A Backpacker's Guide To Bali, Indonesia - Updated 2022

backpackers guide to bali

Have an upcoming backpacking trip to Bali or contemplating about doing one soon? Then read below to find out about the best attractions for backpackers in Bali as well as get a rundown on some of the best places to stay at. Also get some travel tips when backpacking in Bali so that you know how to gain maximum satisfaction on your trip. Bali is known as the “island of the Gods” and also a backpacker parade. With a wide range of affordable accommodation options, deliciously cheap food and a wild party scene which will be of interest to a backpacker, it is not surprising that you would choose Bali as a backpacking destination. So, continue reading below to equip yourself with some useful information on how to backpack in Bali.

1. Hike Mount Batur (from USD 65.0)

Highlights of this tour include scaling the peak of Mount Batur as well as watching the sunrise from atop the mountain. In this tour, you will also get the chance to see the volcanic crater. This tour is ideal for a backpacker as you do not need to depend on co-travelers to undertake it. You will have an early morning pick up from your hotel in Bali and reach Mount Batur in time to take in the wonderful views of the sun rising. You will be accompanied by a local guide who is well versed in the region. After you arrive at the top, you will be able to enjoy breakfast amidst the amazing views of the surrounding area. After sunrise, take a leisurely walk around the crater of the volcano before you cross a hill of lava and black sand. The tour ends with a trek down the mountain and a stop at a coffee plantation before you are dropped back at your accommodation.

Sunrise in Bali: Mount Batur Hiking and Coffee Plantation Tour

Duration: 10 hours

153 reviews

2. Try river rafting (from USD 30.0)

Do you love the water but do not simply want to spend the day on the beach? If you feel adventurous and do not have the right company, then join this river rafting tour. If you are a backpacker and are on a budget, then this tour will not burn a hole in your pocket. Join your local instructor and other rafting enthusiasts on a full day white-water rafting experience on Ayung River. During your rafting expedition, you will paddle past cascading waterfalls and tropical rainforests on a 16-km (10-mile) adventure. As you do so, do not miss out looking for the beautifully decorated Hindu shrines and bamboo bridges. At the end of the rafting adventure, you will be brought to enjoy a lovely Indonesian buffet lunch. All equipment and round-trip transfers from Ubud hotels are included in the tour price.

Bali White Water Rafting at Ayung River

Duration: 4 to 6 hours

1 review

3. Traditional Kecak dance performance (from USD 89.0)

Want to explore the traditional culture of Bali whilst being on a tight budget? If you are a backpacker looking for a local experience, then join this local fire dance evening tour. With a round-trip transfer, you will be able to immerse yourself in the colorful culture of Indonesia. Get drawn by the captivating rhythm of the Fire Dance, the Kecak Dance and the Saghyang Dance, all of them which feature dancing deriving from an ancient tribal culture. This dance lasts for two and a half hours.

An Evening of Bali Traditional Dance

Duration: 4 hours

43 reviews

4. Board a hot air balloon in Ubud (from USD 143.0)

Who says as a backpacker, you can’t have fun? Of course, you can indulge in some amount of luxury with this hot-air balloon experience in Ubud which comes with meals. Visit the Chedi Club in Bali and board the only hot-air balloon in Bali. After takeoff, you will be able to enjoy panoramic views of the Tanah Gajah area, take beautiful pictures of the lush tropical forests of Ubud as well as take in the gorgeous views of Mount Agung. This ride lasts for eight minutes but memories are formed for a lifetime. After you disembark from the balloon, enjoy breakfast and then visit the Goa Gajah temple, Ubud Palace and Ubud market.

Ubud Hot Air Balloon Ride

Duration: 8 minutes

5. Stay at Canggu Beach Apartments (from USD 90)

Canggu beach apartments are one of the best in Canggu. These apartments are air-conditioned and located close to the Batu Bolong Beach. This aparthotel is affordably priced and thus suited for backpackers on a budget. The rooms also feature a kitchen which allows backpackers to make their meals without having to eat out each day. Guests can make use of the outdoor pool and also laze in the tropical garden.

