Looking for the best 3-Day Ubud Itinerary…? Well, look no further, because I’m here to help! No trip to Bali would be complete without spending a few days exploring the beautiful, relaxing, and spiritually transformational area of Ubud, and I’ll tell you everything I know about the best places to stay, things to do, and various insider travel tips!
While I would argue that most people flock to Bali for its famously stunning beaches, unbeatable sunsets, and excellent surfing condiditions – Ubud offers a completely different experience! It’s the “Spiritual Capital” of Bali, and the entire Ubud area has a much different vibe than the rest of Bali. Known for its top-rated lush rice terraces, jungle luxury resorts, yoga studios, meditation retreats, spiritual healers, and dozens of phenomenal cafes – it’s certainly a unique destination in the world, and I honestly think everyone will easily fall in love with Ubud!
It may be one of the cheaper areas for budget travelers and backpackers in Bali, but is also is home to some of the most luxuriously expensive resorts with unbelievable infinity pools!
I also just finished my massive new article titled, “The ULTIMATE BALI Itinerary | How to Plan the Perfect Bali Vacation“, so definitely check that out as well! I spent days writing it, and it’s one of the most comprehensive guides and itineraries to to the “Island of the Gods”
So without further ado…here’s what I would do if I had three days in Ubud!
Where To Stay in Ubud For Three Days
First things first, you’re going to need to book somewhere to stay! I’ve stayed at a wide variety of accommodations in Ubud now, and here are my top recommendations!
Airbnb Ubud – Ubud is honestly one of the favorite places to use Airbnb!! There are so many incredible, cheap, and beautiful villas to rent in the Ubud area. From waking up in a treehouse in rice terraces, to renting an entire villa with a private pool, Airbnb has tons of beautiful properties available with excellent reviews. While availability might be difficult for the more popular Airbnb’s, it’s definitely worth a shot!
- Peaceful Satya Villa Hideaway Near Center of Ubud
- Romantic Villa with a Pool in a Famous Artist’s Town
- Magical Treehouse with Jungle Pool above the Rice Fields
If you’re not a fan of using Airbnb
- Royal Villa Jepun: (HOTEL) Quality and comfort at an unbeatable price! It’s well located, has an amazing pool, and is super luxurious for the price! Read some of the reviews, and I’m sure you’ll be booking a few nights here! The staff are also incredibly friendly, and will go above and beyond to make sure you have the best time in Ubud!
- Wayan’s Family Hostel Ubud: (HOSTEL) This family-run hostel & guesthouse is widely reviewed as one of the best hostel in Ubud. Great value for money, swimming pool, and comfortable rooms – perfect for backpackers in Ubud!
Bebek Tepi Sawah Restaurant and Villas: (LUXURY) Rooms vary in prices, but they range from around $100-$190 U.S.D per night depending on which villa you choose. They’ve got free wi-fi, breakfast included, a restaurant, pool, hot tub, spa, and so much more! You’ll love it!
Getting Around Ubud | Travel Tips
The most common and easiest way to explore Ubud is going to be on two wheels! Now, if you’ve never rented a scooter before, I wouldn’t really recommend learning to drive one here in Ubud. The city center can get extremely busy at times with intense traffic, so it’s best to only drive a scooter if you’re skilled, comfortable, and confident!
Now if you’re a smart and responsible driver, you shouldn’t have any issues at all though, and riding around Ubud can be an adventure all on its own! The roads are pretty well maintained, and there’s something so magical about zipping by beautiful rice terraces, gorgeous temples, and lush jungle streets! I love driving around Ubud on my scooter, and it’s actually one of the things I miss most about Bali!!
Now if don’t want to rent a scooter, the next best thing is going to be the Go-Jek Rideshare App! It’s basically like the Indonesia version of Uber, and you can request rides (and even sit on the back of scooters) for dirt cheap. This is going to be the best for your more relaxing days, where you only visit a few places.
Finally, another great way to explore Ubud is Hire a Car with Private Driver for 10 Hours!! It’s super cost-efficient, and you get a local driver who will drive you all around Ubud, the rice terraces, temples, and anywhere else you want! It really is an epic deal, especially if you’re traveling with a partner or group of friends!
Ubud Itinerary Day 1: Rice Terraces & Monkey Fun
Let’s start off your Ubud itinerary bright and early and head down to the famous Tegalalang Rice Terraces! Bonus points if you gather the strength to wake up for sunrise! The way the morning light shines through the palm trees is so peaceful and picture perfect!
Located just about a 20-25 minute drive north from the city center of Ubud, the Tegalalang Rice Terraces are truly magnificent, and you can easily spend several hours walking around the sprawling valley, getting lost in the beautiful green scenery.
