Free Travel Guide for Bali

Packing for Bali: advice and tips

Our tips to never forget anything

After several trips in Bali, we perfectly know what to bring to fulfil most of your needs. Get the most out of our experience and advice to confidently prepare your suitcase!

Step by step guide to fill your suitcase:

Suitcase or backpack, what to choose?
Hygiene and beauty
Readings and useful items
Photography equipment and phone
Sports activities
Travelling with a baby or a kid?

Suitcase or backpack?

Choosing between a suitcase or a backpack should vary according to your way of travelling.

If you have planned an itinerant tour, a hiking backpack is the best option as the sidewalks in Bali – when they exist – are not always in good conditions. In that case, you should better take a backpack that can be padlocked and cover it with backpack cover.

If you stay at the same place during all your trip, or if the transports are limited or already organised, you can choose a suitcase on wheels.

If you plan to bring checked-in luggage, we recommend you to also travel with a hand luggage, with your must-have stuff inside and at least one changing outfit, in case of a lost.
Before choosing your type of bag, check your flight tickets and the maximum weight you can pack (in hold or in cabin) on the online reservation.


Our advice:

 Bali offers an all year round warm and humid climate. Choose loose-fitting cotton clothes, which do not stick to the skin, unlike those made of synthetic materials.
 Avoid overpacking as it’s easy and cheap to clean your clothes in Bali.
 If you stay in small guesthouses without ironing board, pack easy matching clothes that do not wrinkle (skip linen for instance).
 Choose clothes with clear colours as mosquitoes are attracted by darker tons.

Here is the must have to pack in your luggage:

  • Bottomwear: skirt, pant, short... Bring at least one pant to protect yourself from the mosquitoes in the evening and night. Keep the short for seaside resorts as it remains badly seen by Indonesian people who usually hide their body and associate low covering clothes with a lack of respect or poverty.
  • Topwear: bring mostly high covering clothes (avoid low-necked or revealing clothes) as they are perfect to visit temples and sacred places. Same as for pants, don’t forget to bring a long sleeves shirt to protect yourself from the mosquitoes during your evenings out.
  • In option: night out clothes.
  • Light weight backpack for visit and activities.
  • A ‘sarong’, which is a long piece of tissue that you wrap around your waist to cover your bare legs, will be often required to visit sacred places. If you don’t already have one, don’t worry, you will easily find them for sell and it’s also a perfect souvenir. Good to know: when visiting Bali with one of our private drivers or local guides, they will lend you a sarong when needed.
  • Nightwear, underwear, and socks.
  • Swimsuit and amicrofiber towel (for the beach for instance).
  • Comfortable shoes for the visits and flipflops or sandals for relax days.
  • A light scarf (very useful with air conditioning).
  • A sweater for the plane.

Hygiene - beauty

You can easily find most of the products on site (soap, shampoo, toothpaste…) expect if you usually use organic or specific products which are hard to find in basic stores. If you prefer to bring your own products, you can choose the ‘travel size’ or using small BPA free travel bottles to only bring the necessary quantity. Those who want to travel very light can opt for a multi-use travel natural soap (body, hair, clothes, shaving cream...).

Also keep in mind to bring your other products like lens cleaner, pads or tampons that are quite expensive and not easy to find, depending on where you stay in Bali.

Finally, for those who want to keep doing their make-up routine, don’t forget their make-up bag and make up remover (to save a bit of space and avoid wast: reusable make-up remover pads, make-up remover glove...).


