What to Pack for Bali: with Printable PDF Checklist

You may wonder, “How hard can it really be to pack for Bali? Surely all I need are some T-shirts and shorts?”  Well, yes they are must-have items to pack for Bali. But there are also a few essentials to include on your Bali packing list to ensure you are prepared for all that the island has to offer.

Bali is an island in the South East Asia country of Indonesia.  It has active volcanos, rice paddies tiered up mountains surrounded by lush tropical forests.  At the foot of the hills are the beaches – so popular with tourists from countries near and far and all demographics – the surfers, hippies, artists, young singles through to families and seniors.  This is no doubt due to the diverse range of Bali attractions from lazing on the beaches, shopping at markets to high-end stores, visiting Hindu temples, playing in adventure parks, eating out in fancy restaurants, stopping at street stalls, and living it up at the pubs and clubs.

I’ve travelled to Bali at least five times, staying in different locations and experiencing all of these activities and attractions and this is what I’ve discovered you need to bring to Bali so that you can experience all that Bali offers!

In this Packing for Bali Checklist You Will Discover

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Essentials for Bali

The weather is a typical tropical climate of steamy temperatures up into the low 30C/86F with periods of high rainfall in the months of November to March.   This means there are some essentials you should bring to Bali.

Sun Protection

Two people in Bali pool with hats and rash guard clothing protecting from sun
Clothes to wear in Bali to stay safe from the sun

Whether it’s a cloudy day or a bright sunny day, the sun is fierce in Bali.  You need to protect yourself.


  • Sunscreen
  • Hat
  • Long sleeve rash guard top for the pool and beach
  • Kaftan or sarong to cover up after you get out of the water

Top Trip Tip: Buy sunscreen before you leave home as sunscreen is expensive in Bali

Rain Protection

“But what should I pack for the rainy season in Bali?” You may ask.

From the months of November through to March, it rains on about 50% of the days.  This is why you will find most hotel rooms supply an umbrella; like our hotel the Padma Resort Legian.  But don’t fear it rarely rains all day long.

To keep as dry as possible during those sudden downpours and in the wet season include in your day trip bag an umbrella or rain poncho*.

Top Trip Tip: It often rains more at night, so even though it might look clear take the hotel umbrella out with you in the evenings.

Insect Protection

With this hot tropical climate, you also get mosquitoes and sandflies.  And there have been a number of cases of Dengue fever reported.

Pack a tropical-strength insect repellent; we apply this liberally every evening before heading out for dinner.

I also include a plugin mosquito repellent that I turn on each evening (and leave on throughout the night) in the hotel room.

Top Trip Tip: Try not to choose an oil-based plugin repellent as the smell can get very strong in a hotel room


Over more recent years the quality of the food has improved no end in Bali.  But that doesn’t mean you are immune to getting an upset tummy, especially if you are a more adventurous eater.

Pack a non-refrigerated probiotic and take it daily if you really want to boost your gut health.

Top Trip Tip: Also don’t forget your own personal medical and include a copy of your script or letter from the doctor

What to Wear in Bali

The holidaymaker’s dress code in Bali is very relaxed.  It is perfectly acceptable to wear your shorts, tank tops and flip flops/thongs strolling along the beachside streets and be in your skimpiest bikini on the beach.

As already mentioned the weather is warm throughout the year.  If you are wondering, “do I need a jumper for Bali?”  The short answer is “No,” however if you are staying in the mountains then you may like to take a light jacket or wrap.   The only other time you may need a jumper is during your flight and perhaps at your home base.


So let’s look at what clothes you should pack for Bali.


Kuta beach in Bali with sun lounges looking out to sea
What to wear at Bali beaches

Pack for swimming and for sun protection.

  • Swimsuit
  • Hat
  • Cover up
  • Flipflops/Thongs

Top Trip Tip: If you are worried about the safety of your personal items whilst you are by the pool check out these mini travel safes*


people sitting at restaurant tables along the beach in Bali during the day
What to wear in Bali during the day

The daywear Bali dress code is simple. 

