- Immerse yourself in the traditions and culture of Ubud, Bali's cultural capital
- Enjoy a wild rafting adventure on the Ayung River
- Explore local markets and learn old family recipes at a cooking class
- Hike through the Balinese countryside to find hidden waterfalls
- Experience the drama of a traditional barong performance
|Arrive in Bali, Transfer to Ubud
|Local Markets & Cooking Class, Afternoon Waterfall Hike
|Raft on the Ayung River, Traditional Barong Dance Performance
|Cultural Immersion at Rumah Desa, Explore the Sangeh Monkey Forest
|Visit Uluwatu Temple, Depart Bali
Day 1: Arrive in Bali, Transfer to Ubud
Welcome to Bali! Upon arrival at the airport, a private driver will be waiting to take you to your hotel in the upland town of Ubud. Located in the heart of the island, Ubud is famed for its traditional crafts and dances as well as its spectacular natural surroundings. Temples, shrines, rainforests, and rice paddies await as you make your way to the town on a scenic 90-minute drive.
Once you arrive, get checked in and decide what to do next. You're free to explore at your leisure or rest up in the hotel before your first big day of adventure begins tomorrow. If you choose to head out, consider visiting some of the town's most famous local landmarks and attractions, like the Museum Puri Lukisan or the Pura Taman Hindu temple, or simply roam the winding streets and see where the mood takes you. Cooking classes, cultural dances, and soothing spa treatments are just some of the activities on offer nearby.
Day 2: Local Markets & Cooking Class, Afternoon Waterfalls Hike
Bali is famous for its traditional cuisine, and today you'll enjoy a deep dive into the island's culinary traditions. Meet up with a local chef, who'll take you to one of the town's markets. Admire and learn all about the fresh ingredients on offer, including tropical fruits, organic veggies, and aromatic spices, and watch as locals hurry about, stocking up on their favorite supplies. Next, you'll be taken to a nearby kitchen for a Balinese cooking lesson, learning several popular recipes and discovering the traditional culinary techniques and flavors of Indonesia. When the cooking is done, you'll take a seat and taste the rewards of all that hard work.
Chat with a local specialist who can help organize your trip.
Day 3: Raft on the Ayung River, Traditional Barong Dance Performance
The adventure continues on day three, which kicks off with a rafting expedition along the Ayung River, the longest in all of Bali. Before hitting the water, your expert guides will introduce you to the various safety guidelines and equipment. Then, you'll team up with your fellow rowers and hit the rapids for a thrilling two-hour descent along the Ayung. Pass unspoiled rural Balinese landscapes as you brave over 20 sets of rapids, and when the exhilarating ride finally comes to an end, you'll be escorted to a local restaurant for a tasty traditional lunch.
In the afternoon, you'll be able to keep your feet on dry land and give your muscles some time to recover as you take in a two-hour barong dance performance. Named for a lion-like creature in Indonesian mythology, this dramatic dance depicts the battle between barong and rangda (the demon queen) with elaborate, decorative costumes and powerful traditional music.
Day 4: Cultural Immersion at Rumah Desa, Explore the Sangeh Monkey Forest
Today, you'll visit Rumah Desa, a traditional countryside house just an hour's drive from the heart of Ubud. There, you'll meet a local family who will introduce you to their way of life through an array of fun-filled activities spread out across a four-hour experience. You'll get to spend time in the rice fields, explore the plantations, and admire demonstrations of traditional Balinese farming techniques used throughout the ages.
In the afternoon, you'll be driven over to the nearby Sangeh Monkey Forest. Just half an hour from Rumah Desa, this 35-acre (14 ha) conservation area is beloved by visitors and holds sacred status to the locals. It's home to hundreds of playful macaque monkeys, as well as a 17th-century temple named Bukit Sari, which you'll be able to visit before the day's end.
Day 5: Visit Uluwatu Temple, Depart Bali
There's still time for one last temple visit before heading home. Begin your final day with a guided tour of Uluwatu, a 90-minute drive south of Ubud and not too far from the island's international airport, which you'll be flying out of later on. The temple sits on a cliff, looking out across the Indian Ocean. Here, you'll learn about the history of Balinese Hinduism, meet the local monkeys, and admire the seafront views.
If you've got time, you can also take in a traditional kecak dance performance on the temple grounds, involving a group of performers dancing and chanting while reenacting scenes from the Hindu epic, "Ramayana." Afterward, you'll take a brief 40-minute transfer directly to the international airport, ready to catch your flight home. Safe travels!