Ubud MONKEY FOREST Travel Guide: Exploring Wildlife, Culture, and More

Ubud Monkey Forest Travel Guide

Ubud Monkey Forest, a sacred sanctuary in the cultural heart of Bali, is a must-visit destination for anyone looking to get up close and personal with nature’s most mischievous creatures: MONKEYS! Not many first-time Bali tourists know this, but the Sacred Monkey Forest in Ubud offers more than just monkey business – there’s also a frog dance performance you won’t want to miss!

Imagine walking through a lush oasis, teeming with greenery and vibrant tropical flowers, where over 1200 long-tailed macaques roam free, swinging from tree to tree like they own the place (which, let’s be honest, they kind of do).

The number of monkeys in the forest can be difficult to pin down, with estimates ranging from over 700 (given by many travel bloggers) to over 1,200. According to the Monkey Forest Ubud official website, at the time of writing this blog post, there are over 1,200 monkeys living in the sanctuary.

Monkey on tree branch in Ubud Monkey Forest Bali

Ubud Monkey Forest Travel Guide

Visiting the Monkey Forest is one of the best things to do in Bali. As you walk through its winding paths, you’ll be serenaded by a symphony of sounds – chirping birds, rustling leaves, and even the occasional loud chatter of a monkey demanding attention (or maybe snacks). You’ll likely encounter very excited tourists, young and old, too.

These furry friends are more curious than aggressive, and they’re unlikely to bother you unless you’re carrying a bag full of bananas. Additionally, keep your wits about you, especially when those monkeys might try to swipe something from you. Notably, I found these monkeys to be surprisingly relaxed compared to those at Uluwatu temple.

As you explore Ubud Monkey Forest, you’ll discover intricately carved stone carvings, temple complexes, and stunning jungle views. With its unique blend of natural beauty, spiritual significance, and pure monkey mayhem, Ubud Monkey Forest is an unforgettable experience. So you should definitely have Ubud Monkey Forest on your Bali vacation itinerary, especially if you are a first-time visitor to Bali.

Get ready for a wild adventure in Ubud Monkey Forest! Discover the wonders of this enchanting sanctuary, and get insider tips to enhance your visit and make the most of your time there.

Ubud Monkey Forest: The Entrance Lobby

As you step into the enchanting Monkey Forest in Ubud, you’ll be greeted by the lush greenery and vibrant atmosphere of the Entrance Lobby. This charming area sets the tone for an unforgettable experience amidst the majestic Balinese jungle.

The Entrance Lobby is a carefully designed space that blends traditional Balinese architecture with modern amenities, surrounded by a calm pool of water.

Main Lobby and Pond-in Ubud Monkey Forest

Friendly staff are available to answer any questions and provide guidance on how to make the most of your Monkey Forest visit. Buy your ticket there and receive a map highlighting the trails and attractions within.

With your ticket in hand, you’re ready to embark on an unforgettable adventure through the enchanting Monkey Forest. Before you make your way into the forest, you’ll want to take a few pictures. Here is a picture of Sri Deva, the Goddess, and her two companions. Like Persephone, the Greek Goddess of agriculture and fertility, Sri Deva and her companions offer blessings of fertility to the world.

Three Fountain Statues with Goddess Sri Devi in middle

Soon after entering the Monkey Forest, you will see monkeys very quickly.

Ubud Monkey Forest

You won’t see a huge number of monkeys until after you pass through this dark entrance tunnel. When I was there, I also saw a monkey standing on top of this spooky looking tunnel entrance.

Sacred Monkey Forest Entrance Tunnel

Walking through the tunnel was like entering another world, where monkeys ruled.

Monkeys in Central Point

The first place I walked to was the central point, which was like a roundabout, leading to different destinations in the Monkey Forest. This was the first place where I saw plenty of monkeys.

Cute Monkey sitting in Central Point

In this area, you will also be able to see monkeys eating during feeding time.

