The Best Things to Do For Free in Bali

Tegenungan Waterfall, Bali│
Tegenungan Waterfall, Bali│ | © Richard / Flickr
Edira Putri

If you are not one to believe that the best things in life are free, this list of incredible free things in Bali may surprise you. From cliff-jumping to festivals, discover the best things to do for free in Bali.

Go Camping

In an island with a landscape so beautiful, camping can offer things luxe resorts may not be able to provide. From an unparalleled view of nature to falling asleep to the sound of crickets, camping in Bali is an unmissable experience for nature-lovers. Plus, it costs much less than any other accommodation options. The tropical paradise has numerous excellent camping sites, from the highest peak of Mount Agung, the scenic Bukit Asah, to the secluded Nyang Nyang Beach.

Mount Agung, Jungutan, Karangasem Regency, Bali, Indonesia

Bukit Asah, Sengkidu, Karangasem Regency, Bali, Indonesia

Nyang Nyang Beach, Pecatu, Badung Regency, Bali, Indonesia

View from Mount Agung


Here’s the good news: You can enjoy Bali’s most prized feature, the beaches, for virtually zilch. Many beaches like Kuta and Seminyak are free, and many others cost less than half-a-dollar (including parking – the small fee goes to the beach maintenance and development of local community). It will, of course, cost you more to do activities like snorkeling or water sports, but if you’re happy with swimming, sunbathing or bringing your own surfboard, you can enjoy Bali’s most idyllic scenes without spending a lot.

Clifftop view of Balangan Beach in Bali

Observe the Festivals

Indonesians joke that Balinese have more holidays than everyone else in the country. And while that is covetable, the holidays provide tourists a lot of windows to observe lively traditional festivals. Balinese dedicate a lot of days to uphold their traditions and religious celebrations during their 210-day calendar system. That amounts to numerous festivals yearly, from the walking procession during Galungan to the ogoh-ogoh festival before the day of silence (Nyepi) and many other events after. Each locality has different ways to celebrate one special occasion, so the choices are virtually endless.

Traditional procession at Galungan Day, Bali│

Go Hike the Hills

Hiking is one fun and free way to appreciate Bali’s stunning nature. Just by utilizing your own feet, you can enjoy the lush tropical jungles, fresh breeze, warm sunshine and vibrant wildlife. Head over to Campuhan Ridge for a short walk, with a picturesque view of Ubud, or to Mount Batur for a 3-hour hike culminating in the glorious sunrise.

Campuhan Ridge Walk, Kelusa, Gianyar, Bali, Indonesia

Mount Batur, South Batur, Bangli Regency, Bali, Indonesia

Kintamani from Mount Batur, Bali

Watch Sunset

Bali’s sunsets are notorious for being both easy to catch and easy to miss. Simply go to the western-facing beaches like Uluwatu, Tegal Wangi, Kuta and others, sit by the sand with a beer in hand (optional) and wait for the several minutes of wonder. If you have more money to spend, you can also opt for one of Bali’s hip sunset beach bar for well below $10 around Legian and Seminyak.

Uluwatu beach, Pecatu, Badung Regency, Bali, Indonesia

Pantai Tegal Wangi, Jalan Tegal Wangi, Jimbaran, Badung Regency, Bali, Indonesia

Kuta Beach, Kuta, Badung Regency, Bali, Indonesia

Stunning sunset at Bali

Cliff-Jumping and Sliding or Dipping Down the Waterfalls

Bali includes numerous waterfalls, each with its own charms. Aling Aling Waterfall, for example, offers a unique adventure of gliding down the natural waterfall slide or jump off the cliffs into the deep, cool water below. Tegenungan Waterfall, on the other hand, is perfect for swimming and taking enviable pictures.

Aling-Aling Waterfall, Jalan Raya Desa Sambangan, Sambangan, Buleleng Regency, Bali, Indonesia

Tegenungan Waterfall, Kemenuh, Gianyar, Bali, Indonesia

Walk Through a Rice Field

You’ll be surprised at how soothing this simple activity is. The sun is warm but the air is crisp, and you’re in the middle of a vast, picturesque rice terrace. In an instance, you’ll feel like the green calming sight has washed away your weary eyes from hours of staring at the screen daily. And, yes, taking pictures is still free.

Bali rice terrace

Wander the Streets of Ubud

Architectural Landmark

Wander the Streets of Ubud
© Vin Crosbie / Flickr
Many adventures, sights and experiences await in the streets of Ubud, the art and culture capital of Bali. The neighborhood is alive with a quirky and artistic atmosphere reverberating in every corner; in every small craft shop, temple, café and gallery, you’ll encounter it. If, during your relaxing stroll through the area, your ear catches a sound of live music playing, follow the music, and you might find a gamelan music group rehearsing. Most of the time they don’t mind an audience as long as you keep quiet. Also, don’t miss the art market, where you can find souvenirs for any budget or just look around.
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