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Bali Driver and Tour Guide | How to Choose a Driver in Bali | Suggested Tours in Bali

Updated on February 1, 2012

Bali, an island where you get a mixture of eastern and western culture, located in Indonesia, but with a taste of its own, such that you don't feel like you are in Indonesia. With Hindu influence, Bali is a very unique and relatively safe place to travel.

I stayed in a very remote beach called Amed for a few days. While I was there, I was told that, if I leave a motorcycle by the roadside, nobody will steal it. Even after a year has passed, you will still find the same motorbike parked at the same spot, with the helmet attached, except that it has grown rusty. That’s Bali. Balinese believes in good karma. If one does something bad, he will suffer karma punishments.

The best way to travel around Bali is to hire a local driver who can speak English and knows the places well. It would be cheaper to hire a motorcycle (for 50,000 Rupiah or USD 5 a day), but the scorching hot sun in Bali can be unbearable for a half or full day tour. Sitting in a cold air-conditioned vehicle with a local tour guide certainly makes the travel more pleasant and easier.

How to choose a driver in Bali ?

Before hiring a Bali driver, it is important to check whether the driver:

1) is able to speak reasonably good English (if you do not know Bahasa Indonesia or Bahasa Melayu)

2) owns valid driving license (without this, the driver may try to avoid local policeman inspection by taking a longer route to reach the destination)

3) owns a car with good air-conditioning

Ketut Suwendra
Ketut Suwendra

A Trustworthy Balinese Driver

While I was in Bali, I have engaged Ketut Suwendra as our tour guide and driver. He brought us around in a new Toyota Advanza car. Together with his brothers, Made and Nyoman, they formed a team to provide the best possible services to tourists. They also have good Toyota Kijang and Toyota Innova vehicles, and it is up to customers to decide on the preferences.

Ketut Suwendra is an experienced Bali driver, who can recommend places to see in Bali, according to your travel preferences. He can bring you to the most beautiful places in the island of bali, providing you with the information of the local history and culture. Often seen wearing a friendly smile, he was so courteous, trustworthy and respectful to us during our few days’ tour under him. We felt very secured and safe under his sincere guidance.

Contact Information for Ketut Suwendra :

Mobile or Handphone contact : +62 8179781331

Email contact :

His websites and website reviews :

Lake Beratan (Bedugul)
Lake Beratan (Bedugul)
Gitgit waterfall
Gitgit waterfall
Surfing in Bali
Surfing in Bali

Suggested Tour in Bali

Below are the list of places and things you can do in Bali, recommended by Ketut Suwendra :

Bali Day Tours

* Kintamani day tour
1 Thopati: traditional batik painting
2 Batu Bulan: barong and keris dance
3 Celuk: gold and silversmiths
4 Batuan: home of painters
5 Mas: wood carving village
6 Tegallalang: rice terrace village
7 Kintamani: lunch beside the spectacular view of an active volcano
8 kopi and spice plantation
9 Sebatu: Holy spring water temple
10 Ubud: local market and monkey forest

* Bedugul & Tanah Lot Temple day tour
1 Mengwi: Taman Ayun temple
2 Pacung: most beautiful rice terrace in Bali
3 Bedugul: beautiful lake Beratan & temple in the lake
4 Alas Kedaton: Monkey forest & bats
5 Tanah Lot: temple on the rock & sunset view

* Uluwatu day tour ending with romantic sunset seafood dinner at Jimbaran
1 Nusa Dua: water sport activities
2 Garuda Wisnu Kencana (GWK) Cultural Park
3 Uluwatu: temple on the cliff & watching Kecak dance during sunset
4 Jimbaran: romantic dinner with grilled fresh seafood by the beach

* Besakih & Klungkung day tour
1 Gianyar: Bali Safari Park
2 Klungkung: the old court justice (Kerta Gosa)
3 Besakih: the Mother temple in Bali
4 Goa Lawah: bats cave & temple
5 Kusamba: traditional salt making village

*Singaraja & Waterfall day tour
1 Bedugul: beautiful lake Beratan, temple on the lake, & botanical garden.
2 Gigit: waterfall & clove plantation
3 Lovina: the black sand beach, lunch served at Lovina local restaurant & dolphin watching
4 Banjar village: Hot spring water
5 Papuan village: rice terrace

* Ubud & Tanah Lot temple day tour
1 Celuk: gold & silversmiths
2 Singapadu: zoo & bird park
3 Batuan: painting village
4 Mas: wood carving village
5 Ubud: monkey forest & Ubud market
6 Taman Ayun: the family royal temple
7 Tanah Lot: temple on the rock, by the sea & sunset view

* Other activities
1 Water sport, surfing
2 Spa (aroma therapy)
3 Elephant safari
4 Atv ride
5 White water rafting
6 Scuba diving
7 Dolphin watching
8 Fishing
9 Bali safari & marine park
10 Camel ride
11 Horse ride


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    • profile image

      Ranbir singh 

      11 months ago

      last year I was travelling to Goa. Me and my friends fully enjoyed in the beach, so it's a nice place to visit here.

