Everything You Need To Know
to Visiting Bali Consciously

May 2024 – Edited by The Punch Editors

Step into the world of conscious travel and explore the stunning island of Bali with sustainability and mindfulness at its core. Bali has long been a destination of choice for travelers seeking adventure and rejuvenation, with its beautiful landscapes, rich culture, and welcoming people. However, as tourism grows, it is essential to travel responsibly and with respect for the environment and local communities.

In this guide, we will delve into the essence of conscious travel and offer you tips, resources, and insights to navigate Bali in a way that fosters meaningful connections, preserves its natural beauty, and honors its communities. Our comprehensive guide provides you with everything you need to know – from the ideal time to visit, transportation options, essential health tips to insider information about the local culture, making your experience unforgettable. Whether you are a seasoned Bali enthusiast or a first-time visitor, embark on a journey of mindful exploration with us and discover how to make a positive impact while savoring the wonders of this island paradise. Join us as we take each step consciously towards a sustainable future.



While walking can be an enjoyable way to soak up the local atmosphere and discover hidden treasures, it's important to recognise the challenges of walking around Bali. Walking in Bali is generally possible, especially in popular tourist areas such as Seminyak, Sanur, Kuta and Ubud, where sidewalks and designated crossings are common. These places tend to provide a pedestrian-friendly environment, making it safer to explore on foot. However, the practicality of walking can still be limited by factors such as distance and infrastructure constraints. In addition, the lack of pavements, traffic lights and sometimes congested roads can make walking less convenient, especially during peak tourist periods when traffic volumes increase.

In Bali, there are a variety of transport options to suit different tastes and needs:


Renting a scooter in Bali is popular and easy, granting travelers the freedom to explore at their own pace. With rental shops scattered throughout tourist areas, a valid license and deposit are typically all that's required. In recent years, electric scooters have gained traction as a quieter, eco-friendly alternative for exploring the island. Companies like Niu now offer electric scooter rentals, contributing to the shift towards more sustainable transportation options. When renting a scooter, safety is key, especially on busy roads, so obeying traffic laws is crucial. Inspecting the scooter beforehand and ensuring proper insurance are also important steps.


For convenient transportation in Bali, mobile apps like Grab and Gojek provide easy access to ride-hailing services. Users can book rides with licensed drivers from their smartphones, choosing from various options including motorcycle taxis, car rides, and food delivery. These apps simplify transportation by locating nearby drivers, offering real-time tracking, and secure in-app payments. With competitive prices and promotions, they're a cost-effective choice for navigating Bali's bustling streets, whether you're headed to the beach, cultural sites, or exploring the city.


Taxis are another common mode of transport in Bali, offering convenience and comfort to travelers looking for a hassle-free way to get around. Blue Bird Group is one of the most reputable taxi companies on the island, known for its reliable service and metered fares. Travelers can easily identify Blue Bird taxis by their distinctive blue color and logo, ensuring a safe and regulated ride. In addition to Blue Bird, other taxi companies and independent drivers operate throughout Bali, providing travelers with many options for getting from one place to another.


Hiring a driver in Bali offers both convenience and cultural insights for travelers. With a personal vehicle and experienced guide, visitors can explore with ease, especially beneficial for groups or families. Drivers are well-versed in Bali's culture, history, and tourist attractions, providing valuable recommendations and navigating congested roads effortlessly. This removes the stress of parking and traffic, allowing travelers to focus on enjoying the island's beauty and rich cultural experiences.


Weather &
Ideal Time to Visit

Known for its stunning beaches, lush landscapes and vibrant culture, Bali boasts a tropical climate that contributes all year-round appeal as a tourist destination. Situated close to the equator, the island enjoys consistently warm temperatures and high humidity throughout the year, with two distinct seasons: the rainy season and the dry season. Understanding Bali's weather patterns is essential to planning an enjoyable and memorable trip, whether you're looking for sun-drenched days on the coast or exploring the island's rich cultural heritage in the occasional rain. Regardless of the season, Bali's vibrant culture, warm hospitality and breathtaking scenery make it a year-round destination.


Dry seasons in Bali typically run from April to October. During the dry seasons, travelers can expect sunny days with minimal rainfall, making it an ideal time for outdoor activities and exploration. Clear skies and warm temperatures create the perfect conditions for lounging on the beaches, trekking through lush rice terraces or taking cultural excursions to temples and traditional villages. With lower humidity and calmer seas, water-based activities such as snorkeling, diving and surfing are also popular during this time. Bali's dry season offers travelers ample opportunity to make the most of the island's natural beauty and cultural treasures under sun-drenched skies.