Here is what your medical suitcase should content:

First-aid kit: a must!
  • Your usual medication + the ones specific for travelling in Bali (anti-diarrhea, intestinal anti-bacterial…). Make sure to bring all prescriptions.
  • First-aid kit (including compresses, bandages, antiseptic...) adapted to your personal needs.
  • Electronic thermometer. Mandatory for monitoring a possible fever.
  • Hand sanitiser
  • Hat/Cap and sunglasses (with a hard sunglasses case). If you need to change them, consider polarized lenses that stop reflected rays and the sensation of glare for optimal comfort.
  • High protection marine friendly sunscreen: it’s better to buy one before leaving as the products’ quality in Bali may vary. Regarding the after-sun lotion, you can also opt for buying pure Aloe Vera once on-site. It’s an efficient and multi-benefits plant.
  • SPF lip balm.
  • Mosquito repellent for tropical areas.
  • Chirurgical masks to use for sanitary measures or if a volcano erupts and spread ashes to Bali.
  • Optional: Sleep eye mask (with memory foam) for morning light sensitive travellers.
  • Optional: Ears plugs will help you to not be awaken early in the morning by animals.
  • Optional: Special ear plugs for plane that help regulate the pressure.
  • Optional: poison pump for travellers planning several hikes.

Readings and useful items

  • Choose a travel guide book that suits your tastes and needs. It should be easy to bring it everywhere and well organised.
  • Optional: English-Indonesian conversation book.
  • Paper books or a Kindle with electronic books already downloaded.
  • Optional: small sewing kit (make sure to avoid scissors in your hand luggage) and a bit of detergent.
  • Waterproof zipped bags or freezing bags to protect your valuable belongings (travel documents, photography equipment…) and for the transport of beauty products (to avoid a leak in your suitcase).
  • Optional: A notebook with pen to write down the visited places, your thoughts, your expenses...
  • Optional: luggage scale to check the weight of hand and hold luggage.

Photography equipment and phone

  • Camera with its charger.
  • One or two changing batteries.
  • Several memory cards. We strongly advise you to bring at least two high memory cards. If any problem occurs you could possibly lose all your pictures if you always use the same one.
  • For reflex camera: UV filter, sunshade and cleaning kit. Before leaving, don’t forget to clean your camera (by yourself or ask a professional).
  • Optional: tripod and remote control.
  • Phone and charger. Remember to disactivate the use of data and to download Bali’s map on an app like Google Maps or (to check it without using your data) and an app for currency exchange rate like XE before leaving. If you expect to make many calls, bring an unlocked phone; and then buy a prepaid local SIM card on arrival.
  • Optional: laptop and charger portable hard drive to periodically save your pictures.
  • Optional: a travel plug adapter if you have a lot of electrical devices to plug.

Sport activities

If during your trip you planned a few days at sea or in waterfalls, bring water shoes that will protect your feet and help you to walk painlessly on the small rocks that can be underwater. Keep your favourite pair of flipflops for beach days. The Crocs have are very comfortable and can even be worn during the day (and trust me, now you may find good looking ones!).

If planning hikes:

  • A hiking pant, preferably customizable (to turn it into a short).
  • A sweater or a fleece jacket and a waterproof and windproof jacket if you climb up to high altitude (ex: ascending the Mount Batur).
  • Headlamp. Also useful to read a book in the darkness.
  • Hiking socks and Hiking shoes. We recommend you wear your hiking shoes some weeks before leaving to get your feet used to it, avoid blisters on feet and to be comfortable inside once in Bali.

If you have planned to do snorkelling:

  • Fins, mask, and snorkel. You can also rent a snorkelling kit in Bali, but the quality may vary. It’s better to bring your own set especially if you’ve planned to snorkel a lot.
    Snorkelling addicts will opt for a full face mask (180° panoramic view, anti-fog system, integrated snorkel) and fins for experienced people.
  • Optional: Anti-UV tee-shirt.
  • Optional: waterproof phone case, waterproof camera, or a Go-Pro.
  • Optional: USB power bank.

What to choose?

A basic waterproof phone case is cheap and light. However, and according to our experience, it may damage your phone if the waterproof is not totally efficient, adding the fact that it’s quite difficult to take good pictures or videos as the screen is stick on the plastic cover and this usually closes the app or activates the zoom... Nevertheless, the waterproof bag is useful to avoid sand damage when on the beach.
Choosing a waterproof camera or waterproof video camera, you will get some nice underwater quality shots without damaging your phone. However, it will obviously be pricey and take more space in your suitcase.


