Are you planning to travel to Bali and wonder what to do in Ubud while staying on this beautiful and spiritual place? I lived almost two months in Ubud and had enough time to explore the city to give you my best advice. Here is my very personal guide to what to do in Ubud: from visiting the rice terraces and being a bit adventurous to the best restaurants and places to relax.
1. Visit the rice terraces!
If there is one thing Ubud is really famous about, then it is Ubud’s beautiful rice terraces! So if you have only little time and wonder what to do in Ubud best and what definitely not to miss, make sure you pay a visit to the rice terraces! The ultimate spot to do so are the famous Tegallalang Rice Terraces north of Ubud’s city center. You will be amazed by the beauty of this place and its unreal green colours. Remember not to rush and take your time to fully enjoy this place! It is even possible to do a walk through the rice fields, just follow one of the many paths!
2. Bike downhill from Lake Batur to Ubud
Instead of just walking through the rice fields you can also do a downhill tour from Lake Batur to Ubud, where you will pass a few rice terraces and even paddle through the rice fields. The tour is fairly easy and only small parts are off-road where you have to drive a little more carefully. You will also pass some typical Balinese villages and stop at a big temple where you learn more about Bali’s culture and traditions. The tour ends with a yummy lunch at a local Warung where you can try authentic Indonesian food. Otherwise just enjoy cycling down-hill, doing nothing and feeling the wind blowing into your face – it’s great and so much fun!
3. Do white water rafting!
In case you want to be even more adventurous, you can do a white water rafting tour on one of the many rivers running through Ubud. There are tours for beginners and advanced rafters, and even if you might be scared from time to time, you will have a great time! It’s best to do it with your friends and the trip takes about half a day in total. As it’s not only a rough tour, you will also be able to enjoy Ubud’s country side and get a feeling for it’s wild jungle.
4. Indulge yourself with super healthy food
I think I have never seen so many vegetarian and even vegan restaurants with such healthy menus like I did in Ubud! Ubud really is THE place for healthy, yummy food. Even I as a steak and burger lover was impressed how tasty Vegetarian food can be and I didn’t really miss eating meat. But it’s not only about the food: many places have super delicious juices and smoothies on their menus which get you boosted with your daily dose of vitamins. A whole wheat grass shot for example contains as much vitamins as one kilogram of fruits and vegetables! Here are a few my favourite restaurants:
This restaurant really had the most delicious vegetarian food in all Ubud! The menu is a mixture of Mediterrean and Asian food and also offers a lot of vegan options. The juices come in great colours and all food is presented very nicely. The interior is pretty as well, but the best part is the fantastic view you enjoy from The Elephant. As it’s nestled on a hill you are overlooking rice fields and palm trees while eating. One of my favourite food was the vegetarian BLT sandwich for breakfast and the super delicious meat-free Spaghetti Bolognese!
This was my favourite place for breakfast! The Atmam Kafe is located on the popular Hanoman Road and you can easily miss it, as it’s floor is a bit higher than the street and it might look a bit dark insight. But the menu is just incredible and offers a wide selection for breakfast as well as plenty of juices and options to even create your very own juice or smoothie. I always ordered Eggs Benedigt and an avocado chocolate smoothie – yummy!
Clear Café is another very healthy restaurant with the most stunning view of all restaurants in town. From here you look down at a beautiful temple and enjoy peaceful quietness away from Ubud’s busy center. The menu is a bit more pricy but the food is really good and of high quality! It also offers non vegetarian food and a large selection of western and Asian dishes, as well it’s very own signature dishes.
This Warung sells typical Balinese food, and is one of the most authentic tasting Warungs in the center of Ubud. They have a selection of typical Balinese dishes where you can choose from and that change daily. The prices are cheap, the staff is super friendly and the atmosphere pretty laid back. You can find Warung Sopa in a parallel street of and only a short walk from Hanoman road!
In case you are fed up with Asian food, Mama Mia is a great Italian restaurant I can recommend to you. The pasta and pizzas are really delicious and taste like authentic Italian food. The atmosphere really feels like in an Italian restaurant and very often you would see the owner, a true Italian himself, walk a round and have a chat with his customers. And even if you expected Italian food to be expensive in Bali, the prices at Mama Mia are really cheap and you can get a Pizza Margarita starting from 55.000 IRp which is less than 4 Euros.
Or what about some Mexican food? Just across the street form Mama Mia you will find Taco Casa, a really yummy Mexican restaurant. They sell all those typical Mexican dishes from Tacos, Enchiladas, Quesadillas, to Burritos, Fajitas and Corona beer! Their Guacamole is really good and I especially loved their crispy Tacos with beef! The prices are moderate and the portions big enough – all in all really yummy food!
5. Drink the best coffee in Bali
But Ubud not only has really yummy and health food, it is also home to the best coffee in Bali! People at the Seniman Coffee Studio really know how to select the beast coffee beans and brew delicious coffee. As always, my favourite is their Flat White! Next to coffee they also serve a small selection of breakfast, some really nice juices as well as cakes and pastries. The coffee place has a really cool vibe and is located in one of the side streets of Ubud’s main road. And in case you are caught up in rain, you can also do some indoor coffee tastings here! Other places to drink a decent cup of coffee In Ubud are the Freak Café and Anomali Coffee.
6. Spoil yourself in one of the best hotels in Ubud!
We’ve been back in Ubud a couple of times since we’ve lived there in 2015 and recently stayed at the Komaneka at Bisma.
An amazing hotel with only 40 rooms about 10 minutes away from the Monkey Forest Street and the city center of Ubud while still being surrounded by lush jungle with view at the volcanoes in the north of the island!
Simply incredible and definitely a place to stay for at least one night!
7. Work in the coolest Co-Working Space
Most people nowadays do not travel without working a little bit and at least check their emails every now and then. If you are looking to get some shit done and work just a little but even more productive, Hubud is the place for you! This is a eally cool Co-working space with a very vibrant and friendly community. They have indoor seatings as well as a little outside area where you can also get coffee and some food. If you buy something at the counter you can ask for a password to get access to their high-speed internet. And while sitting in front of your laptop you can get inspired by the green rice fields which are facing the Hubud!
8. Educate yourself in paradise
Ubud is a very inspirational and spiritual place, and the perfect spot to change your life. A great address for such changes is TurnPoint, which offers several educational courses for young entrepreneurs. When we were living in Ubud they offered courses in programming for beginners as well as valuable workshops for people planing a freelancer career. You can even move into a big villa with other motivated entrepreneurs to be, taking part in helpful workshops, enjoying the pool and the fantastic views on rice fields.
9. Become a Yogi!
Whether you are already an experienced Yogi or never stepped on a yoga matt before, Ubud ist definitely the place to get you into full Yoga shape! In every street and on every corner you will find a Yoga studio and all different kinds of Yoga teacher are in he city. You might also think of staying a bit longer and do a whole Yoga retreat. There are plenty of options to choose from – don’t wait becoming a Yogi!
10. Take a relaxing massage
And to fully digest what you have experienced in Ubud there is one final thing on my list for what to do in Ubud: do a relaxing massage! There are plenty massage salons and spas in town and most of them offer really good massages for good prices. Try a typical Balinese massage, or go for a whole treatment with body or facial mask and a relaxing, warm flower bath afterwards. There is really nothing better after a day full of sightseeing, sport, adventure and yoga than a relaxing massage. Next to treating yourself with super yummy and healthy food, also make sure to treat your muscles and body with a lovely massage!
I hope you now know what to do in Ubud when coming to Bali on your next Trip! If you also have some tips and recommendation, please share them in the comments below!