Kintamani: Your Guide To One Of Bali’s Most Underrated Spots

The Kintamani area is a great place for a day trip or even for a longer visit if you intend to climb Mount Batur, one of the island’s two active volcanoes.

We think it’s one of the most underappreciated and underrated spots in Bali. Island life here in Kintamani is much more authentic than it is elsewhere because the area has yet to see much in the way of development.

Here are the reasons why we think everyone should visit Kintamani and what they can expect when they get there.

Where Is Kintamani Village?

KINTAMANI FINNS BALI MAP

Kintamani Regency and the village are in the Northeast of Bali not far from Ubud.

How To Get To Kintamani?

The best way to get to Kintamani is to either hire a private car and driver or to use one of the tour companies that provide tours of the region.

We don’t recommend driving a scooter as the roads in this area are not in very good condition and can be worse during the rainy season.

When Is The Best Time To Visit Kintamani?

Landscape view of volcano mount Gunung Batur, Kintamani, Bali
Picture Source: envato.com

There is no bad time to visit Bali or to visit Kintamani. However, we should point out that Mount Batur is best climbed during the dry season. This is because you are less likely to have your view obscured by clouds on the mountain at sunrise. So, if sunrise trekking is why you’re coming – come in the dry season.

Otherwise, the area is a little more humid and hotter in the wet season, but given that the highlands have a cooler climate than the rest of the island, it’s not really a big deal. You will still see plenty of sunshine and hotels and transport are usually cheaper in the wet season.

What To Expect At Kintamani?

Kintamani is a picture postcard beautiful place that will remind long-term visitors of what Bali used to be like before the arrival of mass tourism.

The green rainforests, crystalline volcanic lakes, and active volcano provide a spectacular backdrop to any holiday in Bali.

What To See In Kintamani?

Lake Batur

Batur
Picture Source: envato.com

Lake Batur is nearly 65 meters deep and was formed in an ancient volcanic eruption.

The waters here are crystal clear and the air is so fresh and pleasant, particularly if you’ve been in the Southern beach towns or Denpasar, that you won’t want to leave.

Mount Batur (Gunung Batur)

View of Batur Caldera and Gunung Abang from mount Agung in Bali
Picture Source: istockphoto.com

Mount Batur (Gunung Batur in the local language) is one of two active volcanoes in Bali (Mount Batur is joined by its larger companion Mount Agung in this respect).

Hiking on Mount Batur is one of the big draws of Kintamani. The view from the summit of Mount Batur is amazing and the sunrise is out of this world.

Kehen Temple

Stairway leading to the Hindu temple of Pura Kehen in Bali, Indonesia
Picture Source: envato.com

This out-of-the-way temple has a very attractive split gate entrance which allows for some amazing Instagram shots.

There is a huge banyan tree in the centre of the grounds and it’s a lovely place to spend some time in meditation or contemplating the mysteries of life.

Kintamani Highland

This is a lovely area with free private parking surrounded by restaurants and with an observation deck to see the volcano opposite.

It’s the ideal place to stop for lunch while exploring the area.

Batur Geopark

This is a great little museum that endeavours to introduce the visitor to the local area, its culture and heritage plus providing insight into how the volcanic soil of the mountain has had such a huge impact on local agriculture.

Luwak Civet Coffee Farm

Fresh roasted kopi luwak coffee
Picture Source: envato.com

We need to point out that some people feel that Kopi Luwak is a form of animal cruelty, however, others disagree and given that this form of coffee originates in Indonesia, if you want to try it, it’s probably best tried here.

The coffee fruit is ingested by a civet cat and then the bean is expelled unharmed, but with its flavour enhanced by its trip through the cat’s digestive system.

Kintamani Plateau

This is a very pleasant viewpoint where you can stop and take photographs of the stunning local area.

However, it’s also surrounded by some very persistent souvenir sellers.

Mount Abang

This is the third-highest mountain in Bali and an extinct volcano. It’s great for climbing and trekking but be warned, there is a fairly steep entrance fee to the mountain of about 500,000 IDR.

Penulisan Temple

This is, allegedly, the highest-situated temple on the island but there are only 350-400 steps to the top which makes it pretty easy to get to.

The view is excellent and the temple makes for some lovely photographs.

Trunyan Cemetary

This is one of those places that you really want to see, or one you really don’t want to see.

It’s a lakeside cemetery with the skulls of many of the dead on display. To get there, you must hire a private boat.

Ulun Danu Batur Temple

Pura Ulun Danu Batur Temple, Bali, Indonesia
Picture Source: envato.com

This is one of the most spectacular temples on the island and sits on the waters of the lake. Take a camera, it’s amazing.

