Home to picturesque beaches, sacred temples and spectacular mountain scenery, camping in Bali is a getaway second to none. Indonesia’s most famous island boasts some of the best surf spots and dive sites in the world. With that being the case, it’s no wonder camping in Bali is becoming more and more popular every year.
In this article we share with you some of the best campsites and campgrounds in Bali, recommending our top picks. We also look at what makes each region of Bali special, to help you decide which area to stay in, and the best months to visit.
But first, here’s a few fun facts about this picturesque island!
- Standing at over 3000 meters tall, Volcano Agung is the highest peak in Bali and is considered the island’s most sacred spot.
- There’s around 580 languages and dialects spoken in Indonesia.
- With over 3000 species of fish, Bali is a scuba diving sweet spot.
- There are five World Heritage Sites in Bali; Taman Ayun Temple, Pura Ulun Danu Batur, Pakerisan Valley, Lake Batur, and Jatiluwih Rice Terraces.
Camping in Bali: Where should you camp?
Across Bali’s five regions there are gushing waterfalls, rugged mountains, great beaches, dense jungles, alluring panoramas, and beautiful wildlife. However with all that and more on offer, it’s hard to decide which region you should be based during your vacation. (Related: Nature and wildlife in Bali).
That’s why before showing you some of the best campsites in Bali, we want to first quickly explain what each area of Bali has to offer.
What each region has to offer?
Consisting mainly of the Buleleng District, Northern Bali is filled with interesting historical sites, museums and palaces dating back to colonial times. This region is also ideal for spotting and swimming with bottle-nosed dolphins who have made Bali’s famous Lovina Beach resort area their playground. In fact Lovina has more to offer too, as it has stunning volcanic black sand beaches alongside lovely stretches of golden sand for sunbathing.
In this region there’s also the opportunity to explore the largest town on the northern coast and former colonial capital of Bali; Singaraja. In Singaraja you’ll discover many colonial buildings, including the royal palace of Puri Agung Singaraja that was built in 1604. Another attraction worth visiting in Northern Bali is the Gedong Kirtya Museum which is dedicated to the preservation of Lontar scripts.
This region is also home to Pura Meduwe Karang – an enthralling temple boasting stone carvings which is located around 10 km east of Singaraja.
To sum up: If you’re looking to camp near beaches with access to dolphin spotting opportunities and great cultural experiences, camping in the north may suit you best.
This part of the island is becoming a popular tourist attraction and no wonder – it has an incredible stretch of coastline and outstanding scuba diving spots. In fact if you are looking for fantastic snorkelling and scuba diving, Tulamben and Amed in the east are ideal for the over 3000 species of marine life that live there!
However it’s also brimming with lush forests, rice terraces, volcanic beaches, traditional villages and the mesmerizing Lake Batur. Eastern Bali boasts Bali’s highest active volcano too – Mount Agung. It’s officially closed for hiking, but some hikers still test their skills by attempting this challenging trek which starts at Besakih Temple.
Furthermore, Eastern Bali is home to Pura Besakih and Pura Lempuyang – some of the island’s most sacred pilgrimage sites.
To sum up: If you’re looking to camp near scuba diving sites, but with easy access to some of Bali’s most beautiful natural scenery, then being based in the east may be best.
If you are seeking waterfalls, lakes, wildlife and scenic rice terraces, Central Bali could be the destination for you. This region is rich in flora and fauna, steep ravines, serene lakes and offers countless tourist excursions. Many Bali campsites are located in this region.
The central region of Bali is more developed compared to the east, and has an array of activities. The town of Ubud sits in this region and is known as the cultural heart of Bali as it’s brimming with quaint temples, beautiful royal palaces and botanical gardens. Nearby is the Ubud Monkey Forest as well as the scenic landscape of the Tegallang Rice Terraces.
Hikers will also love this region for the unparalleled panoramas you get on top of Bali’s second highest mountain – Mount Batukaru which stands at 2275 meters. Trekking this mountain gives you a very unique rainforest mountain experience. The UNESCO World Heritage Site Jati Luwih – which comprises over 600 hectares of rice fields – can be seen from Batukaru too.
To sum up: If you’re looking to camp in a region with access to many excursions, hiking opportunities and breathtaking scenery, then staying in Central Bali may be the best option.
Known as Bali’s busiest and most developed area, the south is full of amazing attractions and surf spots, including great shopping, resorts, as well as Nusa Dua Beach which is a popular place for kayaking and surfing. There’s also Uluwatu Temple in this region which we believe is the most picturesque Balinese Hindu sea temple on the island.
This region is home to the best surfing spots on the island too, some of which include Kuta Beach, Seminyak Beach, Padang Padang Beach, Nyang Nyang Beach and Uluwatu Beach.
In fact Kuta Beach is famous for its exceptional sunset views and a glorious 2.5km stretch of golden sand which is ideal for sunbathing. However if you are looking for lively spots brimming with nightclubs, restaurants and great bars, then both Seminyak and Kuta are the ideal destinations.
We would recommend Seminyak for its upscale and trendy designer bars, many with amazing views of the ocean. But if you want a cheaper option, Kuta is ideal for its low end and more affordable spots.
