Ubud Monkey Forest, also known as the Sacred Monkey Forest of Padangtegal, is one of Ubud’s most popular attractions; a natural forest sanctuary that 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.
The Monkeys Forest being a tourism attraction, the Ubud Monkey Forest is well known for its conservation efforts. Research and studies are regularly carried out for observing the monkeys’ health, diet and breeding habits. Over a hundred macaques inhabit the forest, divided into four different known troops.
While it is always tempting to touch or feed the monkeys, you are advised against it. They are wild animals. Another rule of thumb is to avoid wearing any loose jewellery or apparel – the macaques may easily snatch a necklace or bag for something interesting enough to eat.
When the monkeys set their eyes on something, you will be hard pressed to stop them from taking it.Once they have your stuff, say goodbye to it. They don’t give it up willingly and we saw many become aggressive with hissing, teeth barring and chasing when challenged for things they had stolen. Be smart about your visit and mindful about what you bring with you into the Ubud monkey forest.
However, under no circumstances should you attempt to touch the monkeys. They may look cute and cuddly but they are actually ferocious little hellions. They can become territorial and aggressive in the blink of an eye.
Being scratched or bitten by a monkey poses some serious risks to you. Rabies is a disease that is rampant in many parts of Asia and can sit dormant in animals for up to 2 years before they begin to show signs or symptoms of carrying it. A bite or scratch from an animal that is carrying rabies can prove fatal if proper action is not taken immediately.
There are several guidelines when visiting the monkey forest, all of which are there for your own safety.
- Do not run
- Do not panic
- Do not look a monkey in the eye
- Do not hide food
- Do not bring paper/plastic bag
- Take care of your belongings, monkeys will steal items
- Do not touch/grab/disturb the monkeys especially babies, the mothers are defensive
- Do not feed peanuts, cookies, candy, bread, or any snack/drink (bananas are okay)
Children should be supervised at all times. Please remember these are wild animals and are unpredictable.
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