Kayu Selem Temple

This very colourful temple sees very few visitors and you will be expected to wear a shawl and sarong to enter. It’s worth it, if you love Balinese culture.

Segara Natural Hot Springs

This is a popular local hot springs (see our Bali Hot Springs Guide for more ideas for hot springs on the island) arrangement that offers a few basic facilities for those looking to jump into the warmed-by-volcano waters.

Hulundanu Batur Songan Temple

A small temple overshadowed by its more famous neighbour on the shores of Lake Batur. Be prepared for a bumpy ride there but it’s quite a fascinating place and worth a visit.

Toya Devasya Hot Spring Waterpark

With a large collection of hot springs pools including a hot spring infinity pool, this place is a bit different from the other hot springs, it’s also much more expensive.

The Local Market

Every 3 days, they hold an open market in Kintamani Village and it’s about as authentically Balinese as it’s possible to be.

Get haggling to ensure you get the best deal on the freshest local produce around!

What To Do In Kintamani?

Mount Batur Sunrise Trekking

Landscape view of volcano mount Gunung Batur, Kintamani, Bali
Picture Source: envato.com

The Mount Batur Sunrise is legendary in Bali and if you can make it to the caldera (crater rim), you will be rewarded with stunning views sprinkled with orange clouds over the island below.

People travel from all over the world to climb Mount Batur and it’s not the most challenging hike in Bali. As long as you are reasonably physically fit, you should have no problem tackling Mount Batur.

However, Mount Batur should not be confused with Mount Agung, as climbing Mount Agung is a serious undertaking and is the sort of thing that should only be tackled by experienced climbers.

One of our favourite moments at the top of Mount Batur is cooking eggs for breakfast in the steam vents of the volcano, that’s not something you get to do every day! Great food always tastes best when you cook it yourself, right?

Cycling Tour

This area is also very popular for cycling tours. The ancient village nearby is a wonderful place to visit.

Where To Stay In Kintamani

There aren’t a huge number of places to stay in and around Kintamani Village as it’s quite remote, but all of these places are quite lovely and come with a great view of Mount Batur as standard:

Oculus Bali

This is one of the more upmarket hotels in the area and has 5-levels that are all designed to showcase the best views of the mountain.

Where Is It? Jl. Windu Sara, Kedisan, Kec. Kintamani, Kabupaten Bangli, Bali 80652, Indonesia

Black Lava Camp

If you fancy a bit of glamping by the mountains then this should be your idea of a good time. The road to the camp is a bit bumpy though.

Where Is It? Jalan Bukit Payang No.88, Desa Batur Tengah, Kintamani Banjar Bugbugan, Central Batur, Kintamani, Bangli Regency, Bali 80652, Indonesia

 

 

Tira Vilagna Suites & Spa

This gorgeous resort sits in a valley with a local conservation project and it’s surrounded by virgin pines. It’s the perfect place for a rest or as a base for hiking the surrounding countryside.

Where Is It? Jalan Shanti, Padang Mun, Kec. Kintamani, Kabupaten Bangli, Bali 80652, Indonesia

Pramana Zahill Kintamani

This is a very pleasant retreat on a cliffside with a view over the pine forest below. They offer free transport and private parking.

Where Is It? Jl. Raya Kintamani, Batur Sel., Kec. Kintamani, Kabupaten Bangli, Bali 80652, Indonesia

Bobocabin Kintamani

This is an interesting eco-resort that requires the ability to walk up steep slopes with stairs and gravel. If you want to feel like you’re really in the “great outdoors” this is the place to be.

Where Is It? Jl. Mundukan Ngandang, Songan A, Kec. Kintamani, Kabupaten Bangli, Bali 80652, Indonesia

Villa Jempana

This lovely lakefront villa is near Lake Batur and it’s a very pleasant place to stay, the infinity pool is really luxurious too.

Where Is It? jalan raya songan gang jempana nomer, kintamani, Jl. Jempana Jl. Songan No.2, Songan A, Kec. Kintamani, Bali 80366, Indonesia

Batur Volcano Guesthouse

This hotel has its own hot spring swimming pools! What more could you ask for? The food here is great too.

Where Is It? Q92V+5H4, Jl. Pendakian Gn. Batur, Batur Tengah, Kec. Kintamani, Kabupaten Bangli, Bali 80652, Indonesia

Where To Eat In Kintamani

Eating in the shadow of Mount Batur is always fun and these are our top picks of the local cafes and restaurants.

Montana Del Cafe

This is a lovely local restaurant with some of the friendliest and most helpful staff around. The views here are incredible and the Furikake Rice Bowl’s pretty good too.

