Getting round in Bali – Lonely Planet

Bali is comparatively small in measurement, however it might probably take a very long time to journey throughout. Public transport is erratic, so selecting probably the most environment friendly solution to get round is essential on the “island of the gods.”

Visitors jams are widespread within the densely populated southern and central components of the island, the same old hangout for vacationers and vacationers. In outlying rural areas, the winding paddy discipline lanes and jagged chains of ridges and valleys make the island a pleasure to discover, however in addition they do a great job of slowing your tempo. Bali is a spot the place it hardly ever pays to hurry.

Two people riding a bike in Bali
Apps like Seize and Gojek make discovering a motorcycle in Bali simpler © Stephane Victor / Lonely Planet


In contrast to on neighboring Java, touring by prepare will not be an possibility on Bali. Public buses are the most typical type of transport for islanders with out their very own wheels. Buses join most Balinese cities, however in case you are making a protracted journey throughout the island, you’re prone to should make a number of adjustments, and it may be time consuming. The ever present bemo (minibuses) are the most cost effective transport out there and have a tendency to price lower than US$2 for every hour of touring. Itineraries are hardly ever mounted, and schedules are erratic. Invariably pleasant native individuals can at all times inform you at what time the subsequent bus is more than likely to cross and the place to attend.

Kura-Kura (which implies tortoise in Indonesian) is a tourist-class bus service that operates a dozen routes round southern Bali and as much as Ubud. You should purchase a ticket by way of the Kura-Kura app, on the corporate’s web site or paying while you hop on. It’s straightforward and handy, and in the event you don’t thoughts ready for the subsequent scheduled cease, it may very well be the most cost effective solution to get round. A seven-day cross that provides limitless journey on all strains prices lower than US$18. 


Low gas costs (lower than US$0.50/liter) imply that taxis are comparatively cheap on Bali, and in case you are touring with associates and like to not drive, taxis are a super possibility. Bluebird Taxis has Indonesia’s largest taxi fleet, with 23,000 automobiles, and the corporate has a desk outdoors the arrivals part at Ngurah Rai Worldwide Airport. Costs are on the excessive aspect (comparatively talking), however the journey from the airport to your lodge is a set charge, l so no want for a bout of jetlagged haggling. The MyBluebird Taxi app makes reserving and monitoring simpler, too. It’s also possible to merely hail a Bluebird on the road and pay as regular on the meter.

Seize, the Singapore-based firm that acquired Uber in Asia, is among the finest options to the issue of getting round Bali, and it’s usually about half the worth of metered taxis. Seize even has an air-conditioned lounge simply outdoors arrivals on the airport the place you possibly can cost your telephone and make a reserving. In case you are touring and sightseeing, you possibly can go for the Seize Lease system, which lets you rent a driver for “shifts” of 4, six, eight or 10 hours.

Seize and Maxim, the brand new child on the block, are markedly cheaper than common taxis and are solely “democratic,” which means that everyone – Balinese, Indonesian or international vacationer – pays the identical. Reassuring safety facets of the superb Seize app embrace route monitoring and an alert button that you would be able to hit in the event you really feel unsafe. Hyperlink the app to a bank card so that you just don’t should fiddle with money or search for change on the road. A assessment characteristic permits riders to present a thumbs-up on your driver’s angle, the cleanliness of the automobile and even the music performed.

Motorcycle taxi

Within the previous days, unofficial bike taxis generally known as ojeks (usually pushed by younger males hanging out on a avenue nook) have been the usual methodology of getting round Bali’s cities. Nowadays, apps comparable to Gojek and Seize make discovering an ojek simpler than ever.

In case you are visiting an obscure (or laborious to pronounce) handle, merely drop a pin on your vacation spot by way of the app, and there’s no have to enter into complicated explanations along with your rider. Taking a motorbike taxi usually prices roughly half the worth of a automotive. Drivers at all times carry a spare helmet for passengers. The app codes of conduct restrain their riders from the kind of reckless driving that was widespread among the many daredevil ojek drivers of yesteryear. Identical as reserving a automotive taxi, costs are mounted and displayed earlier than you verify your reserving.

