When you think of Bali you often think of parties, beaches, surfing, and lots of Bintangs. Well at least that’s what I used to think until I visited Ubud. It was here I discovered, there is a completely different side to Bali that is booming in health and wellness tourism. So after a few too many nights on the Bintangs I decided to give this opposite side to Bali a try. I booked a week in Ubud and embarked on my own little health and wellness retreat and was pleasantly surprised at just how much I enjoyed my time there. So here it is, my ultimate health and wellness guide for Ubud: A guys version. Before you book flights, don’t forget to grab some Travel Insurance from Southern Cross to keep you covered, no matter what crops up along the way.
Yoga, yoga and some more yoga
You can’t stay in Ubud and not try out some yoga classes. I can’t say this was something I would have ever thought I would do back home but as they say “when in Rome”. Ubud as I’m told is a yogi’s mecca (yes I just said yogi), with numerous studios scattered throughout town. One only needs to look at how many yoga shops and people there are in yoga tights to know that yoga is a big part of the tourism there. I decided to try out the Radiantly Alive studio to pop my yoga cherry. All the staff and teachers were great and made a first timer like me feel very comfortable. My first class was tough and I was very obviously the new student in the room. I was rudely shocked to discover my thoughts of yoga just being relaxed stretching was completely wrong too, as I managed to create puddles of sweat on my mat. However I stuck with it everyday and soon realised yoga is an awesome workout. Not only did I enjoy the workout side but I definitely noticed the calming effect it has on you. Hmmmm perhaps there is something to this yoga business after all.
Eat at organic, gluten free, raw, vegan restaurants
I would have normally winced and grimaced had someone told me I was going to eat at some health food cafe that made vegan, gluten free, raw, organic food. In fact I don’t think I would have even considered that food. However in my attempt to open my mind and try something new I decided to try the many different health food cafes on offer in Ubud and wow was I proven wrong. I felt my take on healthy eating was turned upside down as I ate probably some of the most tastiest meals I have ever had. My list of must try cafes include: Dayu’s Warung, Seeds of Life, Clear Cafe, Soma, Alchemy and Kafe. That is just listing a few too of many great places you can eat.
Try out one of the many different holistic therapies
Okay so I didn’t try all of these out, as quite frankly I didn’t have time and there were just some I wasn’t willing to go there on, for example colon cleansing. But if you have any health problems there will be a therapy in Ubud for you. There is everything from balinese healing massages to acupuncture, cleansing breath workshops (I’m still not too sure what they do), naturopathy, bodywork, sound healing and detoxes. That’s just what I can remember off the top of my head too. I decided to stick to some of the more conventional therapies like healing massage and acupuncture. Most of the yoga centres offer these therapies in house, and you will find flyers everywhere in town promoting the vast range of therapies available.
All in all my week in Ubud was eye opening for sure and I left feeling recharged and healthier than ever. I’m not going a full vegan, raw eating yogi just yet but I’ve definitely managed to make some healthier changes in my daily life.