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  • Writer's pictureWorld Mappers

Gay Friendly Guide • BALI | Itineraries, Tips and What to See | Practical Complete LGBT Friendly


Travel solutions with itineraries to discover all the wonders of this destination, places not to be missed, advice on where to sleep and what to eat, and above all special suggestions to make the most of your trip!

Welcome to Bali, the island of Gods.

An adventure between rice fields and temples, heavenly beaches

and wonderful forests, meditation and spirituality.


Are Bali and Indonesia safe for gay travellers? Indonesia is a predominantly Muslim country and therefore very conservative. However, unlike many other Southeast Asian countries, Indonesia does not criminalize same-sex relationships. Furthermore, Bali is predominantly Hindu and has always been more liberal on these issues than the rest of the country. That said, sex is a taboo subject in society, and public displays of affection are still frowned upon, whether straight or gay. Homosexuality has never been a sin here and it remains legal throughout Indonesia, except in the ultra-conservative province of Aceh and the islands of Sumatra.

While homosexuality is legal in most of the country, there are still political tensions and revisions to the country's penal code that could potentially criminalize same-sex relationships are currently under consideration. If these laws are passed, many advocacy groups fear it would spell a huge setback to human rights and equality.

While the LGBT rights situation across Indonesia is getting worse by the day, Bali has so far managed to remain an oasis against the rising tide of hatred. This situation is due to the fact that while other Indonesian islands have a predominantly Muslim population, the Balinese have a completely unique culture with its roots in Hinduism and animism.

Gay travelers should know that Bali is very safe and one of the friendliest and most welcoming destinations we have ever visited. You don't need to hide your sexuality, but public displays of affection on the streets are generally frowned upon, regardless of whether you're straight or gay.

The most popular, most Gay Friendly and most 'free' area to stay in Bali is the Seminyak area, with Jalan Camplung Tanduk (formerly Dhyana Pura) being the unofficial gay street. Here you can find gay bars and drag shows. The gay sauna scene is limited to just two men-only saunas on the island, Banana Spa and Elegantz Spa & Sauna, both in Seminyak.


Visiting this destination at its best depends essentially on how long you have to fully enjoy it. Here is a solution based on the number of days available to you:

  • Day 1 - ITALIA / Bali Airport - Ubud

  • Day 2 - Ubud

  • Day 3 - Ubud - Tegalalang Risaie - Tempio di Tirta Empul - Tempio Pura Kehen - Kanto Lampo Waterfall - Goa Gajah - Ubud - Google Maps

  • Day 4 - Ubud - Leke Leke Waterfall - Tempio Ulun Danu Beratan - Handara Gate - Jatiluwih Rice Terrace - Ubud - Google Maps

  • Day 5 - Monkey Forest Ubud - Sideman/Selat - Google Maps

  • Day 6 - Sideman/Selat - Tirta Gangga - Pura Penataran Agung Lempuyang - Amed o Padang Bai - Google Maps

  • Day 7 - Amed o Padang Bai (traghetto) Gili Islands / Gili Trawangan

  • Day 8 - Gili Islands

  • Day 9 - Gili Islands / Gili Trawangan (traghetto) Serangan - Seminyak - Google Maps

  • Day 10 - Nusa Penida (full day daily excursion)

  • Day 11 - Seminyak - Bali Airport / ITALIA - Google Maps

(By opening the Maps with Google, you can easily follow our path)


Click'n'Go - Click on the places to find them on the Map





Our favorite corner of the Isle of Gods and the place we chose to stay during our trip to Bali. Ubud is located in the central part of the island, and for this reason it is the perfect place to visit all the points of interest in Bali if you prefer to establish your base in one place and tour the island from there. There are many things to see in Ubud, with a good mix of traditional and modern: the Monkey Forest, temples, markets, paths through the rice fields, handicraft centers and charming cafes and restaurants where you can taste the traditional cuisine.

