Before setting off on our year away, we agreed we wanted to visit Bali and I knew I wanted to visit Ubud. Watching films like Eat, Pray, Love and reading various blogs I had this idea of Ubud being a yoga heaven where everyone was really chilled and the vibe was ‘cosmic’. I haven’t been anywhere like that before and really felt drawn to visiting Ubud. My concern, however, was that it might be a bit too ‘pretentious crusty hippies hugging trees’ for Andy. He was quite happy to come along to see what Ubud had to offer and we were both pleasantly surprised.
Ubud is a mixing pot of rice fields, busy roads, yoga schools, museums, fine dining restaurants, street food stalls, temples, bars, clothes shops and market stalls of souvenirs, amongst many others things. This eclectic mix was reflected in the tourists visiting Ubud who were from a range of ages and backgrounds, all visiting for various differing reasons. Finding something to do here really was not difficult.
Where we slept
After trawling online through extensive lists of accommodation available in Ubud, we came across Inang Villa located about a 15 minute drive outside of the town centre.
Inang Villa has 7 rooms of varying standards. There is an infinity pool with sun loungers and an eating area overlooking the surrounding rice fields and greenery. We were lucky enough to have a free room upgrade due to a late cancellation which meant we were in a deluxe room named Inang Lily. The room opens straight onto the pool and is extremely spacious with an armchair, mini bar fridge, tea/coffee making facilities and a large bathroom with bath (we haven’t seen a bath for about 2 months!).
Inang Villa offers breakfast, lunch, dinner and various snacks including complementary tea and banana fritters in the afternoon.
I have to say that the service at Inang Villa was just fantastic. The staff were great and we were also treated to a free 30 minute massage each. Check out Andy’s trip advisor review here
How we got around
Inang Villa provide an on demand, free of charge, shuttle service into town. At any point during the day, generally from 8am to 10pm, at your request, a staff member will drive you into town, in an air conditioned car, and drop you off at Ubud Palace, which is in the town centre. You are provided with a pre-charged mobile phone so that when you are ready to leave town, you call Inang Villa and within 20 minutes (traffic dependant) your chariot awaits, at the same point outside Ubud Palace.
Once in the town centre, we walked around to explore. Some people hire mopeds but the traffic is pretty hectic so we stuck to walking.
What we did
Rice fields walk – there are various rice fields in and around Ubud. About a 5 minute walk down the road from Inang Villa, there is a path that winds alongside rice fields leading into Ubud town centre, known as the Campuhan Ridge Walk, which took us 1.5 hours to reach town. The path is dotted with a few local craft shops, some accommodation and some restaurants.
Yoga – I attended a Yin & Meditation class held at The Yoga Barn . They have about 15 classes each day so there are plenty to choose from. The classes here can be pretty big as they have lots of space. The class was great as was the turmeric, ginger and pineapple juice I bought from their shop afterwards. There are so many yoga schools in Ubud that you are bound to find one that teaches the particular style you like. Many also offer introductory classes if you are a yoga virgin.
Cooking class – Whilst I was at the Yoga Barn, Andy spent the day (approx. 8am to 3pm) at Lobong Culinary Experience. The day started off with a guided tour of the local market learning about different ingredients. This was followed by cooking in the kitchen at the host family’s house whilst also learning about Balinese tradition and culture. Check out Andy’s Tripadvisor review for more information.
Where we ate
The list of restaurants, cheap eats and food stalls is extensive but here are a few places we visited:
Babi Guling Bu Oka – all they serve is suckling pig which is a favourite in the area
Warung Bintang Bali – a little out of the way from the town centre but totally worth it for the ribs and duck
Waroeng Bernadette – busy place in the middle of town with a great beef rendang
Would I recommend Ubud if you are visiting Bali? It’s a definite yes from me!