I think what I like most about Bali is the variety of landscapes it has. We all know that the beaches are one of the main attractions, but for me the green landscapes you can find in areas surrounding the center of the island are even more beautiful!
Rice has been and still is the staple food in Bali and that is reflected by the large tracts of rice fields that you can find throughout the island. This landscape is structured in five rice terraces, organized in Subak, a system of traditional and sustainable irrigation which has been declared as world heritage by UNESCO. If you are interested in this subject, I recommend you to visit UNESCO’s website for more information.
The point is that I was dying to visit these fields, so I decided to move my journey to the Ubud area.
The first day, I went to the rice terraces of Tegalalang. It is a well-known point of interest that can be accessed from various point of entries.
I parked in a small entrance on the road and I started a 15 minutes trail. The walk was very nice. The area is about 600 meters above sea level and the entire path is full of trees protecting you from the sun, so it’s a relatively cool area.
There’s a donation fee to enter the terraces area, and right after you’ll find the wonderful view that you probably have seen printed on Bali post cards! What a gorgeous place!
Although it is a tourist area, the place preserves its own cultural identity. It is true that some people will try to make you pay an entrance fee or will try to sell statues and souvenirs, but you’ll also find authentic Balinese people working in the rice fields.
I tried to strike up a conversation with one of them, but it was quite difficult. The man was trying to explain something to me, but the truth is I did not understand anything at all! We ended up laughing together. All good, everybody’s happy! haha
From what I observed many people just came to take the typical Instagram pictures of the place, and then they left. I would recommend to bring the adventurous spirit that we all have inside and go explore the area.
Strolling among the rice fields is a joy! Here the notion of time changes, everything moves slowly; the senses are enlivened by the immensity of nature. It is a good place to get in touch with the earth and with yourself.
The next day I went to other fields with other travelers from Roam, a new coliving place, where I’m staying these days. That day we went with quieter plan, just walking, talking, taking pictures and drinking some fruit juices.
Since it’s close to Roam, some afternoons I go there to write. It’s so quite and peaceful! I like to sit at Cafe Pomegranate and watch the sunset while drinking a coconut.
A couple days ago I went to the area called Campuhan with Emiel, another traveler with whom I’ve connected on this trip. It took a while to find the entrance, but we finally made it. We did not have much time, so the ride was short.
We stopped to take some pictures. I did some yoga poses and it was funny that a girl there, asked me if we could take a picture together. She did not speak any English or Spanish, so she made gestures of picture taking and point to both of us. We took the picture and after a while she asked me again to take another picture from another perspective. It was funny! I couldn’t understand anything else that she said to me!
The next day I returned to this same place by myself to explore further. I like to go on adventures by myself because I feel free. Sometimes I lose track of time and I enjoy every step of the way without having to worry about if the others are tired, if they are hungry or hot, if they want to return, etc.
The route is a path of about 2-3 kilometers, with a slight upslope, but it is very easy to do. I saw villagers working in the fields, runners, lots of greenery and few tourists (most of the tourists left after the first few meters of the route).
After some time I arrived at Karsa Kafe, a beautiful restaurant. Unfortunately I couldn’t try anything. When I go to explore I like to go light. I just had my Iphone with me, no wallet, no money to even drink a fruit juice… 😢
The three routes are very nice. To me the most impressive view is the view point of the rice terraces of Tegalalang, but if you have the opportunity I would definitely recommend you to explore as much as possible. You’ll find something different in each place.
See you at the fields!!
Love and gratitude