Rice Fields in Bali

Bali is famous for its beautiful deep green terraced rice fields. Rice is Bali's main crop and features in most of its cuisine.

Here are the Top 5 Rice Fields in Bali:

Tegalallang Rice Fields

SLocated 15 kilometers from Ubud, Tegalallang Rice Plantations are the most famous and one of the best rice fields in Bali. They are located near the main road and if you are going by motorbike or car from Ubud we advise you to park in the public parking which is located at the beginning of the rice fields, at a price of 5000 rupees (30 cents?). After leaving the parking lot and paying the entrance fee to the rice fields (10,000 rupees), it is advisable to walk the part of the road that leads to the plantations to the end, where you can stop at the different viewpoints, some on the terraces of restaurants and coffee. Halfway there is an access to go down to the rice fields of Tegalallang and be able to walk among the rice fields in exchange for a small donation to the farmers who look after and maintain the place. The path up and down between the rice fields is about a kilometer long and is beautiful. On the way you must avoid stepping on the rice fields and only cross the marked areas. The disadvantage of Tegalallang, compared to other rice fields, is its ease of access which leads them to be visited a lot even by organized tourist groups. We therefore advise you to go there early in the morning to avoid the crowds.

Jatiluwih Rice Fields

Jatiluwih Rice Fields, located in the Tabanan region just under a 2-hour drive from Ubud, have been designated a World Heritage Site and are considered by many to be the best rice fields in Bali. They have the advantage of being very large and having more difficult access than those of Tegallang, and therefore much quieter. The entrance price to these rice fields is 40,000 rupees (less than 3 euros) and you can park directly on the road that runs alongside them, or in the authorized parking lot. At the entrance to the rice fields you will see a small map with the different hiking and cycling routes. One of the best things to do in Bali is walking through the rice fields and Jatiluwih is the perfect place to do that and enjoy one of the most beautiful landscapes in the Island of Gods. On the same day you can combine the Jatiluwih rice fields with a visit to the Batukaru temple, they are a few kilometers away and the road that separates them is full of rice fields and vegetation.

Gunung Kawi Rice Fields

Located around Gunung Kawi, one of Bali's must-see temples, these plantations are one of the most beautiful rice terraces in Bali. Half an hour's drive from Ubud and very close to another of the island's most important temples, Tirta Empul, this is another of the must-see rice fields on the Isle of Gods. To see them, you can leave your car in the Gungung Kawi car park and buy a ticket (10,000 rupees) for the temple at the entrance, wearing a sarong as a sign of respect. Once you have crossed the entrance door, you go down some steep stairs and before reaching the bed of the river, you can see perfectly maintained rice fields on the right. If you have some time, we suggest you take a walk through the rice fields until you reach a small waterfall and some sanctuaries carved into the rock. This is one of the less visited areas of Gunung Kawi, but one of the most amazing and beautiful. To conclude the visit, there is nothing better than enjoying the Gunung Kawi temple.

Rice Fields around Ubud

If you're staying in Ubud, you don't have to go far to see some of the best rice fields in Bali. Of the routes you can choose around Ubud to see the rice fields, our first option is the Sabak Juwuk Manis Trail. This route starts at Ubud Markey, on Jalan Raya road, near Ubud Palace and Saraswati Water Temple. Walk through the Market to the trailhead marker. The walk takes between 2 and 3 hours. Another of the must-see rice paddies in Ubud is the Campuhan Ridge Walk. This route, known as the Palm Route, starts at the entrance to the IBAH Hotel from Jalan Raya road. The route is about 2km long and we recommend you finish this route at the beautiful Karsa Cafe, overlooking the rice fields.

Rice Fields of Tirta Gangga

The Tirta Gangga Water Palace, surrounded by vast rice fields, is one of the must-see places to visit in Bali, as well as one of the must-see places on the island. The drive from Tirta Gangga to Lempuyang Temple, located more than 1,000 meters above the sea, offers natural panoramic views of the rice fields. This area, near the active volcano Agung, is the least affected by tourism and one of the most recommended. As an extra, we recommend that you stop at one of the warungs (typical Balinese kiosks) overlooking the rice fields, sit down, order a coffee and snack on some fried bananas while enjoying one of the best experiences in Bali.

