Bali Travel Diaries – Ubud Stole My Heart!
After 2 extra days in Jimbaran we bundled ourselves into a coach and headed off to Ubud. On the way we stopped by Uluwatu Temple for the rest of the family to experience and then off to Kemeh Butterfly Park, which was small but worth the visit. The butterflies fly around freely and you also get to see the cocoons which is really interesting to see how these beautiful insects some to life.
We had a late lunch at an organic Indian style restaurant called Kayan. It is set in the most peaceful and clean location in Ubud. The food was so so, we all found it quite bland but the fresh juices were delicious and refreshing.
We said ta-ra to half of the family who were staying at The Annuman Hotel while the rest of us proceeded to our hotel.
We knew our hotel was located in the rice fields and a car couldn’t get down there but we didn’t quite realise that we would have to get our luggage and ourselves on to the back of scooters to get to our luxurious villa – but it was all part of the fun and was the start of an exciting four days at Luxe Villas.
After all that excitement we were greeted at our villa by the owners Grace and Paul who made us feel extremely welcomed right from the start alongside all of their staff. We had two rooms (3 in each) which were beautiful with stunning views of the rice fields.
After we checked in Paul asked us what our plans were whilst in Ubud and we gave him a list of what we wanted to do. That evening he arranged for us to trek up Mount Batur at 2am! Crazy I know, after a mad dash to the Nike store for some protective layers and a lovely dinner at Oops on the strip we headed back to the villa to try and get a few hours of rest before we had to head back out again. As you can imagine none of us slept and a couple of hours later we were back on the scooters again to get to our 2am pick up point to be taken to the mountain.
We had a great driver who spoke good English, he drove us an hour away to the mountain, gave us our breakfast of breads and jams to have at the top. He introduced us to our two guides and we were on our way up to the top. It was a rocky and hilly climb up but our guides were amazing and assisted us as and when we needed it.
Top Tip: wear layers and strip off as you get hot and keep hydrated.
A couple of hours and a few bruises later we reached the top! Yay! Whoop Whoop! Unfortunately it was a cloudy morning (it had been raining prior to our climb) and the sun took a while to come out and play but when it did it was such an amazing experience and view. After a few photo opportunities we made our way back down. It was a slippery ride down and I have to admit that I did fall flat on my bum once but that was all part of the fun! All in all I’d have to say it was an amazing experience and even though half way up I was cursing myself for putting myself through the climb, I’m so glad I did it and am extremely proud of myself and my family members for doing it and for the amazing team effort and support we showed one another. It was a mentally challenging climb more than physically but once you go up and make it back down you’ll be so happy you made the effort.
As we arrived back from our trek after the set time for breakfast, Paul had arranged for us to have it out of hours, which was extremely kind of him and it was personal touches like this that made Luxe Villas one of a kind and stole our hearts! We gobbled down homemade fresh juices, pancakes, french toast and vegetable burritos – as we did every morning!
After a few hours of well deserved rest we headed off for massages at Adgure Spa which was recommended to us by the villa. The massages were amazing but the spa was a bit outdated and unclean, which was disappointing.
We headed back to the villa to rest our weary heads after an evening stroll for our adventure of the next day which was a Bali Ebike tour which was once again kindly arranged by the team at Luxe Villas.
We were collected from the villa (well the path of the villa) by the Ebike company and driven through Ubud in a golf cart to the starting point, which was a mini tour of Ubud itself. After signing the consent form we were on our Ebikes with our guides for our 3 hour tour through the rice fields, cemetery and Eat Pray Love location before we had a late lunch in a local restaurant. The tour is totally worth it even though we had sore bums for a few days afterwards as the seats were uncomfortable.
Then we headed off to the Monkey Forest which wasn’t as scary as I had imagined. Two of our group members had monkeys climb on them which they found a little frightening – shame we didn’t have our cameras ready!
Then it was off to Spa Bali for more pampering. I had a full body massage and a steam facial which were both amazing and the spa was really clean.
On our last day Paul offered us late check out as they didn’t have any guests checking in until the next day (another nice touch). So we took full advantage and us girls had a last bit of pampering by getting our nails done followed by a bit more shopping before we headed back to the villa to quickly pack our cases so we could get a last meal in a the Luxe Cafe before we headed off to the airport. As we didn’t take the airport pick up on arrival to the villa we were able to use that ride to get back to the airport – how amazing is that!
Why did Ubud steal my heart?
Out of all the places we visited (Seminyak and Jimbaran) Ubud just felt peaceful. Our villa was situated in the rice fields and we rode on the back of scooters which reminded me of visiting my grandparents in India when I was younger so for me there was a bit of nostalgia. Also because Luxe Villas felt so homely after being at a resort and the staff really went above and beyond with their service. Our wants never seemed too much for them and they always greeted us with a smile.
Thank you Bali! See you soon!