Ubud: the land of pure bliss, nature and spas
Ubud is a gorgeous heaven of rice paddies, waterfalls, street markets and much more! It is known for its fancy af spas and resorts that sit atop a rice paddy with the most out-of-this-world view! Whether it is cliff-side swinging or waterfall hopping, Ubud’s got your back. Amongst Bali’s most visited landmarks, Ubud should definitely be on your Bali list!
A backpacker’s guide to Ubud:
First things first, rent a scooter!
It’s around 60k Indonesian rupiah ($6) per day, usually including a full tank of gas and a helmet. It is therefore also customary to return the scooter with a full talk of gas, which may cost around 10-40k rupiah. BUT, this economical mode of transportation not just means you can whiz through traffic like a ninja, but also have the flexibility to go whenever and wherever you want. And trust me, traffic is eminent is almost 90% of places in Bali due to small roads and a boom in tourism, especially in city centers.
BUT, this economical mode of transportation not just means you can whiz through traffic like a ninja, but also have the flexibility to go whenever and wherever you want.
Taxi’s on the other hand, might be an option if you and your mates can’t/ don’t want to ride a scooter. It is of course pricy and limits where you can go, and there is a 99% of getting stuck in traffic.
Moving on, make friends at your hostel! Go to the common rooms, kitchen etc., and just say “hello”!
I know it is easier said than done, especially if you are introverted, but then again, if you are in Bali and in a hostel, you might as well take the extroverted step of getting to know your comrades.
Well, since I like to be proactive, I started by making friends since my flight from Cairns, Australia to Bali, Indonesia. Oh no wait, I started making friends when I was travelling across Australia (check out my blogs for the ultimate 35-day road trip 😉 ) and met a wonderful girl who was on the same flight as me, to Bali! What a coincidence!
By my 2nd day in Bali, I had a group of 10 friends that I travelled all around Bali with! And only 2 of them I knew from before! So, make friends and unleash the power of true backpacking!
Where I stayed in Ubud:
I stayed at two hostels in the center of Ubud, but do not recommend either of them for unstated reasons.
I do, recommend though to stay in the city center, as many restaurants and things to do will be in walking distance. I also recommend that if you are travelling as a couple/ a pair who is okay to share a room, then take one of the villas. The villas are very huge, comfortable apartments with privacy, more comfortable beds and numerous more amenities than a hostel, with almost the same cost as a hostel bed per person, or very slightly more.
Places in and around Ubud:
Like I mentioned before, there are tons of restaurants in the city center! With foods ranging from high-class Italian and pizza restaurants (there is a very fancy pizza restaurants that I can’t remember the name of, but I’m sure you’ll find it on Google), to low-key local food stalls, and everything in between.
Like always, a large Bintang (or small, you do you) is cheaper at Mini Marts than at a restaurant/hostel reception, so do look around.
Translation: Bintang is Bali’s most famous beer: unfortunately/ fortunately imported from The Netherlands, Indonesia’s colonial ruler, and owned by Hieneken. You will get this drink in every corner of Bali, even a small island, economies of scale, am I right?!
List of things to do when in Ubud:
- The Sacred Monkey Forest
- Tegenungan Waterfall
- Visit the iconic rice paddies and take this opportunity to swing over the cliffside
Bali Cat Poo Chino: which is a tea and coffee plantation with samples of exotic teas, incense sticks, and flavored cigars
- Visit the numerous temples in and around Ubud: there is even one with a holy bath that soothes you of all pains and spiritually cleanses you.
- Visit the street market for great bargains: this is where I bought my fridge magnet for 10 cents and a Bali shirt for $5
- Take a cooking class
- Have a relaxing spa overlooking a gorgeous view (and don’t take a photo of it, just a mental one)
For more information, please reach out to me through the contact form, or browse over my other blog posts on where to spend your best vacation in Bali, Indonesia!