Being one of Bali’s leading tour operators, we get all kinds of questions from travellers around the globe about everything from what to bring on a trek to required fitness levels, local customs and more. To make it easy for you so that you can get the most out of your Bali trek or tour, we’ve put together this handy guide of some things to consider before booking your Bali adventure.
1. When is the Best Time of Year to Book a Bali Trek or Tour?
Bali has two distinct seasons: the dry season from about April to September and the rainy or wet season from about November to March. When it comes to trekking and tours, the dry season is a good bet, but don’t rule out the rainy season either! On many days in the wet season the rains won’t start until later in the afternoon, so you can still get in a sunrise trek or morning tour without getting wet. Plus we often have dry spells in the rainy season (and sometimes wet spells in the dry season).
Another thing to consider when planning your trip is the peak tourist season. We see the highest amount of tourists visiting between June and August, during the Idul Fitri holiday at the end of Ramadan (dates vary every year), and the Christmas holidays in the month of December. Outside these times you will probably find the roads to be less hectic and the top sightseeing spots less crowded.
2. Do I Need to be in Top Physical Condition to do a Bali Trek or Tour?
While some of our treks do require a decent level of fitness and full mobility, we also offer a wide range of tours to suit all fitness levels and age groups. You can challenge your limits on one of our tough Mount Agung treks, get the body moving as you trek up Batur, or take an easy-going downhill cycling tour, a leisurely stroll through the rice paddies, or a laid-back wander through Ubud. If you’re concerned about any physical or health issues, just send us an email and we’re happy to discuss how we can tailor your tour to suit your needs.
3. Why do I Need a Guide to Trek up the Volcanoes?
In the past you could climb Mount Batur and Mount Agung without a guide, but now the government makes it mandatory for all climbers to use a guide. There are many reasons for this, but the main one is safety. First of all, both mountains are active volcanoes, so at times of high activity they can be very dangerous to climb. In addition, weather conditions can change rapidly the further you go up, and many solo travellers have gotten lost coming up or going down. All of our guides know the mountains like the back of their hands, so they know when it’s safe to climb the mountain and exactly which trails to take.
4. What Should I Bring on My Bali Trek or Tour?
No matter what tour you take, good walking shoes are essential. This might sound obvious, but you’d be surprised how many people show up for a trek wearing just flip flops! Warm clothes are also a good idea, as it can get pretty chilly at the tops of the mountains. You may want to bring layers that you can easily pull on or off and a light waterproof jacket in case of rain. As for drinking water, torches and snacks, we will supply those to you on the trek, but you are welcome to bring your own as well. And of course a camera is a must for getting all those incredible photos that will make your friends at home jealous!
5. What Kind of Wildlife Will I See?
Depending on the type of tour you take and the area you explore, you could see monkeys, tropical birds, civets, and of course Bali dogs. We don’t have any poisonous spiders here in Bali, but we do have a few types of poisonous snakes. However, the chances of seeing a poisonous snake are pretty low because they generally try to stay away from humans. No matter what type of wild animal you see, we highly suggest keeping a respectful distance because you never know how a wild animal may react.
6. What Happens if it Rains on the Day of my Tour?
The weather in Bali can be unpredictable, so there is a possibility that it might rain on the day of your tour (even in the dry season). We usually don’t let this stop us from trekking up the mountain or exploring the countryside and rainforest because the rains can often stop as quickly as they come, and even a wet trek can still be an amazing experience. However, in the case of extreme weather like high winds or electrical storms, our knowledgeable guides may cancel the tour for safety reasons. You can read more about our cancellation policies here.
7. What Should I Know About Balinese Culture?
Overall Balinese people are warm, welcoming and super accommodating of other cultures and customs. However, we’re also a slightly conservative bunch. When visiting traditional villages, try to dress modestly. T-shirts and shorts are fine, but mini-skirts and cleavage-revealing tops are not. Public displays of affection are also taboo in Bali. In addition, you should never touch people on the head because the head is considered sacred, and if you must shake hands or pass something to someone, use your right hand because the left hand is considered unclean in Indonesian culture.
When visiting a temple, be sure to cover your shoulders and knees, and wear a sarong and a sash. Our tour guides will provide you with the proper attire before entering the temple. Women who are menstruating are forbidden from entering temples. Also, while in the temple never point your feet at the altar or stand or sit in a higher position than the priest. And if you want to take photos, be sure to be respectful of the people who have come to pray and try not to get in their way.
We hope these tips help answer any questions you have about your Bali trek or tour. If you’ve got a question that isn’t listed here, please feel free to ask it in the comments below or contact us directly.