Pura Tanah Lot

Tanah Lot, located in the south of the island, an hour from Ubud and built on a rocky islet in the middle of the sea, is another of the best temples to visit in Bali. Arriving at sunrise or sunset to watch the sun rise or set with the temple in the foreground, the waves crashing on the rocks and the ocean in the background is one of the best things to do in Bali. Dedicated to the god of the sea, this famous Hindu temple, which cannot be visited inside, can be seen up close when the tide is out.

Waterfalls in Bali

There are several waterfalls to see in Bali, each one very impressive indeed.

Here are the most beautiful waterfalls in Bali:

Leke Leke

One of the most famous waterfalls on the island, and very photogenic indeed!

Kanto Lampo Waterfall

Another of our favorite waterfalls, enjoy taking pictures with a long exposure for a truly unique final effect.

Git Git

The highest waterfall on the island, in the north, easily accessible and perfect for swimming.


Located in the north of Bali, among the most impressive waterfalls on the island. The path to reach these waterfalls is a bit challenging (you also cross a river).

Goa Batu

Located near the Git Git waterfall. To reach it you have to walk a nice path through the jungle. It's really worth it.

Aling Aling

One of the best known waterfalls on the island. You can jump from its top.

Nung Nung

With a large waterfall within easy reach, where you can swim.

Ulun Danu Temple

Ulun Danu Temple is one of our favorites and another of the most beautiful places of interest to visit in Bali. The temple, dedicated to the goddess of water, is notable for its location on the shore of Lake Bratan. Located at about 1,200 meters above sea level, its image reflected in the lake formed in the caldera of a crater is one of the most famous on the island of Bali.

Luhur Uluwatu Temple

Luhur Uluwatu Temple, located on a 75m high cliff in the south of the island, is one of the most beautiful and must-see places to visit in Bali. It stands out for its perfect location to watch the sunset over the Indian Ocean. A little over two hours by car from Ubud, we recommend that you get there well in advance before sunset and also take the opportunity to visit some of the best beaches in Bali nearby, such as those of Balangan, Padang Padang or Bingin, which are well worth a visit . Watch out for monkeys aiming at objects, especially sunglasses.

Volcanoes of Bali

Bali has several volcanoes as it is located in what is known as the Pacific Ring of Fire, an area with great volcanic and seismic activity. Batur volcano, at 1,717 meters, is the island's tallest and best known, and although it remains active, it last erupted in 1964. Climbing the crater is one of the best hikes you can do in Bali. The difficulty of the ascent, between 2 and 3 hours, is of medium level, so if you take it calmly, we can say that it is accessible to all travellers. This excursion, which is recommended to be done with a guide, can be booked at most agencies in Ubud. The departure is usually before dawn.

Another volcano worth visiting is Batran, with a large caldera enclosing several lakes where one of the most beautiful temples in Bali, Pura Ulun Danu Batran, is located.

Finally the Agung volcano, of great importance for the Balinese as it is considered a replica of Mount Meru, sacred to the Hindu religion.

Pura Besakih

The most important temple and one of the must-see places to visit in Bali. Considered the holiest temple and recognized as the mother temple of all others, it is a huge complex made up of 22 temples. Its most important temple is the Penataran Agung, built on 7 levels of terraces representing the layers of the universe, where only the followers of this religion can climb its grand staircase.

Gili Islands

To conclude the trip in the best way, we recommend taking an excursion to the Gili Islands, about 2 hours by speed boat from the port of Serangan in Bali. These three small paradise islands (Gili Trawangan, Gili Meno and Gili Air), are the perfect destination to enjoy sunsets, beaches and snorkelling in one of the best seabeds in the world.

