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Museum Guide for Bali

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There are many well-known museums in Bali, and while each one deserves to be visited, there are also some great off-the-beaten-track venues that are absolute treasures. This list covers the best of both, with variety enough to satisfy every type of cultural explorer.

Good for
  • History Buff
  • Art and Architecture Lover
  • Nature Lover
  • Peace and Quiet Seeker
  • Luxury Traveller
  • Thrifty Traveller
  • Like a Local

9 Places

7 City Tips

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9 Places

Setia Darma House of Mask and Puppets

Speciality Museums

Gedong Kertya Museum

Speciality Museums

Museum Puri Lukisan

Art Museums

Museum Kain

Speciality Museums

Bali Provincial State Museum (Negeri Propinsi Bali)

Art Museums

Agung Rai Museum of Art (ARMA)

Art Museums, Lessons & Workshops, Performances

Don Antonio Blanco Museum

Art Museums

Le Mayeur Museum

Speciality Museums

Neka Art Museum

Speciality Museums

LynnePP's City Tips

  • Tipping is not compulsory but always appreciated.
  • Take metered taxis for short distances and hire a private car and driver for venues further afield. Allow plenty of time for traffic jams!
  • Do not point with your index finger or feet.
  • Use only the right hand to eat with, and for giving or receiving anything.
  • Do not touch an Indonesian on the head. This includes children.
  • When entering a temple, please obey the rules.
  • Saving face is of utmost importance in Indonesia, so please speak respectfully to avoid embarrassing anyone.
  • Setia Darma House of Mask and Puppets
    Speciality Museums
    See more photos
    LynnePP Says:

    This fascinating museum is located around 10-minutes drive from Ubud, and set within 1.4 hectares of beautifully-maintained tropical gardens. It houses over 4,800 puppets and 1,200 masks collected from across the Indonesian archipelago, other Asian countries, as well as a few from places further afield. The exhibits are beautifully displayed behind glass in old traditional joglos from Java, and in Balinese structures known as wantilan.

    Good for
    • Must See
    • Luxury Traveller
    • Thrifty Traveller
    • Hidden Gems
    • Like a Local
    • History Buff
    • Art and Architecture Lover
    • Nature Lover
    Tips
    • Allow yourself time to visit the whole museum.
    • Have a coffee break, the latte is great!
    • Spend ample time in the magnificent gardens.
    • Make good use of the free guide.
    • Look for President Obama and Michael Jackson...
    • There is no entrance fee but there is a donation box at the exit — contributions welcome!
    Plan to stay:
    2-3 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #1 of 21 things to do in Sukawati
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • A gem just near Ubud 18/09/2018
    • Not too be missed amazing collection 04/09/2018
    • Setia Darma House of Mask and Puppets
    Address:
    Jl. Tegal Bingin
    Banjar Tengkulak Tengah
    Sukawati
    Indonesia
    Phone:
    +62 361 8987493
    Hours:
    Sun - Sat
    8:00 am - 4:00 pm
    Other:
  • Gedong Kertya Museum
    Speciality Museums
    LynnePP Says:

    This beautiful library in the north of Bali is home to the thousands of old Balinese manuscripts, which were inscribed onto palm leaves known as lontar. These historical works are records of an ancient Bali dating back to the 13th century, and cover a variety of categories — from genealogy and religion, to astronomy and folklore. It is the only museum dedicated to lontar manuscripts in the world and well worth a visit!

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Must See
    • Luxury Traveller
    • Thrifty Traveller
    • Hidden Gems
    • Like a Local
    • History Buff
    • Art and Architecture Lover
    Tips
    • Opens around 7am and closes at 3.30pm. Closed on weekends.
    • Not many visitors know about this spot, meaning you'll often have the venue to yourself.
    • Look for the inscribed bronze plates dating from the 10th century.
    • Pop into Museum Buleleng while you're in the area.
    Plan to stay:
    1-2 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #10 of 25 things to do in Singaraja
    • Interesting 10/10/2016
    • all old collection of lontar can be found here. 06/07/2016
    • Gedong Kertya Museum
    Address:
    Jl. Veteran no 23
    Singaraja
    Indonesia
  • Museum Puri Lukisan
    Art Museums
    See more photos
    LynnePP Says:

    This museum houses many beautiful artworks, including paintings and wood carvings, both traditional and modern. Its exhibits are displayed in three spacious buildings which are connected by walkways that wind through a lovely serene garden, complete with lotus ponds and statues.

