Tips for Bali on a Motorbike: The Cheapest and Easiest Way to get around

Nathalie and Julie

I am on the road again! Just by writing these words, I can feel my body filling up with Excitement, Heat and Freedom. I asked my Travel -buddy, Nathalie, my former University buddy:

“Nathalie, Do we have the guts to drive around Bali, on a motorbike, on the left side of the road?”

Her response was: “Julie, we dare Everything!”

Which created in me, an explOsion of excitement!

The cheapest and easiest way to get around Bali is definitely on a motorbike. Its a good way to explore Bali, without a set itinerary. Find its hidden treasures, free from mass- tourism. Especially in high season, it allows you to bypass long traffic lines and avoid organized tours. Moreover, on a motorbike, you can choose when and where to stop! Which in our opinion, made us avoid quite a deal of unnecessary hassle! Organized tours have a tendency of bringing you to, what they call: “Bali’s Sight Seeings.”

Ulun Danu Temple

For example: On the right image, you can observe one of Bali’s water temples, on a lake. I had seen the temple for the first time, last year, on a postcard. Its been hanging on my imaginary travel fridge, ever since. When the long awaited moment arrived. The only magic breaker was: the temple was surrounded by at least 500 tourists… Then the head scratching started. How the Hell am I gonna point my camera, to make sure I can shoot one Tourist Free shot? Ha Ha Ha Ha! Yes, I’m sure you traveling- readers, have all experienced this once during your adventures. Do share your experience with us, in the comments! There’s nothing like, a Good laugh related to our travel flops!

Our advice to visit “Bali’s sight seeings”: visit Bali in low- not too rainy season. November, December, March and April, have fresh temperatures and it’s not raining too much. In high season, we suggest you put your alarm clock early. To get there before the crowds!

Flat Tire 3!
Flat Tire 3!

Experience: Our only driving experience, was 10 years ago, we both had a motorbike for 2 years, in high school. Nevertheless, driving on the left side of the road, took some getting used to. Renting a motorcycle in Bali is not complicated at all, you can rent them anywhere and they didn’t even ask us for our International Drivers License.

The Balinese road traffic, on the other hand, is complicated. We never really understood the rules. Who had the right of way. We made sure we looked confident, which involved a lot of horn honking and fought our way through the loud, busy, unorganized, crazy and extremely exiting Balinese traffic. Off course, everything accompanied with a smile! Overshooting kilometer long traffic jams, waiting for colorful holy ceremonies to pass, crossing massive trucks… I read later that in Bali, the biggest vehicle has the right of way. We managed to get 3 flat tires, with our off road adventures… Will tell you more about this, in the next articles about Bali. Subscribe if you haven’t already!

How not to get fined: Look like you are a Local Boulé (local foreigner). Driving a motorcycle in only your bikini, is a classic cop attractor, that shows that you are clearly, a tourist, begging for a fine. Having your International driving license can avoid you to get fined, if you get stopped… One of the Local boulés told us: “If a cop, orders you to stop, pretend like you didn’t see him and keep driving!” Last but not least: wear a helmet.

Kuta Bali traffic jams!
Kuta Bali traffic jams!

Traffic around Kuta, Bali: Keep in mind that, as soon as you approach Kuta, South Bali. The traffic Jams are present. You will need much more time to complete a given distance on the map.

A less funny subject to talk about, is that usually foreigners are expected to pay up if an accident occurs, even if they aren’t at fault.

There you go, some pointers for your Bali adventure. Don’t hesitate to ask any questions in the comments. Happy Holidays!

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