Top Trip Tip: When planning your travel wardrobe choose items that mix and match – consider this with your evening wear as well

Evening wear

A Bali street at night with motorbikes and market stalls
What to wear in Bali at night

When thinking about what to wear in Bali at night.  Keep in mind that the streets are riddled with potholes, poor drainage, high curbs, and uneven concrete drain covers.  The temperatures are still warm at night but people do make a bit more effort (in general) with getting dressed up – but not overly.  Think smart casual.  Include:

  • One good outfit (for special occasions or in hotel restaurants)
  • Flat sandals/shoes
  • Dresses
  • Skirts
  • Shorts
  • Tops
  • Makeup (you can get by with just lipstick and mascara)

Top Trip Tip: Choose clothing with fabrics that are lightweight and breathe like cotton, linen and rayon

What to Wear in Bali Temples

people walking into a Bali temple wearing sarongs
What to wear in Bali temples

However, as easygoing as the Bali dress code is on the streets, once you head out to explore and see the Bali temples things change. 

The Bali temples are places of worship and whilst the Balinese community is happy to have us tourists visit, they expect us to respect their culture.

When planning a visit to a temple think about what you can wear within the temple.  You need to have your shoulders and knees covered.  This doesn’t mean you have to spend the entire day dressed in long sleeve tops and long pants.  It just requires preparation.

Pack a sarong or consider wearing zip-off trousers, just don’t forget to pack the bottom half in your day trip bag.

Top Trip Tip: If you forget to pack something to cover up many temples will provide sarongs for you to use for a small fee.

Discover great temples and more in…

What Shoes to Pack for Bali

As I have mentioned before, the Bali beaches and the natural and cultural attractions provide an unsteady surface to walk upon.

Must-have shoes to pack for Bali include:

Top Trip Tip: When packing shoes for Bali, try to choose shoes that can be used for multiple occasions.  This will help to keep your travel packing light

Electronic Items

Next, you will want to take something to record your holiday highlights. And keep in touch with your friends and family back home.


  • Mobile phone
  • Camera
  • Ipad or Laptop
  • Chargers
  • Power adapters

Top Trip Tip: As we tend to have so many electrical devices including a powerboard

Staying Healthy in Bali

When planning a holiday to Bali you do not need to get immunisations.  However, that does not mean you should have a nonchalant attitude towards your health.

  1. The tap water in Bali is not safe to drink.  Always buy bottled water and also use it to brush your teeth.  In case you do end up with an upset stomach pack electrolytes, Imodium and Stemetil.  I do know people who also swear by packing a bottle of Anchor red cordial.
  2. There are lots of street food vendors in Bali.  Sometimes this food is perfectly safe to eat and other times not so.  Pack a non-refrigerated probiotic to help improve your gut health.
  3. Mosquitoes, they come out at night to almost eat you alive.  Pack personal insect repellent and apply before heading out each evening.  Also, pack a plugin insect repellent then sleep easy through the night.

COMING SOON: How to Stay Healthy in Bali

Top Trip Tip: I also advise packing a small DIY first aid travel kit for minor medical needs

Travel Documents for Bali


To enter the country you will need:

  • A passport with at least six months’ validity
  • Travel documents showing your planned departure from the country
  • A valid address where you will be based during your stay (this can be a hotel, hostel or private home)


You may also need a visa:

  • 160+ countries are valid for a free visa for stays up to 30 days
  • If you wish to stay longer it is better to apply for a Visa on Arrival (35 USD) as this can then be extended without you having to leave the country
  • If your passport country is not on the list of Visa Exemptions then you will need to apply for a visa prior to arrival
  • If you are coming to Bali overland, not all ports will offer a Visa on Arrival service
  • The Indonesian Tourism website has lots more details on visa requirements

Travel Vouchers

Don’t forget to print copies of all your travel vouchers.  Bookings can go missing in this electronic age.  And most hotels and airlines will ask to see your documents before checking you in.