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Must See
    • Luxury Traveller
    • Thrifty Traveller
    • Hidden Gems
    • Like a Local
    • History Buff
    • Art and Architecture Lover
    • Nature Lover
    Tips
    • The Kura Kura bus from Sanur stops right in front of the museum.
    • Flash photography is not permitted inside.
    • Combine your visit with one of the many cultural workshops available here. Check online for upcoming events.
    • Building three is only open during temporary exhibitions.
    • The Royal Palace is only a 5-7 minute walk from here, kill two birds with one stone.
    • Don't miss the beautiful lotus ponds.
    Plan to stay:
    1-2 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #15 of 86 things to do in Ubud
    • Highlight of our Visit to Bali 13/10/2018
    • Serenity of quiet pools, gamelan music, no crowds, and Balinese art. 11/10/2018
    • Museum Puri Lukisan
    Address:
    Yayasan Ratna Wartha
    Gianyar
    Ubud 80571
    Indonesia
    Phone:
    +62 623 61971159
    Hours:
    Sun - Sat
    9:00 am - 6:00 pm
    Other:
  • Museum Kain
    Speciality Museums
    LynnePP Says:

    Museum Kain is a privately-owned museum, situated within Beachwalk Shopping Mall in Kuta. Dedicated to textiles, it was established to preserve the old ways of cloth production and weaving, and showcases 60 pieces of priceless batik from the owner's personal collection.

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Luxury Traveller
    • Thrifty Traveller
    • Hidden Gems
    • Like a Local
    • History Buff
    Tips
    • The museum opens at 11am so plan to visit it before a nice lunch at Beachwalk.
    • It is situated on level three of the shopping mall.
    • It can get a little chilly inside because of the air conditioning. Take a light jacket or pashmina with you.
    • There is a coat and bag check at the entrance. (Backpacks are not allowed inside.)
    • Strollers and cameras are not allowed inside, and cell phones must be on mute.
    • Sketching is allowed, but only with pencil.
    Plan to stay:
    Less than 1 hour
    From the community
    Ranked #51 of 111 things to do in Denpasar
    • Good idea, bad presentation 06/11/2016
    • Excellent Guide 16/04/2016
    • Museum Kain
    Address:
    Jl. Pantai Kuta
    Alang Gallerie Beachwalk Shopping Center lt. 3
    Denpasar 80361
    Indonesia
    Phone:
    +62 361 8465568
    Hours:
    Sun - Sat
    10:00 am - 7:30 pm
    Other:
  • Bali Provincial State Museum (Negeri Propinsi Bali)
    Art Museums
    See more photos
    LynnePP Says:

    This is the largest and oldest museum in Bali, built to preserve Balinese cultural objects that were in danger of extinction. Today it houses nearly 14,000 items, which are showcased in a traditionally-styled outside area, courtyard, and central area. It's an interesting spot to visit for the culturally-curious, but can also be a little frustrating due to the crowd of pushy guides here, who will do their best to insist you hire them for a tour. Stand strong and your efforts will be worth it!

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Must See
    • Luxury Traveller
    • Thrifty Traveller
    • Like a Local
    • History Buff
    • Art and Architecture Lover
    Tips
    • Arrive in the early morning as this place gets hot!
    • A guided tour is not necessary, especially as the exhibit labels are in both English and Bahasa Indonesian.
    Plan to stay:
    Less than 1 hour
    From the community
    Ranked #37 of 111 things to do in Denpasar
    • Small yet quite interesting museum 29/09/2018
    • A bit disappointing 02/09/2018
    • Bali Provincial State Museum (Negeri Propinsi Bali)
    Address:
    Jl Let Kol Wisnu
    Denpasar
    Denpasar
    Indonesia
    Phone:
    +62 361 222680
    Other:
  • Agung Rai Museum of Art (ARMA)
    Art Museums, Lessons & Workshops, Performances
    See more photos
    LynnePP Says:

    ARMA (as it is commonly known) is a gallery and performing arts space, which houses paintings collected by Anak Agung Gde Rai — a local Balinese man who started out selling souvenirs to tourists! Here, you will find many fine examples of works by notable Balinese, Indonesian, and international painters, including Walter Spiers, Raden Saleh, and Affandi. Plus, the beauty of the tropical gardens and fountains surrounding the museum are well worth the visit alone!