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      Aricltes like this make life so much simpler.

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      Ketut Suwendra: Safe and honest driver

      As I've indicated on Trip Advisor, I prefer to book my own driver as the quality of service differs so markedly in terms of safety. In 2012 and recently this April/May 2013, I used Ketut Suwendra from Discover Bali Driver ( or and email & by phone number 08179781331 local here, +628179781331 overseas).

      I'm stunned that there is no review for Ketut Suwendra. I have used him many times and each proved to be the right choice. I find Ketut to be a very safe driver who is professional, patient and punctual.

      First time in Bali in 2012, I actually got him through his brother, Made, which indicates he is trustworthy. Ketut took us around Nusa Dua, Jimbaran, then to the Kecak Dance in Uluwatu, at his recommendation. It was stunning! We were very late getting back but Ketut remained flexible amiably. My son had fallen asleep at lunch and Ketut babysat him while we grabbed lunch.

      On a second excursion, both Made and Ketut were booked so I tried another company. It was then I realised the difference in service. The other driver was preoccupied with the next day's itinerary and kept checking his sms! I was so nervous that I couldn't nod off despite being tired.

      When I planned this 2013 trip, I made sure I booked Ketut once my itinerary was sorted. I wanted to stay in Lovina so used the trips to and fro for sight-seeing. On the journey there I wanted to include the Munduk drive as I had read it was scenic. I was indeed relieved it was Ketut driving as that route is steep with fish-hook turns all the way. It was also raining. Ketut concentrated hard and was extra cautious.

      On route he also recommended a stop at Coffee Break in Bedugul which was more than a coffee tasting place. It was educational and had other herbs labelled in the garden. We found that really interesting and wouldn't have bothered to include if not for Ketut.

      He chose a scenic spot to stop for lunch as he had picked up by then that I am camera-happy. We got some of the best pics of Lake Bratan without having to pay fees. The warung was well located and reasonably priced.

      Ketut is not one to pour out tourist info like a textbook but he listens well as we chat and intuitively makes suggestions along the way. I prefer to chat about life in Bali, his family, etc and read up the tourist info online! He is informative no doubt about local info that you can't find online. I prioritised safety over info-overload, as is often the case with tourist guides.

      On our return journey, Ketut was well prepared and punctual. He took us to Gitgit and to the falls appropriate for our kids. He also knew my fascination with padi fields! :) That stop offered more than the falls.

      I wanted to go to Jatihluwih and explained my disappointment with Tegalalang on last year's second excursion with other driver. Tegallang was so commercialised and packed that it was hard to get pics without ppl in the background. He asked if I would like to have the Jatihluwih views without the crowd and fees. I went with his suggestion and it proved amazing. We had views, food and a manicured garden to photograph. There was also a bale set up with a tinglik that my boys played on later.

      At another coffee tasting place, Ketut explained it was a good one for price though it didn't provide an educational tour.

      All through, Ketut would always offer choices for meal breaks - price, setting, taste - instead of taking us where he gets the highest commission.

      We used Ketut again in the city. When he realised we were just using him as an expensive taxi service, he told us the taxi fare equivalent to save us money. Even when we wanted to tip him, he discounted the tip and said the half day fare was sufficient!

      When we wanted to go on a date, my husband booked Ketut straightaway to take our boys on a tour of their own.Yes, he can be trusted to that extent. Ketut took them all round on a cultural tour and to the night zoo. My husband left him with a wad of AUDs but Ketut was so careful with what he spend, and how he accounted for the expenditure, that we were amazed. He never once took advantage of the responsibility he was laden with. My sons keep stating that day with Ketut as their best day in Bali.

      The other aspects of Ketut is his punctuality and professionalism. He rings up your accommodation on his own volition, to check location, etc.

      Ketut now has a nicer, larger car with great suspension so it is more comfy than the smaller cars for hire.

      Lastly, Ketut is unassuming which may explain why this site has no review yet. We would not hesitate to recommend him and will certainly book him again in Bali. We consider Ketut to be family and friend now. I'm happy to help with any other detail you may have.


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