Although Bali is one of the busiest and most visited islands in Indonesia, I found it surprisingly cheap to travel around. At first, I was planning to stay there for only 3 days, but I ended up extending my visit for another 4 days. In fact, Bali has so much to offer for so little money if you know where to go and how to bargain.
If you don’t believe me, follow these few tips on how to avoid overspending and you will be able to enjoy your visit here for less than $25 a day.
Price: IDR55.000 a night (around $5), 15 bed dorms.
Address: Jalan Dewi Sri no.45/18, Kuta, Bali 80361, Indonesia.
Hostel review: It’s a cheap place with friendly staff and a good location. It is placed in Kuta area around 15 minute walk from the city center and 25 minute from the main beach. The rooms were clean and neat. Every bed was supplied with locker and there was a great Internet connection everywhere (including the rooms). The price of BedBunkers is unbeatable in Kuta and the whole hostel was really kept clean.
Local women getting ready for prayer time
Who doesn’t love Indonesia? Well, aside from the beautiful beaches and sunset in Bali and the warm greetings from the locals, there is something else Indonesian should be proud of: affordable Balinese local cuisine.
Fried chicken, spicy noodles and veggies – Indonesian style dish
Food type: Street food.
Daily cost: $6.
What you can eat:
- Mild or spicy noodle soup with your own choice of meat for IDR7.000/$0.62, a cup of black tea or coffee for IDR2.000/$0.18 and a bowl of tropical fruits IDR4.000/$0.35.
- Chicken served with rice and veggies for IDR15.000/$1.32 and a glass of ice tea IDR3.000/$0.26.
- Grilled pork meat with a bowl of rice and grilled sweetcorn for IDR20.000/$1.76.
- Local pancake called Martabak for IDR7.000/$0.62.
Total: $5.11 a person.
The best way to explore the island on the cheap is to rent a scooter. It costs IDR50.000 ($4.50) a day and if you find a travel buddy, you can share the expenses! The petrol is only IDR6.000-7.000 ($0.50) and it will last you for more than 10 hours of ride. In this way you can be transport independent and definitely more flexible with your sightseeing plans. It’s also a great adventure to do Bali’s Temple Hopping on the cheap. Scooters shops are everywhere, but you can also rent one from BedBunkers and other hostels. Before riding it, make sure you have an International Driving Licence and you wear the crash helmet.
- One of Bali’s top 5 temples.
Tanah Lot temple is just an amazing rock formation off the Indonesian island of Bali, great place to capture stunning sunrises. If you get there after 6 pm, the entrance is free (I did it).
- Fish market.
It is free of charge market filled with fresh fish and seafood where you can get your dinner or lunch on the cheap. Moreover, it is a stunning sight as traditional boats, or jukung, bring their catches to shore in the lemon-yellow morning light so you can take some amazing photos.
- Sacred Monkey Forest Ubud Sanctuary.
The admission fee is IDR20.000/$1.76. You can spend around 2-3 hours at the temple watching the monkeys interact with the tourists who brought in food and drinks in their purses or bags.
Monkeys at the Sacred Monkey Forest of Padangtegal
Adding up all expenses you will ended up spending only $17.76 a day, so you still have more than $7 to spend on some extra snacks, temple entrance or some drinks when going out. As you can see, Bali can be a budget friendly place as long as you keep your parties in check, consume local food and avoid the busy city center where plenty of locals are just waiting to rip you off.
How cheap do you find Bali now?
About the Author
eTramping is a budget travel blog where Agness and Cez are sharing their tips on how to travel the world with $25 in their pocket. This Polish duo has been on the road since 2011, living and working in different countries all over Asia. They are currently based in China where they dig into baozi and jiaozi, explore local temples and teach English to kindergarten students. If you would like to read more about their adventures, you can check out their “Add the Brick to the Great Wall:” Experience-based Advice for China from Expats” e-book or visit eTramping.