Nestled in the jungle in the heart of Bali, and made famous by “Eat, Pray, Love” is the beautiful town of Ubud. From exploring the rice terraces to playing with monkeys, there are plenty of things to do in Ubud. Here is my 3 day travel itinerary for Ubud!
UBUD DAY 1
Start your day with the more photogenic breakfast ever – a floating breakfast! It isn’t the most practical way to eat, but it is such a novelty and great for photos! I had mine at the Desa Visesa, find out more here!
Explore the rice fields
The most famous rice paddies to explore in Bali is Tegallalang, this is about a 30 minute drive north of Ubud. We hired a taxi for 3 of us for 300k IDR (around 20$), try to arrive before 10am to beat to tourist buses. You will need to pay 10k IDR to enter plus a donation once you’re in the fields. You will need anywhere from 30 minutes to 1.5-hours to explore every corner of the rice terraces.
TOP TIP – If you want to fly high over the rice paddies, rather than forking out $35 for the Bali swing, have a go on one of the many swings in Tegallalang (for only $5 or less!)
Once you’re done exploring why not stop in one of the cafés? A few of them have “I love Bali” signs an a great view over the rice fields.
Experience a ritual purification
Only 20 minutes away from Tegallalang is the water temple Pura Tirta Empul. This temple compound consists of a bathing structure, and is famous for its holy spring water. Balinese Hindus visit this temple for a ritual purification, you can either observe or partake in the purification process.
If you wish to partake, you will need to hire a green sarong at the temple. Also, make sure you bring swimwear and a towel!
Ubud Monkey Forest
Spend the afternoon amongst the shaded trees, watching all of the mischievous monkeys swinging through canopies and lazing along pathways. Conveniently located in the town centre, Ubud Monkey Forest is a natural forest sanctuary that is home to a horde of grey long-tailed macaques. The site also features beautiful ancient temples with guardian statues covered in moss, and is quite enjoyable to explore.
TOP TIP – DON’T BRING FOOD! The monkeys are semi wild and have been known to bite tourists – but this is usually due to them hiding food in their bags. I would advise against bringing a bag, but if you have to make sure it zips close – I saw one monkey reaching into a gentleman’s bag on the search for food.
Ubud town boasts plenty of shops to suit all needs, as well as a market where you can search for the perfect souvenir!
UBUD DAY 2
Book your taxi the day before, for a day tour around the surrounding areas. There are a lot of places to visit and the taxi drivers will have a brochure of examples. I personally wanted to get a closer look at Mount Agung. We hired a taxi for the day for 3 people for 700k IDR (about $48), I will share with you my exact itinerary.
About a 1.5 hour drive from Ubud (plus 15 minute walk) is the most magical waterfall I have ever seen! The light in this place is just unreal!
TOP TIP- Aim to get here no later than 10am, as this is the best time to see the light rays.
Pura Lempuyang Luhur
Situated on a hill nearby Mount Agung, this temple has the most iconic gates in Bali. It is about a 3 hour drive east of Ubud. There are many temples going up this hill and to see all of them, you would need to set aside around 4-5 hours, however, if you wish to visit only the insta-famous temple, it is only a short hike away from the entry point.
TOP TIP- You can visit at any time of day to get this photo as people will queue. I went around midday and had to queue about 30 minutes to get a photo between the gates. Make sure you check the weather forecast for the day as the clouds can hide Mount Agung.
Tirta Gangga Water Palace
A beautiful and idyllic spot near Pura Lempuyang, the water palace has schools of humongous koi, a maze of gardensn as well as intricately designed fountains . It was Built in 1946 by the King of Karangsem, the name literally translates as “water from the Ganges.”
Mount Agung viewpoint
On your drive back towards Ubud, ask your taxi driver to find a nice viewpoint of Mount Agung. The volcano is HUGE, so this shouldn’t be hard to do!
We stopped near a spot named ‘PANGI karangasem’ on Google Maps. Unfortunately the sky clouded up by the time we got there, but it was still a beautiful view!
Last stop for us was Tegenungan waterfall. This was the perfect way to end our day as you can swim here!
UBUD DAY 3
Take a stroll along the Campuhan Ridge Walk
Start your day on a scenic mountain valley hiking trail. The Campuhan Ridge Walk is a free and easy nature trek. It is around 9km long in total, but the most popular part is the 2km to the south of the trail.
TOP TIP – Go early to avoid the crowds and also the heat (there isn’t much shade there!).
Visit a medicine man
You probably remember Julia Roberts in ‘Eat, Pray, Love’ visiting a medicine man. These ancient healers each have their own speciality, and can help heal anything from a sore back to a broken heart.
Bali’s ancient healing arts are intrinsically linked to Balinese Hinduism, which is all about maintaining balance.
During my stay at the Desa Visesa I met with their resident medicine man. We sat together for about 15 minutes whilst he read my inner chakras. From this he was able to determine which chakra I have issues with, and thus which parts of my body I often have troubles with (my lower back). He also gave advice on how to relieve pain and cleanse my chakras (salt water bath!). It was a really unique and eye opening experience into Balinese culture.
Relax with a massage
What better way to finish your stay in the relaxing haven of Ubud then with a massage? There are plenty of spas in the centre of town, and a lot of guesthouses and hotel will be able to offer these services at their accommodation.
I hope you have the best time in Ubud! If you want to read more about what these is to do in Bali, check out my blog post on the Top 9 Things to do in Bali!
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