Ubud is the cultural capital of Bali, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t opportunities for adventure. The Campuhan Ridge Walk is one of the most popular mini treks in Ubud.
Best of all, you don’t need to risk your life on a scooter to get there. That’s a plus for me, who tipped over twice when I tried driving one.
The starting point for Campuhan Ridge is only a 10-minute walk from the Ubud Royal Palace.
So, whether you’re just starting to plan your trip to Ubud or you’re ready to hit the Campuhan Ridge Walk today, the tips below will help your mind and body prepare.
Campuhan Ridge Walk Overview
If you’re short on time, I’ve got you covered. The chart below summarizes key takeaways that I’ll be discussing in the tips and FAQ sections of this article.
|Length of the walk
|2 kilometers one way
|20 - 30 minutes one way
|Hours of operation
|Easy to moderate
|Sightseeing, rice fields, art shops, warungs, temple visit
Getting to the Campuhan Ridge Walk start point isn’t hard. But finding the turn for the hike can be confusing if you don’t know what you’re looking for.
So, if you’re wondering where to start the Campuhan Ridge Walk, look for my photo instructions towards the end of this article.
14 Campuhan Ridge Walk Tips
I learned valuable takeaways during my time hiking Campuhan Ridge. Below are the tips that will be the most helpful to you.
Tip #1 Time Your Trek
At only two kilometers long, the Campuhan Ridge Walk length is short by many trekkers’ standards.
So, Campuhan is an excellent activity to incorporate as part of your day in Ubud, not as the day’s activity.
Keep in mind that these two kilometers are for hiking one way. If you return along the same path as most people, you’re looking at an approximately 4-kilometer round-trip walk.
This equates to anywhere from a 40-minute round-trip hike at a fast pace and no stops or around a one-hour walk at a slow pace.
Should you stop for a drink or meal (which I highly recommend), you can tack on another 30 – 60 minutes to that time.
So, you can expect a leisurely Campuhan Ridge Walk with plenty of time to stop for photos, food, and rest to take upwards of two hours.
Tip #2: Know Your Abilities
A quick search on TripAdvisor reveals that people have many opinions on the Campuhan Ridge Walk’s difficulty.
Some people say it’s a breeze, nothing more than a light stroll.
Others warn hikers-to-be that the word “walk” is misleading for this trek’s physical requirements. Plus, they rightly point out that the path contains spaced-out cement blocks, making it easy to trip if you aren’t paying attention.
As with so many things, the difficulty of walking Campuhan Ridge depends on your abilities and fitness level.
So, as a relatively fit 30-something, I’ll share my perspective: I think saying that Campuhan Ridge is a light stroll is taking things a little too “lightly.”
No, there aren’t any massive mountains to climb, boulders to scale, or hundreds of steps.
But there are some steps (at the start and end of the hike), and when you’re walking from the Warwick Ibah Villas & Suites start point to the end of the ridge, it’s pretty much a constant uphill journey.
The uphill journey is fairly gentle, but it got my heart rate going in a few spots.
I saw people of all ages doing the Campuhan Ridge Walk, so I’m not writing this to discourage you. One of the great things about the walk is that it’s free and self-guided.
So, if you start down the path and decide it’s too difficult, you can always turn around.
Tip #3: Keep Your Expectations in Check
I was under the impression that I’d be able to see rice fields along the Campuhan Ridge Walk. While there’s truth to this, it’s misleading since many people stop walking at the village’s entrance, assuming they’ve come to the end of the path.
Therefore, I was disappointed to arrive at the steps of the village (literally; there are seven steps through an old temple-like gate) and not have seen any rice fields.
Don’t get me wrong—the lush jungle views when walking along the ridge are beautiful.
They were just not the whole picture of what I expected to see.
Luckily, I’m a curious traveler. I also had my sights set on eating at Karsa Kafe, which I had read is the place to go on the Campuhan Ridge Walk.
I’ll talk more about Karsa shortly. But for now, know that by continuing your walk into town, staying on the same road as the ridge walk, you’ll pass a few pretty rice fields and arrive directly at Karsa Kafe’s huts on a pond.
Tip #4: Understand Its Spiritual Significance
The Campuhan Ridge exists because of two rivers that run a narrow parallel path to one another, carving out the high strip of land above them.
Locals call this water the “Sacred Campuhan River” because the starting point for the hike (by Ibah Villas & Suites) is where these two rivers meet and become one.
As a result, it’s a place known as the meeting point of two rivers.
The Balinese believe that the Compuhan River has a masculine and feminine balance. It’s a holy ground where people go for purification and meditation.
