6 Places Near Bali You Should Definitely Visit

Places Near Bali You Should Definitely Visit

Are you ready to embark on an island-hopping adventure beyond the lush paradise of Bali? While Bali is famous for its stunning beaches, vibrant culture, and laid-back vibes, there’s a whole world of wonder just waiting to be explored beyond this beloved Indonesian gem.

Bali, with its terraced rice paddies, fragrant frangipani flowers, and serene temples, may have a special place in your heart, but the islands nearby hold their own unique charms and surprises.

So, grab your sun hat, slip on those flip-flops, and let’s set sail to discover six other fantastic places near Bali that are worth visiting on your next island escapade.

From the rugged, prehistoric landscapes of Komodo Island, where you can come face to face with living dragons, to the laid-back, hammock-strung beaches of Nusa Lembongan, each of these nearby destinations promises a different flavor of adventure.

Whether you’re in pursuit of underwater wonderlands teeming with marine life, a taste of local traditions in remote villages, or vibrant nightlife by the ocean, the islands surrounding Bali offer a kaleidoscope of experiences just waiting to be explored.

So, let’s dive in and discover the secrets and splendors of these six enchanting destinations, each a short hop away from the Bali we know and love.


Kuta Beach in Lombok (photo Jonny Melon)
Kuta Beach in Lombok (photo Jonny Melon)

You can’t talk about Bali without mentioning its mysterious neighbor, Lombok. Just a short boat ride away, Lombok is like Bali’s slightly quieter cousin. But don’t mistake quiet for boring! Lombok is an enigmatic paradise waiting to be explored.

Begin your Lombok adventure at Kuta Beach, not to be confused with Bali’s Kuta Beach.

This Kuta Beach boasts powdery white sands and mesmerizing turquoise waters, perfect for surfing, sunbathing, and general beach bumming. Explore the southern coast for a taste of Lombok’s untouched beauty.

For the ultimate adrenaline rush, hike to the summit of Mount Rinjani, an active volcano that stands proudly as Indonesia’s second-tallest mountain. The view from the top is absolutely breathtaking, and the experience is nothing short of life-changing.

Mount Rinjani in Lombok (photo Much Better Adventures)
Mount Rinjani in Lombok (photo Much Better Adventures)

Don’t forget to stop by the traditional Sasak villages, where you can immerse yourself in the unique culture and lifestyle of the island. If you’re an adventure seeker, test your limits with some off-road dirt biking or go snorkeling in the pristine Gili Islands.

Nusa Penida

Kelingking Beach like a T-Rex, in Nusa Penida
Kelingking Beach like a T-Rex, in Nusa Penida

Just a short boat ride from Bali, Nusa Penida is like Bali’s wild and rugged sister.

Solo female adventurers drawn to Nusa Penida’s untamed landscapes will also appreciate Bali’s welcoming and safe environments. Check out our guide on best areas to stay for female solo travelers in Bali for peace of mind and adventure.

If Bali is all about relaxation and yoga retreats, Nusa Penida is where you come to explore untamed beauty. Start your adventure at Kelingking Beach, where you’ll find the iconic T-Rex-shaped cliff. It’s a challenging hike down to the beach, but the reward is an otherworldly view of a hidden paradise. Diamond Beach, Atuh Beach, and Crystal Bay are other must-visit spots on the island, each with its unique charm.

Snorkeling or Diving to see the Manta at Manta Point Nusa Penida
Snorkeling or Diving to see the Manta at Manta Point Nusa Penida

For you dive enthusiasts out there, don’t miss Manta Point, where you can swim with these graceful giants. If you’re lucky, you might even spot the elusive mola mola (sunfish). And yes, there’s also an underwater temple to add a touch of mystery to your dive.

Nusa Lembongan

Nusa Lembongan, one of the three Nusa islands, is like a little slice of tropical tranquility. With its crystal-clear waters, vibrant marine life, and swaying palm trees, this island is an ideal escape from the hustle and bustle of Bali. Sandy Bay is a fantastic spot for unwinding and taking in breathtaking sunsets. And speaking of sunsets, Devil’s Tear is a must-visit. It’s a rocky cliff where the waves crash dramatically against the rocks, creating an awe-inspiring spectacle.

