Ubud travel guide

Ubud Tourism | Ubud Guide

You're Going to Love Ubud

Wild monkeys, rolling hills, towering mountains, and beautiful rice paddies make up the landscape of Ubud. You'll take one look at it and marvel at the unspoiled beauty.

In the town center you'll find incredible local art, jewelry, and knickknacks, but you don't need to go very far to feel like you're in the deep jungles of Indonesia.

Take a stroll through the Monkey Forest or have dinner overlooking a rice paddy. The people of Ubud love to show you what their country has to offer, so don't be afraid to strike up conversations. Once you arrive, you'll never want to leave.

Top 5 Reasons to Visit Ubud

1. The Magical Landscape

There are few places left in the world that feel completely untouched and Ubud is one of them. The landscape is unlike any other, and you won't see this kind of beauty anywhere else on the island of Bali.

2. Mingling with the Monkeys

One of Ubud's most famous attractions, the Monkey Forest, is just as fun as it might sound. Walk down the paths and explore waterfalls and temples, and make a few monkey friends while you're at it. Just remember to hide your sunglasses.

3. Dine on Local Cuisine

Indonesian food is full of incomparable flavors, spices, and more. The people in this part of the world really know how to cook and Ubud's local cuisine - with its emphasis on noodles, rice, meat, and vegetables - is evidence of this.

4. The Art of Relaxing Yoga

Ubud is yoga central, with several organisations offering classes for incredibly cheap prices. Ubud is the place to visit if you just want to relax and unwind.

5. A Thriving Art Scene

Ubud is a center for all kinds of incredible artwork. Whether it's paintings, statues, or rarer things that only the locals have names for, you will find it all here. Some can be acquired cheaply, but this is an instance where things can begin to get pricey.

What to do in Ubud

1. Ubud Monkey Forest: Release Your Inner Mowgli

After a visit to the Ubud Monkey Forest, we promise you'll be counting monkeys and not sheep to fall asleep! With over 700 monkeys covering 12.5 hectacres, this popular tourist destination is the perfect place to get an up-close animal encounter. The many moss-lined structures tucked away amidst a sea of tropical green will have you feeling like you've stepped right onto the set of The Jungle Book. However, the local Indonesian population see the Monkey forest not only as a fun tourist spot, but also as an important spiritual place. Here, visitors can become educated about conservation efforts in the region while also contributing to the sustainability of the local economy.

2. Ubud Traditional Art Market: Pick Up Some Souvenirs

Located just opposite the Royal Palace, the Ubud Traditional Art Market draws together hundreds of artisans displaying their wares for tourists and locals alike. Some of the most popular artistic works include silk scarves, handwoven bags, statues, and colorful kites. Pro tip: make sure to use the local custom of haggling over the price with vendors before purchasing any items. You're sure to get a better deal and maybe learn a few cultural tricks of the trade along the way.

3. Goa Gajah: Follow the Elephants

While Goa Gajah doesn't actually contain any elephants, the archaeological park is thought to have received its name from the Hindu lord Ganesh who is depicted in a stone statue within the hidden caves. Goa Gaja was built in the 9th century and was originally a place of quiet meditation. Today there are many structures at Goa Gajah with relics of early Buddhism for visitors to see. On the grounds are also two small streams, a small rice-paddy field, and an excavated pond.

4. Tegalalang Rice Terrace: What a Rice View!

If you're a fan of Eat, Pray, Love then chances are you've caught yourself dreaming of holing up in a villa on the skirt of a rice-paddy field. The Tegalalang Rice Field is a popular tourist site due to it's unique views, artistic local community, and agricultural significance. The rice paddy fields of Bali feature a traditional cooperative irrigation system called subak, using five terraced rice levels and water temples to regulate the crops development. The site was made a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2012 and continues to be one of the most iconic views in all of Bali.

5. Ubud Royal Palace: Visit Indonesia's Ruling Family

Ubud Royal Palace remains the official residence of Indonesia's monarch Sultan Hamengkubuwono X and the focal point in central Ubud. The palace was built in the early 19th century and has been carefully preserved to the modern day. Currently, Ubud Royal palace acts as both a cultural gathering place and an administrative building. Visitors should take advantage of the local-guided tours and nightly dance performances at the Palace to get true glimpse of traditional Balinese culture.

