Before visiting Ubud, I continued to hear about the amazing yoga and vegan inspired town in Central Bali. While I pretended to be stoked, I was honestly a little nervous. To be blunt, I hate yoga and am the farthest thing from a vegan. If you’re a yogi and a die-hard vegan, more power to you, but that’s just not me. Needless to say, I was questioning my decision to visit a town that is basically known for these two things. However, Ubud ended up being, hands down, my favorite place I visited in Bali. While the yoga lifestyle is definitely a prevalent part of the culture in Ubud, I didn’t feel as if I was missing out on anything by not participating in a single yoga class or eating at any vegan café’s. Here is what to do in Ubud, Bali Indonesia that has nothing to do with the downward dog or veggie burgers:
1. Monkey Forest
If you’ve ever wanted to feed, touch, or hang out with a monkey, this is the place to go. There are hundreds of wild monkeys just roaming all over the forest. Before you know it, there might even be one sitting (or peeing) on your head! Monkeys are incredibly interesting creatures and I think I could stay in this forest for hours just observing them.
Pro Tip #1: The big monkeys are very protective over the babies, so don’t get too close!
Found that one out the hard way
2. Hike Mount Batur
This hike requires a 2 am wake-up call in order to make it to the peak by sunrise, but is absolutely worth it. The company will pick you up from your hotel at 2 am, drive you the two hours to the start of the hike, feed you breakfast, and lead you up the steep hill that is actually an active volcano. This hike definitely gave my previous favorite hike in Malaysia a run for its money. I think I’d have to say I have a new favorite!
Pro Tip #2: Bring a jacket or else you’ll have to rent one of these cool, blue fleece ones bc freezing at the peak
3. Water Temples/Cleansing
This was one of the coolest things I did while in Ubud. When you arrive to the water cleansing area, I would definitely suggest talking to a local guide before engaging in the cleansing. The local guide will explain what each station is and what it all means, which is great, because otherwise you’re just rinsing in water in public. I would also recommend going early in order to beat the crowds of tourists that gather at this place.
Meditating before our water cleansing (except I accidentally went before which is why I’m soaking wet lol)
4. Tegalalang Rice Fields
I don’t know if I’ve ever seen a greener place in my life. The rice fields are huge and you are able to explore all of them for just a small donation. This can be done in 30 minutes or 3 hours, depending on how much time you want to spend walking through the fields. We were there for about an hour and I think it was the perfect amount of time to see what we wanted to see.
5. Coffee Tasting
There are coffee tasting places all over Ubud that allow you to try the many different coffees for free. Ubud is known for their luwak coffee that is actually made from an animal’s poop! While it is free to try every other coffee, you are required to pay about 67,000 Rupiah (about $6) to try the luwak coffee. Once you see how much time and effort goes into making this coffee, you won’t mind spending the few dollars to give it a try. We’re all aware about my love for coffee so this place was essentially my own personal heaven
Like I said, HEAVEN
This is the animals poop!
Which is then peeled
And finally, grinded down by hand!
6. Tegenungan Waterfall
Nothing I love more than a good waterfall. While you are usually allowed to swim in the waterfall, unfortunately it was closed for swimming when we were there. Since we couldn’t swim we only spent a small amount of time here, but it is definitely worth checking out!
It just rained, which is why it’s brown haha
Also while in Ubud:
Got peed on by a monkey, fell into a rice paddie (which is actually much muddier and deeper than one might think), broke another pair of sandals, tried an espresso martini for the first time (best thing ever), and celebrated my friend’s birthday with one too many espresso martinis’.
If you’re not a yogi or a vegan, don’t let that deter you from visiting Ubud. There is so much to do and I still have so much left to explore on my next visit to Ubud. It is an absolutely stunning part of Bali that should not be missed on your trip to Indonesia.
What to do in Ubud, Bali Indonesia? This was my trip in a nutshell! Do you have anything to add?! Let me know in the comments below!