We spent three days of our trip to Bali up in Ubud. It is a pretty standard area for tourists, but is based in-land, with no beaches close by. While our hotel was really lovely, and the city itself is vibrant with plenty of places to wander and eat, we decided for one of the days that we would take a road trip around the area.
Taxis are so cheap, and you can hire a driver for the day, to take you to anywhere that you see fit. There are places set up for all of the drivers to rest in the shade while they wait for you at the attraction or site, so it is a pretty done thing over there!
There are places like Bali Zoo and a Bird Park in Ubud, but we wanted to do something a little more unique and things that would really help us to see the island more, and experience more of the culture and what it had to offer. This was pretty much our spiel to the driver, and these are the places that he took us to.
When we were planning out trip to Bali, I was looking up travel insurance to cover volcanic ash, as they do go off every now and again on the island. I did find a good deal, but luckily we didn’t have to use it. However, we did want to see one of the volcanoes on the island. Mount Batur is an active volcano located at the centre of two areas, with a large lake in-between.
Of course, we didn’t get right up close to it, though you can faintly see some villages that are close by. Our driver warned us off going to those villages, as they don’t like tourists very much and tend to rip you off. So we just admired from afar. The first time I have ever seen a volcano in the flesh…
Tegalalang Rice Terrace
I don’t think you can head to Bali without wanting to see one of the many rice terraces. There are some all over the island, but Tegalalang rice terrace is one of the largest and most famous. I mean, just look at the images, they are just iconic of all things Bali I think.
You do need to be prepared for a little walk down to the base (you can see Chloe’s grumpy face about having to walk below). But the views are amazing, and they are so pretty. They can be pretty busy, but it was so large that we barely noticed anyone else. This terrace is free to visit, though there are things like swings that you can pay to go on, that swing over the rice field.
Tirta Empul Temple
If you want to experience some of the Hindu culture that is so evident all over the island, then a visit to Tirta Empul Temple is a must. It is a Hindu Balinese water temple located near the town of Tampaksiring.
These are the Balinese blessings and offerings that you will see all over the island… outside homes, outside shops, and outside temples.
The temple is one of the largest temples that we went to, and it has something really unique, as it has water pools that are believed to be a source of sacred healing waters. Locals and tourists alike get in the water to be healed from whatever ails them. It was honestly an amazing thing to witness – so many people but such a sacred and silent moment.
If you are heading to Ubud, then I think hiring a driver is a good way to go. Being more in-land it means that there aren’t beaches to head to. So going on excursions and experiencing the sites is a must. As you can see, there are a real range of things for all of the family.