Ubud & East Bali – Ricefields, Temples, Waterfalls and Virgin Beach Tour

This itinerary is ideal for those wanting to avoid some of the most heavily touristed attractions and instead takes a wonderful route around the area between Ubud and East Bali through the stunning scenery of Sideman with views across to Mt Agung and onto my favourite beach in Bali.

It’s a 10-hour round trip, depending on where you get picked up from.

Tegallalang Rice Terraces

Heading up the eastern side of Ubud to Tegallalang Rice Terraces is really an excuse to keep heading further north and through the jungle to Gunung Kawi, one of the lesser-known temples, but in my opinion one of the most interesting.

Tegalalang Rice Terraces - Best Tourist Attractions in Bali
Tegalalang Rice Terraces – Best Tourist Attractions in Bali

Rice is planted all year round in Bali and there are usually about 3 crops per year. The harvest cycle starts with flooding the terraces to create a muddy soup, then hand planting tiny rice plants (called paddy), which when grown make a spectacular view, then they turn golden as the rice kernels ripen, then harvest, followed by leaving the ground to dry, then burning and finally tilling before starting the entire cycle again.

So it depends entirely on what stage of the cycle the local farmers are at when you visit Tegallalang Rice Terraces as to what kind of view it is. But never fear, because on this tour you will be going through Sideman with plenty more rice fields to view along the way.

Gunung Kawi

Gunung Kawi Temple is an 11th-century temple complex that sits on either side of the Pakerisan river. It comprises 10 rock-cut shrines carved into 7-metre-high sheltered niches of the sheer cliff face.

Gunung Kawi - Best Tourist Attractions in Bali

Tukad Cepung Waterfall

From there it’s on to Tukad Cepang Waterfall. Depending on what time you get there, the sunlight falling through the hole at the top of the waterfall makes for a glorious view, but be aware that it can get really busy with tourists waiting in line to get their perfect Instagram shot. However, it tends to be much less busy than other waterfalls due to its difficult climb through the river bed to get to the bottom of the waterfall, and the route there and then afterwards tends to be much less busy than others.

Tukad Cepung Waterfall - Best Waterfalls in Bali
Tukad Cepung Waterfall

After Tukad Cepung I highly recommend the driver east through Sideman, one of my favourite districts in Bali on the way to Virgin Beach in Karangasem. The rolling terrain and beautiful ricefields are one of the nicest drives in Bali, and if you’re lucky you even see Mt Agung in all its glory if it is not covered in clouds.

Virgin Beach

The route takes you close to Tirta Gangga, the stunning Water Palace, another of my favourite temples, but you really only have time for this as an option if you drop Tukad Cepung or Tegenungan from your itinerary and are willing to not spend as long at Virgin Beach afterwards.

Virgin Beach - Fishing Fleet - Bali Holiday Secrets

Virgin Beach in the Karangasem district is definitely one of my all-time favourites, not least because it is generally not crowded, but also because it is along a stretch of the beach still used by one of the last working fishing villages in Bali that uses the traditional outriggers.

Tegenungan Waterfall

From there it’s either back home if you have already had a long day, or for a later afternoon stop at Tegenungan Waterfall, one of the largest in Bali. It’s pretty accessible as the path to the waterfall is paved all the way, and while there are still stairs, it’s easy-going compared to many of the other waterfalls in Bali.

Tegenungan Waterfall - Best Waterfalls in Bali

Ubud & East Bali Tour Map

Ubud & East Bali - Ricefields, Temples, Waterfalls and Virgin Beach Tour


Make a booking

SSL Secured - Bali Holiday SecretsBooking online is easy and secure. This website uses SSL Encryption and payments are secured by Stripe in 25 different currencies so you can easily see the exact cost in your home currency. I’ve been building online businesses and websites since 1995, so you can be assured your booking is completely secure.

I’m a technology entrepreneur and traveller and began Bali Holiday Secrets as a guide for friends and family who came to visit after I moved to Bali, and has grown to 80,000+ visitors a month.


Leave a Reply
  1. Hi Michael

    We are visitng Bali next year, staying in Sanur. What trips can you suggest for someone who as limited mobility. Doesn’t need a wheelchair but cannot climb a lot of steps or walk long distances. We would like to visit Ubud, some waterfalls, temples and museums.


  2. Apologies, just thought it may be more beneficial to hire the driver & car for the day & plan the route that way. However, I just want to confirm, as we are staying in Ubud, would we need to pay the additional fee for driver accommodation if we wish to do consecutive days? Thanks in advance.

    • Hi Scott, if you’re hiring a private car and driver for multiple days, make sure you choose the North or East Bali option so you can visit the attractions you mentioned (and all others), and if you choose multiple consecutive days, no need for driver overnights if you are staying in Ubud. That’s only applicable if you’re staying in North or East locations.

      Safe travels, Michael

  3. Hi Michael, we’re staying in central Ubud. Just wondering if we said 7:30am pick-up would be reasonable? In addition, would it be possible to drop Virgin Beach entirely to fit in Tirta Gangga? Thanks

  4. Hi Michael,
    Just wanted to say thank you for sorting me out an airport transfer with Ubud Tour, plus this amazing East Bali day tour. Komang was a fantastic and patient driver. Hiring a car and driver is a great way to find out plenty about the country – there’s no way I’d try and battle through on a scooter!
    It’s easy to try and cram too much in, but what looks like a main road on Google Maps isn’t necessarily a lovely highway to drive along. I got to see some beautiful places, including Goa Lawah, Tirta Gangga, Pura Lempuyang and Virgin Beach.
    You need stamina for Lempuyang- the walk up from the bus drop off is something else! I didn’t join the queue for photos.
    I can’t recommend this hassle free service highly enough- holidays are about de-stressing & believe me, this helps!


  5. Thanks Michael. I’ve made a booking for 7:30 am. Let me know if you’d recommend an even earlier start. Looking forward to it!

  6. Hi Michael, how long would this tour take? Would you recommend at 9 am start/pickup? My hotel is in Ubud (Jl. Raya Andong). Thanks

    • Hi Sherry – it’s a 10-hour round trip, depending on where you picked up from. Just remember Tegnungan Waterfall closes at 6:30 PM, so you would have to be aware that if you leave at 9:00 AM you may not make it there in time, depending on how long you spend at the other attractions.

      Safe travels, Michael

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *