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The Artistic Town of Ubud, Cultural Heart of Bali

Ubud is the centerpiece of Balinese culture and popular for its crafts

ampuhan Ridge way of artists, in Bali, Ubud. Beautiful calm sunny morning (c) Shutterstock
ampuhan Ridge way of artists, in Bali, Ubud. Beautiful calm sunny morning (c) Shutterstock

Ubud is located on a mountainous area of central Bali, less than an hour drive away from Denpasar, the capital of the island. Ubud is often called as the cultural center of Bali as the artistic industry flourish in this area. Not just now, but since bygone era.

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Monkey at Sacred Monkey Forest, Ubud, Bali, Indonesia (c) Shutterstock
Monkey at Sacred Monkey Forest, Ubud, Bali, Indonesia (c) Shutterstock

You can expect to find the pinnacle of Balinese crafts here. You can also see the wonderful mountainous landscape, the terraced paddy field, the sacred monkey forest, wonderful museum and many more. Here are some of the places you can visit in Ubud.

Tegalllalang Rice Terrace

Rice terraces photos from the height, bali, indonesia, ubud, the geometry of the rice field (c) Shutterstock
Rice terraces photos from the height, bali, indonesia, ubud, the geometry of the rice field (c) Shutterstock

In Balinese culture, they maintain a cooperative irrigation system called ‘subak’. That system created a beautiful terraced landscape on which they plant their rice. Tegallalang is famous for its scenic rice paddies maintained with subak system. Many tourists stop by just to admire the view and take a picture or two.

Monkey Forest

Famous dragon bridge in Monkey Forest Sanctuary in Ubud, Bali, Indonesia. (c) Shutterstock
Famous dragon bridge in Monkey Forest Sanctuary in Bali, Indonesia. (c) Shutterstock

Inhabited by grey long-tailed macaque, Ubud Monkey Forest is managed by the community. It is highly accessible and overseen by Padangtegal village. This forest, as well as the macaques, are considered sacred by the locals. It holds a great cultural and spiritual importance in this area. Besides, this forest is also a site of scientific research.

Ubud Art Market

Market on the main street of Ubud (c) Shutterstock
Market on the main street of Ubud (c) Shutterstock

Pasar Seni Ubud, as locals call it, opens daily and selling many crafts. You can find handmade bags, woven hats and baskets, statutes, shirts, kites, and many other goods.

Most items sold here are made in the neighboring villages like Payangan, Tegallalang, Pangosekan, and Peliatan. Most arts produced here can also be found in other parts in Bali, but you might find it cheaper here.

Puri Saren Royal Palace

Ubud palace, Bali - Inside the Ubud palace, Bali, Indonesia. (c) Shutterstock
Inside the Puri Saren Palace, Bali, Indonesia. (c) Shutterstock

Next to Ubud Art market is Puri Saren Agung, the palace of ubud Royal family. It is one of the most famous place in Ubud and has become a landmark of the area. The palace was built in the early 1800’s and has been well maintained by the royal family. You can see the traditional Balinese architecture, complete with garden settings.

Pura Taman Saraswati

Lotus pond and Pura Saraswati temple in Ubud, Bali, Indonesia. (c) Shutterstock
Lotus pond and Pura Saraswati temple in Bali, Indonesia. (c) Shutterstock

A water temple, Pura Taman Saraswati is located in central Ubud. This temple is a great place for an afternoon leisure walk, offering calm and relaxing aura as well as photo opportunity. There is no entrance fee here but as in many sacred places in Bali, you are required to wear sarong and sash. This temple is also a great example of traditional Balinese architecture.

Blanco Reaissance Museum

Entrance of Don Antonio Blanco Museum in Ubud, Indonesia. (c) Shutterstock
Entrance of Don Antonio Blanco Museum in Bali, Indonesia. (c) Shutterstock

This museum was formerly the house of Philippine-born artists, Don Antonio Blanco. This museum has become an unofficial icon of Ubud. It houses many artistic legacy item of Blanco, including paintings, collages, and illustrated poems. Antonio Blanco was always fascinated in women, and it has become the central theme of his works.

Campuhan Ridge Walk

ampuhan Ridge way of artists, in Bali, Ubud. Beautiful calm sunny morning (c) Shutterstock
Campuhan Ridge way in Bali. Beautiful calm sunny morning (c) Shutterstock

You can enjoy a free nature trek in Campuhan Ridge Walk. This can be a good getaway if you want to avoid the busy main street of Ubud. Leisure walk along this ridge will give you wonderful panorama as well as fresh air. The walk starts at Gunung Lebah Temple and usually the trek is quite empty.

Goa Gajah

Goa Gajah, Elephant Cave in Bali, Indonesia. Ancient balinese temple, place of tourist interest. (c) Shutterstock
Goa Gajah, Elephant Cave in Bali, Indonesia. Ancient Balinese temple, place of tourist interest. (c) Shutterstock

Goa Gajah (Elephant Temple) is a piece of archaeological wonder. It is located within a complex of historical sites in Bedulu Village. Within the site, there are Hindu temples and bathing pool, complete with fountains. Then in one courtyard filled with artifacts from ancient time, you will see a huge carved rock from 11th century. Within the cave, you can see some sort of relief and meditating site.

Rainbow on a rice field in Tegallalang. (c) Shutterstock
Rainbow on a rice field in Tegallalang. (c) Shutterstock

Ubud is popular for its crafts and arts, but it is also rich in cultural and historical legacy. You can find the best authentic Balinese souvenirs here, while also enjoying the many wonderful aspects of Ubud’s every day’s life. Next

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