Introducing Ubud

Ubud has everything for anyone with wanderlust. A spiritual and cultural hub, it gives a taste of traditional Balinese life to modern-day travellers. Here you can watch craftspeople at work, shop for one-off souvenirs in the markets and eat a dazzling array of food. Best of all, the rivers, mountains and brochure-worthy scenery that circle Ubud puts an escape to the jungle within easy reach.   

Things to do

The epicentre of Bali’s arts and cultural movement, Ubud is brimming with museums. But they’re more than simply collections. The unmissable Agung Rai Museum of Art aims to preserve Indonesian creativity through the ages – from sculpture to gamelan music. Neka Art Museum is full of Bali-inspired works. And the art displayed in Museum Puri Lukisan is just one side of the story, with beautiful grounds to wander around too.

To explore the tropics without really leaving Ubud town, enter Mandala Wisata Wanara Wana – or Sacred Monkey Forest Sanctuary. Keep your wits about you while you explore, as the macaques living in this eco reserve are wily creatures. As well as the monkeys, temples hide among the 100+ species of tropical trees. Look for the Pule Bandak tree that’s used to create holy masks for strict use within the temples only.

One day you can be tucking into exotic dishes from a street food stall. The next you could be pulling up a chair at a gastronomic restaurant in a luxury hotel. That’s the beauty of the Ubud food scene. Roast suckling pig features heavily here, so be sure to add it to your culinary hit list.

Top Tip from SLH

Indonesia is a major player in coffee production, so take time out from sipping cocktails to sample its single-origin bean blends.