Ubud makes me feel something I can’t put into words. It is a place that I want to visit many more times in my life. It is a beautiful, soulful and yet cheerful, almost cheeky village, and the perfect location for an escape if you are spiritually or artistically inclined.
Ubud has a special place in my heart. My husband and I married in Ubud by the Ayung River. In fact we eloped, so we shared the day with no one but ourselves – and it was as idealic as it sounds. It was the most romantic, fun and relaxing wedding, in the most beautiful place imaginable. It was the most beautiful day of our lives.
Visiting Ubud again reminded me of the plans we had for our life together on our wedding day. They definitely didn’t include the long working hours, piles of bills and daily stresses that seem to have taken over my life over the past few years. Ubud reminded me that, while the daily concerns of raising kids, paying the mortgage and running a business do exist, maybe I’m just not focussing on the really important things. Maybe the exhaustion has fogged my vision. Maybe I can find serenity in my life if I stop trying so hard. Maybe we are living some of the dreams we had, but I’ve been too stressed to notice or be grateful.
1. Do not buy anything at the commercial arts and crafts centres that your driver is likely to take you to on the way to Ubud. You will find much better deals in Ubud and I promise you the shopping experience in Ubud is much more memorable. If you can, skip all the stops and go straight to Ubud- you can always visit them on the way back.
2. Stay in Ubud – it’s a lovely day trip, but you’ll leave wishing you could have stayed longer. Spend at least 1-2 nights in Ubud (or more! I could spend a week there and still want more time)
3. Ubud markets are the best in Bali. Give yourself a good couple of hours or more just to explore.
4. Gedong Sisi is a lovely, cheerful, lush cafe/restaurant directly opposite the markets. They have cocktail happy hour 5-7pm. A perfect way to finish a day of shopping.
5. Explore the lush little laneways, you will often find hidden gems – restaurants, galleries and beautiful little shops.
6. Don’t take food or drinks into the Monkey Forest – those cheeky little monkeys will jump on you and steal straight out of your hand. (I learnt the hard way)
7. If you are looking for a luxe but organic escape, the Royal Pita Maha Resort and
Royal Kirana Spa are located together in the Ubud hills and are both utterly amazing. Their Royal Healing Package includes daily yoga, organic meals and the most amazing spa treatments. The healing Villas are too good for words, but expect high end luxury.