Welcome to the land of sun, sand, and serenity! Bali is a paradise for beach bums, adventure seekers, and spiritual wanderers alike.
But, did you know that you don’t need to break the bank to have an amazing time? There are plenty of free things to do in Bali that’ll keep you entertained for days.
From exploring hidden waterfalls and ancient temples to watching the sunset over a volcanic lake, grab your flip-flops and let’s dive into the world of free Bali adventures!
One of the best free activities to do in Bali is lounging on the beach.
Wherever you are staying on the island, there will be one of the famous stunning beaches in just a short drive (maybe a little further if you’re in the heart of the island).
Beaches in the very south have the best white sand, clear waters and impressive scenery, while the west coast has the most stunning sunset views. For something a little quieter, the east has some truly magnificent hidden gems where you can snorkel right off the sand.
Spread out your sarong, sip an ice-cold coconut and let the waves hit your back, the beaches in Bali are otherworldly, and enjoying them is one of the best free things to do on the island.
Enjoy a Pool
Don’t forget to enjoy your accommodation while in Bali. It’s easy to want to spend every day out and about, but many of the best places to stay on the island have beautiful gardens and amenities that deserve to be enjoyed.
Have a lazy day at your villa, hotel or hostel, lounging around the pool on the sun beds, taking an afternoon nap in the rays and playing a game of mermaids with your friends. Bali has some truly incredible hotel pools, don’t miss out on them!
Catch a Magical Sunset
It’s pretty obvious that the sunsets in Bali are some of the best in the world. Watching the magnificent changing colors, and dramatic dip of the sun is a favorite local pastime.
The beaches are always filled to the brim around the setting hours. All you need is something to sit on and a tasty snack, and you’ve got yourself a front row seat to a mesmerising natural wonder.
Check Out the Rice Paddies
The rice paddies of Bali are one of the most iconic sights on the island. Towering terraces and vast expanses of greenery make up a lot of the landscape of Bali, especially in the less visited parts of the island.
Wandering through a peaceful rice paddy, watching mother nature thrive and exploring the rural parts of the busy island is a great way to see a side of Bali that is much less seen.
Grab your camera for some beautiful photos, and explore parts of Bali that the partygoers and beach dwellers won’t see.
Join in Traditional Ceremonies
The Hinduism practiced in Bali is very different than anywhere else in the world. They have a ceremony and celebration for just about everything!
You’ll find beautiful canang dotting the roads and doorways, towering penjor around the villages and local ceremonies taking place every full moon.
Spend your time in Bali really getting to know Bali and join in, or simply watch, one of these unique ceremonies. The Balinese people love to share their culture and religion, letting you in on the secrets of why they celebrate and do what they do.
See the Milky Way on Nyepi
If you happen to be staying in Bali during Nyepi, you are in for a real treat. It’s like no other celebration in the world, with the whole island shutting down for a whole day – including the airport!
As the silent night draws in, and there is minimal light pollution on the island, you will get to witness the stunning sparkling stars, and perhaps even the Milky Way.
It is a truly an incredible time to be on the island.
Visit Pura Taman Saraswati Temple
Wanting to have a super special, spiritual experience? Pura Taman Saraswati Temple is one of the only temples in Bali that is free to enter – although donations are always appreciated.
Explore the traditional temple to see statues, traditional architecture and evening performances.
Take a Stroll Along Campuhan Ridge Walk
In the heart of Ubud, Campuhan Ridge Walk is one of the best free things to do in Bali.
With stunning views, a cool temperature and easy pathway, you can easily wander the trail, taking in the beautiful surroundings and getting some fresh, tropical air.
Follow the trail by Pura Gunung Lebah Temple for 30-ish minutes, depending on your speed, and you will reach the Bangkiang Sidem Village.
Visit Ubud Palace
At the Ubud Royal Palace you can have an inside look at how the royalty of the island lived.
The traditional-style Balinese palace is filled with incredible architecture and artworks that add to the luxury and lavish setting.