Adventurers will love snorkeling in the crystal-clear waters around the island. But the real hidden gem here is the underwater sculpture garden at Nest Beach, which is as Instagram-worthy as it gets.

Komodo Island

Komodo Dragon at Komodo Island Flores (photo- National Geographic)
Komodo Dragon at Komodo Island Flores (photo- National Geographic)

Are you ready to meet some real-life dragons? Komodo Island, famous for its Komodo dragons, is just a short flight from Bali and offers a unique adventure that’s as far from Bali’s tranquility as you can get.These prehistoric reptiles are the world’s largest lizards, and they can only be found on a handful of Indonesian islands, with Komodo Island being the most famous. A guided tour will take you to their natural habitat, where you can observe these fascinating creatures from a safe distance.

Beyond the dragons, Komodo Island is home to some of the most diverse marine life in the world. Go diving in the Komodo National Park to witness an underwater world teeming with vibrant coral reefs, manta rays, and even sharks.

Gili Islands

Maps of Gili Islands (Gili Trawangan, Gili Meno, Gili Air)
Maps of Gili Islands (Gili Trawangan, Gili Meno, Gili Air)

The Gili Islands, located just off the northwest coast of Lombok, are like the party central part of the Indonesian archipelago. These three little slices of paradise – Gili Trawangan, Gili Air, and Gili Meno – cater to a wide range of travelers.

Gili Trawangan is known for its vibrant nightlife, where you can dance the night away on the beach or enjoy a beachfront barbecue. It’s also a fantastic place to learn how to dive or take your diving skills to the next level. The underwater world here is a kaleidoscope of colors, and you’ll have the chance to swim with sea turtles.

Gili Air offers a more relaxed atmosphere, with beautiful beaches and crystal-clear waters. It’s a great place to unwind, practice yoga, or simply read a book in a hammock.

Hammock-ing at Gili Air (photo - TripCanvas Indonesia)
Hammock-ing at Gili Air (photo – TripCanvas Indonesia)

Gili Meno, the quietest of the three, is perfect for honeymooners and couples seeking a romantic getaway. The beaches are pristine, and there’s an enchanting saltwater lake in the middle of the island.

Switching gears from quiet romance to family fun is easy here. Bali and the islands around it, like Gili Meno, are great for kids too. Check out our guide for things to do in Bali with kids. It’s full of fun ideas that will keep everyone happy and busy.


The Tricolor Kelimutu Volcano in Flores
The Tricolor Kelimutu Volcano in Flores

For a truly off-the-beaten-path experience, set your sights on Flores, a hidden gem of the Indonesian archipelago. This island is a bit further away from Bali but is worth the extra effort.

The highlight of Flores is undoubtedly the mesmerizing Komodo National Park, which we’ve already mentioned. But there’s so much more to see on this enchanting island. The Kelimutu volcano, for instance, is famous for its tri-colored lakes, each with a unique hue. Wae Rebo, a traditional village, is a cultural gem nestled in the mountains of Flores. The traditional houses, or Mbaru Niang, are cone-shaped and have been preserved for generations.

Waerebo Village
Waerebo Village

End your Flores adventure in Labuan Bajo, a bustling town that serves as the gateway to Komodo Island. It’s also a fantastic place to indulge in fresh seafood while taking in the beautiful views of the Flores Sea.

Bali has already swept you off your feet with its enchanting beauty, but guess what? The adventure doesn’t stop at Bali’s shores. Just a stone’s throw away, a kaleidoscope of islands offers everything from heart-thumping adventures to zen-like tranquility, not to mention nightlife that dances until dawn and creatures that time forgot.

Here’s a little secret for the savvy traveler: the golden ticket to unlocking this treasure chest of experiences is all in the timing. Dive into our best months to visit Bali guide to sync your travels with the island’s prime time. Think of it as insider info to ensure you catch Bali and its neighbors at their absolute best.

Why settle for one slice of paradise when you can have the whole cake?

Bali’s neighboring islands are like hidden tracks on your favorite album – each one a new favorite waiting to be discovered. So pack your bags, set your out-of-office reply, and let’s turn the page on what might just be the most epic chapter of your travel diary yet.

Every island has its own tale. Why not be part of it? Check out our vacation rentals and villa listings in Bali and more. Alterstay have the perfect spot for everyone – whether you’re traveling alone or with family.

Happy travels!

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