Bali has very unique and beautiful nature without any doubt. But the real truth is that most tourists stay in areas like Kuta or Seminyak and they don’t really experience much of that nature. Rice paddies, waterfalls, lush tropical gardens, volcanos and green rain forest are hard to find there. South of Bali is heavily overdeveloped and overpopulated so you don’t get any feel of Real Bali there. So my advice is to get out of there for few days and experience the beauty of the island. One day trip will not make it. Plan a real getaway trip for 2-3 nights and explore the rural areas of Bali.
This is exactly what we did ourselves couple weeks ago. The rain season was on and waves were mostly off so me and my friend were started looking for a getaway place somewhere in the east of Bali. We were looking for some beautiful place where we can relax and take our time to do nothing and maybe explore something in the neighborhood. And when I stumbled upon this very well hidden spot – Kubu Carik Bungalows – I knew that’s the place I absolutely want to go to.
Located in the middle of very beautiful scenery of volcanoes and rice paddies and jungle these bungalows are nested on the hill overlooking a very green rural area of Karangasem. The place itself is so secluded and tranquil that you forget that cars, motorbikes & tourist crowds exist in Bali. Grass roof bungalows surrounded by very lush garden are a real nature retreat!
Okay, let me tell you about this amazing place in details.
Kubu Carik Bungalows review
When you arrive in Kubu Carik at the parking lot you immediately get surrounded by rain forest and lush garden. You walk down old stone staircase and get surrounded by more tropical plants. And after you enter your shown to you your room, all you feel is that you are in heaven.
There are two bungalows for rent and each of the bungalows has a balcony overlooking rice paddies. The bungalows sit on the hill so it makes them really private, noone can see and you can’t see anything but endless fields :0)
Each bungalow has a good sized room with a double bed and en-suite bathroom. The bathroom has a window so basically you can take a shower with a view too ;-) The balcony has table and chairs and it’s really nice to relax there. Rooms have A/C, hot water, large closets etc.
Kubu Carik is styled in a balinese manner with lots of wooden decor elements. You really feel like you are in Bali and not in another fancy modern resort without any character.
The territory of Kubu Carik is spacious and they have a huge swimming pool with superb view over the rice paddies. They also have got an outdoor dining area and a chill out spot with sofas and chairs. Everything is semi outdoor and with views! And the garden is so green and just amazing.
Owners live in the bigger house which sits a bit up the hill, so guests can feel themselves really private. Also because there are only two bungalows it’s never crowded or noisy in Kubu Carik, that’s what i liked most!
Homemade western breakfast & local cuisine
We absolutely loved our simple yet very cozy breakfast! (Breakfast is included in the price of the room.) For breakfast you get eggs & bacon, homemade jams from local fruits and homemade breads. Tamarillo jam was absolutely to die for. Yeah, all this isn’t a typical balinese ‘makan pagi‘ (breakfast) but locals eat rice with chicken for breakfast, but we prefer our western style breakfast.
And don’t worry you not gonna miss out balinese cooking. One of the owners is Kadek who can cook for you famous ‘nasi goreng‘ (fried rice) and other indonesian / balinese dishes. That all comes for extra money, but prices are decent. We also heard Ketut can organize a cooking workshop for you if you are interested to learn how local dishes are made. Should be fun!
Swimming pool with a view
Ohhh that pool! I can go back to Kubu Carik just for the pool itself! And I am not a pool type person at all. I normally don’t like swimming pools very much. I used to rent a house with the swimming pool in Bali and I ended up using it less than once a month.
But swimming pool in Kubu Carik is just amazing. That view! You really just want to soak in the pool all day long enjoying the view and surrounding tropical garden. Especially after you did a long tiring hike to one of the temples (few hundred stairs!) and the water is so soothing.
Kubu Carik Bungalows are located in the Karangasem district in the East of Bali. It’s a very scenic area with volcanos, endless rice fields and beautiful coastline. And most of it is still not destroyed by development and tourism. Karangsem used to be a kingdom some time ago so apart from beautiful nature you can also visit beautiful palaces where actual kings once lived.
Recommended length of stay
I would say that you should stay there for at least 2 nights. There is so much to see around (read below) and so much to enjoy in Kubu Carik, so you won’t be bored! It has a perfect location so you can have Kubu Carik Bungalows as base and just do day or ½ days trips around.
And it’s so peaceful in there so you might not want to leave!
Price & Booking info
To rent a bungalow for 1 night will cost you around 40 USD / 35 EUR / 55 AUD
What else to see around?
Visit a water palace
So talking of water palaces you should definitely visit on of those. The most famous ones are Tirta Gangga and Udjung Water Palace. Both of them are water palaces and they are really different from whatever else you can see in the other parts of Bali. My favorite one is Tirta Gangga, but they are located 20-30 min away from each other so you can visit both. Tirta Gangga is really close to Kubu Carik.
Climb one of the most beautiful temples
Besides that you can also visit beautiful temple complexes like Pura Lempuyang or Pura Besakih. Pura Lempuyang is my favorite one and it is located just 30 min away from Kubu Carik. To climb all those stone stairs to see all the little temples of Pura Lempuyang complex might take you about 2 hours. It’s absolutely stunning climb to the top temple. Pura Besakih is 1 hour away and if you are staying longer it makes sense to visit it too. It is considered the Mother Temple of Bali and its architecture is really rich.
Rice fields trekking
Right from your bungalows you can actually climb down the hill and end up in the endless paths on the rice fields. Take your time to wander around, make beautiful pictures and enjoy real Bali countryside that you won’t see in Kuta or Seminyak ;-)
Visit a white sand beach
Although the east of Bali is famous with its black volcanic sand, there is a white sand beach that is called Virgin beach. Unless it’s a week-end or public holidays this beach is never crowded. And it’s just 30 minutes away.
Go snorkel / dive in Amed or Tulamben
The fishing & diving village of Amed should be on your list of places to visit in Bali. But if you are not planning to stay there you can go there from Kubu Carik. 30-40 min drive to Amed and about 1 hr drive to Tulamben. You can take a diving introduction course or go snorkel (you can rent all the equipment there).
Climb Volcano Agung
Almost everywhere in Karangasem you will see the most important volcano for all Balinese – Mount Agung. It is considered as main volcano in Bali and it is a part of many local hindu traditions. You can attempt to climb the volcano (with a guide) and see the sunrise at the summit. It’s a 4 hours trekking and requires good physical form.
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