How to legally hold yoga retreats in Bali
How to legally hold yoga retreats in Bali

Yoga Retreats in Bali

Yoga retreats in Bali involve several legal considerations to ensure your yoga event complies with local regulations. Bali, in Indonesia, is a popular destination for yoga retreats. The reason to choose Bali as a destination for yoga retreats is because of its awesome natural landscapes, lush green rice terraces, tropical forests, and beautiful beaches. These serene and wonderful surroundings provide an ideal environment for yoga and meditation.

Besides its surroundings, Bali is known as the island of Gods and is home to many Buddhist and Hindu temples, which create spirituality in the atmosphere.

This aligns well with yoga principles and attracts those seeking a deeper connection with themselves and their surroundings.

Also, the weather in Bali is warm throughout the year. This tropical climate is conducive to outdoor yoga practices, and many retreats incorporate outdoor sessions to take advantage of the natural surroundings.

Yoga retreat in Bali
Yoga retreat in Bali

How to Legally Hold Yoga Retreats in Bali

Now that you have come to know Bali’s outstanding culture and surroundings, you think of legally holding yoga retreats in Bali. Is that easy? Not that easy. As you prepare to visit another country and do business, you need certain rules and regulations to follow. You can term them as legal formalities you must acquire and fulfil before legally holding yoga retreats in Bali.

Licenses and Permits

  • Business Registration
  • Visas and Work Permits
  • Tax Obligations
  • Land Use and Permits
  • Event Permits
  • Insurances
  • Comply local laws

1. Business Registration

To have yoga retreats in Bali means you are doing business, right? Thus, you need to have a business license. Business registration means you must have a legal business, a yoga studio in Bali. You may need to establish a legal entity or work with a local partner. Register your business with the appropriate authorities, such as the Bali Provincial Government or the Investment Coordinating Board (BKPM).

2. Visas and Work Permits

It would help if you got a temporary residence permit for yoga retreats in Bali.

If you plan to work in Indonesia or stay for a few months, you need a limited-stay permit known as KITAS.

Remember that your KITAS must be related to the retreat’s subject, and only a KITAS based on a work permit allows you to organize one.

When applying for your passport, it must be valid for at least 18 months and have at least a few empty pages.

If you get a new passport during the KITAS application process, the KITAS process must be redone. Ensure the passport is valid for at least 21 months for the application process.

 In July 2018, Indonesia released a new work permit regulation that replaced IMTA with a notification from the Ministry of Manpower, allowing a much faster work permit processing.

Note that non-resident directors and commissioners don’t need a work permit in Indonesia.

Ensure you and any foreign instructors have the necessary visas and work permits to conduct activities in Bali. Work with a legal consultant to understand your specific situation’s visa requirements and application processes.

Work Permit For Bali
You Need Work Permit For Bali

3. Tax Obligations

You may need to understand and comply with Indonesian tax regulations. As you are now conducting business by holding yoga retreats, this may include registering for taxes, obtaining a tax identification number (NPWP), and fulfilling other tax obligations. Keep detailed records of your financial transactions related to the retreat.

  • You will likely need to obtain a Tax Identification Number (Nomor Pokok Wajib Pajak or NPWP) for your business. This is a unique number assigned to entities for tax purposes.
  • In Indonesia, Value Added Tax (VAT) applies to certain goods and services. Check whether your yoga retreat services are subject to VAT and understand the rate applicable.
  • Ensure that you understand your business’s income tax obligations. This includes reporting and paying income tax on any profits generated from the retreat.
  • You may need to withhold tax if you pay non-resident individuals or businesses (such as instructors, vendors, or service providers).
  • Stay informed about the required tax reporting deadlines and comply with all reporting obligations.
  • Be aware of any local taxes or levies that may apply to your business activities. Local regulations can vary, so you must check with the relevant authorities in the area where you plan to host the retreat. If you hire employees to assist with the retreat, be aware of your obligations regarding payroll taxes, social security contributions, and other employment-related taxes.

As said above, maintain accurate and organized financial records. Proper record-keeping is essential for tax compliance and can help in the event of an audit.

Check if any tax treaties between Indonesia and your home country may affect your tax liabilities. Engage the services of a local tax professional or accountant who specializes in Indonesian tax law. They can provide tailored advice based on your specific business structure and activities.

4. Land Use and Permits

When organizing a yoga retreat in Bali, you must consider the land use and obtain the necessary permits to ensure your event complies with local regulations.

Obtain the necessary land use permits from local authorities. This may involve coordination with the village or subdistrict office and the Bali Provincial Government.

Nusa penida island
Nusa penida island in Bali

5. Event Permits

Depending on the size and nature of your yoga retreat, you may need event permits. Check with local authorities to understand the specific permits required for organizing events in the chosen location.

An environmental impact assessment (AMDAL) may be required for larger events or those held in environmentally sensitive areas. This assessment evaluates the potential impact of your activities on the environment.

If you plan to construct temporary structures or alter existing buildings, check if you need building permits. This is especially important for larger retreats with infrastructure requirements.

Also, familiarize yourself with any additional local regulations that may apply to your location. These can vary between regions in Bali.

It is essential to work closely with local authorities, including village officials and relevant government departments, to understand and fulfil all the requirements.