Canggu Beach Apartments

Wifi Available

Address: Jalan Pantai Batu Bolong 68B
Accommodates: 4

Parking Garden Terrace Non-smoking rooms Airport shuttle Babysitting/child services Laundry Family rooms

6. Find a room at Shanti Natural Panorama View hotel (from USD 74)

This hotel is affordable and will not burn a hole in backpackers’ pockets. Starting at only 1256068.75 IDR (86 USD), this provides the utmost comfort for its guests. The property is located on Sambangan Hill and provides views of the rice fields. Surrounded by greenery, one will feel completely immersed with nature. Free parking is available on the premises. The rooms are decorated in traditional Balinese style and fully air-conditioned. At the onsite restaurants, guests can enjoy a wide range of Balinese, other Indonesian dishes and Western dishes.

Shanti Natural Panorama View Hotel

Wifi Available

Address: Desa Sambangan, Kecamatan Sukasada
Accommodates: 2

Parking Restaurant Room service Bar Garden Terrace Non-smoking rooms Airport shuttle

7. A backpacker's accommodation at Alamdini Resort Ubud (from USD 62)

Alamdini Resort Ubud is one of the best resorts in Ubud. Combining tranquility with a lush greenery, the hotel is located in the heart of Ubud. Not only is it highly affordable which would be a pleasant surprise for backpackers on a budget, but it also features comfortable rooms and amenities. Guests can use the large outdoor pool and also dine at the onsite restaurant. Free Wi-Fi is offered throughout the resort. Bike hire is available at the resort and backpackers can cycle in and around the area.

Alamdini Resort Ubud

Wifi Available

Address: Jalan Bisma
Accommodates: 2

Parking Restaurant Room service Bar 24-hour front desk Garden Terrace Non-smoking rooms

8. Le Cliff Bali (from USD 131)

Le Cliff Bali is located in beautiful Uluwatu, just a few kilometers away from Uluwatu Temple. Rooms at this hotel feature views of the mountain in the surrounding. All rooms have private bathrooms and come with basic amenities like a kettle and coffee/tea. What is more newsworthy about this hotel is that it is highly affordable given that the rooms are cliff villas. If you are a backpacker looking for a budget room yet looking for comfort, this is the accommodation to book.

Le Cliff Bali

Wifi Available

Address: Jalan Labuan Sait
Accommodates: 2

Parking Restaurant Bar Terrace Non-smoking rooms Free parking Internet services WiFi Available

9. Airport pick-up services

GrabTaxi Logo
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user GrabTaxi used under PUBLIC DOMAIN

In order to have a seamless airport to hotel transfer, you might want to arrange for a pick-up service prior to your arrival. This way, you will have someone waiting for you when you arrive at the airport in Bali. Especially if you do not understand Bahasa Indonesia or dislike haggling, pre-arranging a pick up is the way to go.

Grab Taxi

Website: Grab Taxi

10. Use 'Gojek' service app

Source: Pexels

A useful application to have on your mobile phone is ‘Gojek.’ This is one affordable way of getting around Bali, which can be notorious for its bad traffic. With this app, you will enter your pick-up address and destination. The driver will then arrive on his motorbike within the estimated time. You will be given a helmet and ladies will have the option to use a hair mask. You could even use Gojek to deliver food you have ordered from restaurants, right to your hotel doorstep.

Gojek Indonesia

Website: Gojek Indonesia

A fascinating backpacking expedition

Enjoy a unique backpacking vacation in Bali by following out guide above. From the best sites to visit to the ideal accommodation of a backpacker such as yourself, you won’t miss out on any of the fun while in Bali.

Disclosure: Trip101 selects the listings in our articles independently. Some of the listings in this article contain affiliate links.

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I'm a mother to 2 wonderful young kids and enjoy travelling with my family. Having travelled to many countries across the world, I am particularly keen on trying out new cuisine and sightseeing...Read more

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