To sum up: If you’re looking to camp in a region with access to Bali’s best beaches, superb surfing spots and great nightlife, then staying in southern Bali may be the best option.
This region of Bali is perfect for nature lovers as it’s a remote area home to many animal species like monkeys, rare birds and bantengs. In particular, the huge West Bali National Park – which covers over 19,000 hectares – is a wildlife spotting heaven.
This untamed and serene part of the island has so much wildlife, all of which live in dense forest, mountain ranges, rainforests, and crystal clear water. The reality is that Western Bali is ideal for those seeking an off the beaten path experience.
With around 160 species of birds to discover, this region is a great place for birdwatching. Western Bali is also a good diving location due to the marine life in the region – particularly at Menjangan Island – as well as the underwater temple at Pemuteran which combines nature with art.
To sum up: If you’re looking to camp in a region with great wildlife watching opportunities, diving spots and have an adventurous spirit, then being based in western Bali may suit you best.
Camping in Bali: Some of the best campsites in Bali
There are many affordable campsites in Bali. Below are a few of our favourites!
Bali Jungle Camping
Located in beautiful Tabanan, Bali Jungle Camping is set in tranquil and peaceful surroundings right in the middle of a coffee plantation in Central Bali’s Padangan. We love the remote location and the privacy of this campsite, including its comfortable dome tents, WIFI and very good restaurant.
We highly recommend visiting the nearby Blahmantung Waterfall on a hike if you stay at this campground.
Situated in Buleleng in Central Bali, Camp Tamblingan has great facilities and boasts an amazing view of Tamblingan Lake – a canoe ride on the water is a must.
This campsite is a great base for hiking as it is conveniently located close to Mount Batukaru. You can also visit and enjoy the stunning nearby Hindu temples of Pura Ulun Danu Tamblingan and Pura Dalem Tamblingan for the unparalleled panoramas on offer there, as well as their sense of serenity.
Taman Denbukit Camping Ground
This Bali campground is located in Central Bali’s Bedugul, a forested upland neighborhood which is close to Beratan Mountain Lake and offers stunning views of the mountainside with lush trees and shrubs.
The campground has many facilities, and you will have access to fishing ponds, playgrounds and can even enjoy a crackling bonfire by the lake. As an added bonus, the breathtaking Bali Botanic Garden and Golden Valley Waterfalls are both just a short drive away from the site.
Kayupadi Sunrise Camping
This Eastern Bali site is the ideal base for amazing hiking, cycling and trekking adventures as it is situated in the Bangli district and is close to attractions like Mount Batur, Mount Agung and Lake Batur.
Kayupadi Sunrise Camping has some lovely facilities too, and adventurous travelers can undertake early sunrise hikes of Mount Batur which is located only a few hundred meters away.
Baliwoso Ecotourism Camp
This site is ideal for experiencing authentic Balinese nature and local culture as it has the aim to promote conservation and sustainability in the region. It also does adventure-filled agro, culture and food experience excursions with the guests that stay.
This campsite is close to the stunning Lake Batur – only 5 km to the south. All in all, we love the location and excursion options on offer.
Keramas Beach Camping Grounds
Located just a few minutes walk from Keramas Beach, in Gianyar (at the crossroads of south and east Bali), this campsite is perfect for avid surfers, as well as families. It has good facilities and is close to tourist attractions like Bali Zoo and the Tegenungan Waterfall.
Keramas Beach Camping Grounds also lies close to a black sand beach which stretches over 10km. The beaches nearby are perfect for surfing and the site itself has a laid-back surfer vibe which is great for unwinding after a long day riding the waves.
Tips for camping in Bali
Camping in Bali is undoubtedly one of the best ways to explore and discover this incredible island. It’s also one of the best ways to experience Balinese culture and meet the friendly and welcoming locals.
Here are some tips to help you during your Bali camping adventure!
- Bali has mosquitos and you will likely come across many mosquitos in the forests and during rainy days. We highly recommend a mosquito-proof tent like this one for a more comfortable stay.
- Along the same lines, equip yourself with a good mosquito repellent or even bug-repellent bracelets and diffusers.
- If you are planning to camp during the wet season – which is between the months of October to April – we recommend a waterproof tent like this one.
- To keep the mud away from your sleeping area, a tent with a porch area such as this one is a must. Then after a day exploring waterfalls and jungle trekking you can store your muddy boots and gear outside of your sleeping area.
- Take any rubbish with you, and leave your camping spot exactly the way you found it.
Camping in Bali: The weather and best months to visit
Boasting a tropical warm climate all year round due to its location around eight degrees south of the equator, Bali has two seasons: A dry season spanning between April and September, and a rainy one between October and March.
The busiest months to visit Bali are the months of July, August, December and January – these months mark the high season and if you’re staying during these months we recommend booking your camping spot in advance.
Temperatures vary from 22 °C to 31 °C during July and August, and 23 °C to 33 °C during December and January. These months tend to be good for fun water sport activities like scuba diving, surfing and snorkelling.
If you are looking to avoid the peak tourist season, then April, May, and June are a fantastic time to visit, go on walks, and take in the majestic views. With temperatures between 23 °C to 34 °C from April to June, it is a great time to explore the nature reserves, rainforests and waterfalls on the island.