Ubud is the cultural capital of Bali. Located some 35 km from the beaches of Kuta and Seminyak, it has a fascinating mix of nature, historic temples, and traditional art and crafts.
It is centrally located so a day trip is easy from anywhere in Bali. However, we recommend spending at least a few days soaking up the unique atmosphere in this charming town surrounded by emerald-green rice paddies.
Ubud is home to the iconic Tegallalang Rice Terraces, a sacred monkey forest, and the impressive Goa Gajah ancient caves. Also, a must-visit is the Art Market and at least one of its famous yoga retreats.
The town is also the perfect base to explore nearby attractions like the Tegenungan Waterfalls, Gunung Kawi, Sidemen and Ulun Danu Temple. A sunrise hike at Mt. Batur is an easy half-day trip from Ubud, or if you prefer more adrenaline-fueled action, white water rafting is just a few minutes from the town centre.
Despite the laid-back vibe, Ubud is a very cosmopolitan town, with a large digital nomad scene. The town’s famed art heritage dates back to the early 20th century, and it is arguably the most famous traditional arts hub in Southeast Asia. There are literally hundreds of art museums and galleries.
Depending on where you are coming from, you can take a minibus, taxi, or private car to reach Ubud. Read on for a more detailed guide.
Quick Answer on Getting to Ubud
The most convenient way to get to Ubud is by taxi, whether going direct from the airport or from other tourist areas such as Kuta.
However once in Ubud, the only option is by private car, as ride-hailing services and metered taxis are technically banned from the town centre (drop-off is allowed).
How to get around in Ubud
There are no local transport options for travelling around locally within the Ubud area. Due to an influential “taxi mafia,” ride-hailing services like Grab and Go-Jek are unofficially banned from picking up passengers, although it’s fine for them to drop you off in town if coming from other parts of Bali.
Even metered taxis like Bluebird are almost non-existent. Local ‘taxis’ are all private car owners. This means fairly expensive fares for relatively short rides. Expect a minimum of about 70,000 IDR ($4.50) even for a quick ride of just a few hundred metres.
If you plan to spend a few days in Ubud and use it as a base to tour around the island, renting a motorbike or a car with a driver is a good bet. For a motorbike, expect to pay about 50,000 IDR ($3.20) per day. For a car, expect to pay around 100,000 IDR ($6) per hour or 500,000 IDR ($32) for a full day. Most hotels can arrange a motorbike or reputable driver, although you’ll likely need to haggle for a reasonable price.
Be also prepared for the busy traffic within the town, especially when travelling by car. The traffic jam in the inner town of Ubud is a disaster and it can easily take over 30 minutes to get out of the inner centre. Renting a scooter will be more convenient, but make sure you know how to drive a bike before driving one in busy traffic.
From the airport to Ubud by Taxi
Duration: 1hr 15m
Cost: 249,000 IDR ($16)
Duration: 1hr 15m
Cost: 249,000 IDR ($16)
When travelling from Ngurah Rai International Airport to Ubud, you have two options: you can take a fixed-price taxi or hop in a pre-booked car.
There is also an option to take the bus, but it involves two transfers, both of which have inconsistent schedules. We don’t recommend this, especially if it’s your first time visiting Bali.
From the airport to Ubud takes roughly 1 hour 15 minutes, depending on traffic. Taxis are prepaid at the airport taxi counter and the fare costs around 360,000 IDR ($23).
Hoping for cheaper rates? There is also an option to book online via ride-hailing apps Grab or Gojek but they are prohibited from picking up passengers inside Bali Airport. They wait outside the airport perimeter which is behind the main multi-story car park. It’s more than a 5-minute walk from the arrivals area and the route is quite difficult if you are travelling with large, heavy luggage. A Grab or Go-Jek direct to Ubud costs about 200,000 IDR ($12.50).
Also, note that these ride-hailing services are also unofficially banned within Ubud town centre. It’s perfectly fine to take a Grab or Go-Jek there but you will likely be unable to book one departing from Ubud for the return journey back to the airport or for other trips around Bali.
If you don’t want the hassle of worrying about your taxi ride (and want to save some money), you can also just book your ride at least a day prior to your arrival. As you should already know the date and time of arrival, this is in our opinion the most convenient option.
Klook offers taxi service to Ubud for 249,000 IDR ($16). These cars are comfortable enough to fit 5 people. Book your private car through the link below.
The cheapest way to travel from Kuta or Seminyak to Ubud is by minibus. There are two companies offering multiple departures daily – Perama Tour and the Kura Kura Tourist Bus.
With Perama there are departures daily at 10:00 and 13:30. Travel time is around 1.5 hours depending on the traffic and a seat costs from 60,000 IDR ($3.85). It departs at the Perama Tour Office at No. 39 Jalan Legian in central Kuta. If you’re coming from Seminyak, you will need to take a short taxi ride to the Perama Tour Office.
The Kura Kura bus departs from its main terminal at DFS Galleria in Kuta. There is an average of four round trip services a day from 09,00, 11.00, 13.00 and 14.30. The fare is 80,000 IDR ($5). There is also a Kura Kura Seminyak to Kuta local service which ends at DFS Galleria to enable you to connect with the Ubud bus.
Travelling in a group or want to be more flexible? Why not consider taking a taxi? You can book one via Grab or Go-Jek for around 200,000 IDR ($12.50) depending on the actual pickup location. Travel time is around 1 hour 15 minutes.
You can also hail a conventional taxi in the street, but this will be a bit more expensive. Bluebird Taxi is most reputable company.
Another option is to save yourself the hassle of finding one on the day and book a taxi in advance via BookAway. Cars booked online have fixed prices, so you won’t have to haggle. A private car from Seminyak costs 382,000 IDR ($24.50). From Kuta, it’s 349,000 IDR ($22.50).
The best way to travel from Canggu to Ubud is direct by taxi.
A taxi booked via Grab or Go-Jek costs around 220,000 IDR ($14). The journey takes about 1 hour 20 minutes. However, Canggu is one of the areas where Grab and Gojek are officially not allowed. They might still come in less central areas, but it’s not recommended.
Alternatively, a private car via BookAway costs 349,000 IDR ($22.50). Just click the link below.
Ubud is about 1.5 hours away from Uluwatu by taxi.
You can book one via Grab or Go-Jek for about 300,000 IDR ($19). Alternatively, you can book in advance with BookAway for a private car transfer for a fixed price of 481,000 IDR ($31).
If you are travelling alone or as a couple, there is a cheaper option.
Firstly take a taxi to the Ayana Resort near Jimbaran, which is about 20 minutes away and will cost about 100,000 IDR ($6) or about 70,000 IDR ($4.50) via Grab or Go-Jek. The Kura Kura Tourist bus departs once a day in the morning at 08:50 am from outside the Ayana Resort and travels directly to Ubud, which costs another 80,000 IDR ($5) per person. Total travel time is about two hours.