Day 1 – Ubud Outskirts
Getting around Ubud can be done by motorbike (experience drivers only) or private driver. Ubud is the main destination for a 3-week Bali Route and is busy year-round. For that reason, it is best to get a driver for the first and second days of our things to do in Ubud guide.
1. Tegalalang Rice Terraces
Rise and shine very early to visit the magical valley of rice terraces: Tegalalang. The countless layers of rice fields are the absolute best way to start your day in Ubud.
Due to its popularity, it’s best to visit the terraces before 10 AM to avoid the crowds. Visiting Tegalalang is one of the things you must do in Bali.
More about: Tegalalang Rice Terraces
2. The Holy Spring Water of Pura Tirta Empul
This temple is an important site for holy, fresh drinking water from the ground. Both locals and tourists go into the two purification pools, where you clean yourself at each of the 30 stations. The cleaning process starts from the left and finally finishes on the right side. The entrance is 15000 IDR per person.
Tip: Nearly every temple provided free sarongs to use inside the temple.
3. Ancient Bali: Pura Gunung Kawi
Pura Gunung Kawi is an archeological area in Bali. A long time ago, big temples and houses were carved out of the rocks because people didn’t know how to construct houses. The whole area is surrounded by beautiful rice paddies. A highly recommended thing to do in Ubud!
Again the entrance is 15000 IDR per person.
Lunch tip: Have a great lunch at Lazy Cats Cafe.
4. Monkey Forest Ubud
One of the most popular things to do in Ubud is to visit the Monkey Forest. Inside the center of town is a beautiful park, without a fence, where loads of monkeys spend the majority of their day. And even if you don’t like to see the monkeys, the park itself is a big rainforest and a beautiful walk that lets you escape the buzzing town life. Here’s how to visit the Ubud Monkey Forest.
The monkeys are not really interested in you but remember that they are wild, cheeky animals, so the park asks you to stick to the following rules.
- Don’t look them in the eyes
- Don’t smile; showing your teeth is a form of aggression.
- Don’t feed them
- Don’t touch the babies
- Remove all loose items like jewelry, sunglasses, or food that are outside your bag
Must read: 3-week Indonesia Route
We think the Ubud Monkey Forest should be on everyone their 3-week Bali Route. The entrance fee is 50000 IDR, and you can easily spend 2 hours here.
5. Campuhan Ridge Walk
Around sunset time, head to Campuhan, this is the bridge where the two rivers meet in central Ubud. The 2-kilometer-long Campuhan Ridge Walk is very popular with both locals and visitors. Some people come for a walk with their dog, for a good run, or to take pretty pictures. It is free for everyone.
After this walk, you must be hungry. Go to KAFE for a delicious dinner.
Day 2 – Waterfalls around Ubud
Ubud owns some of the most beautiful waterfalls in Bali. The following two waterfalls are 40 minutes outside of Ubud, easy to visit, and lesser-known than the other waterfalls in the area.
6. The Waterfall: Kanto Lampo
The waterfall Kanto Lampo is a beautiful big wall of water that is popular to climb up. Locals like to hang around at the weekend. In front of the waterfall is a small pool area. Jump in the water, enjoy a relaxing swim, and shower. It is a simple 3-minute walk down from the parking.
Also read: Bali waterfall route
Tip: Visit Kanto Lampo during the weekdays as many locals will be here in the weekend.
7. Tibumana Waterfall
A short 15-minute ride from Kanto Lampo is the strong Tibumama waterfall. After an easy walk down, you can have a swim in front of the waterfall. Be careful; the force of the falling water is usually very strong here. The entrance here is 10000 IDR.
Or: Visit the very popular (read: busy but impressive) waterfall: Tegenungan. Located south.
8. Goa Gajah, Elephant Cave
Don’t worry; no elephants and animal abuse here. Just outside of Ubud is a meditation cave carved out of the rock. It is a small temple and easy to visit. The entrance is 15000 IDR per person. Sarongs are for free near the ticket counter inside.
9. Ubud Water Palace, Saraswati Temple
In the center of Ubud town is a temple surrounded by water and beautiful lotus water flowers. It is a bit hidden behind Starbucks and free to enter. At night, a dancing performance is held.
Lunch tip: Warung Pondok Madu great Indonesian food and service. Another good option is El Mexicano.
Day 3 – Active & Relaxed Ubud
10. Tubing or White Water Rafting
Tubing and White Water Rafting are two very popular things to do in Ubud. Whether alone where you meet people or with a group, going down these rivers is a great and refreshing experience. We loved tubing with our friends.
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It usually takes from 8 AM to 1 PM. The price for tubing is 600000 IDR (40 USD), and rafting is 445000 IDR (30 USD). The more people, the cheaper, of course.
Also read: 3-week Bali Route
11. Shopping at Ubud Market – Popular Thing to do in Ubud
Every day in the center of town is the Ubud Market. It is split into two timetables. The traditional market where vegetables and meat is sold starts from 3 AM until 8 AM. At 9 AM, the market changes to the Art Market, where they sell everything from handbags, kitchenware, decorations, paintings, and souvenirs, you name it. The Ubud bag became a worldwide fashion item, and as a result, every shop sells these pretty bags.
12. Stroll around Ubud
Above all, do not forget to spend time in Ubud! The town is great to walk around, with small art boutiques, clothing shops, and delicious restaurants.
13. Ubud Rice Fields Walk
Certainly, one of the lesser-known things to do in Ubud is the relaxing rice field walk. It is a 45-min walk over a pad along the beautiful fields and farms. It is unknown because the path is a bit hidden away, although it is right in the center of town; this is the exact route.
14. Dinner Between the Rice Fields
Finally, while you are on the Ubud rice fields walk, stop halfway at either Sari Organik or Sweet Orange Restaurant and have a delicious dinner during sunset surrounded by rice fields. Probably the best dinner location in Ubud!
How to Visit Ubud
Ubud is a 1-hour drive from Denpasar airport. Roads are busy, so it usually takes a little longer.
Getting around on a motorbike is only advised for experienced drivers. Ubud center has become so busy that a big part of the roads has become one way.
Where to Stay in Ubud
The surrounding rivers, rice field views, and jungle vibes make it great to spend a longer amount of time. Therefore some of the most beautiful hotels in Bali are located in Ubud.
Best Time to Visit Ubud
Weather-wise, Ubud can be visited best from June to September. Hot days and cooler nights which is very comfortable. Ubud is good almost year-round except for Bali rain season (December – February).
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Happy to help Amber!