Cycle through beautiful rice fields near Ubud, pass Tegallalang Rice Terraces and see three magical temples in Tampaksiring. Then whizz down a beautiful track through the countryside back to Bali to complete this self-guided cycling tour.
This cycle ride starts from the road junction with a statue of Indra, at the northeast edge of Ubud.
Tips for Ubud Rice Fields and Temples Cycle
- Set off early to avoid the heat of the day.
- There are many warungs (cafes) along this route.
- We rented bikes from Rent Bicycle in Ubud Town
- In Ubud we stayed in Gusti Kaler House*, in a lovely yet very cheap homestay in the middle of Ubud town.
- There are some short, steep uphills in this cycle ride – I had to get off and push occasionally – but they are really only short.
- It’s a good idea to have the free app Maps.Me for this cycle ride (but not all paths marked exist in reality).
- This cycle ride could also be done on e-bike, and most of it with a scooter. A convenient way to rent a scooter in Bali is from BikesBooking.com*. They deliver your scooter to your accommodation and it’s professionally done.
- Alternatively, you can get a rented car with driver* to complete his route.
- If you like hiking, try our Ubud Rice Fields Walk, or find other hikes and bike rides on our Hiking Bali page.
This is a free, self-guided cycle tour from Ubud. There are also many guided tours available, including those that use e-bikes, and those where you’re driven to the top and cycle only downhill.
Cycle Route through Ubud Rice Fields and Temples
From the road junction, head north on the road heading upwards towards the mountains. This road is slightly busy and there are shops and houses on either side. After 1.5 km, there’s a smaller road to the right, with quite a few signs for hotels at the junction.
Push Bike Rental in Ubud: Push bikes are what cycling bikes (i.e. not scooters) are often called in Bali. In Ubud we rented bikes from Rent Bicycle, a small place towards the southern end of town, near the Monkey Forest. You can Whatsapp them on +62-(0)878-1970-0181 or +62-(0)812-3921-2430 or see their website. Their bike rental place is open from 9am to 6pm every day. We visited the afternoon before and picked up two decent mountain bikes, meaning we could set off as early as we wanted in the morning for this cycle ride. It wasn’t expensive.
After a few hundred metres, the road bends 90 degrees to the left and heads slightly uphill just before a resort. It also becomes narrower and the surroundings turn into countryside with fewer buildings and more rice. The tarmac ends and for a short distance the route becomes a gravel track that’s slightly bumpy, but most bikes (not road racing bikes) would manage fine.
The track winds through the fields and then comes into a village. Take a left, then right and right again, and continue onwards to pass through. There’s a downhill and then up again after crossing a river on a bridge. The road is paved but narrow and there is hardly any traffic here. Palm trees often line the road and you’re surrounded by fields.
Cycle through Kenderan and Tangkas Rice Fields near Ubud
Continue onwards and pass through the village of Kenderan to reach Tangkas Village. In the middle of the village, just past a temple (there are many), take a small paved alley to the left. It immediately bends slightly left around the corner and downhill, becoming a rocky dirt track. It then heads steeply upwards (I had to push for a few metres) before reaching an amazing plateau covered in rice fields and palm trees. It’s completely unspoiled and there are hardly ever any tourists here.
Once you reach a shrine in the middle of the fields, head right. On Maps.Me it looks like you could head straight onwards and cross the river – you can’t and we found this out the hard way. We carried our bikes down many steps before carrying them right back up again.
The proper path heads through the rice fields to make a nice little loop, ending at the top of Tangkas Village by a lovely temple. At the road head right and cycle back down the way you came up. Not long after the middle of the village, head right. Follow the road as it bends around several corners to cross back over the river.
Tegallalang Rice Terraces
On the far side of the river, it’s quite steep back up to the main road. Once you get here, head up to the right, towards Tegallalang Rice Terraces (Tripadvisor Reviews*). It’s straight up the road for 3.5 km to the start of the terraces. Once you near the rice terraces you’ll see many tourist shops alongside the road, with several cafes interspersed among them.
We weren’t sure which cafe to go to, but ended up at Sai-Ma-I Warung* for a refreshing juice and some noodles. There was an amazing view and we could enter the rice fields from there. We could also park our bikes by the warung entrance, so didn’t have to pay for parking elsewhere.
Walking through Tegallalang Rice Terraces
After a drink, we headed down the little path into the rice fields and walked around and took photos for roughly 15 minutes. The bridge at the bottom across the little stream was closed and had been for a while, so we couldn’t walk on the other side. It was super beautiful, but I preferred the Jatiluwih Rice Terraces because you could walk about more.
