How do I get to Bali?
Bali is a small island set amidst the 17,000+ islands of the Indonesian archipelago. It is approx. 3 hours due south of Singapore, and 3 hours north of Perth, Australia. The international airport is called Ngurah Rai International, and the arrival city is Denpasar (DPS).
How do I get to Ubud from the airport?
From the airport (Ngurah Rai International) to Ubud takes about one hour, and costs approx 300.000 rupiah ( about US$30 ). There is a Taxi Stand immediately to the right as you exit the airport luggage claim. Book a cab and they will give you a voucher ... honest & legit.
How do I get to The Yoga Barn?
The Yoga Barn is nestled between Jln Hanoman/Pengoseken and Jln Tebesaya, Ubud. There is a small parking lot on the Pengoseken side and a larger lot for cars on the Tebesaya side. Find us!
Do I need a visa?
Yes, a visa is required for Indonesia. A visa-upon-arrival system is in place for most countries including Australia, Canada, US & EU citizens. When you arrive at the airport in Denpasar you will enter the Visa-on-arrival line, where you will be asked for U$25.00 and your passport will be stamped for 30 days from the date of arrival. Upon leaving, a 150,000 rupiah departure tax will be assessed.
N.B. – If your passport is due to expire within 6 months, we advise you renew. On occasion, Indonesia has not allowed tourists into the country, and your airline might not allow you on the plane.
Where can I stay?
Of course the first place we will recommend you to stay is The Yoga Barn Retreat Center. However, the rooms are often full, so we also like to recommend our neighbors, all within 10mins walk of the studios. Our preferred hotel partner is Plataran Ubud, a new property with a gorgeous pool and clean, well furnished rooms, located just down the street. Other options in the neighborhood include low budget home stays, mid range properties as well as luxury.
Can I stay longer?
You will probably want to! If you would like to stay more than 30 days, you can apply for a 60-day tourist visa at the Consulate of Indonesia closest to you. You will likely have to show proof of a ticket to leave the country.
How do I exchange money?
Probably best to wait until you get to the airport in Denpasar. There are bureaus where you can exchange cash or travelers cheques, and ATMs are everywhere that take Cirrus and Plus. Please tell your bank and credit card companies the dates that you will be in Bali or elsewhere, as they might cut off your funds for fraud protection if they don't know it is you. Asia loves Visa or Master Card. Few restaurants and shops take American Express
It’s helpful when you change if you can ask for some additional ‘small money’, bills in denominations of 1,000 / 5,000 / 10,000 rupiah.
The exchange rate is approximately Rp.11,100 = US$1.00. Basically, things cost a lot less in Bali.
Is Bali safe?
Bali is the only Hindu island in Indonesia, and was devastated by the ’02 & ’05 bombings in Kuta. Since the bombings, the Indonesian government has taken the threat of terrorism seriously by increasing security and arresting many. Although the US State Department has placed a travel warning on Indonesia, tourism to Bali is once again being touted by many international travel magazines.
The Balinese people are among the most friendly in the world. As for safety in the streets, there is little violent crime, especially in Ubud. In beach areas one has to take precautions against pickpockets, just as most beach tourist spots in the world.
That said, if you’re reading this site then chances are you won’t be staying at an international hotel or partying all night at a discothèque down in Kuta. More likely you’re staying at a quaint bungalow, home stay or small hotel in the middle of a rice paddy, going to bed early to the chirp of crickets and frogs, and waking up early to go practice yoga. Breathe.
Are there any health concerns I need to be aware of?
It is recommended that you visit your GP, personal physician or a travel health clinic 4 to 8 weeks before your departure to Indonesia. Recommended vaccinations often include hepatitis A, typhoid, tetanus and polio. Bali is not a high-risk area for malaria and the tablets can be considered controversial, we recommend that you do some research and make your own decision on this. Dengue fever is another mosquito borne illness to be made aware of.
You might want to bring a prescription of Keflex, or another type of oral antibiotic that can help with stomach ailments. Even though you will be eating in good restaurants, there is always a chance that you can get Bali Belly - a mild dysentery that passes in a few days. Bring good mozzie repellant.
What if I need to see a doctor?
There are plenty of international medical clinics in Bali - especially in Ubud and Kuta. Since the Bali Bombing, the Indonesian government spent $$ on improving the local hospitals and many more private ones have opened since. If you have a minor illness or ailment, you will be just fine. These clinics usually do not accept health insurance, but they do not cost much. Should you need specialized care in a dire emergency, you would need to be evacuated to Singapore. It is always wise to purchase travelers health insurance with evacuation coverage. While in Ubud, for minor issues, see TOYO clinic, for more serious issues, check out the SOS International medical or SILOAM clinics.
What about sanitation?
Any hotel or home stay will have bottled or filtered water available, and 99% of restaurants on the island use bottled water for all cooking purposes. Nevertheless, it is advisable to drink and brush teeth with bottled water. Food carts and local markets carry a greater degree of risk.
What is the weather like?
