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If you’re dreaming of visiting Bali, Ubud is probably on your itinerary. In the heart of the island, this jungle paradise is an amazing place to visit and is personally one of my favourite spots in Bali!
You’ll want at least 3 days in Ubud to give you enough time to enjoy the main attractions and soak up the magic of this destination.
So, if you’re heading to Bali and want inspiration, here are some ideas for the perfect 3 days in Ubud. This Ubud itinerary can obviously be adjusted, but it covers all the best bits that you won’t want to miss!
Why visit Ubud
A picture-perfect haven, you’ll find lots of Bali’s cultural gems in Ubud, as well as some of the most beautiful scenery – think lush forests, rice paddies and gorgeous waterfalls.
There’s a tranquillity to Ubud away from the main tourist sites. And if you’re planning a honeymoon or a romantic break, Ubud is the place to be! You’ll find loads of luxe resorts with breathtaking natural views. It’s a blissful setting for a couples holiday.
The town is a lot busier now than when I first visited, but Ubud is still a wonderful place for grounding into nature and taking time out to appreciate another way of life.
Plus, it’s a fab wellness destination, so you can relax with plenty of spa treatments, too!
How to get to Ubud
Ubud is on the Indonesian island of Bali. It’s one of Bali’s biggest draws and is definitely a highlight – its jaw-dropping scenery and colourful culture have been attracting tourists for years.
Located in the Gianyar Regency, Ubud is easy to reach from Denpasar (where the airport is), as well as Canggu.
It takes 1-2 hours to get to Ubud from Ngurah Rai International Airport (DPS) and you can hire a private transfer or taxi to take you to your hotel.
Or, if you want to make your own way there, you can also rent a car or scooters – just be mindful that the roads in Bali aren’t always great and traffic can be crazy.
Bali might also be banning international visitors from hiring motorbikes in the future, so bear this in mind before you plan!
When to visit Ubud
Like the rest of Bali, there are two seasons in Ubud – the wet season and the dry season.
The best time to visit Bali is during the dry season, which runs from May to September. That said, I’ve been in March, and even though it was humid with heavy rain, it was still beautiful and we managed to do everything we planned.
3-Day Ubud Itinerary
Ubud Itinerary Day 1
There are a ton of things you can see and do in Ubud so you’ll want to maximise your stay. If you can, arrive the night before so you have the whole day today to explore and make the most of your 3 days in Ubud.
Trek the Campuhan Ridge Walk
Up first on your Ubud itinerary is the Campuhan Ridge Walk. Best enjoyed in the morning before the heat of the day, the picturesque Campuhan Ridge Walk is a lovely way to spend a few hours.
If you can, get there for sunrise for the very best experience.
The path is really central in the heart of the town – you can walk there easily from the main street. And, even though it’s so close to the centre, this walking route is serene and full of natural beauty.
It’s easy for everyone to enjoy and you don’t have to be an avid hiker for it. The most popular trail is 2km and you can take it at your own pace, taking in the scenery en route.
Enjoy a floating brunch
Perfect for couples, a floating breakfast or brunch is the epitome of goals so it’s definitely something you’ll want to do next!
Whether you’re celebrating your honeymoon or celebrating a holiday, this will be a memorable and idyllic way to spend your first morning in Ubud.
As an iconic Balinese experience, there are a few places that offer it in Ubud, including the beautiful Kamandula Resort and Padma Resort Ubud. Padma Resort is further from the centre but has options for floating afternoon tea if you want to go later in the day instead.
Visit Ubud Palace + Saraswati Temple
From brunch, it’s time to immerse yourself in local culture with stops at Ubud Palace and Saraswati Temple.
Found in the centre of the town (close to the Monkey Forest), these sites are next to each other so you’ll be able to visit one after the other.
You won’t need long for a visit, but they’re great places to learn more about Balinese culture and to take in the traditional art and architecture.
Ubud Palace (Puri Saren Agung) is home to the local royal family and Saraswati Temple (also known as the Ubud Water Palace) is a sacred place that’s dedicated to the Hindu goddess, Saraswati.
They’re both really pretty and have good spots for photos, too.
Explore the Sacred Monkey Forest Sanctuary
One of Ubud’s main attractions is the Monkey Forest, which is home to hundreds of Balinese long-tailed monkeys. There are three Hindu temples within the forest, too – the area is big, so you’ll want at least an hour or two to explore.
The forest is a lovely natural setting, but the monkeys are obviously the main reason people visit.
The monkeys roam free here and aren’t afraid of humans. They’re known to snatch phones, food and water bottles and they’ll climb on you if you get too close.
I realised I don’t like monkeys after this experience(!) so it was stressful for me.. BUT, so many people I know loved it and the setting is beautiful so it’s still worth considering for your Ubud itinerary!
Ubud Itinerary Day 2
Hike Mount Batur at sunrise
The 2nd day of your itinerary starts with an early start because trekking Mount Batur at sunrise is one of the best things to do in Ubud!
The hike starts at around 2am, so you’ll climb in the dark, but it’s worth it for the views and the glorious sunrise when you finish!
As an active volcano, 1,717 metres above sea level, you’ll be treated to an amazing experience when you get to the summit and take it all in. It really is one for the bucket list.
You can book a private tour or group hike for Mount Batur, which usually includes pickup and drop off, as well as a guide and breakfast. The hike takes around 2 hours to the top.
Visit Ubud Art Market
If you’ve hiked Mount Batur in the morning, you’ll probably be wanting a leisurely afternoon. Following a much-needed nap, the Ubud Art Market is a lovely place to spend some time later in the day.
