Bali, the famed Island of the Gods, with its varied landscape of hills and mountains, rugged coastlines and sandy beaches, lush rice terraces and barren volcanic hillsides all providing a picturesque backdrop to its colorful, deeply spiritual and unique culture, stakes a critical claim to be paradise on earth. With world-class surfing and diving, a large number of cultural, historical and archaeological attractions, and an enormous selection of accommodations, this really is among the world’s most popular island destinations. The culture of Bali is among slow pace, the folks are very tolerant and welcoming to visitors, however, they’re also very modest and polite people so dress modestly and behave modestly. Daytime temperatures are pleasant, varying between 20-33⁰ C year-round. From December to March, the west monsoon would bring heavy showers and high humidity, but days remain often sunny with the rains starting in the late afternoon or evening and passing quickly.Gunung Kawi is an 11th-century complex of courtyards and cliff-carved shrines along the Pakerisan River, near Ubud. Theories and myths surround the ancient Hindu site—legend has it that a ferocious warrior named Kebo Iwa carved the intricate reliefs along with his fingernails, for instance—which contributes to its allure.Sukawati Art Market is just a cheaper and quieter alternative to nearby Ubud Market and other popular locales in southern Bali. There is an impressive array of handcrafted artworks for sale, from framed paintings of local farm life to large wooden sculptures of Hindu deities.On an island packed with natural beauty, Mount Baturand its serene surroundings might be the most dramatic destination of all. The 5,600-foot volcanic marvel contains Bali’s largest crater lake—a wonderful cycling site and slopes ripe for hiking with picturesque villages along the way.This tourist magnet might appear to be an open-air zoo attraction, but Ubud Monkey Forest is truly a holy site with a 1000-plus band of long-tailed Balinese macaques within their natural habitat.Making up the main West Bali National Park, Menjangan Island is just a tiny, less-trodden gem eight miles off the northwestern coast of Bali. Nicknamed “Deer Island” for the numerous Javan rusa deer ambling about, it’s uncrowded and largely uninhabited, and its fringing coral reefs ensure it is among the best diving and snorkeling spots in Greater Bali.TirtaEmpul (“Holy Spring”), a significant sacred water temple for significantly more than 1,000 years, has a warren of shrines, gates, courtyards, and purification pools where Balinese Hindus “baptize” themselves underneath a succession of waterspouts.