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Ubud, Bali, Indonesia – a review, and Eat Pray Love

By on September 2, 2015 in Indonesia

Ubud, Bali, Indonesia is famous for lots of things, but one thing that recently thrust it into the international spotlight was the book Eat Pray Love by Elizabeth Gilbert (confession – I have read the book as it was left at my place by a visitor who described it as one of the best books she has ever read). However, don’t let that put you off visiting the place. Yes, you will encounter a lot of soulful single (solo) travellers wandering around the place in search of whatever they’ve lost, or whatever they think they’ve lost, but in truth didn’t have to start with, but the town makes a great base from which to explore Bali.

Taxi from airport cost 290,000 local (£14 UK; $20 U.S.) and takes 75 minutes. The distance isn’t that great, it is just that the roads aren’t up to much. In fact, the roads are generally very small and narrow, and barely 2 cards wide. There are also a surprising number of corners. That may sound odd, but in a lot of the areas I travelled the road seemed to follow field boundaries, hence a straight section followed by a right-angled corner once at the corner of the field.

You will also find a lot of tourists around Bali, and in Ubud. I certainly met, and saw, a lot of Europeans, and a surprising number of hippies. Ubud is also surprisingly commercialised.

If travelling to Bali one thing I would recommend you do is find a local SIM card. Finding a SIM initially proved difficult, but it appears that any shop selling DVDs may also carry SIM cards. I purchased a Telkomsel (TSel) SIM for 170,000 local (£8.50 UK; $12 U.S.), which gave 2 GB data, and was valid for 30 days. No ID was required. The SIM only offered a 3G connection, 4G didn’t seem to be available. The SIM had to be activated in the shop on a phone, before being used in my MiFi. I had no issues with the card, and it seemed to be able to connect almost anywhere.

FourSquare: Ubud, Bali, Indonesia

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Nick's continued wanderings can be followed on Twitter: @nickswanderings.
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  1. Ari says:

    Indonesia has broadbands in spades, depending on which province, which city. Even as a local, I’m tired of too many packets available from one provider only, not to mention if I compare one with other providers. *No, I’m not Balinese. I’m in Borneo. And I’m Indonesian.

    My city got 4G recently in February 2016. Balikpapan got 4G in around June 2015. I’m not sure when Ubud got 4G though.

    And the cost from what you mentioned was surprisingly expensive. I can get 2GB for a Tsel perdana (perdana means new) for IDR 40k. And 4GB same provider and 3G only for IDR 70k. No ID required from many resellers we can find almost anywhere on the road. But I prefer to top up (now this one requires ID and it’s 4G, I got it easly at Grapari or Tsel official office) 8.5GB 4G + 1.5GB 3G for 49k only 🙂

    I wish one day internet in Indonesia will be at least as modern as Australia.

    If you don’t carry too many luggage, you can take ojek (motorcycle with a rider), there’s gojek, usually 15k, there’s an application for that in iOS and Android (No, I’m not related with any of them nor marketing them, I’m just saying), or you can even rent a motorcycle for … I’m not sure, ask local Balinese over there, probably 100k for a day.

    From someone you just followed on Twitter.
    Salam kenal.