With its vibrant arts scene and wellness vibe, the cultural village of Ubud is a favourite destination for travellers looking to experience the very best of Bali. Blessed with a natural landscape that encompasses flowing rivers, verdant rice terraces and forest greenery, Ubud lends itself to tropical relaxation.
Ubud has many sites of interest that provide a fascinating insight into Bali’s Hindu religion and traditional way of life. The Ubud Royal Palace is a fine example of local architecture where classic dance and music is performed several evenings a week in an outer courtyard. Right across the road is the Ubud Market, a sprawling complex of colourful stalls selling handicrafts, souvenirs, fresh produce and religious paraphernalia.
The nearby Ubud Monkey Forest is a sacred sanctuary and nature reserve that is home to a clan of over 600 long-tailed macaques. A dense canopy of mature trees protects a network of mossy pathways leading to several onsite temples that are of great spiritual significance to the local Balinese community. Some parts of the forest are not open to the public and visitors are advised to wear appropriate praying attire when entering the temple compounds.
Ubud’s famous Bankiang Sidem Trek takes in the rural beauty of Bali. It follows a ridge pathway that runs alongside rice fields and picturesque jungle scenery. Similarly, a series of trails and bridges at Tegallalang give visitors the chance to see rice terraces up close and personal at a site where farmers have worked the land for generations. Despite modernization, the agricultural community here still implement traditional cultivation methods and a shared irrigation system.