Sunday Hotspot: Ubud
Hey there, it’s been a long time since I updated the Sunday Hotspot section mainly because I’m stuck at home during this looong vacation.
Well, the gods finally smiled on me today. My friends and I got together and planned a trip to Ubud, one of the more serene tourist destinations in Bali. At a glance, Ubud still maintains its cultural heritage and uses it as a tourist magnet. Now, you can see tourists and locals blend in together in this tranquil village which is famous for the lush, green rice fields. Ubud also offers high quality art for sale. From paintings to massive wooden statues, Ubud is the home of traditional Balinese art.
Getting to Ubud is a bit tricky, since the roads may confuse you. Asking for directions solves this problem quite easy. From Denpasar, it takes about 45 minutes by car.
Since I was in a party of seven people (including myself), we all thought, “What better way to explore Ubud than by bikes,”. So, we rented some bikes. Bike rents are common in Ubud, and have increased lately due to current social trends. To rent a bike, just have some cash and some ID. The price is about IDR 10,000 – IDR 15,000 for three hours. Prices may vary among sellers. The bikes offered are mostly MTB’s since Ubud is chock full of ascending roads.
So, the first destination was the Monkey Forest. It is a haven for Balinese macaques and considered a sacred place. Tickets cost around IDR 30,000. Prices usually fluctuate in the holiday season, when the forest is visited by lots of people.
Psst, there’s a back road which you can use to sneak past the locket, but it isn’t recommended because you might get caught.
After three hours of cycling through Ubud and sightseeing, it was time for lunch (and time to return our rented bikes). We decided to have lunch at Jangar Ulam restaurant, which was located just beyond Ubud Market. For coordinates on Foursquare, click here.
By the way, there’s a famous restaurant which serves suckling pig (“babi guling”) called “Babi Guling Bu Oka”. It is located at the large “Bale Banjar” near Ubud Market. Though its prices are a tad steep, the food is worth it. The place is also very crowded during lunch hour, so expect a bit of waiting on line.
Okay, back to business. Jangar Ulam restaurant provides a cool and tranquil atmosphere. It is situated near rice fields, which gives a cool breeze, making dining there really refreshing.
I decided to order the pork ribs package and a glass of iced tea, which cost me IDR 36,500. Pretty modest price, if I do say so myself.
The price might be modest, but you can’t argue with the taste. It was terrific. I scraped every last bit of meat on the bones. The downside is the salad. I expected coleslaw, but the salad didn’t suit me. The flavor was too strong; probably had too much vinegar in it. The iced tea was nice, with a hint of ginger in it.
Overall, the food and service was great. The restaurant was a really nice place to hang out and relax.
So, my day in Ubud ended after that. We headed home. Some of us suffered muscle pains. The others were fine. The end.