The Most Romantic Honeymoon Resorts in Bali

The Most Romantic Resorts for a Bali Honeymoon

My wife, Marissa, will never accuse me of being a romantic. She’s usually the one to remind me that flower vases are containers that should contain flowers or that flip flops and low hanging shorts made of sweatpants material is not appropriate attire for date night. But in Bali, which was the last two weeks of our ten-week honeymoon, I tried thinking like a different Noah. Any fans of The Notebook? (In fact, my wife’s memory is sub-par and one day we might live like the characters from that film. Then, I’ll read her this post–leaving out this paragraph of course and anything that follows in parenthesis–to remind her of how romantic I was during our honeymoon in Bali.)

 

I’ve decided to put together a list of the most romantic resorts in Bali. We visited ten properties, but only four made this list. I should say that in order to qualify as a romantic Balinese resort (and to avoid redundancy in this post), it was mandatory that the resorts met my (wife’s) qualifications. All resorts listed below needed to have the following prerequisites: large beds, pools on the property, a private area outside of the main room for lounging, a relaxing spa, and sexy bathrooms–(Before Southeast Asia, I did not know bathrooms could be sexy, but my wife taught me the definition)–with tubs filled with both water and flowers upon check-in, a waterfall showerhead, and other I-don’t-see-that-in-my-bathroom-back-home features.

 

But beyond the minimum requirements, the resorts on this list plain wowed us.

 

HONEYMOON IN BALI: CANGUU

 

TUGU HOTEL BALI

 

My wife and I are usually at odds when choosing a beach resort. I care only about waves and food. She wants sun and a beautiful room. Tugu Bali Hotel was perfect for our conflicting desires.

 

Our villa–one of only twenty-one–blended comfort with traditional Indonesian art. Our upstairs room was like a five-star treehouse with ocean views. (Other room options included downstairs villas with private plunge pools and the most impressive suite that sits over the lotus pond.)

 

Bali Sunset at Canguu

 

Tugu’s best feature, (aside from the proximity to great waves) was its dining options. Couples can eat in the Black Chamber on antique beds surrounded by artifacts from the 1500s. They can picnic in the garden or over the lotus pond. Marissa and I had our romantic feast on the beach, where the sunsets are perfectly cliche.

 

Tugu Hotel Romantic Dinner on the Beach in Bali

 

Our evening meal was appropriately dubbed The Aphrodisiac Picnic Under the Moonlight. Since Canguu Beach is so quiet, we weren’t distracted by curious passerbys. It was only the two of us (and our personal waiter) as we dined on a bed surrounded by candles planted in the sand. The best part of our meal was dessert. Our menu instructed me to tie a blindfold over my eyes. Marissa then fed me raspberry sorbet and chocolate cake, which I guessed correctly. (I’m told gloating is quite romantic.) Then I fed my blindfolded wife a banana and marshmallow soufflé and chocolate covered strawberries. (And of course I snuck a few extra bites.)

 

Tugu Hotel Romantic Dinner on the Beach

 

There are also a few less romantic, but culturally interesting dining options worth considering. At Tugu’s traditional outdoor Javanese kitchen, Madame Soelastri, the former chef for the Indonesian president and the hotel’s cooking class instructor, will prepare Javanese cuisine to be eaten with fingers off of banana leaves. For morbid lovers, try an exotic feast of suckling pig or crispy duck in the Memorial Room, which commemorates the deadly war between the Balinese and the Dutch at the start of the Twentieth Century.

 

The most unique place to dine, however, is in Tugu’s three hundred year-old Chinese temple, the Bale Sutra. Nearly destroyed in Java, the temple was transported and reconstructed in its entirety at Tugu. Couples can sit on opposite ends of the table, twenty feet from one another, having the waiter pass notes back and forth. Or if you shun tradition, you can sit side by side. But to use the temple at no additional charge, you must order the set Chinese menu. If you demand another cuisine, it’s a one thousand dollar surcharge. (Now that would be romantic, high roller.)

 

Note to honeymooning surfers: I met a lot of us in Bali. Most had new wives that were not keen on the quality of sand that sat before Bali’s best breaks. (Many of the premier waves have the worst or most crowded beaches). Canguu Beach offers good waves and good sand, (though the waves are certainly better down on the Bukit). While I spent hours in the water, Marissa bounced from yoga to the pool to the beach, assuaging my guilt, which the other surfers were experiencing on their honeymoons.