Beaches of Bali

The island of Bali, with hundreds of kilometers of coastline, has many beaches of fine sand and turquoise waters, perhaps not as paradisiacal as the ones we usually see in travel catalogues, but interesting enough to consider one or more visits. One of the most famous is Kuta beach which is also famous for its vibrant nightlife. Another of the best known is Jimbaran beach, located near Denpasar airport and much quieter than Kuta. Nusa Dua, Sanur Beach and Seminyak are other recommended locations, with expensive hotels and resorts right next to their beautiful beaches.

If you have more days you can go to other less known beaches such as Padang beach famous for its big waves or Tulamben beach perfect for snorkelling and diving where you can even see a sunken ship from WWII.

Tirta Empul

Tirta Empul, is another of the holiest temples in Bali. It is built on a spring of sacred waters which, according to Hindu tradition, have healing properties for those who bathe in them. During our visit to the temple, we noticed that most of the people undergoing the fountain ritual were tourists who did not show the necessary respect for the Balinese Hindu religion. We therefore invite you to attend this place showing respect.

Taman Ayun

Pura Taman Ayun, the beautiful garden temple, is one of the most beautiful temples in Bali and one of our favorites as well. Entry inside is not permitted, but from the wall that surrounds it there are fantastic views of its pagodas and beautiful garden. This temple is located on the way to Tanah Lot temple.

Gunung Kawi Temple

Gunung Kawi, surrounded by beautiful rice fields, lush greenery and a river with a small waterfall, is one of the most beautiful temples in Bali. Members of the royal family are buried here. In addition to visiting the temple, we recommend that you walk the paths through the rice fields that surround it. Visiting this temple can be combined with Tirta Empul, both are within walking distance.

Pura Lempuyang

Pura Lempuyang, also known as Bali's Gate of Heaven, more than 1,000 meters above sea level on Mount Lempuyang, is one of the most famous temples in Bali. Having become famous thanks to Instagram, today it is overrun by tourists who want to take the famous photograph with the "water effect". By now everything is very organized: you pay a ticket and get in line waiting to be called for the photograph (which is done by giving your phone to a gentleman who takes photographs all day, equipped with a mirror to create the illusory game of the water). From here, the view of the Agung Volcano is really beautiful. Pura Lempuyang is located a bit away from Ubud, so you can take advantage of the journey to also visit Tirta Gangga and Goa Lawah, the Bat Cave, which are along the way.

Pura Kehen

Pura Kehen located in the Bangli region, is another of our favorite temples in Bali. This temple has an architecture similar to that of the Mother Temple, but much smaller. Surrounded by palm plantations, it is dedicated to the god of fire and many offering ceremonies are held here. It is distinguished by the large entrance staircase and the details of its stone sculptures.

Taman Tirta Gangga

Tirta Gangga, although not a temple but a royal palace, cannot fail to be included in the list of unmissable visits in Bali. This royal palace is a heavenly place and one of the most famous postcards of Bali. Water, fountains, sculptures and gardens full of flowers make it truly a unique place.

Goa Gajah

Goa Gajah, the Elephant Cave, located about 5 kilometers from Ubud, is another of the temples in Bali that you must see. This temple, famous for the huge rock-carved elephant that serves as the entrance to the cave, in which is a sculpture of Ganesha, is also one of the most visited.


See a Devdan Show

During the Devdan show there is a real mix of music and dance. From traditional Indonesian to hip-hop, with lights dancing and spectacular acrobatics.

Take a Full Day Tour to Nusa Penida

Explore the beautiful island of Nusa Penida in a day, departing and returning from Bali! Visit iconic spots such as Kelingking Beach (T-Rex Cliff) and Angel Billabong on the west side of the island, and Diamond Beach and Tembeling Beach on the east and south side of the island. End the day snorkeling at Crystal Bay, Manta Bay or Gamat Bay.

Sunrise Trekking on Mount Batur

A hike to the top of an active volcano at a height of 1717 meters above sea level to admire wonderful panoramas from above. On the way back, stop at a coffee plantation and try Luwak Coffee, the rarest and most expensive coffee in the world.

