A Vegan Adventure in Ubud
One of my favourite places in Bali without any doubt is Ubud. I don't exactly know what it is that I like about this town. It's not located close to the sea (thank God for hotel pools) and it's a pretty busy town with scooters driving up and down the streets. Ubud is not what I expected it to be. I think 'Eat Pray Love' gives us all a very dreamy version of this town (or possibly a picture of what Ubud used to be like). Yet I love it here.
I think it's hard to grip the feeling of Ubud if you haven't been here yourself. It's a very happy place. Good vibes almost everywhere you go. Surrounded by yogis. I feel like this is where us Westerns come to find our spiritual selves. It's quite amazing actually. You can't avoid being inspired to become a more spiritual self being surrounded by these life loving hippies.
It's also hard to not smile whilst walking down the busy streets here. The Balinese are so welcoming and always smiling. You'll be offered help wherever you go. Sometimes it all gets a bit overwhelming, but I try to tell myself that there can't be too much good. Right?
The top reason for me liking Ubud so much must be the amazing variety of vegan food here. I think I have to thank all the hippies for this. Seriously though, Ubud is the dream destination for any vegan traveller. I've discovered a bunch of favourites that I now want to share with you. I hope this can be helpful in some way if you one day happen to visit Bali.
I can not speak highly enough about Sage. I was right away blown away when I walked in for the first time. The restaurant space itself is so beautiful. Then the menu - filled with clever and healthy dishes. 'Vibrant vegan cuisine' as they describe it themselves. If you had to pick only one thing of the menu, please get the tempeh buffalo wings (although it would be very silly to only order one dish whilst you're here). I've been happy with everything I've ordered here, but the wings take the grand prize.
Jalan Nyuh Bulan No. 1
Alchemy was really hyped on Instagram, so of course I had to check it out myself. The first time I came here for breakfast and the second time for lunch. This seems to be the place where all the yogis hang with their laptops and I was happy to join in. The staff here is super friendly and I can't complain about the food either. For breakfast I went for the 'Breakfast bar' where you line up and get to pick and choose a few things that you'd like in your breakfast bowl. It's like a D.I.Y breakfast bowl station. My lunch on the other hand consisted of papaya (dehydrated) spring rolls and cauliflower rice sushi. Both dishes tasted amazing and I might have considered going raw vegan for a few short seconds.
Jalan Penestana Kelod No. 75
The Seeds of Life
The Seeds of Life has some lovely yogi vibes, which is no surprise because there is a yoga studio situated above the actual cafe. The food here is all raw, so you can expect to get a very nourishing feast. Firstly try getting a seat outside, I find the inside being a little too dark and hot. Make yourself comfortable and order the green smoothie. I would also recommend you get the papaya crepes with notella (I went back for these). Other yummy things are the pancakes (yes, all raw) and the big SOL salad bowl.
Jalan Gootama No. 2
Earth Cafe & Market
I became a bit of a regular here at Earth Cafe. Whenever I didn't feel like exploring somewhere new I would return here. Please make yourself a favour and order the 'dragon bowl'. It's absolutely delicious! Lots of veg with soba noodles in a bowl bigger than your head. I also fell in love with their blueberry pie. Once you're done eating go have a browse in the organic health shop downstairs. I might have bought a few things... Or go watch a movie at the vegan cinema (Paradiso) located next to the shop.
Jalan Goutama Selanatan (no exact number)
Sayuri Healing Food
I found Sayuri Healing Food during my last days in Ubud, which is a shame since I love everything about this place - the interior, the staff, the vibes and most importantly the food. The food is mostly raw and oh so good for you. The smoothies are spot on. If you feel like indulging get one of the 'bomb' drinks with whipped coconut cream (pictured). All the dishes that are served up here look fantastic. I enjoyed the 'nourish bowl' and the special 'philadelphia sushi roll'. I seriously can't wait to return here one day to continue eating my way through the menu and hopefully also try one of their raw food cooking classes.
Jalan Sukma Kesuma No. 2
I can also recommend visiting Atman Kafe, a cute vegan friendly cafe. They do everything from pizza to Indonesian food and the desserts look amazing. Another gem is Clear Cafe. The food here is great, but it's almost just worth going here to experience the beautiful space. It's very special. If you're looking for something sweet look no further. The Spell is a Lord of the Rings themed creperie that serves VEGAN CREPES.
If you want a little bit of a different experience I would highly recommend booking one of the 4 birds nests at Firefly Eco Lodge. You live in a little round nest in the middle of the rice fields. Check them out yourself! Bookings can only be done through Airbnb.
Another place I loved staying at was Swasti Eco Cottages ,which is located behind the famous Monkey Forrest. Swasti is beautiful little retreat centre with so much heart and soul put into it. I did yoga here every morning and I suggest you take advantage of the classes held here as well. Another highlight was the breakfast which was included, so many vegan options to choose from!
Radiantly Alive is a beautiful yoga studio. I did my first ever sky yoga class here and I dear you to try it too! They hold a whole bunch of other amazing classes and workshops here daily.
Ubud is the perfect place for shopping - dresses, jewellery, yoga gear, natural beauty products and beautiful handcrafted things. Just walk around and you'll find the shops that catch your eye. If you want a little bit of chaos make your way to the Traditional Art Markets in central Ubud.
If you have any questions about Ubud or Bali in general don't hesitate to ask! I'm happy to help.