 

Tugu Hotel Honeymoon in Bali

 

HONEYMOONERS IN UBUD

 

Most honeymooners that leave Bali’s beaches head toward the artsy, cultural capital of Ubud, which is in the center of the island. But if you’re looking for paradise, it’s in the forests that surround the city. In Ubud, we stayed at two resorts outside of the city and both blew us away.
 

MAYA UBUD

 

Our private pool villa sat cloaked in a manicured, tropical forest. Though the water in our pool was cold, we spent afternoons jumping from the pool to the warm waters of our outdoor shower. Then we changed into bathrobes and lounged on the love seat that stared off into the pink-flowered vegetation of Maya Ubud.

 

When we were tired of bathing outside, we sat beneath our thatched roof villa in our indoor bathtub, which was surrounded by smooth black lava stones. The tub looked out onto our pool.

 

Maya Ubud Bali Honeymoon

 

Though the room was hard to leave, there were many lures pulling us from the villa. We were enticed by a delicious seafood buffet, saving just enough room for the personalized honeymoon cake awaiting us on the foot of our bed. Each morning at 7:30, Marissa and I took a complimentary beginners’ yoga class in the pavilion that sat beside the tennis court and above the fitness center. It overlooked rice paddies and a two-hole golf course. We could have returned to the villa and had breakfast brought to us, but instead we ate at the sumptuous buffet and then strolled along the river on the nature walk, where fruit trees grew in abundance.

 

Maya Ubud Most Romantic Resorts in Bali

 

The property of Maya Ubud is so beautiful that just being there is romantic enough. So for honeymooners on a budget, you can save by foregoing the villa and staying in a deluxe or superior room. You’ll actually gain better views and only sacrifice remoteness and a private pool. (Even with our own pool, Marissa and I were so impressed with the zen architecture of the resort pools, that we spent time swimming with strangers, too.)(Still need to cut costs? There’s a half-priced two-hour happy hour each night, a shuttle to town, and a two-hour complimentary afternoon tea.)

 

Maya Ubud Most Romantic Resorts in Bali

 

ALAM UBUD CULTURE VILLAS AND RESIDENCES

 

After we left Maya Ubud, we spent the day hiking Volcano Batur. Our legs were coated with black ash and our feet were horrid looking. Even still, the receptionist at Alam Ubud asked us to remove our shoes and to dip our feet in a flower bath. “You really don’t have to wash our feet,” I insisted, feeling terrible for the two employees assigned to scrubbing duties. They just smiled and massaged our toes. Marissa and I clinked our glasses together, sipped our delicious bubbly welcome drink, which was infused with ginger, lemongrass, and lime, and fiddled with the leis around our necks.

 

Alam Ubud Bali Honeymoon

 

Alam means nature and that’s exactly what you get at the resort. From the top of the valley to the river below, it’s all lush forest. Surrounding the resort, and worth leaving for, are idyllic, flooded rice paddies.

 

Alam Ubud Bali Honeymoon

 

Alam Ubud’s villas were a paradox of architecture. Walking along the path, which was lined with picnic tables overhanging the cliff and ancient sculptures, I hardly noticed the fourteen villas. Yet inside, the rooms were enormous. The king-sized bed in our Drupadi Villa occupied only one-fifth of the bedroom and our balcony could have hosted a small wedding. One of the highlights of our room was the bathroom. It was the true honeymooners’ bathroom. We had a two-person tub filled with frangipanis and roses in the shape of a heart, which we sat in to watch the sun fade and the forest grow dark through our windowless portal to the terrace.

 

Alam Ubud Bali Honeymoon

 

Before the sun fully set, we settled down at the restaurant at the top of Alam Ubud. Dusk’s light reflected off of the infinite pool and the early evening colors enhanced the orange flowers and green palms sprouting from the river valley. Alam Ubud’s number one mantra is privacy. And this was completely true. All of the other guests had opted to take meals in their room. That night (having missed the opportunity to think up the romantic eat-dinner-in-the-room idea) we had the restaurant to ourselves. I also had my tastiest Balinese cuisine: Bebek Goreng ala Alam Ubud, the resort’s exceptional take on crispy duck.

 

Alam Ubud Balinese Food

 

In the morning, (it’s never too late to learn) we ordered breakfast to our balcony and then visited the spa, which hung over the rushing river. We laid inches from the encroaching forest. (The masseuse didn’t even complain as my back skin flaked off, thanks to an Uluwatu sunburn.)