Bear in mind that some villages in Bali refuse entry to Seize and Gojek to guard the revenue of their very own drivers. These roadblocks often imply that you need to stroll a brief distance to your remaining vacation spot.

Silhouette of surfers on beach, Kuta, Bali, Indonesia
Lease a automotive in Bali and get one step nearer to the area’s iconic sunsets and surf © Christian A. Baumle / 500px


It’s straightforward to underestimate distances in Bali. A journey from the airport to the farthest western level of the island (Gilimanuk) is prone to take 4 hours – extra at busy occasions – though it’s lower than 140km (87 miles) away. Bali’s roads might be difficult. Potholes and intensely slim lanes are solely a part of the issue, and the huge numbers of motorbikes imply that you’re perpetually driving in a buzzing swarm. The important thing to secure driving in Bali is to take it gradual and straightforward and to “telegraph” each maneuver as early as attainable. Final-minute swerves may end up in catastrophe.

In Indonesia, all foreigners are required to hold their nationwide driving license and a world license on them whereas driving or driving any automobile. Should you store round, you possibly can usually hire a automotive for US$15 a day. Toyota Avanzas, which might sit seven individuals with out baggage, are widespread, and Suzuki APVs vans are solely barely dearer. Taking into consideration low gas costs, this may be probably the most reasonably priced means for a bunch to get round.

Your lodge or homestay can usually advocate a dependable automotive rental firm, however Bali Automobile Rental Low-cost can also be a great place to test costs. Most automotive rental locations also can provide a driver, which prices round US$20 to US$30 per day. In case you are making multi-day journeys, you have to so as to add on meals and lodging prices for the motive force.

Solo journey within the non secular coronary heart of Bali


Greenback for greenback, Bali should be one of many world’s least expensive locations for bike rental. US$6 a day will get you a good 125cc computerized scooter, however for long-term leases (two weeks or extra), you possibly can usually haggle all the way down to round US$2. Motorbikes might be fitted with surfboard racks for just some further {dollars}.

Bear in mind that few rental sellers on the streets have insurance coverage, and an accident may very well be costly and disturbing. Respected corporations that may provide insurance coverage and on-the-road help in English embrace Bali Bike Rental and Bali Massive Bike, which has a fleet of motorbikes as much as 250cc. If you wish to improve to a good greater bike, try Bali Bike Home, which has a complete vary of sports activities bikes together with gems comparable to a Harley Davidson Softail Traditional (US$175 for a day), a Ducati Monster 795cc (US$83) or a Royal Enfield Traditional 500cc (US$25). 

Whereas guide gear-change mopeds are nonetheless broadly used, most rental scooters are usually easy-to-ride automatics. However, the busy roads of southern and central Bali are removed from ultimate locations for inexperienced drivers to hone their expertise. Overconfidence on the a part of a vacationer is usually paid for with grazes and scars – and typically worse. It’s finest to put on protecting clothes and a helmet.

Bali rice terraces
Some rice paddy trails in Bali are accessible to vacationers with disabilities and mobility wants © Misbachul Munir / Shutterstock

Accessible transportation in Bali

For vacationers with disabilities and mobility wants, Bali might be difficult. Even within the extra developed vacationer cities, comparable to Kuta, Ubud, Canggu and Seminyak, sidewalks are sometimes badly maintained, and roads are slim. Entry to most of the major sights has been improved, with the addition of wheelchair ramps on the most well-known temples and precedence entry for individuals with mobility necessities. Most of Ubud Monkey Forest, Tirta Gangga temple, the stunning Pura Tirta Empul water temple and even components of the paths by way of Jatiluwih paddy fields are accessible to wheelchairs.

Bali Entry Journey focuses on helping vacationers with partial or zero mobility, arranging all the things from lodging, airport transfers, tools rental, transportation, excursions and experiences. Accessible Indonesia runs excursions in Java and Sulawesi and Bali, and so they can prepare tailored journeys. Discover extra accessible journey data by downloading Lonely Planet’s free Accessible Journey eBook.

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How I discovered peace in Bali after a lifetime of solo journey

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