Sacred Monkey Forest Feeding Time with lots of Monkeys Eating

Walking in the Monkey Forest

I have to admit, the monkeys weren’t the biggest attraction in the Monkey Forest for me. I was more interested in exploring the dense foliage and discovering hidden gems, as well as taking in the sights and sounds of the jungle. It was a beautiful place. Many of the pathways looked very enticing, and they made you wonder where they would lead.

Pathway guarded by Statues in Monkey Forest

I really enjoyed walking through the Monkey Forest. The scenery was stunning. I liked walking over bridges and seeing river views.

Bridge over River in Ubud Monkey Forest

Monkey Forest: Holy Spring

One of the best sights I saw in the Ubud Monkey Forest was the Holy Spring. You could see koi fish swimming in the small pond, and it was amazing to see. To be honest, this was my favorite view in the entire Monkey Forest.

Holy Spring Pond in Ubud Monkey Forest

Near the Holy Spring is this dragon stairway. No doubt about it, you will definitely want to walk through it. Here’s a side-on view.

Dragon Statue Stairway in Ubud Monkey Forest

Temples in the Monkey Forest

The Monkey Forest in Ubud, Bali, is a sacred and serene oasis that is also home to several ancient Hindu temples. You will find the forest to be a tranquil retreat with lush greenery, towering trees, and winding paths that lead visitors on a peaceful journey.

The temple complex is dedicated to the Hindu trinity of Brahma, Vishnu, and Shiva, and is home to several shrines and sanctuaries. However, despite its beauty and historical significance, the temples are off-limits to tourists.

Monkeys next to Temple Buildng

According to local custom, the temples are reserved for devotees who come to pray and make offerings to the gods. As you wander through the forest, you can see the majestic stone structures peeking out from behind the foliage. The temples are adorned with intricate carvings, statues, and ornaments, showcasing the rich cultural heritage of Bali.

If you are lucky, you may even hear the sound of chanting in the distance or smell the air filled with the scent of incense, adding to the sense of spirituality that pervades the atmosphere.

Tourists are not permitted to enter the temples, but this only adds to their mystique. It’s a unique opportunity to observe these sacred spaces from the outside, and to appreciate their beauty and significance from a respectful distance.

Getting close to the Monkeys

Instead, visitors can explore the surrounding forest, where they can see plenty of mischievous monkeys chilling out. Take in the breathtaking views of the surrounding landscape and enjoy your time in this magic place.

Monkey relaxing in Ubud Monkey Forest

Tip: You can even have your picture (or someone else’s photo) taken next to a monkey (or holding one) with a Balinese person who assists. The above location is where I saw it happen.

The Monkey Forest is a place of great spiritual significance for the Balinese people, and it’s clear that it’s a sacred space that is deeply revered. As you walk through the forest, you can’t help but feel a sense of peace and tranquility wash over you. It’s a truly unique and unforgettable experience that will leave you with a deeper appreciation for Bali and its rich cultural heritage.

Monkeys in Exhibition Room Monkey Forest Ubud Bali

Monkey Forest: The Frog Dance Performance

Probably the best cultural experience in the Monkey Forest is seeing the Frog Dance. The stage is in a beautiful location and has seating like a Greek amphitheatre. The most beautiful part is that a stream of water that separates the stage from the seating area, where koi fish swim along. It was so soothing to see. Then there were the beautiful female dancers!

Frog Dance Performance in Sacred Monkey Forest

The Frog Dance performance was very entertaining! If you visit the Monkey Forest,do all you can to see the Frog Dance.

Tourists watching Frog Dance in Monkey Forest

Frog Dance Performance Details

Here is a sign in the Monkey Forest telling everyone about the Frog Dance. As you can see, it happens every Sunday at 11 am and at 4 pm. Wow, I didn’t realise this until now, as I thought it was on every day. I was very lucky to be there on the right day and at the right time. Because I went to the Monkey Forest as soon as it opened, I managed to stumble upon this sign and I’m so glad I did.

The Monkey Forest is open from 9 am to 5 pm daily, but there are probably a few days in the year when it isn’t open, so check before you go.

