Holidays with Kids' 10 favourite things at Club Med Bali
The resort makes for a perfect family vacation
Our idea of the perfect family holiday is lots of activities, scrumptious food,
immersive culture and quality time with loved ones. Lisa Wagstaff's recent trip to
Club Med Bali embodied all these things.
1. Water fun for everyone
Water babies are spoiled for choice at this aquatic oasis. The resort is host to three swimming pools and is situated right on the Nusa Dua beachfront. The 33-metre main pool is fun for the whole family - from splashing about in a blow up toy to joining a water aerobics class - it's always a hive of activity. Parents can visit the adults-only Zen Pool while the little ones are at the kids' club and once separation anxiety sets in all ages can play in the Splash Pool. Kayaks, stand-up paddleboards and windsurfers are all available at the beach - as well as shady cabanas and a beach bar. I assumed that with my one windsurfing attempt seven years previously I would be a world-class windsurfer - turns out this was not the case. Luckily, the resort has daily lessons and water sports instructors for aquatic activities.
As soon as I arrived in Bali, my stress melted away. The complimentary airport transfer was followed by a poolside pina colada - and my feet remained up for most of my stay. The resort has over nine hectares of manicured gardens to stroll through and day beds almost everywhere. Parents should find some time during their stay to spend some time at the Mandara Spa to enjoy its relaxation pool, hot tub, sauna and Turkish bath... mmm, I'm relaxed just thinking about it.
3. It caters for all tastebuds
Gourmet delights can make or break a resort - and Club Med Bali sure delivers. Choose between The Agung's huge international buffet, with mouth-watering Asian cuisine (I indulged in dumplings every day) and yummy Aussie classics for the kids (like the always popular fish fingers or bangers and mash) or the more formal The Deck, Gourmet Lounge. The latter's oversized sofas and late al fresco breakfasts became my 'secret spot' in the resort when I was in need of some me time, followed by the delicious espresso martini at The Kintamini Bar - which even has a kid's ladder so they can order their own mocktail.
4. Onsite activities galore
From archery to yoga, guided walks to surfing, tennis and golf lessons to squash and basketball courts, the resort has an array of onsite activities and these are always a great way for the kids to make holiday friends. A highlight for kids is definitely the flying trapeze. Soaring through the air attempting the tricks that trained performers do with ease is an exhilarating feeling and it was great seeing how quickly kids as young as four picked it up – promised giggles all around.
5. Adventure and cultural activities abound
You could easily spend your entire trip at the resort, but if your family is craving some adventure or culture there are day excursions galore to choose from, from the adrenaline-pumping to the cultural. During our stay, we had an amazing day out white water rafting down the Ayung River. The one-hour drive from the resort was half the fun - passing rice paddy fields, impressive stone carvings and Balinese people going about their day. Once on the water, our hearts were soon pumping with excitement and our guides made it a both playful and safe experience - the kids on board giggling as they taught us how to splash the rafts passing by. Other fun day out options include a jungle discovery with elephants, an Indonesian folk dance show or a visit to the picturesque Temple of Tanah Lot.
6. It's all about location, location, location
The resort is situated on a calm beachfront in Nusa Dua, located in southern Bali 30 kilometres from Denpasar and 12 kilometres from the hustle and bustle of Kuta. This peninsula is a sanctuary for families looking to take it easy and without a doubt one of the most tranquil places on the island.
7. There are kids' clubs for all cubs
Time for mum and dad to unwind? No problem. With four different kids' clubs at the resort, all ages will be kept busy and smiling, from Baby Club Med (four to 23 months) and Petit Club Med (two to three years) to Mini Club Med (four to 10 years) and Juniors' Club Med (11 to 17 years). A busy event schedule is posted daily with activities all around the resort. And when the kids finally exhaust themselves from all the fun, there are nap rooms at the club for a little lay down. Nannies are also available for more flexible babysitting times.
8. A room that suits your family's needs is guaranteed
With over 393 rooms and three accommodation types to choose from - Club, Deluxe and Suite - all travel styles are catered for here. All designed in traditional Balinese-style architecture using wood and natural colours, my room was not only beautifully decorated, but spacious and modern. Interconnecting rooms provides kids with their own area and a relaxing space for parents.
9. The friendly staff
The Balinese are known for their hospitality and the staff at Club Med Bali are as warm and welcoming as they come. During my morning run around the resort the staff would all be smiling and chorusing "Hello". The activity Gentle Organisers (GOs) in particular are a special kind of extrovert, coming from all around the world to work here; my Balinese windsurfing instructor, for instance, gave a lesson to our group in English, Japanese and Mandarin!
10. Being in Bali!
The resort is a great place to base yourself while you check out the iconic art markets and bustle of Kuta, the glamour of Seminyak, the surfing in Canggu and and stunning sunset-seafood dining at Jimbaran Bay. For ideas on what to do check our blog on the 6 best bali beachclubs for kids, or our feature story on Bali beyond Kuta and Seminyak.