Rainy seasons in Bali typically run from November to March. During rainy seasons, the island experiences frequent and heavy rainfall, often accompanied by thunderstorms. Although the weather can be unpredictable during this time, with sudden downpours followed by periods of sunshine, it offers a unique opportunity to experience Bali's lush landscapes in all their glory. The rain revives the island's rice terraces, waterfalls and tropical forests, creating a rich lush backdrop for exploration. Despite the occasional downpour, there are still plenty of indoor activities to enjoy, such as visiting museums, art galleries and traditional Balinese dance performances. In addition, the rainy season offers a quieter and more tranquil atmosphere, allowing travelers to experience Bali's cultural and natural wonders in a more intimate setting.


Cultures & Traditions

Honoring local Balinese culture is not only a matter of respect, but also a profound recognition of the island's identity and heritage. Balinese culture is deeply intertwined with spirituality, community and nature, and shapes the daily lives and traditions of its people. By respecting Balinese traditions, visitors help to preserve and sustain this rich cultural legacy, ensuring that future generations can continue to celebrate and cherish their heritage. Engaging with local traditions also fosters meaningful connections with Balinese communities, allowing travelers to gain a deeper insight into the island's traditions, beliefs, and way of life. Regardless of the season, Bali's vibrant culture, warm hospitality and breathtaking scenery make it a year-round destination.

Bali's rich culture is woven from centuries of tradition, spirituality and artistic expression, creating an enchanting and vibrant atmosphere unlike any other. From the intricate carvings of its ancient temples to the rhythmic melodies of its traditional music and dance, Bali radiates a strong sense of cultural heritage that captivates visitors from around the world. The island's deeply rooted Hindu beliefs influence every aspect of daily life, from colorful ceremonies and rituals to the magnificent offerings that grace doorsteps and temples. Beyond the spiritual dimension, Balinese culture is also celebrated through its culinary delicacies, vibrant markets and warm hospitality, which invites travelers to immerse themselves in the rich tapestry of Balinese traditions. Regardless of the season, Bali's vibrant culture, warm hospitality and breathtaking scenery make it a year-round destination.

Whether participating in temple ceremonies, learning traditional crafts, or enjoying authentic Balinese cuisine, honoring local culture enhances the travel experience and fosters mutual understanding and appreciation between visitors and hosts. Ultimately, by embracing and respecting Balinese culture, travelers not only enrich their own journeys, but also contribute to the sustainability and vitality of Bali's cultural heritage. Regardless of the season, Bali's vibrant culture, warm hospitality and breathtaking scenery make it a year-round destination.


〇 Dress modestly for temples and religious ceremonies, covering shoulders and knees as a sign of respect for Balinese culture.

〇 Take off your shoes before entering temples or homes in Bali, as it's customary.

〇 Ask permission before taking photographs of locals or participating in religious rituals.

〇 Support local artisans by buying handmade souvenirs directly from them, preserving traditional crafts.

〇 Participate in cultural activities and ceremonies with an open mind and a willingness to learn about Balinese traditions.

〇 Carry a reusable water bottle and refill it at filtered water stations or your accommodation to minimize plastic waste.

〇 Support eco-friendly businesses and accommodations that prioritize sustainability practices.

〇 Practice responsible snorkeling and diving, avoid touching coral reefs and marine life, and use reef-safe sunscreens to protect the ocean.

〇 Consider walking, bicycling, or using green transportation whenever possible.


〇 Don't touch or disturb religious offerings (canang sari) on the ground or shrines as they are considered sacred.

〇 Don't point your feet at people or sacred objects, as this is considered disrespectful in Balinese culture.

〇 Don't litter or pollute the environment, as Bali's natural beauty is an integral part of its cultural heritage.

〇 Don't disrespect sacred sites or statues by climbing on them or posing for inappropriate photographs.


Bali Airport

Ngurah Rai International Airport, nestled on Bali's southern coast near Denpasar, serves as the island's main gateway. Its modern facilities welcome millions of visitors yearly to Bali's stunning beaches and rich culture. Upon arrival, travelers find various transportation options, including taxis, ride-hailing services, and shuttle buses to tourist hotspots like Kuta and Ubud. Regardless of the season, Bali's vibrant culture, warm hospitality and breathtaking scenery make it a year-round destination.

Inside the terminals, amenities like duty-free shops and dining venues offer relaxation. To ensure a smooth departure, arrive early and stay updated on flight information, especially during peak seasons or adverse weather. For international departures, confirm departure tax inclusion in ticket prices and utilize online check-in services for convenience.



Understanding visa regulations is essential for travelers planning to visit Bali, as it ensures a smooth entry into the country and compliance with immigration requirements. Depending on their nationality and length of stay, travelers may need to obtain a visa before arriving in Bali or upon arrival at Ngurah Rai International Airport or other entry points. Each visa type has specific requirements, validity periods, and allowed activities, so it's essential for travelers to research and apply for the appropriate visa before arriving in Bali.


ASEAN nationals visiting Indonesia, including Bali, for tourism purposes do not need a visa. The visa is obtained upon arrival, free of charge, and permits a 30-day stay, which cannot be extended. It's important to exit Indonesia before the visa expires and note that it is strictly for tourism, not for work or business.


