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Why is Ubud The Heart And Soul of Bali


The place that pumps life in the island of Gods with its undefined beauty, Ubud is carefully crafted by God. The green terraces of paddy surrounded by the mountain ranges, the white sand glittering under blue skies exudes beauty like no other place. The culture and history blending together, the vibrant nightlife, beautiful sceneries of sunset and sunrise and a sense of tranquillity that gives the peace of mind.

No wonder why Elizabeth, the protagonist of Eat, Pray, Love played by Julia Roberts spent a fair amount of time exploring the aesthetically rich streets and lanes of Ubud. From ace art galleries to the luxurious yoga retreats, Ubud has everything that satiates the soul. From good shopping markets to historical museums to the rich flora and fauna, it has everything that charms the heart. Ubud can easily be called the heart and soul of Bali. Here are some of the tempting reasons to visit Ubud, the cultural heart of Bali.

1. The UNESCO’s Rice Fields

Why is Ubud The Heart And Soul of Bali-1 The green rice terrace of Ubud truly defines the beauty of this place. You can take a walk amidst the marvellous vistas of the paddy fields or pick up a bike for a refreshing ride. Ubud’s rice fields are also listed in the UNESCO’s world heritage sites and reflect the core culture of Balinese people.

The Tegallalang rice terraces are amongst the most famous paddy fields of Ubud. They are popular not only for their fresh lush green gardens of the crop but their irrigation system is what sets them apart and takes it to the list of UNESCO world heritage site. You can take a day tour around the terrace gardens surrounded by the hills of Bali mountain ranges and marvel the beautiful sunset. The cafe Ubud rice field Walk is such a pleasant experience. Sauntering along the rice fields with intermittent cafes and warungs gives feels that one must definitely experience.

The Ubud rice fields gain much of its popularity after the movie "Eat, Pray, Love" was released. Julia Roberts explores the scenic views of Ubud on her scooter and this is the place she falls in love with.

There are several cafes and eating joints around the gardens for you to enjoy a good Indonesian meal. You must definitely stop at the Sari Organik, an open-air restaurant surrounded by the rice fields serving vegan and all-organic Balinese dishes. It is an exotic experience to have lunch in the middle of a rice field, give it a shot!

2. Take a Tour

Why is Ubud The Heart And Soul of Bali-2 Brimming with the natural beauty and marvellous vistas, Ubud offers a lot of places to its visitors to captivate everyone with its beauty. You have plenty of reasons to visit Ubud. Once you have gone through the rice fields, wait, there is more. You can take a tour to the cultivation land of the most expensive coffee of the world. Yes, you can see how the famous Kopi Luwak is cultivated.

After that, there is the monkey forest where you can befriend the mischievous but equally friendly animals of the island. The monkey forest of Ubud lies in the Padangetal village. The residents of the village view it as the spiritual, economic, educational and conservation centre of the village. In the monkey forest you can find as good as 186 species of trees. The natural reserve which is also a Hindu temple complex is one of the popular touristic sites of Ubud. You can see the blend of nature, culture and religious value all at one place.

Here are the things you should know about the Balinese coffee and its cultivation.

3. The Unrevealed Beauties

Why is Ubud The Heart And Soul of Bali-3 Ubud will surprise you with its natural beauty that is hidden in every nook and corner of the region. Escape in the dense and green woods of Tegenungan forest filled with a number of trees and reptiles and birds. To hear them chirping will put your soul to peace. While strolling in the jungle, it is no surprise to end up in a complete unexplored place with a hidden waterfall or something. Tegenungan waterfall has a number of water cascades in its premise which you can explore while trekking.

Campuhan Ridge Walk situated in the central Ubud, is a popular nature trek which makes for a perfect escape. When it comes to the natural beauty of Ubud, Tegenugan waterfall comes as a prime. This is a spot every nature lover is going to relish. The north of Ubud abounds is lush greens. For detox head to The yoga barn where you can meditate amidst the pristine and lush green environment.

4. The History and Architecture Unfolds Here

Why is Ubud The Heart And Soul of Bali-4 The home to a number of Hindu temples which are not only a sacred place but truly an architectural wonder to behold. The famous Goa Gajah or the elephant caves which can be dated back to 9th century are the historical treasure for the island. It is one of the holiest Hindu sites in Bali and the intriguing details carved on the rock are something to praise.

You can also visit the famous Pura Taman Saraswati temple in Ubud which is located in the middle of an artificial lake with lotus blooming all over. Lotuses are the main attraction of the temple as is the authentic architecture of the temple. You can also enjoy the Balinese Barong oRangda dance performance which takes place in the temple complex to show the glimpse of the Bali’s culture. Tirta Empul is the largest water temple in Indonesia and tourists from all around the world come here for spiritual cleansing.

