Like so many other young Australians, I have a love affair with Bali. The breath-taking beaches, the warm-hearted Balinese people, and the rich, varied culture of the island itself. Because travel programs and tour agencies tend to focus on Bali’s scenery and resorts (and rightly so, both are undeniably exquisite!), I wanted to share my favourite restaurants and bars with you instead. Each time I visit I find myself returning to each venue, and if you read on you’ll understand why!
Here are my all-time favourite restaurants and bars in Bali – and where to find them!
The best bars and restaurants in Bali
What would a list of the best bars in Bali be without Sky Garden getting a mention? This year saw Sky Garden voted as Indonesia’s best club, and I couldn’t agree more. Located in Kuta on the buzzing nightlife strip, Sky Garden is a guaranteed great night out. There is a food buffet each evening that features a different ‘themed’ meal each day (think pizza one day, pasta the next). Drinks are cheap and there are multiple floors for dancing. Sky Garden frequently features incredible DJ’s, so make sure you get yourself there if you’re keen to party.
Kubu Restaurant in Mandapa never disappoints. An unforgettable dining experience, you can find Kubu at The Ritz Carlton Reserve. You will have to ditch your signature ‘thongs & bikini top’ holiday look if you plan to eat at Kubu (the dress code is strictly smart casual, and thongs are not allowed) but it is well worth it. You dine overlooking the Ayung river whilst enjoying the sumptuous European-inspired cuisine. If you’re on a romantic holiday with your significant other, I’d suggest booking one of the restaurant’s nine private cocoons.
3.Baker Street Social
I adore concept bars, so there was never a chance that I would not come to love Baker Street Social in Seminyak. As Bali’s first ‘speakeasy’ themed bar, I always make sure I pay a visit to enjoy their incredible range of cocktails. I estimate that 99% of the Boomerangs currently in existence are due to me filming my Baker Street drinks. I love the intimacy of the venue, it only seats about 30 people and its understated entrance means you won’t find it unless you’re looking for it (trust me though, you’ll be looking for it!)
For a family run restaurant that serves incredible local cuisine, you can’t pass up Warong Legong in Gianyar. The hospitality is second-to-none. You are made to feel like part of the family from the second you walk in the door. The price of the food is so reasonable, making it great for a big group meal, and the portions are more than generous. The service is fast, the staff are so accommodating, and the food gets 5 stars. Try the Kare Ayum or the Nasi Campur!
5.Swoon Cocktails & Coffee
For excellent cocktails in a relaxed, low-key bar with great ambience, make sure you pay Swoon Cocktails & Coffee a visit in Sanur. It’s the perfect combination of great coffee, reasonably priced cocktails and live music. My hands down favourite is the Hazelnut Espresso Martini, you must taste it to believe it! This venue is perfect if you don’t want to do a heavy night of partying, but you still want to hang out in a place with a great atmosphere.
These are just five of my favourite places to drink and dine when I visit Bali. The country has so much to offer people who enjoy a variety of cuisines and love to socialise. Make sure you visit these five exceptional venues the next time you visit this tropical paradise, you’ll understand why I can’t help but return again and again!
If you’re in Sydney this winter, check out my guide on fun things to do and see!