The Visa On Arrival (VOA) costs IDR 500,000 or equivalent in another currency. It's valid for tourists staying up to 30 days, extendable for another 30 days, totaling 60 days. This visa is strictly for tourism and can be obtained at the Visa On Arrival payment counter upon arrival in Indonesia, before proceeding to immigration checkpoints.


The Visit Visa 211A is ideal for business trips and longer stays in Indonesia, especially for those ineligible for Visa on Arrival. It allows for a 60-day stay initially, extendable twice for 60 days each without leaving the country, totaling 180 days. This visa is suitable for non-residents and tourists seeking extended stays for tourism or business purposes.


Local Cuisines

Local cuisine in Bali is not just about food, it's a vibrant reflection of the island's rich culture and traditions. Balinese cuisine is characterized by bold flavors, aromatic spices, and fresh ingredients sourced from the island's fertile land and surrounding seas. From traditional street food stalls to fine dining establishments, Bali offers a diverse culinary landscape that caters to all tastes and preferences.

One of the most iconic dishes in Balinese cuisine is ayam betutu. Ayam betutu is a flavorful dish consisting of chicken marinated in a blend of spices, including turmeric, ginger, garlic, and chili, before being wrapped in banana leaves and slow-cooked until tender. It's typically served with rice, sambal matah, and assorted vegetables, offering a tantalizing taste of Bali's diverse flavors and culinary traditions. Another must-try is babi guling, a juicy roasted pork dish with a mixture of spices, often served on special occasions and celebrations. Sate lilit, a type of satay made from minced meat mixed with grated coconut and spices, is also popular with locals and visitors alike.

Seafood lovers will enjoy Bali's abundance of fresh fish and shellfish dishes, such as grilled fish served with sambal matah (a spicy chili relish) or seafood soups and curries. For those with a sweet tooth, Balinese desserts such as jaje bali. These treats come in various shapes, colors, and flavors, made from ingredients like glutinous rice flour, coconut, and palm sugar. Popular options include klepon (rice balls with palm sugar filling) and jaja laklak (coconut pancakes).

To truly immerse yourself in Balinese cuisine, consider joining a cooking class or food tour led by knowledgeable local guides who can introduce you to authentic recipes and cooking techniques passed down through generations. Bali's vibrant culinary heritage is sure to leave a lasting impression on your taste buds and memories.

While savoring Bali's culinary delights, it's important to be aware of "Bali belly," a common term for traveler's stomach discomfort often caused by consuming contaminated food or water. To avoid this discomfort, you can opt to carry a water bottle and refill it at your accomodations, as the tap water in Bali is not drinkable. Many hotels and accommodations provide filtered water stations where you can refill your bottle safely. Practice good hygiene by washing your hands frequently, especially before eating, and consider using hand sanitizer when necessary. By being mindful of these precautions and choose well-cooked and freshly prepared foods, you can reduce the risk of encountering Bali belly and fully enjoy your culinary adventures on the island.


Health & Travel

Travel and health insurance are essential considerations for tourists visiting Bali, providing peace of mind and protection against unforeseen circumstances. Bali's tropical climate and adventurous activities make it prone to various health risks, including food poisoning, mosquito-borne diseases such as dengue fever, and accidents while participating in water sports or exploring rugged terrain. Comprehensive travel insurance provides coverage for medical expenses, emergency medical evacuation and repatriation, offering vital support in the event of illness or injury.

Comprehensive travel insurance covers a range of travel-related issues beyond health concerns, including trip cancellation, lost luggage, and unexpected disruptions due to natural disasters or political unrest. Bali's occasional volcanic activity and seismic events highlight the importance of insurance, offering financial reimbursement for canceled flights or accommodation changes. By securing comprehensive coverage before traveling, visitors can explore Bali with confidence, knowing they're prepared for any emergencies or disruptions that may occur.


Travel Responsibly


Before you travel, take time to learn about Balinese customs and traditions. When visiting temples, dress modestly and observe cultural etiquette. Avoid public displays of affection or disruptive behavior in sacred spaces.


Choose locally owned accommodations, restaurants, and tour operators to contribute to the local economy. Avoid patronizing large international chains that may divert revenue from the community.


Reduce your impact on the environment by minimizing waste and supporting eco-friendly initiatives. Refrain from activities that harm the environment or wildlife, such as littering or purchasing products made from endangered species. Plan your itinerary carefully to minimize carbon emissions and reduce overcrowding at popular tourist sites.


Choose responsible wildlife experiences that prioritize animal welfare and conservation. Refrain from activities that exploit or disturb wildlife, such as feeding or inappropriately touching animals.


Interact respectfully with local people and immerse yourself in their culture. Participate in community-based initiatives and support local artisans and craftspeople. Avoid disrespecting local customs or interfering with private ceremonies.


Keep abreast of local regulations and cultural sensitivities while in Bali. Obtain information from reputable sources and adapt your behavior accordingly. Avoid relying solely on guidebooks or outdated information.