Weekend warriors, music lovers, and foodies, gather ’round. We’ve sifted through all the events planned for this month and picked out our favorites. Music, parties/nightlife, food, and in arts and culture. October is more than just about Halloween parties (though we’re a fan of those too).
We update our events guide throughout the month as more stuff goes public, so keep checking back for new entries.
It feels like W came out of nowhere with its Wake Up Call music festival, which looks like it’ll bring some pretty big (whaddup Angus & Julia) and fun (hello, Tove Lo!) names to Bali. The festival is heavily promotional for the W hotel chain and is being held across several “hot” cities where W has properties like Barcelona and Dubai: It’s selling packages wherein guests can book rooms over the festival weekend and get tix included in the price, but unless you’re a high roller and can afford a IDR13.5 million (US$897.43) for a 2-bedroom villa (that’s all that’s available as of writing time), then you gotta shell out a pretty penny for separate entry to the Bali festival.
Single day pass is IDR800k (US$53.19), while the two-day pass will set you back IDR1.3 million (US$86.42). Sam Feldt, FKJ, Klingande, and Nora En Pure are some of the other acts, to name a few.
We usually avoid crowded Kuta if we can help it, but sometimes a special event or shopping trip warrants a visit — in this case, it’s for the music. Hard Rock Cafe Bali has been around for 25 years and to celebrate, the tourist town institution is putting on a show with Indonesian rockstars Andra and the Backbone, followed by a Dj set from Diskophorosis.
American DJ duo Soul Clap will be hitting the decks for the Oct. 7 Sunday party at Omnia, the day club that’s got one of the best views of all the party venues in the land. If you don’t mind shelling out IDR300k (US$19.93) on entry and you’re into the whole splashy, opulent scene, this is your party. Mixing funk, hip hop disco, house, and then some, Soul Clap looks like they’ll turn down for what.
One of Bali’s freshest beachfront venues, SugarSand over in Double Six, is throwing its grand opening. Touting the event as a mini festival, the beach club has a day lined up of DJs and drinks. We aren’t ones to commit too far in advance, but they are offering attendees a free cocktail on arrival for registering ahead of the event. Otherwise, you got to go between 3:30-4:30pm for free flowing cocktails.
We’re sure news of more Halloween parties will surface throughout the month, but one of the early contenders for our destination of getting turnt on the Day of the Dead would have to be the Lawn and Lovesong Horror Show party in Canggu. Headlining the party will be Peking Duk, an Australian EDM duo who not only apparently has great taste in Asian poultry dishes, but who are also flamboyant entertainers, as evidenced by their “Wasted” tour in Oz. Like any proper Halloween shindig, it is a costume party.
Bikini restaurant, home to some of the more out-there plates and daring mixology, is putting on a pop-up multi-course dinner. The restaurant’s own kiwi chef Jethro Vincent will be doing a New Zealand produce-driven meal with guest star James Stapley, who is also a follower of the local ingredient centric trend. A kiwi as well (hence the whole theme of the evening), Stapley was the executive chef at his country’s Bistro Gentil, a recipient of one white hat from the Cuisine Good Food Awards, and is the chef-owner of Kika in Wanaka, who Cuisine Magazine listed as a Top 100 restaurant in New Zealand. In other words, dude can cook.
The Bali Vegan Festival, which, shocker — is all about vegan food and lifestyle, is back at it for another year. Whether you’re vegan or a meat-eater but vegan curious, they’re still going to let you in. The event has a free “Vegan Village” space with local vendors serving up vegan concoctions (you know there’s a lot in Ubud). All about proving that veganism extends beyond just food, there will also be booth with vegan clothing, handicrafts, jewelry, and beauty brands, as well as sustainability-focused charities. Outside of the village will be special (read paid) events at other venues including talks, music, and other “community activities.”
The Bali Vegan Festival has stuck to Ubud since its launch in 2015, but this year they’re heading out to Bali’s second most healthy hood, Canggu for a second festival weekend. Watch out Bali, the vegans are taking over (we are not even really kidding here). Similar to its OG event in Ubud, the festival will involve local vegan-friendly vendors from food to beauty brands in a free eco-village (set at Jl. Neleyan) with the additional option to join special (aka ticketed) events like cooking classes, workshops, demos, et cetera. Just a heads up, a single day pass is US$85, but you can also a buy two-day pass for US$215, or get access to all six days between both venues (Canggu and Ubud) for US$420.
Wednesdays – Artotel free flow wine
This one’s for all the fellow wine-os in Bali fed up with paying an arm and a leg for wine (or those who plan their next intake of vino when waiting to leave the country to pick up a decent bottle at the duty free). Artotel in Sanur has a two-hour free flow wine special for IDR150k (US$9.97) with four labels on Wednesdays. Alternatively, if hops are more your thing, they do a beer version every Thursday for the same price, same amount of free flow time. Or, just do a double header, we won’t judge (but please be responsible and hire a ride home).
Since it got started in 2015, Miniknio has been all about getting the work of independent short-makers out there and making short films more accessible to the local masses. The festival is a week packed with shorts, mostly from Indonesia and Southeast Asia, but also a wider international selection. Pop-up cinemas, talks, and awards are on the agenda.
24-28 Ubud Writers Festival
Ubud’s going to be packed as usual for the UWRF, Southeast Asia’s biggest literary festival. The five-day event is targeted towards literature-lovers and culture-junkies, with panel discussions, workshops, dinners, and other special events. One of the headlining speakers, Ndaba Mandela, has pulled out, but one of the panelists to look out for is for Indonesia’s badass Fisheries Minister Susi Pudjiastuti.
You’ve seen them all over YouTube, but now you can see them in person. Bali’s had TED talks in Ubud, but this year will be the first ever TEDxCanggu. Themed “Solutions to Global Problems, Impact,” the Technology, Entertainment, Design Conference has seven speakers lined up for an evening of the event’s inspirational presentations, which will be held at Deus. Issues addressed will include poverty, pollution, and smart technology, while there will also be an emphasis on solutions to these problems and their impact on communities.
Got an upcoming event you think we should know about? Send tips: email@example.com