In fact, you can also visit the Agung Rai Museum of Art and take time to cherish the Balinese arts. The museum works towards the preservation of the Balinese arts, culture and its connection with the community. Moreover, the Gungung Kawi temple is Bali's largest ancient temple complexes which you must certainly visit.

Along with the traditional Balinese painting style, the Kamasan art, the Rai museum of art also holds a varied collection of modern art which depicts traditional and abstract scenes. There's the Neka Art Museum which displays a sweeping collection of paintings and sculptures across six Balinese styled garden compound buildings.

To celebrate the Balinese culture you can check out these famous festivals in Bali.

5. The Great Shopping Experience

Why is Ubud The Heart And Soul of Bali-5 Ubud is well known among the tourists for shopping. This is the right place to take away souvenirs for all your friends and family. The street markets are vibrant and are filled with different kinds of shops and stores that will give you everything you are looking for. The handmade artifacts and handicrafts are the main attraction of the market. The nearby Celuk village is famous for its goldsmiths and silversmiths where you can find local people carving beautiful antique silver jewellery. You can also find intricate designs and varying patterns of gold and silver jewellery in the market.

Running right through the center of Ubud, the Jalan Raya street is considered to be the main shopping street. It is also known as Bali's artistic and cultural heartland. There is no shortage of choice when it comes to shopping here, from fashion boutiques to traditional heritage textile, from paintings to handicrafts and from souvenirs to vibrant sarongs, you are going to find everything here. Ubud art market and Sukawati art market are the most popular art markets of Ubud.

6. Spot the Birds and Reptiles

Why is Ubud The Heart And Soul of Bali-6 Ubud with its rich flora is home to a variety of species or birds and reptiles. Such diversity of flora and fauna is something you can hardly spot anywhere else but in the dense woods of Ubud. For the birds and reptile show, the best place in Ubud is the Bali Bird and Reptile Park, located in the village of Batubulan, Gianyar Regency. This tropical garden spread over an area of 2 hectares offers the sight of over one thousand exotic species of birds and reptiles. You can take a tour around the well-manicured and well-maintained gardens of the park whilst you adore the exquisite wildlife of Ubud. You can pay a brief visit to the sacred monkey forest where you can see 186 species of trees spread 12.5 hectares of land.

A blend of fertile volcanic soil, regular rainfall and warm weather of Ubud makes it a perfect environment for the flora to flourish. If you go outside the town centre, you'll be amazed by the dragonflies, butterflies and fireflies by night!

7. Experience the Nightlife

Why is Ubud The Heart And Soul of Bali-7 The history, the nature, the shopping but once the dusk unfolds only thing that represents a place is its nightlife. Ubud lacks nowhere here when it comes to lively lifestyle. Be it a beach shack, a moonlit or a clubbing experience at the bars in Ubud, it has all. Not just that Ubud is also famous for its night market and the night food market famous for its handicrafts and delicious food that they serve throughout the night. Talking about nightclubs, Ubud is a home to few of the most prominent bars and clubs of Bali, some of them overlooking the beach and the infinite sea. Laughing Buddha Bar, Bar Luna, Shisha Lounge, CP Lounge famous for their clubbing experience.

Ubud Royal Palace is where you can experience the cultural performances, gamelan and orchestra and dancers. To watch the youngsters tune to the rhythm of traditional Balinese songs is a treat to the eyes. Make sure you don't get late for the traditional and elaborate Balinese dance.

Laka lake garden restaurant is a beachside restaurant and bar famous for its ambiance. You can also visit the Ubud Royal Palace if you are looking for something above the clubbing, at the palace you can enjoy the traditional dance performances by the trained artists of Bali.

**8. Luxurious Hotels and Resorts In Ubud**

Why is Ubud The Heart And Soul of Bali-8 The choicest hotels and resorts are those which are most relaxing and the hotels in Ubud certainly count among them. Most of the hotels in Ubud will provide views of the flowing green valleys, the scenic mountains and the stunning rice fields. Maya Ubud, the Kayon resort, Manyi resort and Komakena are some of the excellent hotels and resorts in Ubud. Then Four season Resort Bali is an elegant tropical resort which offers scenic views of the rice fields. In the far distance from the rice fields and the Ayung river this resort is no lass than a haven for tropic lovers. There is no shortage of resorts and hotels when it comes to luxurious stays in Ubud because the place abounds in exotic resorts.

For all the coffee lovers a stopover at Seniman Coffee Studio to relish some of the great brews is a must. Since the cafe constantly experiments with their food as well as their coffee brews, you can always expect a novel taste to your coffee. Some of the best luxury hotels in Ubud are Viceroy Bali, Komaneka at Bisma Ubud, Mandapa, Four Seasons Resort, St Regis Bali Resort and the list is endless.

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