Get all your paperwork sorted with the…

Driver’s License

If you are planning on hiring a scooter/moped or car you will need a driver’s license. You will also need an international driver’s permit (you must also carry your actual driver’s license with you). You need to obtain your international driver’s permit before you travel. In Australia, they only cost $49 from RAC plus a passport photo.

If you have an accident and get hurt whilst driving without an international driver’s permit you will not be covered by your travel insurance. You also need to be obeying all laws including not drink driving, speeding and wearing a helmet.

Please note: travel insurance does not generally include motor vehicle insurance – it is for you. To cover the vehicle you will need to purchase additional motor vehicle insurance from the car hire establishment.

Travel Insurance

I just mentioned it and I cannot stress this enough – get travel insurance, preferably as soon as possible after making your travel booking. 

Here are six reasons…

Make sure you choose the right cover for South East Asia and declare any pre-existing conditions; you may be able to get additional coverage for some illnesses eg asthma.  We use Cover-More*.

Top Trip Tip: Keep all your documents together and make it easier to find each item by using a document travel wallet*

Packing for Bali with Kids

I read on one website about Bali packing lists for families, not to pack toys.  I’m going to guess this author does not have kids!  Whilst there is a lot to do in Bali with kids and many resorts offer kids clubs there are times when you are “trying” to relax back in your room, on the beach, by the pool and the kids will demand attention.  So let’s look at everything you need to pack for family holidays to Bali.

What to Take to Bali with a Baby or Toddler

toddler ready to jump into pool at Bali hotel
What to take to Bali with baby or toddler

If you are travelling with a baby or toddler you will need to pack all the essential baby paraphernalia, however, most hotels will offer cots and high chairs.  Just bring your own pram/stroller.

Pack baby essentials enough for the duration of your stay if you are staying under a week or two.  There are mini-marts everywhere to get additional supplies.

  • Nappies/diapers
  • Nappy sacks
  • Nappy rash cream
  • Change mat (can be disposable or a travel one)
  • Wipes

It is really helpful to have snacks at the ready

  • Formula (if not breastfeeding) and I would take enough for your entire stay
    • Use boiled bottle water NOT tap water
  • Bottles
  • A small amount of dishwashing liquid
  • Bottlebrush
  • Your child’s favourite snacks
    • Dried fruit
    • Crackers

Clothing for at least four days if not the duration of your stay, don’t forget how dirty little ones get and consider how you will launder those clothes.  You could hand wash (include another travel bottle filled with laundry liquid), drop your clothes at a local laundry mat (it usually takes 24hrs before you get your clothes back) or the hotel laundry (very expensive).

  • Shorts
  • Tops
  • Dresses
  • PJ’s
  • Shoes

Then there is toys and entertainment.  When putting your list together of toys for travel remember to include options for the flights.

  • Snuggle friend
  • Reading books
  • Colouring books and crayons
  • Activity/sticker books
  • A small number of cars or dolls

For more inspiration check out these…

Additional extras you’ll want for your baby or toddler include:

  • Swim nappy/diaper
  • Long sleeve rash guard shirt
  • Swimming hat
  • Baby sunscreen
  • Baby insect repellent
  • Baby toothpaste and brush

For a full list read this…

Things to Take to Bali for Older Kids

Lots of kids playing in Bali pool with inflatable toys, balls and buckets
What to pack for Bali family holidays

For old kids, it is much the same as toddlers minus the nappy.  For clothing you’ll want:

  • Shorts
  • Tops
  • Dresses
  • Hat
  • Shoes

For toiletries include:

  • Toothbrush
  • Toothpaste
  • Hairbrush
  • Hair ties

For entertainment

  • Snuggle friend
  • Reading books
  • Activity books
  • Card games
  • Inflatable ball and flotation device – because it’s fun!

Find more ideas for…

You may also find the following kids travel packing lists which come with free PDF’s helpful.

Top Trip Tip: Get the kids involved with planning for their Bali family trip by getting them one of these educational Bali activities travel journals

Did you know we have all these packing lists available for free for you to download, edit and print?  Plus we’ve now added this NEW Bali packing guide.

Bali Packing List PDF

Continue to Plan Your Bali Trip

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