Frog Dance Sign in Ubud Monkey Forest

Frog Dance Video

Take a look at this short Frog Dance video to give you an idea of what to expect. It was taken near the end of the show.

Monkeys: The Main Attraction in the Monkey Forest

While monkey are the biggest attraction in the Monkey Forest, don’t think for one second that they are the be all and end all as a reason to visit. As you’ve just seen, there are some fantastic walks to go on in the Monkey Forest, plenty of koi fish swimming about, and the Frog Dance to see, provided you’re lucky enough to be there on a Sunday.

Mother-with-Baby-Monkey in Sacred Monkey Forest Ubud Bali

Tips when seeing the Monkeys

As you walk around the enchanting Ubud Monkey Forest, it’s essential to prioritize your safety and the well-being of the monkeys that call this sanctuary home.

To ensure a delightful and incident-free experience, you should follow these guidelines:

As you navigate the forest, remain calm and composed in the presence of the monkeys.

Avoid panicking or running, as this may provoke them and lead to aggressive behavior.

Respect their personal space by not making direct eye contact, as this can be misinterpreted as a threat.

Another crucial aspect to keep in mind is to refrain from feeding the monkeys. This is essential for your safety and theirs. Avoid bringing any food into the forest, as the monkeys are drawn to the scent and may try to take it from you. Feeding them can lead to aggressive behavior, where they may attack tourists for sustenance. Moreover, consuming human food can be detrimental to their health, as it’s not part of their natural diet.

Additional monkey safety tips to keep in mind:

Wear comfortable clothing and shoes suitable for walking in a tropical environment, and be mindful of your belongings, keeping a close eye on your personal items to avoid any mischievous monkeys from stealing or playing with them. Avoid carrying loose items that may attract the attention of the primates, such as jewelry or shiny objects, as this could lead to unwanted interactions. Keep your children close to you at all times and ensure they understand the importance of respecting the monkeys’ personal space. To be prepared for any unexpected situations, stay aware of your surroundings and maintain a safe distance from any aggressive monkeys. In the unlikely event of an emergency, remain calm and seek assistance from park rangers or staff members who are trained to handle such situations.

By following these guidelines and safety tips, you’ll be well-equipped to enjoy a memorable and safe experience in the Ubud Monkey Forest.

Ubud Monkey Forest Map

It’s relatively easy to walk around the Monkey Forest and I’d suggest staying for 2-3 hours, or ideally around 3 hours if you’re lucky enough to be there when the Frog Dance is being performed.

Ubud Monkey Forest Map

As you can sort of tell by looking at this Ubud Monkey Forest map, you’ll probably end up walking anywhere from 1-3 miles (2-5 km), depending on how much of the place you want to see.

Other Things to do in Ubud

If you are in Ubud, the Monkey Forest is a destination you have to visit at least once during your visit to this charming town.

Even if you are somewhere else in Bali, taking a day trip to Ubud Monkey Forest is a good decision to make. Provided you arrive in Ubud early in the morning, you’ll have the most of afternoon free to explore Ubud town.

If you’re more of an adventurous tourist, another great option is to go on a Bali waterfalls adventure in the afternoon. Visiting any of the waterfalls featured in this guide in addition to visiting the Monkey Forest will make for a great day out.

Other Bali Attractions

Bali is a fantastic island to visit and the Monkey Forest is one of the best attractions on the island. However, Bali has many fantastic attractions and one of the best things about Bali is its incredible beaches.

You can find out more in the following Bali beach travel guides: Uluwatu Travel Guide and 21 Best Beaches in Bali – Nicest, Prettiest to the Most Beautiful. Also, let’s not forget about Nusa Pendia, the small beautiful island just off the coast of Bali. Here’s a guide to Nusa Penida (West Coast).

Whatever you do in Bali, I’m sure you’ll have an awesome time in this island paradise. Have a great time!

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Sacred Monkey Forest In Ubud Travel Guide