Bali is blessed with plentiful natural beauty. No wonder the island attracts millions of travelers from all over the world. Countless island-goers visit the paradise for an escape and ended up falling in love with Balinese culture, lifestyle, and including the language. Most Balinese are bilingual – they can speak in Indonesian and Balinese, lots of them are also trilingual with English as their third language. While locals are known for their friendliness and openness towards foreigners, conversing with them in Indonesian or Balinese can be a great way to connect with them more 🙏
There are three main languages spoken in Bali: Indonesian, Balinese, and English.
Indonesian (Bahasa Indonesia)
This is the official language of Indonesia which unites the vast archipelago. Used across the country, Indonesian is one of the most widely spoken languages in the world. Indonesian has been influenced by other languages, including Dutch, English, Arabic, Chinese, etc.
Many foreigners said Indonesian is an easy language to learn 🤩 Because it doesn’t need past or future tense, and no distinction for masculine and feminine nouns, also the words have no plural; singular and plural terms are all the same.
Here are some simple phrases in Indonesian:
- Hello : Halo
- How are you? : Apa kabar?
- I’m fine : Saya baik-baik saja/ Baik
- Thank you : Terima kasih/ Makasih
- Yes : Iya/ ya
- No : Tidak/ Nggak/ Ga
- Nice to meet you : Senang bertemu dengan anda/ Senang bertemu denganmu
- Please : Mohon/ Tolong
- I’m sorry : Saya minta maaf/ Mohon maaf/ Maaf
- My name is… : Nama saya…/ Saya…
Pic cr: backpackertrail.de/indonesien/
Balinese (Bahasa Bali)
Balinese is the local language spoken in Bali, and some parts of Lombok and East Java by approximately 3.3 million people. This language of Bali borrows from Javanese and Brahmi from India; for religious purposes, a derivative of Javanese and Sanskrit called Kawi is used.
Generally, learning the Balinese language is not essential as nearly every local speak in Indonesian most of the time. However, attempting to speak in local language such as Balinese will almost certainly please them.
The Balinese language has three main registers depends on the status of those who are speaking:
- Low/ casual (basa ketah)
- Middle/ formal (basa madia)
- High/ artificial (basa singgih)
Here are some simple phrases in Balinese:
- Hello : Swastiastu/ Om swastiastu (May peace be with you)
- How are you? : Punapi gatrané?/ Engken kabare?/ Sapunapi gatra?/ Ken ken kabare?
- I’m fine : Iyang becik-becik kewanten/ Becik-becik
- Thank you : Suksma
- Yes : Inggih/ Nggih
- No : Ten/ Nenten
- Nice to meet you : Angayu bagia kacunduk sareng ragane
- Please : Tempat
- I’m sorry : Ampura
- My name is… : Tiang ….
Pic cr: sahabatnesia.com
English (Bahasa Inggris)
Since tourism has been one of the major sources of income in Bali, a large portion of the region speak a decent level of English. For example, if you’re staying in the popular area of Ubud, Canggu, Seminyak, and Legian, you’ll get along just fine on knowing only English.
Apart from these major languages, you are most likely to hear some Chinese, Japanese, Korean, French, German, Russian, etc in the popular touristy-places. You can now even find small newspapers and magazines in French and German in some of the supermarkets.
Pic cr: saltinourhair.com
Infinity Mountain Biking
Here at Infinity Mountain Biking, you may expect our amazing crews and mountain bike guides to speak English, Indonesian, and Balinese. So you don’t have to be worried about the language barrier before and during your tour!
You may contact us for any booking and inquiries through:
× Office landline : +62 (0) 361 8476 478
× Mobile and WhatsApp : +62 (0) 82 147 910 102
× Website : www.infinitymountainbiking.com
× FB & IG : infinitymountainbiking
See you on the trail! 😎👊🚵
Ager, S. (n.d.). Useful phrases in Balinese. Retrieved from https://www.omniglot.com/language/phrases/balinese.htm
Saxena, R. (n.d.). Languages in Bali - Common Phrases to Help You in the Island. Retrieved from https://www.holidify.com/pages/languages-in-bali-1167.html