Ubud: what you need to know
Ubud is the cultural capital of Bali – a bustling town in the heart of Bali surrounded by lush river valleys and rice paddy fields . It takes approximately 1 hour to drive from Seminyak to Ubud and 1.5 hours to get there from Bali’s international airport.
Ubud has always been a beloved tourist destination but it gained in popularity increasingly after Elizabeth Gilbert’s book ‘Eat Love Pray’ followed by the movie starring Julia Roberts. However, since ancient times, Ubud has been a cultural town, home to artists and craftsmen. There are museums to visit and you can still visit the artisan towns around Ubud to buy handicrafts and artwork or even furniture straight from the local artists and woodworkers. Ubud could also be named the capital of yoga and spiritualism.
Yogis, yoginis, spiritual seekers and health food lovers all come to Ubud to connect with themselves and with nature, practice yoga at amazing places, meditate and meet like-minded people. Families also love Ubud, home to the Sacred Monkey Forest and Ubud Palace where you can see traditional performances. Around Ubud, there are many more landmarks to visit such as Pura Tirta Empul and there are plenty of fun family hot spots and activities, too, such as POD Origin chocolate farm, Bali Zoo, Bali Elephant Camp and Bali Bird Park and white water rafting on the Ayung River.
Quick facts about Ubud
- Ubud is the cultural capital of Bali
- Ubud is a vegan paradise
- Ubud is a yogi and yogini magnet
- Ubud is wonderful for families
- Ubud is home to Bali’s royal family
- Ubud is surrounded by artisan villages
- Ubud is home to fabulous coffee cafes, exquisite restaurants and bars
- Shopping, nightlife, dining for all diets, spas, yoga, temples – Ubud has got is all!
- The main gateway to get to Mount Batur and do the sunrise hike to the summit
Things to do in Ubud
Lovers of culture, nature, shopping, yoga, arts, vegan and raw food and stunning villas perched on the edge of a deep river gorge – you will love Ubud! The centre of Ubud is small enough to explore on foot but also around Ubud, you can visit beautiful places, see amazing things and do fun stuff.
Here is a list of activities in Ubud:
- Campuhan Ridge Walk (the famous rice paddy walk starts from the centre of Ubud) – make sure you are prepared for a bit of a trek as it starts off quite hilly.
- Down-hill cycling tour through rice paddy fields
- White water rafting on the Ayung River
- Cultural performances at Ubud Palace
- Yoga classes at The Yoga Barn
- Experiencing traditional Balinese spa treatment (try Ubud Traditional Spa and get the ‘rice farmer massage’
- Monkey Forest walk
- Chocolate tour at POD Origin (great with kids!) and combine it with Bali Elephant Camp
- Bali Zoo & Bird Park
- Goa Gajah elephant cave
- Water temple Tirta Empul & Unesco monument Gunung Kawi
- Sunrise at Mount Batur
- Day trip to Kintamani
- Visit ARMA Museum and Museum Rudana
- Silversmith class / Batik class / pottery / cooking class and more workshops
Shopping in Ubud
Ubud has got plenty of boutique shops and handicraft stores. You can also spend some hours strolling around Ubud Market but be prepared to bargain hard (it can be fun!). Want to find unique craftwork and buy it directly from the artist? Head over to the famous craftsmen village of Mas.
Family holiday villas in Ubud
We’ve got some beautiful family villas in Ubud – a great place from where to explore the highlights of Ubud. Kids will love having their own private swimming pool, mom and dad will adore the views (at most of our Ubud villas) and there are plenty of family-friendly things to do, as well.
Where to stay in Ubud
We’ve got villas in the centre of town and in the surrounding villages set amidst rice paddy fields on built on the edge of river valleys.You will find that most travellers that come to Ubud love the fact that they feel as though they are the only people on the island. So many of our villas have that private, exclusive feel where you are right among the rice fields. It’s a very relaxing feeling and nothing quite compares to this anywhere in Bali. Ubud has that charm that cannot be replicated anywhere else. See for yourself!