The heart of Ubud feels a bit chaotic. Traffic, motorbikes, men on every corner offering taxi service, the smell of durian coming from streetside vendors…it’s your basic hustle and bustle. Take a few steps off the main drag, however, and you can be enjoying the breezy narrow paths through the rice fields in no time.This particular walkway, lined with palm trees, snakes through the rice fields on the north side of town. While many locals ride motorbikes on the narrow and windy path, it’s a bit too advanced for novice riders. We walked instead.
The fields are all at different stages of planting – some are just pools of water waiting for crops, others have mature plants ready to harvest. The full cycle of the rice crops takes about 4 months.Unfortunately, many of the rice fields are being sold so that foreigners can build villas on the land. We saw signs advertising luxury villas with two bedrooms, two bathrooms, full living spaces, terraces with gorgeous views and a pool for US$110,000. I hope that in the next ten years all of these lovely farms aren’t completely replaced by housing developments.All of the fields by our house have been tilled into ponds, waiting for new plantings. While they don’t look as lush as all of these, they do make for the most perfect reflecting pools at sunset, as I’m sure the one below would.At the end of our walk was a lovely organic farm and restaurant, which made excellent fresh juice. Not that we’ve had any bad juice in Ubud…or any bad food, either. In fact, we’re still trying to figure out what Bali does poorly. Everything we’ve experienced has been excellent. Maybe by the end of our next month here we’ll have sussed out some of Ubud’s faults. Don’t hold your breath.