Sangeh Monkey Forest in Bali

Sacred Sanctuary near Ubud

Sangeh Monkey Forest is a natural sanctuary for grey long-tailed macaques (Macaca fascicularis). Located in the village of the same name, the monkey forest covers 60,000 sq m of fertile forestland with primordial, giant nutmeg trees that can grow up to 40 metres in height.

The sanctuary also has around 22 different species of birds, 5 species of mammals, 3 species of reptiles, 2 types of amphibians, and 5 different arthropods. It also has mahogany, guava, and sapodilla trees. Some of the trees in Sankey Monkey Forest are over 3 centuries old.

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Sangeh Monkey Forest highlights

Sangeh Monkey Forest is a nature reserve and is best known for its many monkey kingdoms. The grey macaques that inhabit the nutmeg forest each have a ring leader – and for the whole, there is 1 highest ruler or ‘king’ living in the largest area, where you can find Bukit Sari Temple, a sanctified temple dating back to the 17th century.

There’s a unique tree specimen which locals refer to as Lanang Wadon (Male-Female). The bottom of this tree has a hole with a down-pointing branch, resembling genitals. This tree is actually a Milkwood pine (Alstonia scholaris), which grows at the forest entrance. In Bali, it’s often used to make sacred masks.

Good to know about Sangeh Monkey Forest

The grey macaques had a negative reputation as they’re quite clever at stealing from those wearing visible jewellery or loose items. Over the years, their characteristics have somewhat improved but it’s a rule of thumb to always be cautious and regard them as wild animals.

You’ll find art stalls and food vendors near the parking and entrance. Sangeh Monkey Forest is a sacred site, so women on their periods or those in mourning aren’t allowed to enter the forest. Located in Sangeh, the sanctuary is around 25 km north of the island’s capital city of Denpasar.

Sangeh Monkey Forest

  • Opening Hours: Daily from 8am to 5pm
  • Location: Jalan Brahmana, Sangeh, Badung, Bali 80353, Indonesia
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