Whilst most people tend to stick to popular areas such as Ubud and Kuta, those who venture further afield will be highly rewarded. Munduk is a great place to explore and offers several incredible things to see and do, generally without the.crowds.
It's an ideal area to hire a scooter and explore independently, far fewer cars on the road mean that it is a more relaxing experience than in other parts of Bali. We still love Ubud, but on our most recent visit found it more crowded than we were expecting. Munduk with its gorgeous country roads, and low levels of traffic was a breath of fresh air. You'll zip through the jungle, past dozens of monkeys, huge waterfalls, and lush greenery. It was our favourite part of the trip, and we are already dreaming about going back.
We highly recommend incorporating it into your Bali itinerary. Here are 8 amazing things to do around Munduk.
Pura Ulun Danu Bratan Temple
It is worth going all the way to Munduk just for Pura Ulun Danu Bratan Temple. In our minds this is the most beautiful temple in Bali and is a stunning place to visit at sunrise. The weather tended to cloud over every afternoon in Munduk, so for clear skies go early, you won't regret it.
Though we mention that Munduk is much less busy that other parts of Bali, this is still a popular temple, so an early visit will also mean you miss the crowds too.
If you want to visit, check out our blog all about the beautiful lake temple.
Read more: The most Instagrammable spots in Bali
Banyumala waterfall is stunning, and you can hear the water from really far away. The falls are huge and surrounded by lush forest, giving it a really wild feel. It is definitely one of the best waterfalls in Bali.
The road (the last 3km of it) is in pretty bad shape so go slow if you are on a scooter. If you put the effort in, you will be rewarded with this incredible place, hopefully all to yourself.
If you're thinking of visiting Banyumala, then check out our blog which has everything you need to know about visiting this incredible waterfall.
The Gate at Handara Golf Course
Not many golf courses have an entrance this magnificent, but the Handara in Bedugul does! On the road into the golf course is this stunning structure, framing the surrounding mountains and landscape.
It is best to visit just after sunrise as there was no one else there on our visit (yes, this is an Insta famous spot!) and the light is gorgeous. In the middle of the day, the light can get pretty harsh, casting shadows on the gate. We drove past the gate at sunset and it had a few people trying to take photos, whereas early morning there wasn't another soul in sight.
Sekumpul is another one of those waterfalls which would be rightly famous anywhere else in the world. However, in Bali it is just another waterfall.
The twin falls here are huge and the walk down feels like you are entering Jurassic Park. Although it is a fair distance from Munduk and fiddly to get to, it is well worth putting in the effort.
Munduk Waterfall is just another stop at the side of the road to the Balinese. But to those of us who don't have huge waterfalls in our backyard, it is another stunning place to check out.
As many people choose to go to more famous waterfall in the area, GitGit, it is likely that you will have Munduk Waterfall all to yourself (just like a lot of the waterfalls we have mentioned!). It was a little tricky to find so we've put more details in this blog post.
Next stop: Ubud
Hidden Hills, Wanagiri
If you fancy a go on a Bali Swing but don't want to pay the price of the more famous one in Ubud, then head to Wanagiri Hidden Hills. The swing here is over the lake, and it is a truly beautiful view.
It costs 50,000 rupiah (around $3.5 USD) which is still a lot for a swing, but if you want that amazing shot.... (guilty). You can swing for as long as you want. We visited in the morning and there was no one else around, it felt really peaceful and the light was stunning.
Nung Nung Waterfall
Nung Nung Waterfall is a great place to stop off on the journey between Ubud and Munduk, and is one of our favourite waterfalls in the whole of Bali. When we visited, it was roaring and blasted us with spray even when we were over 10 metres away. The power is just incredible. You could take a dip here, but we were content just to stare for a long while, it's a truly breathtaking place.
If you want to visit, check out our post all about the gorgeous Nung Nung Waterfall.
Further afield: Jatiluwih Rice Terrace
Ok, we put this in the best things to do in Ubud blog as well, but as Jatiluwih is between Ubud and Munduk, we felt it should be in both! These Unesco World Heritage Rice Terraces are 45 minutes outside of Munduk and another perfect stop off on your way to, or from Ubud. They are almost unbelievably green, and an absolutely gorgeous place to go for a stroll. There are several marked walking trails, allowing you to get a great feel for the area.
In all directions you'll see steep terraces, with the Bratan Volcano as a stunning backdrop. As it is a little further from Ubud than many other rice terraces such as Tegalalang less people choose not to visit, making it nice and quiet.
Where to stay in Munduk
Budget(ish) - CLV Villas
We chose to stay in Bedugul as this seemed to be fairly central to all the things we wanted to do in Munduk. There aren't too many options here, but we chose to stay at CLV Villas. The accommodation is a set of faded villas that had grand ideas but didn't really follow through.
It is an ok place to stay for a couple of days, but it is rough round the edges and could do with a really thorough clean. However, its location is great and the food is incredibly cheap. It's also less than 1km from the Pura Ulun Danu Bratan temple and just over 1km from Handara Golf Course, both of which we wanted to visit at sunrise. We weren't overly confident about scootering too far in the dark so the location was key.
Luxury - Munduk Moding Plantation
If we were on a shorter trip (with a bigger budget) we would definitely have chosen too stay in the Munduk Moding Plantation which looks absolutely incredible and has an amazing infinity pool. Next time!
Getting to Munduk
Ubud to Munduk
The journey from Ubud to Munduk takes approximately 1.5 hours by car. We chose to hire a driver for ease. You can drive from Ubud to Munduk on a motorbike, but it will probably take a little longer and requires navigating some twisting and narrow mountain roads.
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Are you planning a trip to Bali? Would you venture north to Munduk? Let us know in the comments below!
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