Each day the palace has live performances of Balinese Kecak dance and more!
If you have some free time in Ubud and looking for something to do without having to spend a dime, the Ubud Royal Palace is a great option.
Discover Hidden Waterfalls
Getting out and exploring the vast landscapes of Bali is one of the best free things to do in Bali.
Ok, you may have to pay for a driver or your scooter gas, but getting out among nature and taking in stunning views is free and enriching.
Some of Bali’s waterfalls require a donation, but many are free to visit.
Descend down wonky staircases and explore the jungle floor to find impressive, towering waterfalls, encompassed by luscious scenery.
Try Out the Natural Pools at Tegal Wangi Beach
Catch magical sunset views from the special natural pools at Tegal Wangi Beach.
Lining the shore are natural pools where the waves crash and fill the space with ocean water. Warmed by the sun and deep enough to stand, you can watch the sunset and spend a relaxing afternoon luxuriating in the water.
There are also some cool waves you can check out nearby!
Count the Kites in the Sky
During July and August the Bali Kite Festival is held on Sanur Beach, filling the skies with colorful, HUGE kites.
The locals will fly their kites, fighting with one another to cut their competitors kite down.
It’s a really impressive sight, with some of the kites running the length of a car!
Visit the Abandoned Amusement Park
There are a couple of creepy spots around the island that will get your adrenaline pumping with its scary stories and haunted vibes.
The Taman Festival Amusement Park in Denpasar was built in the 90s and quickly became abandoned when the owner ran out of money.
It was left in the hands of the Bali government who have done nothing with the land.
Neglected and overgrown, if you are looking to do something a little spooky, visiting Taman Festival will be right up your street.
Go Window Shopping
There are some great shopping centres and malls in Bali, as well as the trendy boutiques that line the roads and little market stalls.
When you don’t want to spend any money, head out and do some window shopping to see what’s about and what you might fancy buying in the future.
It may not be as fun as actually shopping, but it’s a free thing to do in Bali when you want to kill some time.
Plane Spot from the Beach
You can see planes flying in and out of the island from the coastline surrounding the airport.
One of the closest beaches is Kelan Beach, but the planes can be seen from Kuta Beach, Berawa Beach and beyond.
If you have some friends flying in or family heading out, you can wave off their plane from the oceanside.
Stop by Peaceful Geger Beach
For those staying in Nusa Dua, staying at the St Regis or The Mulia, Geger Beach is a must-go.
The perfect white sands and clear water makes it a beautiful spot for an idyllic beach day soaking in the sun.
It still remains relatively quiet and peaceful, despite its picture-perfect setting. A day at Geger Beach sounds like the perfect free thing to do in Bali 🙂
Watch Sunset at Pura Luhur Batu Ngaus
Pura Luhur Batu Ngaus is much like the famous Tanah Lot Temple, except free to visit!
Located on the peaceful Mengening Beach, it is an amazing spot to watch an oceanfront sunset with an impressive, rock-top temple in view.
Lesser known than its Tanah Lot sister, you can guaranteed a good view and photo opportunities!
Party on a Budget
If you are a partier on a budget, there are plenty of bars and clubs around Bali that have free entry.
And luckily for the ladies, there are spots all over the island that host Ladies Nights with free flow drinks – ShiShi in Seminyak is just one of the options 😉
Join Community Activities
Bali is a melting pot of all kinds of people with differing cultures, hobbies and ideas of fun.
Being part of the community will open you up to a world of new fun activities to take part in.
You can join social activities and meet ups through platforms like Nomeo, or Facebook Groups.
One of the best options is at Cocomo Canggu. Every Friday there is a special, free art meet up for women. You just have to join the Art Club Bali group on Facebook first.
For the budget travel warriors and those who just love a bargain, these free things to do in Bali vary from activities to just lazing about.
Perfect for a day where you have nothing else going on, enjoy one of these activities and report back to us!
Have other ideas for free things to do? Hit us up in the comments below!
Featured image: Canggu