Is Bali Safe? Solo-traveler's guide + the do's and don'ts! [2023]

Updated on:  
January 4, 2023
Reading Time:  
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Bali, Indonesia is packed with natural beauty that attracts millions of tourists each year! But, how safe is it? Keep reading to find out what to avoid and how to stay safe in 2023. 

Traveling to a new country can be a little daunting, I get it, I've been nervous before I've traveled too! But exploring somewhere new brings all kinds of rewards. 

A few safety tips, some travel insurance, a little common sense, and a good travel plan are the recipe for a successful trip. Stick to this formula when it comes to Bali and you’ll be laughing all the way!

Home to luscious jungles, bewitching culture, mouth-watering food, and some of the best beaches for surfing, Bali is a backpacker's heaven. It's a great, safe place to start your backpacking adventures! 

But like any other trip, there are a few things to be mindful of. Keep reading to discover all things safety in Bali and what to avoid!

Is Bali Safe to Visit?

rice farms in bali
Image Courtesy: Geio Tischler on Unsplash

The simple answer is yes! Bali is an island enjoyed by millions of Americans and tourists of all nationalities. Most trips are incident free! Of course, like any other major tourist destination, there are petty crimes, scams, and things to avoid. 

There are many areas and provinces in Bali spread out over 95 miles! With over 141 million people living there, it's quite densely populated!

Crime tends to occur more in tourist areas. But, the risk is low in comparison to other areas across South East Asia. So rest easy, you’re making the right decision if you plan on traveling to Bali.

Bali Crime Rate

You might be shocked to know that the highest risk to tourists in Bali is natural disasters! These threats include tsunamis, earthquakes, flash floods, volcanic eruptions, and rough seas. 

The rainy season in Bali is from October to March, making it the most common time for any bad weather to make an appearance.

The crime rate that impacts tourists is extremely low. In 2019 there were 72 crimes per 100000 inhabitants, which has continued into 2022. But petty crimes like scams, pickpocketing, and mugging do occur. 

The main crime that’s been on the rise in recent years is credit card scams. Shop or restaurant owners record credit card details when you pay for something. This can be unavoidable in tourist areas. Paying with cash is the best way to avoid these scams. 

Pro Tip:

Make sure you exchange cash before you travel to Bali. Store your money in a secure bag in your hostel locker to keep it safe. If you need more cash make sure you use a reputable bank's ATM. ATMs can be found in many popular tourist areas. 

What Should I Avoid in Bali?

Bali is famous for all it has to offer. From sacred temples to surfer's paradise, backpackers, digital nomads, and tourists fall in love with this majestic island. 

But with all the variety, there are things to avoid. Let's take a look at what not to do in Bali:

  • Avoid drinking tap water.
  • Renting a scooter without a license? Simply avoid driving without a license at all costs!
  • Don’t wear beach clothes when you visit temples. Rather cover up to show respect.
  • Always wear mosquito spray or long clothing on hikes. Avoid those mosquitos at all costs as they aren't as friendly as the locals!
  • Steer clear of animals, this includes dogs and monkeys! The monkeys are cute but aren’t always friendly
monkey in bali
Image Courtesy: Jared Rice on Unsplash

Is Bali Safe for Female Solo Travelers?

Many backpackers head to Bali on their first big adventure and the simple reason is that so many others are doing the same! 

With friendly locals, great hostels, and like-minded travelers, Bali is a safe place for female solo travelers. There’s no reason not to explore at night or go off the beaten track, just don't throw all caution to the wind. Trust your gut.

Safe Transport in Bali

Exploring Bali can be a little overwhelming when you first arrive. The roads are hectic! Here are a few great ways to get around:


You can hop in a local taxi without much risk. Just make sure the taxi is sky blue with a white light on the roof as these are registered taxis.

Always agree on a price or ask for the meter to be set. 

Car/ Motorcycle:

Public transport is lacking somewhat after covid. Still, there’s no reason you shouldn’t rent a car or motorcycle. It’s a great way to explore at your own pace. Just make sure you always wear a helmet, be mindful of other traffic and never give your passport over in exchange for a rental!

Local tours:

Not everyone wants to navigate the busy roads in Bali. The traffic can be overwhelming!

If you’re feeling unsure, I would recommend a local tour to help you explore. Not only do you get an expert guide, but you also get the chance to meet like-minded travelers. 

Local tours offer a little extra safety and in true Bali fashion, are great value for money.

woman walking up stairs in Bali
Image Courtesy: AR on Unsplash

Safe Places to Stay in Bali

If you’re looking for a safe place to stay in Bali, stick to the tourist areas!

Areas like Ubud, Seminyak, Uluwatu, and Canggu are just a few areas that offer great hotels and hostels. They are easy to get to and are at the heart of some of the best activities in Bali like surfing, the monkey forest, and visiting mesmerizing rice terraces.

If you’re still feeling a little overwhelmed, check out the best areas to stay for first-timers in Bali. Wherever you chose to say, make sure your hostel has front desk security, safety lockers, and great ratings from other backpackers. 

Safety Tips in Bali

To help your trip to Bali go smoothly, here are some tips to make you feel more at ease when exploring:

  • Don't hold your phone in public.
  • Keep your personal belongings safe. My favorite thing to use when exploring is a money belt to hide your cash.
  • Know disaster drills, like what to do in an earthquake or volcanic eruption.
  • Don't swim in rough seas or where there are red flags! The tides and currents in Bali can be really strong.
bali beach
Image Courtesy: Bady Abbas on Unsplash

So, Is Bali Safe?

Bali is a safe place to travel for solo travelers and group travelers alike. Crime rates are relatively low, with the only major concern being credit card scams. Compared to other areas in South East Asia, backpackers and digital nomads can navigate this island by day and by night with confidence. 

With bustling markets, alluring jungles, cascading waterfalls, zen yoga classes, and buzzing nightlife, Bali truly is one of a kind!

Backpack Safely with Pilot

Bali is open and waiting for you! The best part about your trip to Bali is exploring the unknown, and not letting fear hold you back. Keep your common sense alive and your safety tips in mind and you’ll be set for an epic trip abroad! 

If you’re considering traveling to Bali, let Pilot help you plan a backpacking trip of a lifetime! 

Pilot is your brand-new travel planner that helps you discover and build travel itineraries connecting you to resources everywhere. Make the planning experience more fun by collaborating with your travel buddies! Pilot makes it fun and easy to share and relive your favorite travel memories with many useful features! 

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Published on:  
September 19, 2022

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