 

Alam Ubud Honeymoon in Bali

HONEYMOONERS IN JIMBARAN

 

THE FOUR SEASONS

 

We ended our Bali honeymoon overlooking Jimbaran Bay. The only thing partially blocking our view, as we sipped champagne from our plunge pool up in the hills, were pink, purple, and white flowers blanketing the tree tops. The Four Seasons was Marissa’s favorite villa of the entire trip.

 

Four Seasons Honeymoon in Bali

 

We had an open-air living room with wicker couches and chairs. There were lounges on the deck and a turtle statue spraying a steady stream of water into our private pool. The room was gorgeous, too, topped with the typical Balinese thatched roof of woven palm leaves and bamboo supports. While the bathtub inside didn’t have the same spectacular views as our other rooms, the Four Seasons made bathing most enjoyable by simply fastening pillows to the tub.

 

Meals at the Four Seasons were pricier than anywhere else, but they served up the best Eggs Benedict I’d ever ordered (and that’s after I had made that same definitive statement two days earlier at another hotel that employed a two-star Michelin chef). Not being able to splurge beyond the room shouldn’t detract you from Bali’s Four Seasons. Located on the beach below, just next door to where you can use the resort’s complimentary non-motorized water sports equipment, are the famous seafood restaurants of Jimbaran. (In my opinion, they were a bit overrated and you’ll leave stinking of fish, but they offer the best sunsets and they’re affordable.)

 

No matter where you choose to honeymoon in Bali, there is one thing to remember: The island has a way of making you more romantic. (I think. You should probably ask my wife.)

 

In the comments section, tell us what made your honeymoon romantic?

Four Seasons Honeymoon in Bali

Disclosure: The resorts had either hosted us or offered us reduced rates, but the review is most certainly honest. Some of the links in this post are affiliate links, but Agoda provides exceptional deals. So if you plan on booking your stay and you found Somewhere Or Bust helpful, I’d appreciate you booking your stay through the above link.

 

Posted on by Noah Lederman in Asia, Somewhere

20 Responses to The Most Romantic Honeymoon Resorts in Bali

  1. Ronnie

    It sounds like the end of a PERFECT honeymoon was pure Perfection!!!

  2. Michael

    This place is perfect for honeymoon.I’ll tell my fiance about this.She’ll like this place.Romantic,relaxing and beautiful.Thanks for sharing a useful and informative post!

  3. Aakash

    Perfect Honeymoon Destination u have shared…..m planning to go bali on end of January…..i m looking for a max 5 day stay there in which i want to enjoy forest as well as Beach….Please suggest if its possible in 5 days.

    • Noah Lederman

      I really loved Canguu, which offers you the beach, but also puts you far away from the party scene in Kuta. I hear there are some incredible beaches that are quite relaxed on the east coast as well. I’m not sure of their proximity to the forest. Have a great trip.

  4. Aakash

    i want to say three days in ubud and three days some were near to beach. Can u plz suggest best beach(white sand and clean water). did my lil homework and found St Regis ,Nusa Dua, kutu and Jimbaran are good……any suggestion? or any other beach which u wud like to suggeast?

    • Noah Lederman

      Hi Aakash. My favorite beach was Canguu, but keep in mind I like beaches for the waves and the solitude, which is not everyone’s cup of tea. There were a few places to grab bites along the waterfront and our hotel had beds on the beach for romantic dinners. While I didn’t explore the east side of the island, I hear there are some beautiful beaches there, too. The waters in Nusa Dua were very crowded with motorboats and paragliders. If you’re into that, it’s nice, but I found it to be noisy and unattractive. Jimbaran’s beach was great for seafood and there were quieter sections. Kuta was packed and catered to those who want to party. If you want a little more laid back than Kuta, Seminyak is the spot. It’s close enough to Kuta if you like the party scene. Can’t say I know much about St. Regis. Best of luck.

    • Kasey

      If you’re into water sports and jet skiing and stuff, Nusa Dua is the place to go. It’s not as polluted as Kuta and the accommodation options are great. We loved The Westin Nusa Dua Bali.

  5. Dee

    Hi Noah.