Ubud Monkey ForestUbud Monkey Forest
Ubud Traditional Art MarketUbud Traditional Art Market
Goa GajahGoa Gajah
Tegalalang Rice TerraceTegalalang Rice Terrace

1. Ubud Monkey Forest: Release Your Inner Mowgli

After a visit to the Ubud Monkey Forest, we promise you'll be counting monkeys and not sheep to fall asleep! With over 700 monkeys covering 12.5 hectacres, this popular tourist destination is the perfect place to get an up-close animal encounter. The many moss-lined structures tucked away amidst a sea of tropical green will have you feeling like you've stepped right onto the set of The Jungle Book. However, the local Indonesian population see the Monkey forest not only as a fun tourist spot, but also as an important spiritual place. Here, visitors can become educated about conservation efforts in the region while also contributing to the sustainability of the local economy.

2. Ubud Traditional Art Market: Pick Up Some Souvenirs

Located just opposite the Royal Palace, the Ubud Traditional Art Market draws together hundreds of artisans displaying their wares for tourists and locals alike. Some of the most popular artistic works include silk scarves, handwoven bags, statues, and colorful kites. Pro tip: make sure to use the local custom of haggling over the price with vendors before purchasing any items. You're sure to get a better deal and maybe learn a few cultural tricks of the trade along the way.

3. Goa Gajah: Follow the Elephants

While Goa Gajah doesn't actually contain any elephants, the archaeological park is thought to have received its name from the Hindu lord Ganesh who is depicted in a stone statue within the hidden caves. Goa Gaja was built in the 9th century and was originally a place of quiet meditation. Today there are many structures at Goa Gajah with relics of early Buddhism for visitors to see. On the grounds are also two small streams, a small rice-paddy field, and an excavated pond.

4. Tegalalang Rice Terrace: What a Rice View!

If you're a fan of Eat, Pray, Love then chances are you've caught yourself dreaming of holing up in a villa on the skirt of a rice-paddy field. The Tegalalang Rice Field is a popular tourist site due to it's unique views, artistic local community, and agricultural significance. The rice paddy fields of Bali feature a traditional cooperative irrigation system called subak, using five terraced rice levels and water temples to regulate the crops development. The site was made a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2012 and continues to be one of the most iconic views in all of Bali.

5. Ubud Royal Palace: Visit Indonesia's Ruling Family

Ubud Royal Palace remains the official residence of Indonesia's monarch Sultan Hamengkubuwono X and the focal point in central Ubud. The palace was built in the early 19th century and has been carefully preserved to the modern day. Currently, Ubud Royal palace acts as both a cultural gathering place and an administrative building. Visitors should take advantage of the local-guided tours and nightly dance performances at the Palace to get true glimpse of traditional Balinese culture.

Ubud Monkey ForestUbud Monkey Forest
Ubud Traditional Art MarketUbud Traditional Art Market
Goa GajahGoa Gajah
Tegalalang Rice TerraceTegalalang Rice Terrace

Top activities & attractions in Ubud

Where to Eat in Ubud

In Ubud, you'll find a number of affordable places to eat that offer wonderful local cuisine. Try Ibu Rai Bar and Restaurant on Jl Monkey Forest for a taste of local flavor at incredible prices. Mains usually are not more than Rp100,000 and drinks about Rp30,000. One of the best restaurants in Ubud is the Italian restaurant Il Giardino just off of JI Raya Ubud, where mains cost around Rp134,000 and drinks about Rp53,000.

When to visit Ubud

Ubud in June
Estimated hotel price
$45
1 night at 3-star hotel
Ubud in June
Estimated hotel price
$45
1 night at 3-star hotel

Because of Ubud's geographic location, it maintains the same temperature pretty much year round, however, you should avoid Ubud between June and October, as that's monsoon season, when it rains every single day, and quite hard. While this doesn't make visiting impossible, it makes it harder to plan your daily activities. Most days have a low of 65 and up to a high of 90.

Data provided by weatherbase
Temperatures
Temperatures
Average
Fahrenheit (°F)
Data provided by weatherbase

How to Get to Ubud

Plane

Because Bali is only served by one airport, getting to Ubud can be a bit of a trek. The island's airport is Ngurah Rai International Airport (DPS) and it's located just over 20 miles from Ubud. Although this may not seem very far, remember that roads near Ubud are very narrow and windy. The best way to get from the airport is to take a bemo (a minivan) for about Rp50,000, and you will need to book it ahead of time. You can also take a taxi, but that will cost you about Rp150,000.