Where Is It? Penelokan Main Rd No.889, South Batur, Kintamani, Bangli Regency, Bali 80652, Indonesia

Black Lava Cafe

This is a nice little place at the Black Lava Camp and if you’re in the mood for a pizza by the pool, this is the place to go for it.

Where Is It? Jalan Bukit Payang No.88, Kintamani, Kec. Kintamani, Kabupaten Bangli, Bali 80652, Indonesi

Lakeview Restaurant, Bar & Cafe

This is another restaurant with an excellent view, this time with some pan-Asian fusion food on offer. We like the little rice hearts they make.

Where Is It? P988+M4R, Penelokan Main Rd, Central Batur, Kintamani, Bangli Regency, Bali 80652, Indonesia

Ritatkala Cafe Batur

This is a popular stop for cycle tours, but that’s because it’s got amazing views from the terrace. Their banana bread is superb.

Where Is It? Jl. Raya Kintamani, Batur Sel., Kec. Kintamani, Kabupaten Bangli, Bali 80652, Indonesia

Warung Mujung Sari

A nice little coffee shop that uses local coffee beans that have a very pleasant kick. It’s very cheap and their mujair nyat nyat is delicious.

Where Is It? P8JV+J27, South Batur, Kintamani, Bangli Regency, Bali 80652, Indonesia

Kintamani Is Also A Breed Of Balinese Dog

To be precise, Kintamani is the only official dog breed that is native to Bali and it is thought to have originated in the Kintamani Region.

Until 1926, these dogs were the only dog species in Bali and were able to roam the island unchallenged and without any interbreeding.

FAQs

Is Kintamani Worth Visiting?

Yes! In fact, we think it’s one of the hidden gems on the island. While facilities are quite basic around Kintamani Village, it’s worth noting that it’s as close to traditional Balinese life as it’s really possible to find here today.

Climbing up to the Mount Batur Caldera is a very memorable experience and the stunning natural scenery of the area is always worth seeing.

One of the best things about the Kintamani District as a whole, is that because it’s not seeing huge volumes of tourists, yet, it’s very affordable and it’s definitely worth adding to your Bali holiday itinerary.

Is Kintamani An Active Volcano? Are Mount Batur And Kintamani The Same?

Technically Kintamani is an area and a village, it’s not a volcano. However, it’s fair to say that some people in Bali do call Mount Batur, “Kintamani Volcano”.

That means, yes, it’s an active volcano as Mount Batur and Mount Agung are the only two active volcanoes in Bali.

Is Mt Batur A Super Volcano?

No. Mount Batur is an active volcano but it is not a super volcano. There are only 20 known supervolcanoes in the world and Bali is not home to any of them.

Sumatra, which is also in Indonesia, is home to the Toba Caldera and when that erupted around 75,000 years ago, it is thought to have produced between 439 and 631 million tons of sulfuric acid!

It would have produced up to 13,200 cubic kilometres of ejected material too!

It is thought to have led to a “global volcanic winter” that led to 10 years of serious problems for the planet and a period of 1,000 years of cooling following the eruption!

This may have caused a temporary bottleneck in human evolution!

Does Kintamani Have Hot Springs?

Yes. In fact, there are several sets of hot springs around Mount Batur and they are very cheap and easy to access.

If you fancy a healing bath in mineral-heavy water, Kintamani is a great place for it.

How Often Does Mount Batur Erupt?

Mount Batur erupts fairly frequently. However, the recorded history of eruptions on the mountain only began in 1804 and the last eruption of Mount Batur was in 2000.

The most powerful eruption in recent history was the one in 1963, which resulted in the lava field which can be viewed from Kintamani Village today.

How To Book A Holiday In Kintamani?

If you want to see Kintamani Village, Mount Batur, Lake Batur, etc. then we recommend you contact the amazing people at the Bali Res Centre.

That’s a locally owned and operated travel agent that specializes in Balinese holidays and can ensure that you get to see everything you want to see and stay in great places too.

They can also arrange flights, transport and accommodation options and all at a very competitive price. When you do business with the Bali Res Centre, you’re directly supporting the local economy too!

Final Thoughts On Kintamani

Kintamani is a lovely place with scenic surroundings and breathtaking views of one of the sacred mountains of Bali.

It’s not a busy tourist destination but rather a place where you can get in touch with Balinese culture and enjoy freshly ground coffee beans in a local coffee shop on a farm.

We’d recommend that everyone who visits Bali spends a little time in Kintamani Village, particularly, after they’ve visited the world’s best beach club, FINNS, in Canggu – it makes for a wonderful change of pace.