
Free for children 5 and under and with discounts for children 12 and under, Sunday Brunch is easily an enjoyable family meal at Taman Gita, especially when complimentary access to the Planet Trekkers Kids Club means more fun for the little ones.
3. Or prepare your own lunch at a cooking class!
Prefer a more hands-on approach to your meals? Well, the wet season is also an opportune time to get your hands dirty at the various cooking classes offered at Bali. Not only are they an ingenious way to take a large bite out of Balinese culture, but they also make great souvenirs: you’ll always have a taste of Bali with you as you recreate sambal matah at home. Beyond cooking classes, some places even offer herbal drink classes and coffee workshops, ideal for those eager to sample traditional drinks, or simply to brew a kopi bali .
Savour a fuss-free culinary experience at Samabe Bali Suites & Villas and their Balinese Cooking Class. In tandem with their signature concept of “unlimited privilege,” all the ingredients and kitchenware are prepared beforehand — all you have to do is to enjoy the 90-minute cooking class taught by an expert chef at Samabe’s Wantilan Kitchen. You can expect to whip up some nasi goreng , prepare Balinese peanut and chilli sauces, and even grill some satay , among other dishes. Your hard work won’t go to waste of course; tuck into these scrumptious delights for a memorable lunch experience.
|Samabe’s Balinese Cooking Classes are held every Monday, Wednesday and Friday,
so you can enjoy a home-cooked lunch whenever it rains in Bali.
Having recently welcomed a new executive chef, check out too Samabe’s Crystal Blue Restaurant and Ocean Grill for an exclusive fine dining experience. With only 81 suites and villas, the resort provides unparalleled privacy and tranquility — which also means that you can expect an unimpeded view of the Indian Ocean as you relish the Restaurant’s signature Mediterranean dishes.
4. Plan a night out to catch the spectacular Devdan show
No amount of rain should stop you from experiencing the rich blend of cultures and traditions Bali has to offer. Certainly, despite rapid modernisation and a booming tourism industry, the Balinese continue to uphold customary practices and observe sacred rituals, such as on Nyepi, or the Day of Silence.
On any other rainy day however, be sure to get your culture fix at the Devdan show, a dynamic visual spectacle comprising various cultural elements drawn from the indigenous populations of the Indonesian Archipelago. Combining such traditional practices with contemporary pyrotechnics and visual effects, the Devdan show is an entertainment extravaganza that will be sure to light up any grey evening.
Indeed, the leading tourism presentation at the Bali Nusa Dua Theatre takes you on a sweeping journey through Bali, Sumatra, Java, Kalimantan and Papua. Expect to be treated to dance performances unique to each region — for example, the Balinese Kecak Dance is a captivating reenactment of scenes from the Hindu epic Ramayana, a reminder of the Hindu influences that have shaped the island’s spiritual culture.
Available four evenings a week, there’s always time for the Devdan show in your itinerary. And you’ll never have to worry about getting a ticket — seats can be reserved up to three long months in advance!
|From the Island of a Thousand Temples to the Sumatran Saman dance of a thousand hands, the Devdan show is an action-packed, 90-minute whirlwind showcasing the diversity of culture that lies along the Archipelago.
There’s perhaps no better time than now to catch this exciting visual spectacle. Get the best views of the show’s dazzling aerial acrobatics from VIP seats offered at a 50% discount ! If not, Category B seats are also offered at a special promotional price of IDR 500,000 (~SGD 48). Furthermore, discounts of 10% and 15% are available for minimum bookings of three and six persons respectively!
Book a ticket on the Devdan journey on their website here !
5. Indulge in some retail therapy
Raring to go after an amazing spa experience, but rain keeping you from having some fun in the sun? Beaches are not the only reason to explore Seminyak, Bali’s most fashionable ’hood. Go shop till you drop instead at Seminyak Square and its neighbouring streets, all lined with high-end boutiques and surfer shops for your (future) beach needs. Rest those tired legs and take an Insta-story or two at a number of stylish cafes peppered around the shopping mall. Else, take another spa break, then rinse and repeat.
Staying at the Samabe Bali, and prefer something a lot closer? For guests in hotels by the Nusa Dua and Tanjung Benoa area, Bali Collection provides free shuttle buses to the shopping complex, making for a no-frills trip when it’s wet outside. With plenty of familiar names like Billabong and Nike, alongside various dining and entertainment options, Bali Collection will keep you happily occupied for a good while.
6. Get creative with local arts and crafts
Batik painting, ceramic-making, silversmithing, kite-weaving, mask-carving … the list goes on. There’s just tons of arts and crafts workshops on offer at assorted ateliers in Bali, all integral to the vibrant traditions and heritage preserved in Bali. Most classes are concentrated in the cultural district of Ubud, so head on over and keep your hands busy through a wet afternoon.
Craft a matching pair of silver rings with your partner at jewelry workshops offered by Chez Monique, or one at the splendid Kapal Bambu showroom of John Hardy. Got a painterly eye? Then try your hand at sketching wax patterns on fabric at a batik painting class . Places like the Agung Rai Museum of Art host a whole range of workshops, while others even help tourists customise an entire day of artsy fun.
7. Go for a walk under the sea
If you’re going to get drenched on land, why not get entirely wet with an amazing sea walk underwater? A unique experience of its kind, the Seawalker Tour Sanur provides an easy way to immerse (pun intended) yourself in Bali’s stunning marine life. Located at Sanur Beach, the Seawalker Tour comprises a leisurely walk on the seabed, where special helmets help make breathing underwater a cinch. Stroll as you would on land — you can even keep your glasses and lenses on — and get up close and personal with whole shoals and schools of colourful fish.
Bali’s rainy season is a time for natural regrowth, as the island’s picturesque rice terraces turn a verdant green in revitalizing rain and sunlight. The same could be said for the tourist: a rainy day provides alternative island experiences for the informed traveller, moments that will have one leaving Bali satisfactorily relaxed and rejuvenated.