Car

There are several car rental services in Denpasar, which lies to the south, such as Bali Car Hire and Wirasana Car Rental. Except to pay a day rate of about Rp600,000. If you're driving up to Ubud, you'll come up the main road (and the advisable road) JI Raya Mawang.

Bus

There are a couple of bus services that will drive to Ubud; the most popular is Perama Tour. A one-way journey will cost you about Rp60,000, and you can book it online. Although the official bus stop is one mile south in Pedang Tegal, usually, you can tell the driver where you're staying and they'll take you there. If not, then you'll get off at the corner of Jl Hanoman and Jl Monkey Forest.

Airlines serving Ubud

United Airlines
Good (2,621 reviews)
Lufthansa
Good (1,726 reviews)
American Airlines
Good (4,064 reviews)
KLM
Good (317 reviews)
Air France
Good (355 reviews)
Turkish Airlines
Good (1,161 reviews)
Delta
Excellent (2,815 reviews)
British Airways
Good (1,118 reviews)
Qatar Airways
Good (1,024 reviews)
SWISS
Good (404 reviews)
Iberia
Good (770 reviews)
Emirates
Excellent (744 reviews)
Etihad Airways
Good (236 reviews)
Scandinavian Airlines
Good (378 reviews)
Singapore Airlines
Excellent (221 reviews)
Air Europa
Good (114 reviews)
Aeromexico
Good (814 reviews)
Malaysia Airlines
Good (37 reviews)
ANA
Excellent (112 reviews)
Thai Airways
Good (40 reviews)
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Where to stay in Ubud

Jalan Bisma - this neighborhood is in the north of the village and is a quieter area with just as many shops, but fewer people. If you're looking for some more local restaurants, then this is a great place to go. It's also a great area to explore on foot because you can venture further out into the wilderness.

Popular Neighborhoods in Ubud

Nyuh Kuning - this tiny village is part of Ubud and is where the Monkey Forest is located. The area is stunning and great for exploring abandoned temples and engaging with the local wildlife.

Campuhan - this quiet area of Ubud is where you'll find the Campuhan Ridge Walk, an incredible walk along a ridge that has plummeting drops into jungles on either side.

Where to stay in popular areas of Ubud

Most booked hotels in Ubud

Komaneka at Bisma Ubud
Excellent (9.4, 335 reviews)
$133+
Viceroy Bali - Chse Certified
Excellent (9.5, 111 reviews)
$256+
Padma Resort Ubud
Excellent (9.3, 345 reviews)
$180+
The Kayon Resort
Excellent (9.3, 275 reviews)
$156+
Alaya Resort Ubud
Excellent (9, 635 reviews)
$93+
The Royal Pita Maha
Excellent (8.8, 273 reviews)
$258+
See all hotels

How to Get Around Ubud

Public Transportation

Ubud doesn't have much in the way of public transportation, but you can take a bemo, which usually collects at the cross streets Jl Monkey Forest and Jl Raya Ubud. They don't seem to run on any schedule, and they tend to stop when people ask. It's advised to not take these, as the drivers will tend to charge you extortionate rates, sometimes as much as Rp100,000, that they make up when they see you're a tourist.

Taxi

Taxis are the best way to get around the village of Ubud and the surrounding area, however, they won't be cheap. You can flag down a taxi pretty much anywhere downtown, but because the reliable Bluebird taxi service doesn't operate in Ubud, you'll have to pay higher rates for the local taxi companies. Usually, it's better value to rent a driver for the day, and that will cost you anywhere from Rp70,000 to Rp200,000.

Car

There are limited car rental options in Ubud, but it could make getting around easier. Most are individual car rentals, such as Bayu Putra Rent Car and Bali Cheap Car & Tour Service, and you can expect to pay about Rp600,000 for a day, with prices scaling down the longer you rent.

The Cost of Living in Ubud

Shopping Streets

The center of Ubud is great for shopping, from works of art to lovely, locally made clothing and jewelry. The best shopping street is Jl Raya Ubud, but you'll also find many art galleries on Jl Monkey Forest as well. Shopping is quite affordable, with most mid-range items around Rp268,000.

Groceries and Other

Groceries and personal care items are very cheap to buy in Indonesia. The largest and most popular stores are Bintang Supermarket (the same as the local beer) and Coco Supermarket. Both sell food and personal care items, as well as clothing and footwear. Bread will cost you around Rp13,000.

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