You’re welcome to visit the river, but only if you do so with the intent to meditate, purify yourself, or pray. In tourist terms, don’t head to the base of the river thinking it’s a great place to cool off before or after your ridge walk.
Travel Tip: Take photos of the river by Ibah. There’s too much jungle to see the water when you’re on the ridge.
Tip #5: Work Around the Heat (or Don’t)
All the information I read online before I did the Campuhan walk was to go early in the morning to avoid Bali’s heat.
I understand their reasoning. You’d have to go out of your way to find shade on the ridge, and the sun is relentless when clouds aren’t around.
Needless to say, between my choice to start at 10:30 am despite the warnings and my experience with such few people at Kajeng Rice Field, I had expected there to be essentially no people on the Campuhan Ridge Walk.
To my shock, there was almost always someone in view, often several groups.
Given that people online warn so strongly to work a visit to Campuhan around the heat, it makes me wonder if the path would have been even more packed had I arrived earlier.
Plus, watching the sunrise or sunset from Campuhan is a thing.
Needless to say, I love the heat. So, doing the Campuhan Ridge Walk in the middle of the day didn’t bother me, and I wouldn’t have wanted to have passed many more people on the path than there already were.
Tip #6: Visit the Temple
The Gunung Lebah Temple sits at the heart of the place where the Cerik and Wos Rivers meet to form the Campuhan River. You’ll pass the temple at the start of your hike, and you may have the opportunity to enter it.
I did the ridge walk on a Sunday, and Gunung Lebah was closed when I passed it at 10:30 am. But when I returned at 12:00 pm, its doors were open, equipped with a donation box for tourists wanting to enter.
I’m not sure if there’s a rhyme or reason for Gunung Lebah’s hours of operation for visitors. But should you wish to enter, be sure to have 20k IDR per person on you, for the donation box is on the honor system; no one is there to give you change.
Women and men need to put on a sarong (a cloth that wraps around the waist) if they wear shorts. The temple has sarong beside the donation box you can borrow for your visit.
Below are some other rules the temple has:
- Photo taking is allowed without flash
- Don’t enter the main courtyards unless you intend to pray
- Don’t try to pass into the restricted areas (those areas will be obvious)
- Women can’t enter the temple when they have their period
- Full Balinese traditional outfits must be worn to attend temple ceremonies and special events
If you’ve already visited other temples, these rules will feel like second nature, as they’re standard for most temples in Bali.
Tip #7: Walk All the Way Into Town
So, you’ve walked from Ibah, across the ridge, and to the gate of the small town on the other side.
Whatever you do, don’t turn around. The town offers a glimpse into more local Balinese living than you’ll find in the immediate area around downtown Ubud.
There are a handful of shops selling locally made artwork, places to buy water and fresh-squeezed juice, and plenty of warungs (family-owned restaurants). The street is blissfully quiet, with only the occasional scooter passing by.
If you’re too tired to explore the town, which sits on a single road (Jl. Bangkiang Sidem), you can take a scooter taxi and enjoy the views from there.
I recommend walking until at least Karsa Kafe, which is the official end of the Campuhan Ridge Walk.
Along the way, you’ll see those coveted rice fields. And if you stop to eat at Karsa Kafe or one of the nearby warungs, you can have a view from them while you eat.
Karsa Kafe is the local hot spot because it has three thatched palm room huts in a pond where you can have your personal place to dine for prices as cheap as fast food in the U.S.
Even if there isn’t a hut available, Karsa offers excellent views of the ponds and rice fields from their other tables. But you can also head next door where there’s a warung with two huts perched in a different pond.
Tip #8: Pack Accordingly
We’ve already established that you’ll need to pack sun gear for your trip, given that little shade is available on the Campuhan Ridge Walk.
Be sure to bring an umbrella or poncho too. This is Bali, after all.
Water is essential as well. But I went more overboard than necessary, given that the walk was shorter than I expected.
Plus, there’s not that long of a period when you’ll be 100% without access to buying drinks.
After you walk past the temple, there’s a small shop at the beginning of the trek where you can buy water. Then, once you enter the town, you’ll have every drink imaginable available at your fingertips.
Of course, you don’t want to get stuck in the middle of the ridge sweating in the heat and not having water. So, bring H2O. But don’t break your back by lugging around liters upon liters of it.
Tip #9: Bring Some Change
There’s no fee to do the Campuhan Ridge Walk. And from my experience, no one will stop to ask you for money along the way.