Enjoy a cup of delicious Balinese coffee and smoothie bowl at one of the cafes perched at the top of the hill, and be sure to do some souvenir shopping along the main road as well!
Once you’ve properly explored, photographed, and marveled at the Rice Terraces for a few hours, it’s time to make your way over to the Ubud Sacred Monkey Forest!
“The Ubud Monkey Forest lies within the village of Padangtegal, which owns it. The village’s residents view the Monkey Forest as an important spiritual, economic, educational, and conservation center for the village. There are many points of interest that you can see here. Other than around 700 monkeys, you also can see 186 species of trees in 12.5 hectares of forest, where will allowing you to get abundant of fresh air.” – Ubud Monkey Forest
The entrance fee is a bargain at only 80,000 IDR (6 U.S.D), and I personally think it’s worth every single penny!
Now I’ve experienced some pretty awful monkeys in South-East Asia before, but the monkeys at the Sacred Monkey Forest were all extremely well behaved. I loved how they interacted with the guests, would let you get close to take pictures, and won’t harass you. You can also purchase some bananas to feed them, and get some fun photos of them on your shoulder!
Fair warning though: monkeys are infamous for being quite mean as well! Do your best not to bother them in any way, and avoid eye contact, and don’t smile at them. I’d also be very cautious with any valuables you have on you. Monkeys have a tendency to grab items and run away! I’ve seen people have their wallets taken from a monkey!
Finish your evening with a sweaty yoga session, relaxing massage, or simply knock back a few Bintang’s at one of Ubud’s Nightlife hotspots! My main advice would be to tire yourself out through the day though, because the next item on the itinerary has an extremely early wake-up time (but it’s 100% worth it)
Ubud Itinerary Day 2: Sunrise Hikes & Ubud Cooking Class
Now I fully understand that no one likes waking up between 2 & 3 A.M, especially if that’s for an intense hike…but there’s a reason why this adventure has become of Bali’s most famous tourist attractions! And out of all the places to do it while you’re in Bali, I’d recommend booking a tour while you’re in Ubud (it’s just a bit closer and will make for a tad bit easier of a morning).
There are tons of different options for Mt. Batur sunrise tours, but here are three solid options with amazing reviews to check out!
“Hike your way up and stand atop the ancient Mount Batur volcano on a day trip from Bali. Watch the sun come up over the sea and feel the adrenaline kick in as you look down on the expanse of the volcanic valley.”
- Mount Batur Sunrise Trek with Breakfast
- Mount Batur Sunrise Trek with Hidden Waterfall
- Mount Batur Sunrise Trek & Hot Springs
It’ll be an experience you’ll never forget, and your Instagram feed will be looking mighty fine as well! The pictures you’ll get at sunrise will be nothing short of breathtaking! I’d recommend doing the mid-tier option, so you can actually walk around the crater! It’s less crowded for the sunrise, and you’ll get much better photos. You’ll be able to see Mt. Rinjani in the distance on the neighboring island of Lombok, as well as my favorite island in the world, Gili Trawangan.
Check out this awesome Youtube video for a look at what this activity includes, and for that little dose of inspiration, which you’ll definitely need for such an early 2 am wake up time!
When you’ll arrive back into Ubud, take an hour or two to shower, relax, and perhaps get a foot massage to get you ready for your next activity – a Balinese Cooking Class! Now, this activity might not excite everyone, but it really is such a fantastic experience, and the local food in Bali is unbelievably delicious! It’s a fantastic learning experience, and you’re guaranteed to get a tasty meal at the end!
Now there are several great cooking classes online, and here are a few top picks!
- Balinese Cooking Class for Dinner in Ubud: Dinner Class from 14:30-19:30. “Discover the unique spices and exotic flavors of Balinese cuisine with a 5-hour cooking class in a traditional home kitchen. Get hands-on as you shop for ingredients at the local market, immerse yourself in Balinese culture in Kelabang Moding Village, and whip up a delicious lunch or dinner under the guidance of an expert chef.”
- Flavours of Bali Local Cooking Class: Afternoon Class from 15:30-21:00. “If you have a keen interest in Balinese cuisine, then this cooking class in Ubud is for you! Learn to prepare authentic dishes from a certified cook in a traditional open kitchen. You’ll get hands-on practice in a 6-hour session, starting in the morning (with a market tour) or afternoon. Numbers are limited to a maximum of 12 for a small-group learning experience with personalized attention. Includes round-trip transport from Ubud hotels.”