Bali Instagram Tour

Visit some of Bali's most picturesque spots and fill your Instagram page with breathtaking snaps, including Bali's famous jungle swings for a once-in-a-lifetime experience! Marvel at the beauty of the island.

Ayung White Water Rafting

A moment of pure adrenaline in one of the best adventures in Bali. Float with the current and admire the lush rainforest, beautiful waterfalls and breathtaking gorges.

Take Part in a Cooking Class

Learn to cook some of the most famous Balinese dishes and learn about their history. Soak up the atmosphere of Ubud's local market and choose your ingredients, prepare and then taste your creation and take the rest of your dishes home after class.

Club Med Bali All-Inclusive Pass with Unlimited Alcoholic Drinks

Discover the modern beach resort of Club Med Bali. Enjoy a range of activities, including land and water sports, archery and yoga. When you get hungry or thirsty, you have no worries as several restaurants and bars are close at hand. This day pass gives you a preview of what Club Med has to offer its guests.

Sunset Dinner Cruise

Enjoy a beautiful sunset aboard a luxurious vessel with cocktails, music and dance performances throughout the night.

Afternoon Tea at The Chedi Club Ubud

Spend an afternoon in this restaurant surrounded by breathtaking natural landscapes. Enjoy selections of premium teas and coffees accompanied by delicacies such as Balinese spiced tuna satay, Valrhona chocolate cake and jackfruit fritters.

Surf Lesson in Bali

It is undeniable that Bali has become one of the go-to places for travelers from all over the world. The beaches, breathtaking sunsets and ancient monuments attract thousands of visitors every year. Although the island has changed a lot since it used to be, one thing has remained the same: it is one of the best places in Indonesia for surfing! Don't miss the opportunity to try your hand at surfing at one of the many Balinese beaches.


Galungan and Kuningan

Galungan is a festival held every 210 days, honoring Balinese ancestors and creator god Sang Hyang Widi. During this festival, the Balinese decorate their homes with offerings and participate in processions. On the tenth day after Galungan, Kuningan is celebrated, which marks the end of the festival.

Nyepi Day (March)

The Day of Balinese Silence. During this day the island is immersed in silence and meditation from 6 in the morning until 6 in the morning after. The inhabitants of Bali stay in their homes, the shops are closed and it is not possible to go around. The internet is also disconnected and the airport is closed. If you are in Bali on this day, respect the Balinese tradition, stay in the hotel, get food and have this unique experience in the world.

Saraswati Day (May)

Saraswati Day is a holiday in honor of the goddess of wisdom, Saraswati. During this festival religious ceremonies are held and offerings of books and manuscripts are made in the temples. Students also take a day off from school to honor the goddess.


It is a festival that pays homage to the gods of the temples. Each temple has its own odala and the Balinese celebrate this festival with religious ceremonies, dances and food.

Pagerwesi (May)

Pagerwesi is a festival honoring the protective force of Sang Hyang Pramesti Guru, the supreme deity. In the temples, offerings are made and religious ceremonies are held.

Tumpek Landep

Tumpek Landep is a festival where metal objects such as knives, cars and tools are honored. During this festival, the Balinese clean and decorate their metal objects and religious ceremonies are held to honor the gods and goddesses who protect these objects.


Instagrammable places to see in Bali

Don't miss the best instagrammable spots in Bali, here are our favourites:

free, impressive at sunset

to not catch a lot of people, go there early in the morning eg.06:30, after 09:00 a person comes asking 15,000 IDR to take pictures and there is a lot of queue

go there at sunset, when there are few people

fee - 40,000 IDR

only visible from afar or sleep in it - it's a B&B



Selat - Camaya Bali

Kabupaten Buleleng - Munduk Moding Plantation *****



One of the most popular swings. It has 5 single swings ranging from 10m to 60m above the ground. Cost: IDR 400K (approx €24)

The swings range from 15 to 25m. You can also enjoy other activities like zip lines, go sky biking, or pose next to the giant sculptured gorilla on the side of the course. Cost: IDR 250K (approx €15) - For 2 single swings + 1 couple swing.