    Thanks for sharing your experience and for the list. We are travelling to bali for our honeymoon and deciding on hotels is like never ending saga. I am seriously considering 2 of your choices (Tugu hotel and Maya ubud). We decided 2 nights in beach side resort and 2 nights in lush green ubud. I am sure you would have heard from many people about other hotels apart from those in your list. Is Jimbaran four season better than Tugu given the fact that both are beach resorts and i am looking for only one. Also what is your take on Ayana resort ( who’s bar is highly recommended ) and Komenyeka in Ubud. Please let me know few more names which i can consider.
    thanks for your time

    • Noah Lederman

      Hi Dee,
      Congratulations.
      I loved all of the hotels on this list. As a surfer, I was in heaven at Tugu. Our room was incredible, the food was delicious, and the waves and empty beach were right out front. But our suite at the Four Seasons was more incredible. The private outdoor courtyard with a pool provided the most spectacular views of the bay. While the beach famous for seafood restaurants is just below the Four Seasons, I found each establishment to be a bit overrated and I was sick of the restaurants and service after three days.
      We visited Ayana to go to the Rock Bar for sunset, but the line was so long. We waited for more than an hour before realizing that we were not going to get in until it was dark out, so we just watched the sunset from the cliff. While guests of the hotel get moved to the front of the line, it was a much busier place than Tugu or the Four Seasons, which I didn’t love.
      Have a great honeymoon. Let me know what you decide.

  6. Jeng

    Hi Noah, Great tips – thanks! I’m going to a place that offers a lot of local culture (market and wares), yoga, swimming, and massages, in between enjoying the native cuisine. My hubby will go anywhere I’ll be happy (secret of a successful marriage – going 25 this year!). Cheers. 🙂

  7. Cat

    Great article. I’m about to plan a 7 day honeymoon to Bali in October and I’m looking to keep it cheap but amazing. I want to do massages and all that pampering sort of stuff. Do you have any shopping recommendations or places that pamper on the cheap? Everyone says Bali is less expensive once there, and I’m trying to find where I can get an understanding of what the costs will be. Best hotel prices etc? Please respond as I’m trying to book asap. Again, thanks for the reviews – I’ve made note of those hotels. Just wondering how their prices compare generally for stay in Bali. Thanks,
    Cat

    • Noah Lederman

      If you’re looking to do a honeymoon in Bali on the cheap, you’ll certainly be able to find ways to save money. While the massages in the resorts are wonderful, you can get an incredible massage outside of the hotels for a fraction of the price. For instance, in Ubud, just a few shops down from the Yoga Barn there was this great little spa, where I paid $11 for one of the best massages that I had on the trip. (I’ve had cheaper massages, but they tend to be bad.) Ubud also has great, inexpensive shopping, from storefronts to markets. You’ll also find a lot of shopping between Kuta and Seminyak, however, those areas are busier. So if you’re looking for a laid back, romantic honeymoon, you might just want to visit Kuta and Seminyak for the day. As for hotels, I can recommend booking through Agoda for the best deals. (That’s what I used throughout Southeast Asia.) Here’s my affiliate link. (Booking through this link will cost you nothing more and I’ll get a small piece of Agoda’s take.)

  8. Melati

    Great post Noah. Many hand-picked romantic resorts are available in Bali. You gt what you want including this amazing full packages luxurious relaxing http://hanginggardensubud.com/spa/full-menu/

  9. kerry woods

    Interesting post. There are many resorts and villas suitable for anyone looking to honeymoon in Bali. you can even do weddings of unique, with the adaptation of existing cultural traditions or you have a concept of its own. there are plenty of accommodation for this. This is why the Bali tourist appeal to anyone in the world. nice post. thanks.
    kerry woods recently posted…Visa on Arrival for BaliMy Profile

  10. Kyle Brady

    Thanks for sharing your experiences. I’m currently planning an 11-day honeymoon in Bali. Mind sharing the names of the six resorts that you wouldn’t recommend?

    • Noah Lederman

      I would use caution when booking in Nusa Dua. While there are some gems there, there are certain waterfronts that are extremely crowded and other properties try to cater to everyone. For instance, the Grand Mirage is one to avoid. Properties that I would avoid are too close to congested areas like Kuta because it’s going to be hard to get that honeymoon feel. While Ubud is a great little city, I’d opt to stay just outside, especially for a honeymoon.

  11. Emma

    Very useful article for honeymooners looking a place to stay in Bali. We booked our honeymoon via http://7.holiday and stayed in Puri Sebatu Resort villa in Ubud. I can definitely recommend this villa and this company. Thanks for sharing your experience.

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