You can expect pleasant day temperatures between 20 to 33 degrees Celsius or 68 to 93 degrees Fahrenheit year-round. From December to March, the West monsoon can bring heavy showers and high humidity, but usually days are sunny and the rains start during the night and pass quickly. From June to September the humidity is low, and it can be quite cool in the evenings. During this time of the year, you'll have hardly any rain in the coastal areas.
That said, Ubud is in the mountains and has a unique microclimate where you can expect cloudy skies and showers throughout the year. Sometimes you’ll even need a sweater or light jacket after the sun sets!
What kind of clothes will I need?
The weather system is now officially un-predictable. Its used to be that if you visited between November and April a rain poncho or umbrella will come in handy, and both can be purchased inexpensively here. As this time is Bali’s summer, the rains tend to be warm and humid, but a light jacket can be useful for evenings. May through October is typically dry season and winter. Comfortable sandals are a must, and should be easy to take off as most Balinese do not wear shoes indoors. Same day laundry service is inexpensive and plentiful, so you’re better off to pack light. Don’t forget your bathing trunks!
Although the Balinese are used to western tourists, they are still a modest culture, so walking down city streets with no shirt on will likely get you a sideways glance or two.
Anytime you go into a temple for a ceremony or tourist attraction you MUST wear a long sleeve shirt, pants or preferably sarong that cover your knees. Women and men have separate requirements, and the Balinese are only to happy to explain the rules and outfit you accordingly if you’re minus an appropriate item or two.
How do I get around?
If you’re here for a short time, and only staying in Ubud, you can easily get along by walking everywhere … this is one of the charms of Ubud. (Just watch out for uncovered sections of sidewalks, and please do your best to avoid stepping on the offerings the Balinese leave at the entrances to their family compounds and businesses!)
If you’re here for longer and wish to do some independent island exploration, both bicycles and motorbikes are available for rent. A motorbike should run you 20,000 to 30,000 rupiah per day … everything is negotiable. Make sure you get a good helmet … roads are narrow, often full of pot holes, dogs are everywhere, and the Balinese like to drive like stock car racers! While driving, repeat this mantra: “Slow and Go, Slow and Go … Om.” If motorbikes aren’t your thing, there are plenty of drivers ready and willing to take you anywhere. We know a number of great ones … honest, friendly and English speaking. Feel free to ask.
Should I rent a car?
It is not necessary, nor advisable, to rent a car in Bali. A car and driver can be had for $30-$40 per day. Inexpensive transportation is readily available.
Do I need to bring a yoga mat?
It is always nice to have your own mat, however we do have loan mats available to borrow or new mats available for purchase through The Yoga Shop.
Can you recommend any good books about Bali before my trip?
Unless you’ve been buried under a rock for the last couple of years, Elizabeth Gilbert’s Eat, Pray, Love is a must. If looking for something more scholarly try Colin McPhee’s A House in Bali or Michel Picard’s Bali: Cultural Tourism and Touristic Culture.
Guest House FAQS
Is the Guesthouse located on The Yoga Barn property?
Yes – we are located directly on property. Access to our yoga studios, healers, KUSH Ayurvedic Spa, and yummy Garden Kafe is incredibly convenient. In fact - you couldn't get any closer!
Are yoga classes included in the room rate?
Classes are not included in the room rate, but single and multiple class cards can be purchased at reasonable and competitive prices. Multiple class cards offer additional savings, and can be purchased at our Yoga Studio Reception Desk. Please see: http://www.theyogabarn.com/schedule.html for our current schedule and class pricing information.
Do I need to book yoga classes in advance?
No. Our daily classes are offered on a drop-in basis. Simply show up 15 minutes prior to the start of the scheduled class, and pay the class fee (or present your class card.) Note: Our plethora of on-going workshops, retreats and trainings do require advanced booking. Please see http://theyogabarn.com/events.html for further information.
Do you have a swimming pool?
At this time, we do not have a swimming pool on property. There are some nearby hotels and guesthouses that do permit outside guests to come and use their swimming pool. A charge may apply, and is determined by the individual hotels.
What do you mean by dorm/bunk room? I am a single female traveler - will there be men sharing the room with me?
Our dorm/bunk room is a great option for the budget-minded, sociable yogi! The dorm room features 2 sets of bunk beds, sleeping a maximum of four people. If you are booking only 1 bed, you will potentially have up to 3 other roommates, depending on other bookings during that time. There is one bathroom attached to the dorm/bunk room, and it is shared by all occupants of the dorm room. Our dorm room is not co-ed. If you're a female - only other females will be sharing the room with you. It's a great way to meet and make new friends! If you prefer your own, private room or a woman travelling with a man, then the dorm room is NOT the option you should choose. Instead, book a private A/C or fan room.
Do the rooms have safety-deposit boxes?
Yes - all rooms, including the dorm/bunk room are equipped with locking boxes to secure your valuables.
Are your twin rooms private?
Yes, the Standard and Deluxe rooms are private, and will be occupied only by you (and a friend, if you're bringing one!) Only our dorm/bunk room is a shared room. Our Standard and Deluxe rooms also have a private, en-suite bathroom and shower, including hot and cold water. Each room can sleep a maximum of 2 people. For couples, the 2 single beds can be pushed together to form a comfy double bed.