Nevertheless, having small rupiahs on you is helpful.
Small bills will make it easy for you to donate to the temple if you wish to visit, buy that extra water bottle, or tip your server at the end of your meal.
The reality is that it’s always a good idea to have small change on you when traveling in Bali. Many warung and shop owners won’t have change for a 100k bill if you’re making a small purchase.
Tip #10: You Can Start the Opposite Way
It’s most common for people to walk the Campuhan Ridge from Ibah Villas & Suites, making their way to the village on Jl. Bangkiang Sidem.
But you can do it the opposite way.
Walking the Campuhan Ridge from Jl. Bangkiang Sidem to the Gunung Lebah Temple is an excellent option if you’re concerned about completing this round-trip hike.
You can have a scooter take you to the start point of the hike on the Jl. Bangkiang Sidem side, allowing you to see all of the same sights, but only once, as you walk to the Gungung Lebah Temple.
From there, you’ll only be a 10-minute walk away from the Ubud Royal Palace.
Tip #11: You Don’t Have to Walk Back
Going off the idea above, if you arrive in the village after walking the Campuhan Ridge one way and decide that you’re too tired, you can hop on a scooter and ride home from there.
The town isn’t as packed with scooters as Ubud’s center, but you’ll still be able to easily find someone willing to give you a ride.
Doing this also offers the benefit of seeing more of Ubud’s countryside on your way back to your accommodation.
Tip #12: See the Rivers From the Bridge
A downside to the Campuhan Ridge Walk is that you can’t see where the rivers meet. Instead, you’ll need to head to the bridge.
And, no, I’m not talking about the bridge you’ll walk across when starting the hike.
The bridge sits a stone’s throw away from the entrance to Ibah Villas & Suites on Jl. Raya Sanggingan when you’re heading towards the Blanco Museum.
Admittedly, it’s not the most stunning vista; electrical lines entangle the view.
But it’s an easy and free stop before or after your ridge walk.
Tip #13: Know How To Visit the Rivers
Should you wish to walk to the base of the rivers for mediation or purification purposes, you have two options—taking stairs that lead by the bridge to the ridge walk or stairs from the bridge for the cars on Jl. Raya Sanggingan street.
There’s also a staircase inside the temple that leads down to the water, directly at the point where the two rivers meet. But I get the feeling that’s only for Hindu worshipers.
Remember, these rivers are sacred to the Balinese.
Practice respectful behavior and only visit them for meditation or purification.
Tip #14: Visit Meru Restaurant
Meru is a restaurant that’s easy to miss when you’re on Jl. Raya Sanggingan and walking towards the bridge where you can see the point where the rivers meet.
It has an unassuming sign that offers no indication of just how expensive and upper-class this restaurant is—most of their meals and drinks start at over 100k IDR.
Of course, those are still cheap prices by western standards. But if, like me, you’ve been dining at warungs, it’s sticker shock at its finest.
That said, even if you’re only willing to spend 45k IDR on a bread basket on the rooftop bar at Meru, I highly recommend a visit. The views you’ll get of Gunung Lebah Temple are nothing short of stunning.
Be warned, however, that the rooftop bar doesn’t offer the best views. Instead, the main lower-level dining area is where you’ll receive the best temple views.
The lower-level dining area is closed on Sundays, so plan accordingly.
How To Get to the Campuhan Ridge Walk
Getting to the Campuhan Ridge Walk isn’t hard. But once you arrive at Ibah Villas & Suites, the small and unobvious signs can make it difficult to know where to go.
So, below is a step-by-step guide for arriving at the Campuhan Ridge Walk starting point.
Step 1: Go to Ibah Villas & Suites
Ibah Villas & Suites sits on Jl. Raya Campuhan, a 10-minute straight-shot walk from the Ubud Royal Palace. And ten minutes is generous if you’re a fast walker; I did it in about seven.
Step 2: Head to the Left
When you arrive at Ibah’s entrance, there’s a fork in the driveway—one paved area leads down a steep hill to the left, and the other up a steep hill to the right.
The right driveway has a gate and an Ibah employee who manages it; the left driveway is the one you want.
For anyone concerned about their ability to do the round-trip Campuhan Ridge Walk, note that you’ll need to walk back up that driveway when returning. It can feel beastly to the tired walker.
Step 3: Look for Stairs to the Right
When you see a scooter parking lot to your left, look to your right and there’ll be a staircase leading down away from the road. Take those stairs.
You’ve gone too far if you cross the bridge over the river. The staircase starts higher up on the road, but it dips below the bridge right at the point when you’d cross over it.
