Top Tips for Visiting Bali from a Luxury Travel Insider

Top Tips for Visiting Bali from the Head of One of Its Most Luxurious Hotels

KATYA HERTING IS NO STRANGER to the hospitality industry—or to tropical locales. The German native studied in Ecuador, went on to work at Swissôtel in Lima, Peru, and after a stint in Germany, made the move to Southeast Asia as hotel manager for Fairmont Singapore & Swissôtel The Stamford, a 1,261-room hotel where she was lauded for finding tech solutions to improve quality of life for guests and staff alike. From this uber macro-hotel, she went micro, and in 2019, opened the stunning 32-villa Raffles Bali that perches above Jimbaran Bay.  

Katya Herting, Raffles Bali
Katya Herting, general manager of Raffles Bali. Courtesy of Raffles Bali

“Bali is a destination that I always loved, it has a majestic feeling that is uniquely personal,” she says. Part of her mission at the hotel has been to bring that feeling into guest experience, and create more jobs for locals through promoting farmers and suppliers from throughout the Indonesian archipelago.  

To that end, Herting has been working with head chef of Rumari restaurant, Gaetan Biesuz, to launch a new fine-dining series called “Rumari and Friends” that showcases Indonesian produce and ingredients. The series sees the restaurant partnering with guest chefs from all over the world—Paulo Airaudo from Michelin-star Amelia in San Sebastian, for one—collaborating on flavors and specialty dishes.  

Rumari also works with local fisherman Pak Oka, who has been able to start his own business—Fresh Fish Bali—thanks to ongoing support from Raffles. “We take working local farmers, fisherfolk and artisans very seriously at Rumari and throughout the hotel,” says Biesuz, who is quick to add that Pak has the best quality fish in Indonesia. 

Aside from recommending a stay at Raffles and a meal at Rumari, of course, GM Herting has some personal travel tips for visitors to Bali. 

Bali Travel Tips from Raffles GM Katya Herting 

Three must-have experiences in Bali? 


Buyan Lake in Bedugul.
Buyan Lake in Bedugul. Photo by Nora Carol Photography/Getty Images

“One of my favorite places to visit in Bali is the picturesque Buyan Lake in Bedugul. Nestled amidst the lush greenery of the highlands, this serene lake offers breathtaking views and a tranquil atmosphere that’s perfect for relaxation and reflection.” 


Bali Travel Tips
Devotees bathe in the holy water of a waterfall. Photo by Agung Parameswara/Getty Images

“I suggest exploring Taman Beji Griya, especially for a water purification ritual—a quintessential experience in Bali. It’s a serene retreat for nature lovers and seekers of tranquility, offering an intimate experience amidst cascading waterfalls and natural pools.” 


“I highly recommend trying tuna satay with freshly caught tuna – lending a little ‘twist’ to the traditional chicken or pork satay. The best place to savor this delightful dish is at Warung Pesinggahan, located near the iconic Goa Lawah temple in Klungkung. The succulent skewers of tuna grilled to perfection are a true local delight.” 

Three essential insider tips for coming to Bali? 


“Explore each region at a leisurely pace. Bali has so much to offer, catering to a diverse range of interests. Whether you’re into adventure sports, cultural immersion, or simply lounging on the beach, there’s something for everyone.” 


“Secondly, if you’re venturing outside the tourist hotspots, it’s wise to prepare enough local cash for food, snacks, and entry fees in advance. While many places in Bali accept credit cards, some smaller establishments may prefer cash payments. Additionally, pre-arranging transport to your desired destinations ensures a hassle-free experience and allows you to make the most of your time on the island.” 


“Lastly, it’s crucial to respect the local culture and practice responsible tourism. Bali holds deep-rooted traditions and customs, and visitors should strive to learn about and appreciate them during their stay. By being mindful of your impact on the environment and local communities, you can contribute to the preservation of Bali’s natural beauty and cultural heritage for future generations to enjoy.”;  doubles from USD920.

Lede and hero image courtesy of Accor.

Written By

Megan Leon

Megan Leon

Megan Leon is a Bangkok-based freelance food writer and culinary collaborator for emerging restaurants and young talent. In addition to writing for various publications, she also works closely with local chefs, restaurateurs and small-scale suppliers to bring their stories to life through narratives and photography.

Beyond her editorial work, Megan ..Read More


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