This market is one of the most famous in Bali and is brimming with souvenirs, clothes and authentic handmade items. You’ll find loads of treasures here so it’s great for buying gifts to take home as well as unusual things that you won’t find elsewhere.
[Edit]: The Ubud Art Market is currently under reconstruction. The stalls have moved from their original home but you’ll still find vendors on nearby streets.
Treat yourself to a massage + yoga
Bali is one of the best destinations for a wellness break so you’ll want to make the most of the amazing spas and yoga studios in Ubud.
Perfect for a relaxing afternoon, make sure you treat yourself to a traditional Balinese massage and flower bath for a luxurious experience.
There are also some brilliant wellness centres like The Yoga Barn in Ubud where you can take part in yoga classes, meditation and energy healing rituals.
There’s a big spiritual community in Ubud so you’ll love it if you’re into personal development and holistic health.
Ubud Itinerary Day 3
Roam the Tegalalang Rice Terrace
The Tegalalang Rice Terrace is one of the most famous places in Bali and there’s a good reason for it. This is a seriously picturesque location.
Like many places in Bali, the Tegalalang Rice Terrace has become a tourist hotspot. So, to start your 3rd day in Ubud, you’ll want to head there early to avoid the worst of the crowds.
I went to Bali a few years ago (pre-pandemic), and I’m sure it’s got much busier since then, so you’ll want to go as early as you can.
Plus, if you go in the morning around sunrise, you’ll get dreamy soft lighting for all your photos.
Visit Pura Gunung Kawi + Tirta Empul Water Temple
From the rice fields, the next stop on your Ubud itinerary is Pura Gunung Kawi, followed by Tirta Empul Water Temple.
These two sacred sites are about 20 minutes from the Tegalalang Rice Terrace and relatively close to each other so they’re good to combine.
Pura Gunung Kawi is one of Bali’s oldest monuments. Set amidst jungle at the bottom of a river valley, this is a fascinating temple complex with ten shrines dedicated to members of the ancient Balinese royal family.
Each tomb is carved into the cliff, making it a really mystical setting.
After Pura Gunung Kawi, head to Tirta Empul Temple. This is a famous site that’s visited by tourists and locals alike.
The temple’s main attraction is the Jaba Tengah area where you’ll find two sacred pools that are used for purification rituals.
You’ll need about an hour to look around the whole complex, or longer if you want to bathe in the waters.
Chase Bali’s waterfalls
You’ll know by now that one of the best things about Bali is its spectacular natural scenery. So, the final part of your 3 days in Ubud is all about chasing the best waterfalls!
Some of the waterfalls you’ll want to consider near Ubud are Tegenungan, Tukad Cepung and Tibumana.
Tegenungan waterfall is about 30 mins from Ubud and is one of the busiest – unfortunately, like a lot of Bali, you won’t have the place to yourself.
You have to hike down to the waterfall (it takes about 15 minutes) and you can then swim in the pool, surrounded by jungle. It’s a pretty spot, even though it gets crowded.
Another waterfall to consider is Tukad Cepung. This one is completely different. It’s hidden inside a cave so expect a small trek to get there. You’ve probably seen the pictures on Instagram – it’s a magical setting with the sun streaming in.
Morning is supposed to be the best time to see the sun’s rays through the canyon, so you might want to shift your day around if that’s a priority for you.
Lastly, Tibumana is a picturesque waterfall that’s (currently) less touristy than the other two. It’s a paradise setting with a gorgeous backdrop for photos and a lovely spot for a swim.
Where to eat in Ubud
Bali isn’t just a great place for nature and culture, foodies will be in heaven here, too. As a destination that’s focused on a slower pace of life, downtime at the many amazing restaurants and cafes is a big highlight of a visit.
Make sure you try local dishes like Nasi Goreng and Gado Gado if you’ve never visited before. And, if you’re a vegan, you’ll love Bali’s food scene.
Where to stay for 3 days in Ubud
There are lots of accommodation options in Ubud covering different price points, but it’s the luxury hotels that often have the dreamiest and most iconic views.
As such a beautiful destination, these are well worth it if you’re wanting a more intimate and peaceful setting!
Como Shambhala Estate
Como Shambhala Estate is one of Bali’s leading luxury spa retreats. 20 minutes from Ubud centre, this hotel is a blissful back-to-nature spot.
As a top hotel for a couples holiday or honeymoon, you have a lovely choice of rooms, suites and villas, each with idyllic jungle views. Plus, there’s a big focus on wellness, so it’s perfect for getting some zen.
The Purist Villas & Spa
With a dreamy collection of suites and villas, The Purist Villas is perfect if you’re after an intimate stay in the heart of Ubud. Despite its close proximity to the centre, this hotel is a tropical oasis so you’ll still find plenty of tranquillity.
You also have a choice of rooms including contemporary jungle villas that boast private pools overlooking the hotel’s gardens.
If you’re looking for a sanctuary, you’ll want to check out Fivelements – it’s a gorgeous eco-retreat focused on authentic Balinese healing and wellness.
Like most hotels in Ubud, you’ll be able to indulge in amazing spa treatments, plus you can enjoy morning yoga classes and healthy plant-based foods.
Udaya Resorts and Spa
As with other luxe resorts in Ubud, Udaya Resorts and Spa delivers a lush tropical setting that’s made for a peaceful escape.
This is an award-winning resort with romantic suites and villas, a dreamy spa and impeccable service. The architecture and decor is heavenly too with traditional bamboo and rattan detailing.
Plus, it’s really close to the centre of Ubud.
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Ubud is an enchanting destination. It’s a part of the world that has so much beauty as well as so many brilliant things to see and do.
Whether you’re having a honeymoon to Bali or a couples getaway, I hope this itinerary has helped you plan your dream 3 days in Ubud!