Ubud is not the small, sleepy village it used to be, and I feel it’s really important to keep that fact in mind.
When you walk down the main street of Ubud, or along Monkey Forest Road, you could be forgiven for thinking that you are actually still in Kuta, Legian or Seminyak. Plenty of souvenir shops and hawkers, as well as “guides” who try to separate you from your money.
However, give it a couple of days, and you are going to realise that Ubud still has that special magic.
Returning to Bali, where I live, I decided to spend a few days in Ubud, staying at Nirvana Pension www.nirvanaku.com
Nirvana had been recommended to me by a friend, and since I trust her judgment, I decided that’s where I wanted to stay.
The airport pick up by Wayan “Benot” worked well, and 90 minutes later I had checked into my room at Nirvana.
Benot is not just a driver, he is also one of the best guides I have come across in a long time. He is completely connected with the Balinese culture, and loves passing on his knowledge with a great deal of enthusiasm. His day tours are totally flexible, and tailor made according to your wishes. He offers a (very) early morning tour, which lets you catch a glimpse of daily activities, and gives you the opportunity for taking some extraordinary photos. His temple tours are memorable for the insight they offer into the different aspects of Bali Hinduism. On his tours Benot travels the back roads around Ubud, making a day tour with him very special indeed. You can contact Wayan “Benot” on local mobile phone number 08123977452 (international: +628123977452) or by emailing him email@example.com
Nirvana guest house is owned and run by Pak Nyoman and his wife, Ibu Rai, with the help of other family member. They live at Nirvana, and sitting down and having a chat with these amazing people, you get the feeling that you are part of the family. The atmosphere is relaxing, and you can let your creativity flow, signing up for a batik painting course. Pak Nyoman and his apprentices look after their students in a caring and fun way – with children being welcome as well
The lush, tropical garden, interspersed with works of art, family shrines, and walls covered with framed water colours, and oil and batik paintings, are an oasis of calm, away from the hustle and bustle of “downtown” Ubud, which is actually only a couple of minutes by foot from Nirvana.