Bali, Indonesia is one of the more popular tourist destinations in Asia. Known for its pristine beaches, friendly locals and perfect weather, it makes sense why so many people want to visit. There are many different beach towns to visit throughout the island, but in today’s post I want to talk about Ubud. Located in the middle part of the island, Ubud is meant for relaxation in the middle of the jungle.
Obviously one of the first things you want to sort out is where you want to stay. I highly recommend Uma’s Villa on Air BnB. Similar to a lot of the other Air BNB hosts, he is a tour guide, taxi driver and super friendly. Feel free to contact him on his Instagram as well.
Depending on what you’re looking for, Ubud is a great place to explore. Everyone has a different amount of time they can travel, if you are on a set time I would suggest 3-4 days in Ubud. You have to leave time getting to and from places in Bali because of the traffic on the island. The roads and infrastructure aren’t really meant for the influx of tourists that visit every year.
Casa Luna Cooking Class
One of the best parts of traveling is eating. Balinese food is extremely healthy and fresh, just like a lot of the other islands in the South Pacific. I would first suggest joining a cooking class to learn how to cook some Balinese food and to eat it. I joined the Casa Luna Cooking Class. Every day there is a different class, I went on a Tuesday morning and it was a great experience. Be on the lookout for a future post highlighting the best Balinese/Indonesian foods.
Explore the Rice Terrace
If this is your first time visiting Bali or any Southeast Asia country you will notice the motorbikes flying through the roads. I would suggest if you’ve never driven one before to not try it in Bali. You can hire taxis to take you around if you do not feel comfortable driving a motorbike. If you have experience driving one, rent one and use it to explore the surrounding area like the Tegalalang Rice Terrace. It’s about a 25 minute ride from the center of Ubud, going down two main roads. I didn’t stop at the main rice patty with the swings, I kept going past the main field and explored the area behind. There are not many people back there and you can see how some of the locals live. It’s stunning and these pictures do not do justice.
Mount Batur Trek and Hot Springs
2am wake up call from Ubud to go on a night trek to see one of the best sunrises you will ever see. There are tons of companies that run Night treks. I used Bali Sunrise Trekking. We were in a group of 4 with one guide that leads us up and down Mount Batar. The company picked us up from our villa and took us to the base of the trek. The trek is not difficult, it’s tough trekking in the middle of the night though. If you are moderately physically fit you can complete the trek. I will say that at the summit it gets very cold and windy, so I would suggest wearing layers. I did not do that and spent the sunrise shivering. The trek up takes about two hours and you can spend a few hours at the top seeing the sunrise. You have to remember that you are at the top of an active volcano so there are steam pockets at the top. Touching the rocks can literally burn your hand. After trekking back down I would suggest going to the Mount Batar hot springs which are included in some of the tours. That’s the nicest and most refreshing way to relax after a night trek.
After waking up and trekking throughout the night, taking a nap is a great idea on day 2.
Dinner at Mamas Warung
After waking up from your glorious nap, head back into town to Mama Warungs. The Goda Goda is a great starter and the pork belly or tuna dishes are excellent mains. You could also order a number of smaller dishes to try, local food here is not expensive like most western countries. Any and all of the fruit juices are spot on as well.
After waking up, feeling a little sore from the trek yesterday, I think treating yourself to a spa day is the right call. There are many options in Ubud but Murnis is what I suggest. It’s close to the center of Ubud, super clean, friendly staff and appropriately priced. I suggest getting a Balinese Massage or a green tea scrub or a traditional facial. Or you could get all 3.
Gianyar Night Market
After treating yo self all day at the spa, contact UMA and ask him to take you to the Gianyar Night Market. For a local Balinese food experience this is a must. Chicken Satay, Peanut Sauce, Suckling Pig, Fish, and Unique Desserts. This might have been my favorite experience in Ubud. There are not many or any tourists that visit here, so you know it’s local and good.
After waking up in paradise again, maybe having a fresh cup of legit Lombok coffee to start your day I would suggest hopping back on your motorbikes. There are several different waterfalls that are close to Ubud where you can drive to and swim. The main waterfall that attracts tourists is the Tegangang Waterfall which is about 25 minutes from Ubud center. Instead I visited the Tibumana Waterfall and was in awe once I arrived there.
Dinner at Nusantara
The last night you should treat yo self to a nice dinner at Nusantara. There are some different foods on the menu to try, like an entire duck, deep fried quail and goat skewers. This is a bit more pricey than the other places I mentioned, but it’s your last night in Ubud so treat yo self.
Ubud is a great place to relax, explore, and recharge. There are also tons of yoga classes and retreats to try as well. I didn’t have time to try any, but there are plenty to try. I also left out the Monkey Forest, as I have seen something like that beige. It’s a big tourist attraction so prepare for crowds and be careful with the monkeys when visiting. Ubud is not a party place for Guying Around, but a great place to make yourself feel better.