- Ubud Balinese Cooking Class at an Organic Farm: “Discover the culinary secrets of Bali at an exclusive cooking class at an organic farm in the lush tropics surrounding Ubud. Visit a local market and experience everyday life, before preparing a regular or vegetarian meal with the help of a chef.”
When you’re done with your cooking class experience, why not head out into town to one of the many bars and nightlife venues for a couple of drinks. I’d recommend either the Melting Pot for some pool or head over to the Laughing Buddah Bar for some live music.
If you manage to do both of these activities in one day, I’m sure you’ll be mad tired though! It might be a good idea to do these on different days though, it really just depends on your travel style/ interests in them!
Ubud Itinerary Day 3: Temples & Ridge Walks
Now it’s your last day in Ubud, but you still have lots more exploring to do in the area!
Your first stop is going to be the most popular of many nearby attractions – Mount Kawi Temple. You’ll want to get there early as possible, as there are 300 steps to climb, and you really won’t want to do that in the Bali scorching humidity!
Once you arrive at the top, you could easily spend an hour or two wondering around the beautiful green area, and photograph the amazing sights.
Tirta Empul Temple
Your next stop isn’t too far away, and you’ll love a quick visit to Tirta Empul Temple. This is said have a holy spring and it’s common for many Balinese to make a pilgrimage here to bathe and worship underneath one of the 12 fountains.
“A very active temple built around a bubbling spring, Pura Tirta Empul is an interesting place to observe Hindu devotees purifying themselves by means of ritual bathing. It is especially recommended to visit on a full moon day, which has special significance in the local religion.”
After exploring a couple of Ubud’s main temples, hop on a moto and make the quick 15-20 minute drive down to the Tegenungan Waterfall! It’s a super scenic waterfall in a gorgeous lush jungle, there’s a nice shallow bathing area, and complete with a fun bar with a pool up at the top.
There is a small entrance fee and about a 15-minute walk down a relatively steep trail, but it’s a fantastic place to spend an afternoon and escape the heat
Campuhan Ridge Walk
Finally, your last activity for the day is a popular one amongst the locals and the expats in Ubud – the Campuhan Ridge Walk. For a detailed guide, information, and pictures — check out this useful guide from LiveLoveRaw about the Campuhan Ridge Walk. It’ll go over everything like how to find it (with pictures), fun tips, rest stops, and lots more!
It’s free, easy, and will be the perfect ending to your time in Ubud.
Best Food in Ubud
After a solid day of Ubud exploration, make sure you treat yourself to a meal at one of Ubud’s amazing trendy cafes! Ubud is another fantastic destination for food fanatics, and you could definitely spend 3+ days here just cheacking out as many places as possible, and still barely scratch the surface!
A few of my favorites you that MUST TRY while in Ubud are: ZEST, Sayuri Healing Food, Alchemy, KAFE, and Clear Cafe. Also, be sure to browse through this article titled, “The 50 Best Restaurants in Ubud” for more info, especially if you’re a foodie it’s a must read!
As well, if you’re looking for a quality Mexican restaurant, I really do love the food at Taco Casa! There are a few locations in Bali, but I’ve only ever eaten at the location in Ubud, and it was definitely one of the better Mexican meals I’ve eaten abroad. Being from Southern-California, I’m always looking for a quality burrito!
Ubud Travel Tips
- Rent a Moto: Riding around the roads in Ubud and the surrounding areas is extremely fun. You can rent motos for dirt cheap, and it’s by the best way to explore all the sights.
- Bargain: You’re in South-East Asia, and all the souvenirs and activities you book can be bargained down. Don’t be an ass-hole about it, but don’t get ripped off either!
- Hubud Events: Hubud is the local digital nomad / expat community in Ubud. Check their events calendar to see if anything interesting is coming up!
- Bring a Nice Camera: Ubud is absolutely beautiful. You’ll want to get some amazing photographs of everything you see!
- Insect Repellant: There are tons of mosquitos in Bali, and especially in Ubud. Protect yourself from those tiny bastards!
Am I Missing Anything from my Ubud Itinerary…?
While I know that only spending 3 Days in Ubud isn’t that long, I tried to fill with it lots of fun information! If you think I need to add anything else to this post, feel free to reach out to me, and I’ll sure to get it updated! I can’t wait to get back to Ubud myself, as it’s such a magical destination to visit!
Don’t Travel to Bali Without Travel Insurance!!
I never go abroad without travel insurance these days, because you really never know what’s going to happen. I’ve heard of some horror stories of people in Bali getting in crazy moto crashes, falling ill, or having things stolen! No matter what, make sure you’re covered. I always World Nomads Travel Insurance and have never had any issues with them. I’d highly recommend their budget-friendly plans.