~ The Sacred Monkey Forest in Ubud ~

So credit where credit is due this little guy is pretty cute, as long as he is only in 2D and on my computer screen. To say I am scared of monkeys would be a huge understatement, after several devastating traumatic events. Including being bitten ( hard, drawing blood and instilling the fear of rabies ) by an alleged pet at a dodgy villa we stayed at, having a 3 foot tall male monkey in Ulu’s try to steal my baby ( or perhaps it was the mango we were sharing still undetermined) and being deep in the Sacred Forest, 8 months pregnant and having my “friends” (yes you know who you are) and the banana seller lady (with the  big stick) think it funny to throw bunches of bananas at my feet and call all 605 monkeys in from the forest to feed off me ( or the bananas again undetermined).  I think I am quite within my rights to never want to look at a monkey again. However the novice Bali traveller may wish to visit the Sacred Monkey Forrest in Ubud. There are approximately 605 (according to the website)  long tailed macaques which live in the monkey forest being of 4 distinct troupes. Within Balinese Hinduism, monkeys represent positive and negative forces. The Balinese both loathe and revere monkeys for example the ones that that occupy sacred Balinese Hindu temple sites (like the Sacred Monkey Forest) tend to be revered and protected by the Balinese. One reason for this is that monkeys, in the form of a Barong, are believed to be capable of guarding temple sites against evil spirits. However, they are also of the belief that monkeys can be negative in nature which is reinforced when, for example, they raid rice fields or snatch items from their shops. There is a small fee to enter the forest and I recommend you do not have any items like sunglasses, water bottles, snacks or phones in your pockets or on you, as they will be taken by the monkeys. You have been warned !

Monkey Forest Road, Padangtegal Ubud.
photo Copyright © Kalle Kiander ( http://www.kiander.se )

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5 thoughts on “~ The Sacred Monkey Forest in Ubud ~

  1. Oh my goodness! Thank you for sharing!!! It’s so good to know I’m not the only one with a monkey phobia!!
    When I was 9 I was bitten by a monkey in Thailand so had to have the rabies vaccine flown in to Australia when we got back. It was 2 weeks of horrible huge needles!
    My brother in law got married in Bali last year and we thought we would all go on a tour with the rest of the family. We asked our driver if we were going to be going anywhere near the monkey forest and he told us no! 10 minutes later we were stuck in traffic so I looked between the seats and all I could see was monkeys running at our van!!! They were all over it in seconds!! All I could do was put my head between my legs and block my ears!!! It was HORRIBLE!
    So glad to know in not the only one!! 🙂 thanks for sharing! xx

  2. Im not a fan either after I reluctantly visited the monkey forest with a friend and had a couple climb my legs. Give it a miss if you’re not a friend of the monkey!

  3. I am not keen on going here, but my husband is insisting. He was going to take our two kids himself, but I think we need two adults & one of those adults to be someone of sound/ safe monkey-wary mind to make it a quick and safe tour. We will have a driver that day, so intend to leave everything in his car that we can, and even avoid wearing thongs! I do want to take my camera in, but am thinking an iPhone with a cover & some sort of wrist strap might have to do??!

    • I am so glad that we went! It was actually very safe (if you follow the guidelines). We left everything with our driver, I even took off my earrings. The only thing we took was my camera. Other people and backpacks, esp open ones, did have monkeys approach them. People who sat down had some monkeys come near them. The monkeys had no interest in is at all. It was very interesting. I would go again.

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