Ubud is a town in central Bali dotted with picturesque rice fields, beautiful Hindu temples and mainstream cafes and shops. After spending 5 days of our 2 week Bali itinerary gallivanting around the town of Ubud, we decided to make one epic list of 10 things to do in Ubud, Bali. With Ubud’s mix of history and culture with small explosions of modern and western flares, it’s no wonder why Ubud has made its way into the hearts of so many.
Things To Do In Ubud, Bali
1) Find Your Flow
Whether you’re a first timer or wanting to get certified as a Yoga teacher, you’ll find plenty of studios in Ubud giving you what you want. The largest studio with loads of different class options is Yoga Barn. From massages to Yoga classes, they are sure to have something for everyone.
For us, we skipped Yoga Barn and went to a studio a little quieter and more in nature. Ubud Yoga House is a great studio offering a wide range of classes. Located in the middle of a rice field, the studio is a open air studio with all the right vibes. The vibrant, warm space is sure to get you in the right state of mind and definitely make you sweat!
2) Eat in A Rice Paddy
Keeping the slow and easy living life in mind, make your way to Café Pomegranate to enjoy some sunset rice paddy views. Located in the middle of a rice paddy, Café Pomegranate is a great spot to grab a meal and a few drinks as the sun sets.
Their open-air restaurant serves up cold beer, tasty cocktails and great grub. A wonderful place to lounge and watch the day fade away.
3) Find Your Inner Peace
If you don’t know already, well you’re about to find out. Ubud is a very spiritual place. If Yoga isn’t your thing, try a meditation class. We went to Radiantly Alive studio and did their “Meditation and Pranayama” class.
It was wonderful, centering and a great way to start the day. The setting is an open air, warm wood studio where you find your breath and start your day on the right foot. A must in our opinion when in Ubud.
4) Walk Campuhan Ridge
Located a short distance outside the main drag of Ubud, you’ll find the 9km Campuhan Ridge walk. A free and easy walk where you surround yourself with rolling hills, lush grass and tall palm trees.
A great escape from the hustle and bustle of the city center. Along the way, you’ll find scattered cafes where you can rest, cool off and have a cold drink. The best time to go is in the early morning to avoid the heat as well as the crowds.
5) Get Pampered
Now, we so wish we would have known about Karsa Spa before coming to Ubud. Their Intuitive Heart Massage was exactly what we were looking for.
Unfortunately, they were booked out for a few days and we were unable to get the massage we wanted. However, there are loads of massage shops in town that offer healing massages, traditional massages, reflexology, etc. Make sure to make some time for yourself. Remember, Ubud is a very spiritual focused place.
Listen to your body and treat it right.
6) Have A Drink & Listen to Live Music at Laughing Buddha Bar
Looking for a night out? Head over to Laughing Buddha Bar. Just up the way from the Monkey Forest, Laughing Buddha Bar has live music, a great crowd and cold drinks. A perfect concoction for a good night out in our opinion 🙂
7) Get Your Shopping Fix at Ubud Market
From cheap souvenirs to artisan crafts, you can find it all at the Ubud market or as locals call it, “Pasar Seni Ubud.”
The market is located in the center of town, opposite the the Royal Ubud Palace. It is open every day from 6am to 6pm and we recommend getting their early to avoid the crowds. Brush up on your negotiating skills because you’ll need them!
Whether its clothes or handmade baskets, be sure to haggle to get a good price. Happy shopping!
8) Take a class at ARMA
Agung Rai Museum of Art, or ARMA for short, is a great spot to take all sorts of art or craft classes.
It is an Art Museum located very close to the Monkey Forest. It also houses a little café and restaurant too. Jesse took a wood carving class where it was just a one on one class with him and the instructor. He carved this gorgeous little owl!
Not to bad for someone whose never carved wood before. You can check out their other classes here on their website here.
9) Explore the Outskirts of Ubud
Hire a taxi or rent a scooter and get outside the town center! There are many sites to see outside of Ubud that you can easily make a day of it. Below is a list of stops that’ll sure to make for an adventure packed day
Pura Tirta Empul is a Hindu Water temple that was constructed in 952. The compound the temple sits within houses large baths. These large baths are filled with holy spring water cleansing the souls of all those who enter. Tourists are able to join in but please be respectful. There are clothes you can rent on site, just make sure to bring a towel if you plan to jump in.
Goa Gajah or the “Elephant Cave” as many call it. It was built around the 9th to 11th century and used for spiritual practices. The cave is just a part of the area. The rest of the area has pools and a wonderful garden you can walk through.
Gunung Kawi is yet another temple for you to see. Built in the 11th century, the massive carvings in this temple are really something to see. Gunung Kawi is thought to be a funeral monument but were here to say, this place is anything but sad!
Gunung Kawi Sebatu is another water temple used for purification. The temple sits within a beautiful, lush garden setting that hosts handful of temples scattered about. A truly peaceful place.
Tegallalang Rice Terrace is probably the most well-known rice paddy in the world. Tegallalang Rice Terrace is a beautiful site to see. Balinese rice workers are actively working the terraces day in and day out. The lush green rice sprigs popping up from the muddy water with pam trees scattered in-between is a site you won’t get out of your mind. It is quintessential Bail wrapped up in one view.
10) Take A Walk Through A Monkey Forest
While we did not make a trip to the Monkey Forest, we wanted to include it on our list. Bali was at the end leg of our 8-month backpacking trip and to be honest, we were monkey’d out! We’ve seen so many monkeys up to this point that we didn’t want to pay a fee to get into the grounds to see more.
However, knowing many of you reading may have not had your monkey fill we wanted to be sure to include it in our list 🙂
The Monkey Forest is home to about 750 Balinese long-tailed monkeys and three Hindu temples. The heavy lush forest is a spiritual place but also a place for education and conservation. During your time here, be respectful and don’t tease the monkeys!
You’ll end up with a bite or a scratch and you definitely don’t want that.
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– Lauren & Jesse Stuart (The Stüs)