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Must See
    • Luxury Traveller
    • Thrifty Traveller
    • Hidden Gems
    • Like a Local
    • History Buff
    • Art and Architecture Lover
    Tips
    • Follow the waterways that meander through the gardens.
    • All paintings are labelled in both English and Japanese.
    • Visit late afternoon when local children often come here for dance practice.
    • Theater performances are often held here. Check online for upcoming events.
    Plan to stay:
    1-2 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #1 of 22 Concerts & Shows in Ubud
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Beautiful landscape & art gallery 12/10/2018
    • Please do visit 08/10/2018
    • Agung Rai Museum of Art (ARMA)
    Address:
    Pengosekan Road
    Ubud 80571
    Indonesia
    Phone:
    +62 361 976659
    Hours:
    Sun - Sat
    9:00 am - 6:00 pm
    Other:
  • Don Antonio Blanco Museum
    Art Museums
    See more photos
    LynnePP Says:

    Don Antonio Blanco was probably the most famous artist ever to reside in Bali. In this museum that he created you can visit the studio where he once painted and where his son Mario now paints. Take a leisurely stroll around the gallery and appreciate the variety of masterpieces on display here.

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Must See
    • Luxury Traveller
    • Thrifty Traveller
    • Like a Local
    • History Buff
    • Art and Architecture Lover
    Tips
    • There's a steep entrance fee, but it's worth it.
    • Guides are available if you'd like explanations of the works.
    • Taking photographs is forbidden.
    • Some of the paintings are very erotic and might not be appropriate for families with young children.
    • Visit the exotic birds in the garden.
    • Admire the banyan tree by the family temple.
    Plan to stay:
    2-3 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #10 of 86 things to do in Ubud
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Interesting Museum and beautiful art 13/10/2018
    • Not really worth it 03/10/2018
    • Don Antonio Blanco Museum
    Address:
    Jl. Raya Penestanan no.8
    Campuan, Sanyan
    Ubud 80361
    Indonesia
    Phone:
    +62 361 975502
    Other:
  • Le Mayeur Museum
    Speciality Museums
    See more photos
    LynnePP Says:

    This small but interesting museum is the former home of artist Adrien-Jean Mayeur, and his lovely wife Ni Pollok. Ni was the subject of many of Adrien-Jean's paintings and you can see many examples of them on display in this museum. While it is sad that some of the artwork is deteriorating due to lack of proper preservation (and powerful air conditioning), this is all the more reason to go and see them while you still can!

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Must See
    • Luxury Traveller
    • Thrifty Traveller
    • Hidden Gems
    • Like a Local
    • History Buff
    • Art and Architecture Lover
    Tips
    • The museum is situated on the beachfront at the northern end of Sanur — a little hard to find behind the beach stalls!
    • Look out for the black and white photographs of Ni Pollok.
    • Most of the paintings feature a degree of nudity and may not be suitable for families with young children.
    Plan to stay:
    Less than 1 hour
    From the community
    Ranked #13 of 34 things to do in Sanur
    • INTERESTING 15/10/2018
    • Something different 03/10/2018
    • Le Mayeur Museum
    Address:
    Jalan Pantai Sanur
    Sanur, Denpasar
    Indonesia
    Phone:
    +62 361 286201
    Other:
  • Neka Art Museum
    Speciality Museums
    See more photos
    LynnePP Says:

    Founded by Balinese teacher, Seteja Neka, this museum houses over 400 pieces of art; from traditional to contemporary, to the wayung style of painting, based on shadow puppetry. Explore the variety of bronze statues and wood carvings on display here, plus a very interesting exhibit of black and white photographs taken of Bali in the 30s/40s. The works of respected artists Arie Smit and Gusti Nyoman Lempad are also well represented.

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Must See
    • Thrifty Traveller
    • Like a Local
    • History Buff
    • Art and Architecture Lover
    Tips
    • Engage a guide, even if just for the kris daggers collection.
    • Time your visit before/after a meal at nearby restaurant, Naughty Nuri's.
    • The display of nearly 300 kris daggers is an excellent example of the mastery of the "Mpu" of the past.
    Plan to stay:
    1-2 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #5 of 86 things to do in Ubud
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • A quiet oasis of Balinese art 08/10/2018
    • A lovely gallery 21/09/2018
    • Neka Art Museum
    Address:
    Raya Campuhan St
    Kedewatan Village
    Ubud 80571
    Indonesia
    Phone:
    +62 361 975074
    Hours:
    Sun - Sat
    9:00 am - 5:00 pm
    Other:
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