6. Insurances

When conducting a yoga retreat in Bali, it’s important to have the appropriate insurance coverage to protect yourself, your participants, and your assets. While specific insurance requirements can vary based on factors like the size of your retreat, the activities involved, and the location, here are some common types of insurance you should consider:

  1. Liability Insurance: Liability insurance is crucial to cover potential injuries or accidents during the retreat. This can include coverage for bodily injury, property damage, and legal expenses. Ensure the policy is comprehensive and tailored to the specific activities of your retreat.
  2. Professional Indemnity Insurance: If you provide professional services such as yoga instruction, consider professional indemnity insurance. This type of insurance protects you if a participant claims that your professional advice or services caused them harm.
  3. Cancellation Insurance: Cancellation insurance can provide coverage if you must cancel the retreat due to unforeseen circumstances, such as natural disasters, illness, or other emergencies. It can help reimburse you for pre-paid, non-refundable expenses.
  4. Travel Insurance: While participants are generally responsible for their travel insurance, it’s a good idea to recommend or require that they have coverage for trip cancellations, medical emergencies, and other travel-related issues.
Insurances are necessary
Insurances are necessary when holding yoga retreats in Bali

The other insurances can include:

  • Property Insurance: If you bring valuable equipment or have invested in temporary structures for the retreat, property insurance can protect against losses or damage to your assets.
  • Workers’ Compensation Insurance: If you hire staff or assistants for the retreat, you may need workers’ compensation insurance to cover medical expenses and lost wages in case of work-related injuries or illnesses.
  • Vehicle Insurance: If you provide transportation services as part of the retreat, ensure that the vehicles are properly insured. This includes coverage for accidents, injuries, and property damage.
  • Event Insurance: Consider event insurance to cover a range of unforeseen circumstances, including venue issues, vendor cancellations, or other disruptions that could impact the retreat’s success.
  • Health Insurance for Participants: While not your direct responsibility, it’s a good practice to recommend that participants have health insurance coverage to handle medical expenses during their stay in Bali.
  • Legal Assistance Insurance: Insurance coverage for legal assistance can be beneficial in the event of legal issues. This may include coverage for legal fees and related expenses.

Before purchasing insurance, carefully review policy terms, coverage limits, and exclusions. Work with an experienced insurance advisor who understands the specific needs of yoga retreats in Bali to ensure that you have comprehensive coverage tailored to your unique situation. Additionally, be aware of any local regulations that may influence the types of insurance you need.

Balinese Life is Simple
Balinese Life is Simple

7. Comply with local laws

The local laws in Bali mean the community and the local people.

Familiarize yourself with and adhere to local regulations regarding noise, environmental impact, waste disposal, and other factors that may affect your retreat.

You must draft clear and legally binding contracts for participants, instructors, and any vendors or service providers you work with during the retreat.

Have to respect and adhere to local customs and cultural norms. Ensure your retreat activities are culturally sensitive and do not violate local traditions.

Working with a local legal consultant or business advisor who understands the regulatory landscape in Bali can greatly assist you in navigating these requirements. Additionally, building good relationships with local communities and authorities can contribute to the success of your yoga retreat.


Legally, holding a yoga retreat in Bali requires careful consideration and adherence to local laws and regulations. You must navigate legal complexities to ensure a seamless and compliant event.

Meticulous planning is essential for obtaining business licenses and land use permits, addressing visa requirements for foreign instructors, and securing appropriate insurance coverage. Understanding and respecting local customs and environmental considerations and building positive relationships with the community further contribute to the success of a yoga retreat in Bali.

Engaging local legal professionals and event planners with knowledge of Bali’s regulatory landscape is highly recommended.

Collaboration with local authorities, cultural sensitivity, and a commitment to sustainability is integral to pursuing a harmonious and legally sound yoga retreat.

By addressing these aspects conscientiously, you can create an enriching and fulfilling experience for participants while maintaining the integrity of their event within the legal framework of this captivating Indonesian island.


What legal requirements do I need to fulfil to organize a yoga retreat in Bali?

To legally hold a yoga retreat in Bali, you need to obtain the necessary business licenses, land use permits, and event permits. You must also ensure compliance with local regulations, such as zoning laws, and consider the cultural and environmental impact of your activities. It’s advisable to work with local legal professionals to navigate specific requirements.

Are there specific visa and work permit regulations for foreign instructors participating in the yoga retreat?

Foreign instructors should have the appropriate visas and work permits to conduct activities in Bali. Work closely with a legal consultant to understand and comply with Indonesian immigration laws. Ensure that you obtain the necessary permissions well in advance of the retreat.

Are there restrictions on advertising and marketing my yoga retreat in Bali?

Yes, be mindful of local advertising regulations. Ensure your marketing materials comply with local standards and avoid false claims or misrepresentations. Working with a local marketing expert can help you navigate these regulations effectively.

Do I need any vaccinations for the yoga retreat In Bali?

You will need to complete the PeduliLindungi application, a digital COVID-19 tracing form, but this is subject to change. Always check the embassy’s website before leaving your country of origin.

Will I need to pay tax on retreat gifts I may carry to Bali?

Yoga retreat organizers should note that there is a 40% import tax on goods valued over $50. If you plan on shipping swag, retreat gifts, or yoga mats to Bali before your retreat, you may become liable for import duties. It would be best to consider looking for local providers to supply you to avoid the gift tax.

I want to conduct recurring yoga retreats in Bali. What should I do?

If you plan on organizing recurring retreats in Bali, consider setting up your own business. The minimum paid-up capital requirement in Indonesia is Rp. 2.5 billion (~US$ 170,000).

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