Don’t forget your passport!
  • Passport for all travellers (and visa if requested).
  • Flight, train, bus tickets, hotel reservation, voucher for already booked activities and/or visits (with the right format requested: QR code, printed document…).
  • If you rent a car or a scooter: driver’s licence, international driver’s licence.
  • Certificate of travel insurance, membership card (to be carried at all times) and the form to be filled out to initiate a claim.
  • A copy of the above-mentioned documents + backup on USB storage key or online (Dropbox, Google Drive…).
  • List of emergency phone numbers in Bali (embassy, clinics, insurance, lost/stolen credit card…).
  • Credit cards: it’s safer to have 2 cards and to bring only one card with you while the second one remains hidden in your hotel room. Don’t forget to inform your bank regarding your travel so that they remove the filters that prevent its use abroad.
  • American dollars if you are not eligible for the visa exemption.

What to add if you travel with a baby or a kid

Here is what you shouldn’t forget in a your baby’s bag. (Adaptable list according to your personal needs and the provided equipment of your hosting places in Bali):

Things to keep handy during your flight:

  • Diapers and wipes for the duration of the door-to-door trip (add 2-3 diapers in case of delays). You can also find disposable diapers in local supermarkets.
  • One changing outfit for the door-to-door trip and a sweater for the plane.
  • Baby bottles, small bottles of water, powdered milk pods (if needed), meals and an easy-to-clean silicone bib. Many airlines offer baby food on board when booking in advance, but you can also bring your own (it’s allowed in cabin within the limits of what is reasonable for the flight).
  • Saline solution, current medical treatment (with prescription) if required.
  • Teddybear and toys to advertise your baby during the flight.
  • ergonomic baby carrier adapted to tropical areas (preferably). A baby stroller is not very suitable for the sidewalks of Bali (but you will surely miss it at the airport). Remember to use the baby carrier before you leave so that your baby is used to it.
  • Optional: travel baby bottle warmer. Useful to save some time and avoid asking the crew member to warm it up for half an hour.
    In the luggage:
  • Clothes: bodies, pyjamas, shorts, pants, sets, dress, tee-shirts, sweater, socks, shoes.
  • Blanket, baby sleeping bag and toys.
  • Hat and sunglasses.
  • Baby bottle, sterilization tablets and easy-to-clean silicone bib.
  • Meal kit (plate, spoon and learning fork) and dishwashing liquid adapted to babies.
  • If the baby is not breastfeeding: powdered milk and cereals if needed. You will find them in local supermarkets but it’s quite expensive and you won’t be sure of how the quality is and if it’s adapted to your baby’s milk habits.
  • Some baby food and compote. It’s also possible to find them in Bali (for instance at Carrefour, in south Bali) but as all baby stuff, it’s not cheap. However, various restaurants accept with pleasure to smash fruits and vegetables to adapt them for babies. In case of food allergy of your baby, it’s safer to bring your own food products.
  • Optional depending on your hosting type: pop-up travel bed for a baby or a child, a baby phone, inflatable bathtub.
  • Travel changing mattress, sanitiser and wipes.
  • Baby hygiene products (soap, shampoo, toothbrush, toothpaste…). Hydrating cream, treatment cream against diaper rash and mycosis.
  • Anti-UV swimsuit and baby water diapers.
  • Sunscreen, water sprayer, adapted mosquito repellent, anti-itch cream in case of insect bite.
  • Usual medicines (paracetamol, soothing gel for teething...) and special travel medicines adapted to babies (anti-diarrheal, oral rehydration solution, treatment against constipation...), adapted thermometer and up-to-date vaccination record.
  • Antiseptic and arnica for small injuries.
  • Optional: adapted car seat. Cars with or without drivers are very seldom equipped. However, it is possible to rent one in advance online for the whole stay.

Good luck with your packing!

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