Bali's original and most popular park with swings ranging from 10 to 78 meters off the ground. Cost: 35 USD (approx €32) - you will have to take your own photos/videos or pay extra to have the staff do it for you.

It has a magnificent panoramic view of the beautiful Buyan Lake. Cost: from around IDR 150K (approx €10)

Offers a fun and exciting experience with lots of jungle swings, jungle beds and birds nests - Cost: Depends on the package - Starting at around USD 30 (including photography) (approx €28).



Seminyak - Mixwell (Gay Bar)

Seminyak - Bali Joe (Gay Bar)

Seminyak - F Bar (Gay Bar)

Seminyak - Ku-De-Ta (Gay Friendly Club)

Canggu - La Brisa (Gay Friendly Club)

Seminyak - Potato Head Beach Club (Gay Friendly Club)

Kuta - Sky Garden (Gay Friendly Club)

Canggu - The Lawn (Gay Friendly Club)

Kuta Utara - Red Ruby (Gay Friendly Club)

Seminyak - La Favela (Gay Friendly Club)



Ubud - €€ - Hujon Locale (Asian Restaurant)

Ubud - €€ - Watercress Cafe Ubud (Cafè)

Ubud - € - Kafe

Ubud - € - Liap Liap (Indonesian Restaurant)

Ubud - € - Mama's Warung (Typical Satay)

Seminyak - €€ - Ginger Moon (Asian Restaurant)

Seminyak - € - Warung Aneka Rasa (Buffet Restaurant)

Seminyak - € - Warung Taman Bambu

Sidemen - € - Warung Melita

Sidemen - € - Dapur Kapulaga

Canggu - €€ - Seaweed Resto

Canggu - € - Warung Varuna (Indonesian Restaurant)

Amed - € - Warung Amsha (Typical Satay)

Nusa Penida - € - Gallery (Vegetarian Restaurant)

Nusa Penida - € - Warung Pondok Nusa Penida

Denpasar - € - Depot Cak Asmo (Chinese Restaurant)

What is a Warung?

Warung is what we Italians understand as Ristorante, and it is the word that probably appears most often on Bali's signs, basically the places where every day thousands of Balinese and tourists eat their meal.



Nasi Goreng

Probably the best known dish in Indonesia. It consists of fried rice, vegetables and chicken to which a fried egg is usually added.

Mie Goreng

Same thing as Nasi Goreng, but the rice is replaced by noodles.


Boiled vegetables with peanut sauce.


Skewers of meat, fish or seafood seasoned with the wonderful peanut sauce.


This is one of the typical meat stew, with amazing flavor.

Pisang Goreg

Fried plantains/banana. We love it.



Seminyak - GTM male spa bali (Gay Massage)

Seminyak - Coco Grande (Gay Massage)

Seminyak - teMAN (Gay Massage)

Seminyak - Jari Menari (Gay Massage)

Seminyak - M2 Spa (Gay Sauna)

Seminyak - Banana Spa (Gay Sauna)

Legian - M.A.N Spa (Gay Sauna)

Seminyak - Elegantz Spa & Sauna (Gay Sauna)

TRAVEL TIPS about BALI by World Mappers

  • Gay Beaches In Bali? No beach in Bali is exclusively gay, but by far the most popular gay beach is Batu Belig Beach, on the west coast of the island between Seminyak and Canggu.

  • Are you looking for an English-speaking Driver / Tour Guide to take you around the Island of Bali? We recommend Komang Budi - Tel +62 81999090703 - email:

  • Near Padang Bai there is a very suggestive black beach, click here to get there.


Also discover other destinations such as



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© Photographs in Tegalalang Rice Fields in Collaboration with Flytographer


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