Step 4: Follow the Trail
Congratulations! You’re now on the Campuhan Ridge Walk trail. It’s impossible to get lost on this trail; it’s a straight shot to the village.
You’ll first come across the Gunung Lebah Temple to your left, as seen in the photo above.
Most likely, other people will be in front of you or shortly behind you. So, you can always follow them if you’re unsure where to go or ask one of Ubud’s many friendly locals for help.
FAQs About the Campuhan Ridge Walk
Still have questions about walking Campuhan Ridge? I’ll do my best to answer them here. But if I don’t address your question, leave a comment at the end of this article.
What time does the Campuhan Ridge Walk open?
There are no opening or closing hours for the Campuhan Ridge Walk. The path isn’t gated, so you can walk it 24/7.
Of course, it’s best to walk during daylight hours. That way, you can enjoy the views and see the town with its shops and warungs open.
How long does it take to walk Campuhan Ridge?
It’ll take you anywhere from 20 – 30 minutes one way and 40 – 60 minutes round-trip to walk Campuhan Ridge. If you stop to shop or eat at a warung, you’ll need to add more time to this.
It usually doesn’t take more than two hours to walk Campuhan ridge, including stops and a meal.
Where does the Campuhan Ridge Walk start?
The Campuhan Ridge Walk officially starts at Ibah Villas & Suites and ends at the village on the other side of the ridge. But you can also start this walk from the village, heading towards Ibah.
Is there an entrance fee for the Campuhan Ridge Walk?
There’s no entrance fee for the Campuhan Ridge Walk. While the Campuhan Ridge Walk price is free, I encourage you to spend some money in the village to support the local economy.
Will people try to sell you things on the Campuhan Ridge Walk?
From my experience, no one will try to sell you things on the Campuhand Ridge Walk. There aren’t any vendors on the ridge. Furthermore, I found the locals in the village to be laid-back with their sales tactics, making for a pleasant experience.
Is the Campuhan Ridge Walk safe?
The Campuhan Ridge Walk is very safe. As a solo female doing this hike, I never felt in danger. People were always in view, and the village felt safe and peaceful.
When is the best time to do the Campuhan Ridge Walk?
Some of the best times to do the Campuhan Ridge Walk are at sunrise and sunset. That also allows you to avoid the heat of the day.
Do you see rice terraces on the Campuhan Ridge Walk?
You won’t see rice terraces on the Campuhan Ridge Walk. Instead, you’ll see rice fields. Unlike the Tegallalang Rice Terraces, the rice in Campuhan grows on mostly flat, single-stories of soil.
Check out my guide on nine incredible rice fields in Bali for more details on the differences between rice fields, rice terraces, and rice paddies.
Can you ride a scooter on the Campuhan Ridge Walk?
No, you can’t ride a scooter on the Campuhand Ridge Walk. However, you can ride a scooter up to Ibah Villas & Suites and then get on another scooter when you arrive in the village at the end of the trek.
Can you do the Camphuan Ridge Walk in reverse?
Yes, you can do the Campuhan Ridge Walk in reverse. This is an especially good option for people who don’t want to do the hike round-trip, as you’ll still get to enjoy all of the views.
Is it easy to get lost on the Campuhan Ridge Walk?
You don’t have to worry about getting lost on the Campuhan Ridge Walk. There’s a single path, and it’s easy to follow, given that it’s composed of visually appealing cement blocks.
Just watch your footing because spaces between the cement blocks make it easy to trip.
Is there scooter parking at Campuhan Ridge Walk?
I didn’t drive a scooter to the Campuhan Ridge Walk. But the day I visited, they were excepting paid scooter parking in the lot across from the stairs leading to the start of the hike.
That said, other people have had issues parking their scooters at the start of the walk. So, I recommend asking the gate guard at Ibah Villas & Suites should you have any doubts.
Is the Campuhan Ridge Walk Worthwhile?
If you have extra time in Ubud, the Campuhan Ridge Walk is worthwhile.
However, I wouldn’t make it the center of your plans if you have limited time in Ubud. In my opinion, it’s worth prioritizing the Tegallalang Rice Terraces, Elephant Cave, and temples (including Gunung Lebah) before Campuhan.
If you have questions about the Campuhan walk, leave a comment and I’ll do my best to help.
I’d also love to hear from you after you do this walk. What did you think of its difficulty? Has anything changed since my visit?
P.S.—Do you want to see monkeys during your stay in Bali? If so, don’t miss my guide on 15 must-know Ubud Monkey Forest tips.