You could spend an hour at the Sacred Monkey Forest Sanctuary in Ubud, Bali and you would see more action than spending a whole day at the zoo. It all happens in Ubud, with our little money friends, as they run around in a frenzy and seemingly having a good old time in the semi-enclosed confines of the Monkey Forest.
I say a whole hour as it is about all you need to spend in the Money Forest to get the most out of the wonderful confides of this sacred little forest. But it’s not only a forest, it also comes with beautiful temples, a few market places and of course those active monkeys that are scurrying around the place. It is a bustling little attraction that is worth a visit when in the town of Ubud.
The best part about the Monkey Forest, is that it is dirt cheap. For around five dollars you can wander the sanctuary at your own pace, take pictures and videos of those active monkey’s, who will put on a show, and even get in on the feeding frenzy, but more on that later.
Watch your back and belongings
These quick witted little friends move around at serious pace. Swinging from branch to branch or along the ground, their movements are quick. One moment they are staring at you with curiosity, then next they are on your back, trying to get into your backpack or taking your sunglasses of your head and making a run for it.
These monkeys have teeth, sharp teeth
Be aware when these monkeys do jump on your back. They have teeth, sharp teeth. The best practice is to let the monkey do what they do and before too long, they will jump off and leave you alone.
I was lucky, in the shock of a monkey jumping on my back the first time, I tried to nudge it off with my hand, not knowing what to do. I tried to gently force it off me, before realising this monkey tried to have a swipe at me with its teeth. Luckily, I moved my hand in time. I have though heard bad luck stories involving monkey biting incidents, so tread carefully. It is important to know that these monkeys are not fierce creatures, but they too get protective.
Buy a bunch of bananas
Inside the Monkey Forest, there are stalls that sell old bananas. Buy a bunch for around fifty-cents and in an instant moment you will be surrounded by a bunch of new friends desperate for a banana or two. Quick tip, if the big one is close by, you’ll recognise him, give it to him first without hesitation, he is the king and he demands it.
Another fascination in the Monkey Forest is the feeding time itself. One moment you are walking in the grounds of the forest, the next you see a whole army of monkeys descending to a central location for feed time. It is quite a sight to see so many monkeys up close in large numbers waiting for a feast.
The action can happen outside the enclosure
You don’t want to pay the small entrance fee? Remember the Monkey Forest is only semi-enclosed which means the monkeys do escape and wander the streets. Therefore, you can hang around the boundaries of the enclosure and let the monkeys come to you.
There are not too many places in the world where you can walk the streets and see monkeys crossing the road like a casual pedestrian. It can happen in Ubud, well close by to the park anyway and that is what makes it so unique and for that matter so is the Sacred Monkey Forest Sanctuary.