If you don’t want to visit any cafe (most of which have their own entrances to the rice fields), you can pay Rp 15,000 ($1) to go in at the semi-official entrance, just up the road.
After that nice break, we got on our bikes again and headed up the road. Not much further, we took the road that branches off to the right and heads up the hill around the corner. You head up to the top of a ridge, and have nice views back down to the rice terraces at the top.
The road continues through the countryside. Three kilometres later, take the road heading off to the left, just after a house/temple and before some lovely rice terraces. From here you whizz down, keep right at the junction, and reach a larger road.
Turn left at the intersection and left through the next town. Follow the road as it bends to the right. There’s a down and uphill to cross a river valley, and then you’ll be in Tampaksiring town.
There are three temples in Tampaksiring, all worth a visit. They are all open from 7am to 6pm daily and all require you to wear a sarong. First head to Tirta Tempul Temple and Water Palace. To get there, cross over the main junction you arrive at and downhill around to the left. You can park your bike in the car park near the ticketing office of the temple.
Tirta Empul Temple
The most famous temple in Tampaksiring is Tirta Empul Water Palace (Tripadvisor Reviews*), a temple from the 10th century. You have to wear a sarong to enter the temple itself – they are available for rent just outside the inner temple gates. Locals and brave tourists bathe in the pools here, with the water said to have magical healing properties.
The temple was nice, with elaborate carvings and peaceful surroundings. On the way out we got stuck in a street lined with little stalls all selling the same tourist items. The route lasted forever, winding in and out through so many shops before we made it back to the car park where we’d parked our bikes.
To reach the next temple, head out the way you came and a short distance back up the road towards the main junction. Take a very sharp left, then left at the corner of the road and you’ll be at the parking.
I preferred Mengening Temple (Tripadvisor Reviews*) to the Tirta Empul Water Palace because there were no other tourists and it had a more peaceful, mysterious feel. There were also several fountains and the setting in the jungle was very picturesque.
After this, there’s yet a third temple to visit nearby. Head out of the car park and left along a small road. After 500 metres turn left to the temple.
Mount Kawi (Gunung Kawi) Temple
Mount Kawi Temple (Tripadvisor Reviews*) requires quite a lot of walking downwards and then back up a whole series of steps. Near the top left of the steps, we had lunch at Green Carik Restaurant. There were fantastic views from here, the food was delicious and also cheap.
I thought it was the best temple in Tampaksiring because of its dramatic location in a gorge by a river amongst endless rice fields. There are a series of royal shrines carved out of the rock cliffs and several temples. It’s a long walk back up, but there are definitely enough people trying to sell you ice-cold water on the way.
At the top again, head left out of the temple and down the road. Head right, left and right again to reach the main road. Turn left and after 700 metres, just after the corner starts, head right on a smaller road through some rice fields.
Cycling down through beautiful Rice Fields back to Ubud
Head left at the T-junction and through the little village. On the other side there are beautiful views. Not too far after the village, go left on a small road heading downhill. Continuing straight on leads to a dead end, even though Maps.Me shows that you can go straight through. Don’t trust it here.
At the main road turn left. Just over 1 km later, turn right through some rice fields. The small road wiggles around, then turns left and downwards. This is a really great section of the cycle route, as you whizz downhill through beautiful rice terraces on a little paved track.
It’s now basically straight down for 6 km all the way back to Ubud. There are some small turns left and right, but the general direction is to continue downwards on a gentle ridge. The route ends with quite a steep downhill to a T-junction with a main road. Head right towards Ubud, steeply down and steeply back up again. You’ll then be back at the junction where you started.
Extension: To visit Goa Gajah Temple, or Elephant Cave (Tripadvisor Reviews*), you can cycle there via Pejeng-Guliang and Bedulu. To do this you turn left at the main road T-junction instead of right.
To return to the east edge of Ubud town, cycle up the main road after the Bat Caves, then turn right along a small road called Jalan Sawah Indah, before the main town and through some lovely countryside. This extra loop adds on 7 km and 100 metres of climb.
FAQS: Ubud Rice Fields and Temples Cycle
The small store Rent Bicycle rents out bicycles (not scooters or e-bikes). They have some decent mountain bikes and it’s not expensive. It’s open 9am to 6pm daily.
Goa Gajah Temple complex, which contains Elephant Cave, was built sometime around the 11th century as a place for meditation and contains both Hindu and Buddhist elements.