Ubud Monkey Forest in Bali
Ubud Monkey Forest is one of Ubud’s most popular attractions and must be visited during holiday in Bali. Also known as the Sacred Monkey Forest of Padangtegal a natural forest sanctuary which is home to a horde of grey long-tailed macaques. The site is well preserved thanks to a community-based management program. The forest is also conveniently positioned near Ubud Town Centre, and within easy walking distance from guesthouses and resorts along the main roads of Jalan Monkey Forest.
Besides watching playful monkeys in their natural habitat, swinging through canopies, lazing along pathways or feeding on bananas, the site offers cool walks along paved pathways through a leafy nutmeg forest. Beautiful ancient temples with guardian statues covered in moss also feature throughout the forest.
The Ubud Monkey Forest describes its mission as conservation of the area within its boundaries according to the Hindu principle of Tri Hata Karana ("Three ways to reach spiritual and physical well-being"), which seeks to make people live harmoniously during their lives. The "three ways" to this goal under the Tri Hata Karana doctrine are harmonious relationships between humans and humans, between humans and the natural environment, and between humans and The Supreme God. Accordingly, the Monkey Forest has a philosophical goal of creating peace and harmony for visitors from all over the world. It also seeks to conserve rare plants and animals for use in Hindu rituals and to provide a natural laboratory for educational institutions, with a particular emphasis on research into the social interaction of the park's monkeys with one another and their interaction with the park's natural environment.
Good to Know About Ubud Monkey Forest
In 2011, approximately 605 crab-eating macaques (Macaca fascicularis) – 39 adult males, 38 male sub-adults, 194 adult females, 243 juveniles, and 91 infants – lived in the Ubud Monkey Forest, they are known locally as the Balinese long-tailed monkey.
The park staff feeds the monkeys sweet potato three times a day, providing them with their main source of food in the park, although bananas are for sale in the park for tourists wishing to feed the monkeys, and the monkeys also feed on papaya leaf, corn, cucumber, coconut, and other local fruit. For the sake of the monkeys' health, visitors are prohibited from feeding them snacks such as peanuts, cookies, biscuits, and bread.
There are five groups of monkeys in the park, each occupying different territories; one group inhabits the area in front of the Main Temple, another the park's Michelin area, a third the park's eastern area, and a fourth the park's central area, while the fifth group lives in the cremation and cemetery area.
In recent years, the monkey population has become larger than an environment undisturbed by humans could support; it continues to grow, with the population density in 2013 higher than ever. Conflicts between the groups are unavoidable; for example, groups must pass through one another's territory to reach the stream during the dry season, and increasing population pressures also are bringing the groups into more frequent contact.
The monkeys rest at night and are most active during the day, which brings them into constant contact with humans visiting during the park's business hours. Visitors can observe their daily activities – mating, fighting, grooming, and caring for their young – at close range, and can even sit next to monkeys along the park's paths.
Dogs – which otherwise might intimidate the monkeys – are not allowed in the Ubud Monkey Forest, and the monkeys have lost their fear of humans. Generally, they will not approach humans who they believe are not offering food, but they invariably approach human visitors in groups and grab any bags containing food that the humans have. They may also grab plastic bottles and bags not containing food, as well as reach into visitors' bags and trouser pockets in search of food, and will climb onto visitors to reach food being held in a visitor's hand, even if the food is held above a visitor's head. The visitor will notice the interesting phenomenon of numerous obese monkeys, a testament to the almost unbounded food supply the huge number of tourists entering the forest provide.
The park staff advises visitors never to pull back an offer of food to a monkey or to touch a monkey, as either action can prompt an aggressive response by the animal. Although they generally ignore humans who they believe do not have food, they sometimes mistake a human's actions as an offer of food or an attempt to hide food.
Ubud Monkey Forest Entrance Fee & Facilities
Visits to the Ubud Monkey Forest are subject to an entrance fee of IDR 40,000 for adults and IDR 30,000 for kids. As one of Ubud’s most popular attractions, Ubud Monkey Forest is always included on itinerary of Bali Tour Packages.
The Ubud Monkey Forest covers approximately a tenth of a square kilometer (approximately 10 hectares or 27 acres) and contains at least 115 different species of trees. The park is heavily forested and hilly, A deep ravine runs through the park grounds, at the bottom of which flows a rocky stream. Trails allow visitors access to many parts of the park, including the ravine and stream.
The Monkey Forest grounds have a forest conservation area, a public hall and gallery, an open stage, a canteen, a first aid center, a police post, parking and toilet facilities, and a composting facility.
How to get Ubud Monkey Forest ?
Ubud Monkey Forest is located on the southern border of Ubud town around 3 kms south of central town. Its official name is the Sacred Monkey Forest Sanctuary (Balinese Mandala Suci Wenara Wana), and its name as written on its welcome sign is the Padangtegal Mandala Wisata Wanara Wana Sacred Monkey Forest Sanctuary.
The site can be reached by many sides besides from central town of Ubud, from eastern corner of Ubud and from southern area of Ubud. The distance from Kuta is around 55 kms, from Sanur around 40 kms, and from Nusa Dua area around 65 kms.
Address: Jalan Monkey Forest, Ubud, Gianyar Regency, Bali , Indonesia