There are few places in the world as nurturing as Ubud, and although there’s plenty to see and do, it’s also an essential part of the Ubud experience to move to a slower rhythm. Go to bed early and get up with the sun for early-morning yoga or a walk through the rice fields at the delicious “golden hour”. Early mornings are the most magical time of day here. And to rejuvenate, be sure to take advantage of the locals’ incredible gift for creating harmony and well-being, not only in the living environment, but in the body as well.
There is an age-long tradition of healing arts in Bali, and it’s possible to visit a dukun, or traditional healer, who has to go undergo years of rigorous training before being permitted to practice, and learns to draw on invisible powers. Often the dukun will work at a physical and spiritual level at the same time, restoring balance to the body and psyche.
Meditation and massage are a key part of Balinese life, and if you’re looking for pampering, this really is the place for you. Spas are a specialty industry here, with more salons than you can count, and you’ll have no trouble finding one to suit your budget. Even at the low end of the scale the quality is often very good, with trained practitioners using natural, flower-scented oils. At the spas in the more upscale resorts, you can expect to pay the equivalent of Western prices but you’ll be in an exquisitely luxurious setting and have an experience that’s truly fit for the gods.
The Balinese are particularly gifted at hand and foot massage, and you’ll find outlets that specialise in reflexology, as well as the more general salons that offer body scrubs, facials, deep tissue massage, hair cream baths, pedicures and many other delectable treatments.
Yoga is extremely popular in Ubud, and is a primary reason foreigners come to this part of the world. There’s no shortage of yoga classes of all types, often with stunning rice field views, as well as longer workshops and retreats on offer throughout the year. Keep an eye on our Events Calendar for more details. Frequent updates can also be found at the local notice-boards in health-food shops and cafes.
Many non-Balinese practitioners of alternative health have settled in Ubud as well, and you’ll find that any kind of holistic healing treatment you seek will be available, from reiki to Tibetan singing bowl harmonising, from Pilates to Ayurveda, from acupuncture to tantric workshops.