The air is crisp and heady. The aroma from the fresh greens clouding you, intoxicating. The wind softly brushes your cheeks, making your sarong flail ever so lightly. You’re subtly aware of the soft touch from the wave that’s gently tickling your toes. Nature’s readied the sky in a spirited wardrobe of colours. There’s a gentle melody created by crooning in the background. This is the moment you’ve been dreaming of. 

And voila! There comes the tap on the shoulder. Demanding a rude snapback to reality. How could you, even for a moment forget about the snaking queue. 

The world’s kind of unforgiving and we know it. Welcome to the world of Instagram – where reality is mirrored through the perception of others. To save you disappointment, we are here to bust some myths. So, when you travel next for the things you see on Insta, you know just what to expect. 

Do note, this post will primarily bust the myths of the most exotic instagrammed places in Bali. 


Gate of Heaven


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A thousand-step climb takes you to one of the most ‘Grammable’ gates of heaven. If you’re heading there for a stack of cray pictures, where you’re silhouetted against the majestic Mount Agung, be prepared for some cardio and cutting that sleep short. Well, if you do fail to wake up in the wee hours, don’t blame us if the mood turns edgy, owing to the two-hour-long wait (it could be longer). The sweat trickling down the brow won’t bring any joy either. Yep, Bali is humid throughout the year and standing under the beating sun for one insta-worthy picture is definitely no fun. But if you still go for it, the trick photography will ensure the picture turns out perfect, complete with your reflection in the non-existent water body. Want the secret behind this too? Catch hold of the kind man with a mirror (he might be perched under his umbrella, unnecessarily close to you), which he places ever so strategically under the lens of the camera to give you that perfect mid-air jump shot. 


Floating Breakfast


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Err..Where do we even start with this one? There’s a reason we’ve dedicated an entire post to ‘Whether to float or not in Bali’ and we’d assume that’s a fair measure but nonetheless…the perfect pool setting, created by our oh, so favourite influencer, is fairly fudged. Sorry if that stung. We’re sure you’re not a fan of drinking some chlorine infused water, or worse, if the food crumbs decide to plop right in for a little swim. Neither is it fun chasing a tray that’s playing hard to get – especially when you’re trying to get that perfect shot! Argghhh, right? 



Glamping in a Bubble Room


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Let’s start with crediting Instagram a little – it definitely does the job of faking, oops, we meant making the world a prettier place. The Bubble room (a large beach ball) – now, who wouldn’t want to live in a bubble? Especially when it sits pretty by the shore of a quaint beach. Well, of course, you should but read on before you decide on this. For starters this bubble’s made of plastic! They offer no privacy (duh!), no real security (real reviews), and here’s the worst of it – it leaves you with free, unwanted taste. Remember how blowing balloons tasted, well, yeah, that’s what staying in a bubble literally is like. And did we mention, there are no showers or toilets there? They’re all placed in the jungle area close by. To the brave who can wade through it after dark – you deserve an award, all others must learn the art of patience (you’d have to wait till the sun comes up). If you’re really hung up on getting a taste of it (not literally), go there early in the morning, get your insta-shots and leave. ‘Cause the bubble tends to get hot enough to melt on you (not literally but there’s a reason we don’t live in homes made of plastics) during the day. 



Bali Swing


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With wind in your hair, and your feet in the air, the Bali swings seem so promising. There’s no denying the view from here is breathtaking (soak in all the greens, while it feels like you’re floating in heaven – even if it’s a short lived). But there’s a little something to know. Much like the Gates of Heaven, the queue and wait for the swing is long and boring. And the experience is expensive. The swing is so slow that one push is perhaps all you’ll get and you’re done. So you either hire a great photographer or have a very dedicated boyfriend. And be sure to test his photography skills on the person who goes ahead of you. You can’t afford to lose out on this precious moment after all this now, can you?


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All right, here’s the most bizarre entry (we save the best for last) – it’s borderline obnoxious even, but it exists. If you plan on getting the ideal Instagram picture of your partner holding your hand – as you recreate the magic of looking upon the endless beauty of Ubud’s rice terraces – but well you’re just as single as you were this time last year, make use of a fake arm Selfie stick instead. Yes, it’s a thing. Well, it’ll be a little secret that the world will never know. 


We at Ithaka want to make sure that what you see is what you get. So we’re sorry if we’ve hurt your feelings (well, kinda).

But if you’re looking for an authentic trip that’ll truly leave you with a bag full of memories to treasure, then go on and get the Ithaka app. Chat with a travel influencer who’s familiar with Bali. And let her / him plan your trip for you. Psst, you’ll surely get some offbeat places to explore.