The mountainous area of Ubud is approximately 3 hours drive away from the tourist heartland of Kuta. As such, there are plenty of peace and quiet to be had, and this cultural heartland has quickly became the side of Bali that people rarely know of. During the day, the tourists will flock to the temples and art market, but they will usually do a short day-trip to the area. If you are looking to experience the best of Ubud, pencil in 2 to 3 days here instead, and enjoy all the relaxation and charm of Ubud.
Babi Guling Ibu Oka
To start with, Ubud is home to several uniquely Balinese cuisine, some of which are famed throughout the island and will often be a talking point with other fellow tourists. The Babi Guling (Crispy Suckling Pig) at Ibu Oka is one such cuisine, and you will see plenty of tourists and locals coming from all over the island to enjoy this treat. The restaurant itself is just a simple hut, located in the heart of Ubud next to the market area and the main temple. The dish itself is cheap and straight-forward, with options of various parts of the pig for you to choose from. The skin is crispy and tasty, while the meat succulent and flavorful. If you are not a lover of chili, then be sure to share that preference when ordering. This is the perfect place for lunch, and will cost you approximately USD8.
Ubud Art Market
Right next to Babi Guling Ibu Oka is Ubud’s art market. Here you can find various handcrafted items from all over the island, a great place to hunt for unique bargains and souvenirs. The layout of the market can be confusing and head-spinning, and the area itself is huge, although there are various shops selling similar things. You can easily spend hours here scouring for bargains, but there are plenty other things to do in Ubud, so try to limit yourself to an hour or so and just USD10.
The area of Ubud is home to various day-spas offering relaxing massage treatments and a variety of pampering services. Some include manicure and pedicure, while some others are more limited in options. Look around the area and ask for a good deal, and enjoy an hour or two of fuss-free relaxation as you leave your body to the expert hands of the masseuse. Choose wisely and don’t hesitate to ask questions at the service counter before deciding, or perhaps even asking for a tour of the facilities. A session of 90 minutes will cost you approximately USD17.
Dirty Duck Diner
For dinner, head to the iconic Dirty Duck Diner which is located next to rows upon rows of paddy fields. This restaurant cum cafe is a popular place for both local and foreign tourists to enjoy a relaxing dinner. The popular dish here is the Nasi Campur Bebek (Duck Mixed Rice), which features a mixture of satay, crispy duck meat, and various vegetables on top of flavored rice. A meal here will cost you approximately USD15.