One of our favourite things about Bali is how diverse the island is. You can easily switch between ritzy beach clubs and tranquil village life and from epic shopping to ancient temples all in the same trip.
If you’re staying in South Bali, you might be tempted to experience the other side of Bali – you know, the one where you’re more likely to see rice fields than surf bars. Here are the need-to-know details of arranging a daytrip to Ubud.
How to Get There
Ubud is located in central Bali:
- 90 minutes from Seminyak, Legian, Jimbaran and Nusa Dua
- 1 hour from Sanur and Canggu
Note that these are just rough estimates and the exact travel time will depend on the traffic flow to and from Ubud.
The best way to get to Ubud is by private car. With Ministry of Villas, this will be a breeze.
Ministry of Villas offers guests a car and driver priced at USD $55 for eight hours a day. Our concierge team will be happy to help you arrange the transport for your day trip to Ubud.
Alternatively, you can also book one of our villas with a car and driver included in the nightly rate. This means that a car and driver are on stand-by for guests’ complimentary use for up to eight hours a day, excluding the cost of petrol.
Things to Do in Ubud
Ubud is known as Bali’s cultural capital and the village is home to some of the most beautiful temples and creative artisans on the island. The huge success of Eat Pray Love cemented Ubud as a bucket list destination for yogis and health buffs – vegan food and yoga studios are very easy to find! The bustling hub of Ubud is hugged by cascading rice paddies and lush jungle views.
Here are some of the most popular activities and sights to check out in and around Ubud.
The Sacred Monkey Forest is arguably the most famous landmark in Ubud and definitely deserves a spot on any day trip to Ubud. The “forest” is a sprawling nature reserve where monkeys roam free. With its ancient trees and beautiful shrines, Monkey Forest is very scenic and the cheeky monkeys sure offer a photo op or two! Monkey Forest is located in central Ubud, close to the area’s best shopping and dining.
Ubud Royal Palace
Ubud Royal Palace sits at the very heart of Ubud and you really don’t want a miss a visit to this majestic landmark on your day trip to Ubud. The Palace offers a mix of intricate Balinese architecture and lush tropical gardens and it’s especially popular during the nightly dance performances.
Ubud is home to Bali’s best artisans, so there’s no better place to pick up some authentic keepsakes to bring back home with you than one of Ubud’s bustling markets. The Ubud Art Market is centrally located just across the street from Ubud Royal Palace. Here, you can pick up beautifully woven bags, local textiles, fine silver and more. Don’t forget to haggle for the prices! Another popular market is the Sukawati Art Market, located some 10 kilometres south of Ubud.
When you think of Ubud, one of the first things that comes to mind are the surreally beautiful rice fields cascading down hillsides. The Tegallalang Rice Terraces are one of the most famous and most beautiful rice paddies in Bali and you can reach them in a 20-minute drive from downtown Ubud. Definitely one of the most Instagrammed spots in Bali!
Bali Bird Park
Bali Bird Park is located on the way to Ubud and makes for a great pitstop, especially if you’re travelling with kids. The impeccably maintained park is home to 1000 birds and offers a fun, educational and very photogenic outing for the whole family.
As the heart and soul of Bali’s vibrant spiritual life, Ubud offers more than a few scenic temples. Goa Gajah, or Elephant Cave, is located close to Ubud’s centre and offers a fascinating display of ancient temple architecture. A little further up north (about 30 minutes from downtown Ubud) is Tirta Empul, also known as the Water Temple, which allows visitors to bathe in the temple’s cleansing waters.
Sports on Land and Water
Visiting Ubud doesn’t have to be just about the art and culture. The surrounding area offers a terrific opportunity for some heart pounding sports. Go on a mountain biking tour through the surrounding villages or opt for some exciting white water rafting. If you’re looking for the ultimate Ubud experience, join a yoga class at the Yoga Barn, Radiantly Alive or any of Ubud’s yoga studios.
You might have seen those dreamy photos of girls in flowing dresses artfully swinging in the Ubud jungle popping up on your Instagram feed. You can get your own shot at Bali Swing. The swing is located some 30 minutes from downtown Ubud and offers different levels: the lowest level doesn’t require you to wear the bulky safety harness, which ensures picture-perfect photos to remember your day trip to Ubud by.
Food, Glorious Food!
In recent years Ubud has emerged as a real culinary destination and any foodie should dedicate some time on their day trip to Ubud simply for exploring the local restaurants. Some of the highlights include the scenic Swept Away restaurant overlooking the Ayung river and the innovative Locavore. Ubud is also home to some of the best cooking classes in Bali.