Monkey Forest Ubud: what to expectdecember 15 2017
When you’re about to visit Ubud in Bali you’ve probably heard about the Monkey Forest. Many backpackers and families head to this tourist attraction on a daily basis. But…is a visit worth it for bon-vivants such as you and me?
Monkey Forest Ubud: what to expect
I would say the Monkey Forest is, in fact, worth it. Yes, we can also spend this time sipping a cocktail next to the pool, but if you want a bit of diversity during your holiday this is an easy activity to add to your itinerary. The Monkey Forest is easily accessible (also when wearing wedges, I speak from experience) and it has a cheap entrance fee (about $2). The location itself is quite beautiful with a hint of Tombraider mystery. It’s conveniently located in the middle of Ubud and the monkeys are fun to watch and they can be cute…if you follow the rules.
Follow the rules
Upon entering the Monkey Forest you encounter a warning sign with the rules. Follow them. All the rules are common sense, but it’s amazing how many tourists apparently left their brains at the airport. In short: don’t carry around things that monkeys can steal (sunglasses, wallet, water bottle, etc.), don’t carry around food, don’t touch the monkeys (I saw a girl trying to make a selfie and she put her arm around the monkey…bad idea, it got VERY angry), keep your bags closed and don’t act like a complete moron.
What to wear
Wear an outfit that you don’t mind getting a bit dirty. Monkeys don’t wash their hands so there obviously is a risk of stains. I’d go for all black. No one sees the stains. Perfect. Don’t wear a skirt that the monkeys can easily pull down, because they will and, I’m just guessing here, I suspect you DO NOT want to show off your buttocks in the middle of the Monkey Forest. Beach clubs are better suited for such (monkey) business.
Golden tip: how to get the perfect monkey picture
Yes. We like Instagram, don’t we? And Facebook is a great means of letting our family and friends back home know we’re having the time of our lives. Maybe send grandma a picture of you and a cute monkey and you’ve made her day. But how do you get that perfect picture?
1. Stay calm
I saw many, many tourists running around screaming their heads off. Instigating each other and the monkeys. Bad idea. As mentioned before, the monkeys can get pretty mean when they feel threatened. Don’t behave like a basic tourist idiot. Behave like the classy bon-vivant you are. Stay calm. Take a seat on one of the walls and wait.
2. You don’t need bananas but it can help
As you would expect from a tourist attraction they’re trying to shake you down. You can buy bananas everywhere and some of the monkeys know that they quickly have to pose with you in order to obtain the food. It’s also possible that the monkeys snatch the bananas and run away before you can make a picture. Ye be warned. If you want the speedy picture: ask a Monkey Forest employee for help and use the bananas, this usually helps. Don’t forget to tip the employees.
As most things in Bali, the bananas don’t cost a thing, but still, compared to your other expenses there it’s kinda expensive. You can also spend that money on an ice cold Bintang.
3. Be patient (don’t use the bananas)
Take a seat on one of the walls and wait. Monkeys are curious by nature and if you sit still long enough, they will approach you. And, once they’re a bit used to you, they might organise an entire family meeting on your lap. Make sure your partner in crime is ready to snap a picture!
Bonus tip: after a morning visit to the Monkey Forest it’s time for lunch. We loved Toro Sushi (Jl. Gootama, walking distance from the Monkey Forest).
They can be quite pretty.
See? I just fed it and it has no interest in me whatsoever.
Even my mom found a monkey friend! Without bananas. (She just sat down for a rest and this monkey adopted her….that’s how I found out that patience and being calm is the key to getting their attention). What would we do without our moms.
There were babies….
….lots of them.
This one adopted me I guess.
Here a monkey just took my banana……. and again lost interest in me right after.
Whether you go see the monkeys are not……Enjoy your stay in Ubud lovelies! ♥
I’m Jaimie, a nerdy but girly marketeer/content creator from Holland who loves stylish travel. Madly in love with all things sweet, pretty and delicious. Into comfort&luxury, combined with the right amount of activities (I just really like soft beds, hot showers and the occasional cocktail). Always on the lookout for beautiful travel destinations and wonderful experiences.