A Guide to Ubud

jana meerman ubud bali 4

Ubud is a bustling, lively city in the heart of Bali, the perfect place from which to base yourself for explorations to waterfalls, temples, rice fields and hikes in the region.


How to Get to Ubud

We arrived in Ubud from Canggu. The best way to travel from place to place with all your bags is to use the apps Grab or Go Jek. They operate very similarly to Uber and will connect you with an English-speaking driver and good quality vehicles to get you from place to place. We paid 123,000 IDR ($11.50 CAD) from Canggu to Ubud.

The closest international airport is in Denpasar.


How to Get Around Ubud

As we have big backpacks with us, we chose to take a Go Jek car from Canggu. However, once we arrived in Ubud and were able to leave our bags at our hostel, the easiest, cheapest and most convenient way by far of getting around is by scooter.

Our hostel offered daily rentals for 60,000 IDR ($5.60 CAD). You must have an international license in order to drive a scooter - you can get fined without one. The roads in Ubud are really well-paved and relatively easy to drive, however you should drive slowly and cautiously at all times.

Use the offline map app Maps.Me in order to be able to get from place to place. It works just like Google Maps but without needing an internet connection!

jana meerman bali scooters

Where to Stay Ubud

We spent a night at the Kayuni Hostel, a lovely small little place right in the centre of Ubud. We enjoyed comfy beds, big lockers, free wifi, free breakfast, coffee and tea and a balcony view over the streets of Ubud. Prices start at 50,000 IDR ($4.70 CAD) for a dorm bed.

We also spent two nights at WW Backpackers, which is a bit further out of the centre of town meaning it's quiet, has a big open common space looking onto the jungle, an outdoor shower (!), free breakfast and wifi and access to use the gorgeous pool at the Ani's Villas Resort across the road! Prices start at 100,000 IDR ($9.30 CAD) for a dorm bed.

At the end of our trip, we returned to Ubud for a night and stayed at Uma Kutuh Bungalow, just outside Ubud with large, comfy beds, great wifi, lovely decor, free breakfast and access to a pool. Prices start at 49,000 IDR ($4.60 CAD) for a dorm bed.

jana meerman kayuni hostel ubud bali

Kayuni Hostel

jana meerman ww backpackers ubud bali

WW Backpackers


Things to Do in Ubud

Streets and Markets

On our first day in Ubud, we decided just to get lost in the streets of Ubud. We wandered up and down various little market streets all crowded with locals trying to sell their wares. Surprisingly, I never felt overwhelmed by Ubud even though it's a bustling place. Enjoy the beautiful architecture, the bright colours and the delightful smells wafting out of local Warungs (restaurants).

jana meerman ubud bali 3
jana meerman ubud bali 1
jana meerman ubud bali 1
jana meerman ubud bali 1
jana meerman ubud bali 1

Ubud Palace

The Ubud Palace or Puri Saren Agung lies in the heart of Ubud, a beautiful open-spaced structure that was once the official residence of the royal family of Ubud. Spend some time wandering the gardens and spotting the intricate doors that fill the space.

jana meerman ubud bali 12
jana meerman ubud bali 12
jana meerman ubud bali 12
jana meerman ubud bali 12

Saraswati Temple

The Saraswati Temple is now home to a Starbucks Coffee, of all things, but behind it lies an architecturally stunning temple surrounded by a lily pond.

jana meerman ubud bali 13
jana meerman ubud bali 13
jana meerman ubud bali 13
jana meerman ubud bali 13
jana meerman ubud bali 13

Campuhan Ridge Walk

If you continue walking on the road of the palace and the temple out of town, you'll come across the Campuhan Ridge Walk, an easy 2km route that winds along the ridge of a lovely tree-filled valley.

jana meerman ubud bali 18
jana meerman ubud bali 18
jana meerman ubud bali 18
jana meerman ubud bali 18

Where to Eat in Ubud

We found the food in Ubud to be absolutely delightful. The streets are full of little restaurants (warungs) all bursting with delicious Balinese meals and some other foods of the world. I also love how many vegetarian and vegan options there are here; every restaurant has something!

jana meerman ubud bali 5

Tempe Manis + Bregedel Kentang + Gado Gado at Warung Biah Biah

jana meerman warung makan bu rus ubud bali

Tofu Tempe Curry + Gado Gado at Warung Makan Bu Rus

jana meerman ubud bali 5

Vegetarian Nasi Campur + Kare Tahu Tempe at Sun Sun Warung

jana meerman sweet orange warung ubud bali

Vegetable Curry + Gado Gado at Sweet Orange Warung


Day Trips and Places to Explore near Ubud

Ubud is the perfect place to base yourself for explorations around the region to waterfalls, temples, rice fields and hiking. I recommend renting a scooter and making your own itinerary!

jana meerman tegallalang rice terraces bali 11

Tegallalang Rice Terraces

jana meerman pura desa batuan temple bali 1

Pura Desa Batuan Temple

jana meerman tegangang waterfall bali 1

Tegangang Waterfall

jana meerman tirtu empul holy spring bali 1

Tirta Empul Temple

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Tekad Cepung Waterfall

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Goa Gajah Temple

jana meerman mount batur sunrise hike bali 3

Mount Batur Sunrise Hike

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