Bali’s rice terraces are pretty iconic and one of the most popular things to see when on the island.
Thanks to the complex, ancient Balinese irrigation system, Subak, the rice fields here are some of the most verdant and luscious in all of South East Asia. Water rushes through the rice plantations via little canals, keeping the fields hydrated and stunningly green.
For many visitors, stopping at one of the breathtaking rice terraces is at the top of their Bali itinerary. And let us tell you, there are plenty to choose from! Between the popular Tegallalang Rice Terraces and the quieter Sideman rice terraces, the island is dripping in incredible landscapes.
These are the rice terraces in Bali that are worth a visit for those outstanding pics you see all over the internet.
Must-See Rice Terraces In Bali
The rice terraces in Bali are magnificent and definitely deserve a spot on your Bali itinerary.
Tegallalang Rice Terraces
If you were to type ‘rice terraces in Bali’ on Google, the number one spot will be Tegallalang on the cusp on Ubud.
Just a 20-minute drive from the centre of the town, the Tegallalang paddy fields get a lot of visitors due to its convenient location and dreamy landscapes. When you wander down the zig zag path to the bottom of the terrace, you’ll be taken aback by the towering fields on either side of you.
Tegallalang rice terraces are probably the most visited of the rice terraces and have been heavily commercialised with a cafe at the top and an entrance fee. There’s even rumours that the farmers working the crops are just there for the donations, not actually working!
There are colourful murals and photo spots throughout the terraces where you can get a cute Insta pic for your feed.
Getting to Tegallalang rice terraces is a straightforward drive via motorbike or car. Make sure you get there early to beat the crowds and enjoy some serenity in the paddies.
Sidemen Rice Terraces
For a quieter rice terrace experience, head to eastern Bali to see the Sidemen rice terraces in Karangasem.
These fields get much fewer tourists, yet are equally as stunning as famous Tegallalang.
You will want to start you Sidemen rice terrace adventures in the early morning. You can wander up and down the bright green tiers, looking over the seemingly endless fields as the sun rises.
A visit to these rice terraces in Bali is a much more local adventure. Many visitors often set aside a few hours to trek through the nature, and stop at the local villages along the way.
To have an immersive experience at the Sidemen rice terraces, you can hire a local guide! They’ll take you on a walking loop while learning about the life and work of the local people living there.
Plus, you’ll even get the chance to sample some of the produce and pick up a few souvenirs from the local stores and market stalls.
The Sidemen rice terraces are a typical stop for tours headed towards the Besakih or Klungkung temples. Immerse in the magic of Bali by taking it slow and enjoying a few days in the area.
Rendang Rice Terraces
If you are staying in East Bali, the rice fields in the quaint village of Rendang are worthy of a visit.
Rendang is located Karangasem, alongside Sidemen, and is the perfect place to relax and unwind in true Balinese fashion. There are gorgeous valleys filled with rice paddies seem to go on for miles as local farmers go about their day.
Many tourists combine the Rendang rice terraces in Bali with a trip to the Telaga Waja white water rapids, defo not to be missed for the adventure seekers.
It is one of the more untouched areas of Bali. As you drive through Rendang, you’ll notice small temples and statues on the way to the rice fields with Mount Agung volcano sitting in the background.
These rice fields are much less built-up than some of the more centrally-located alternatives, making it ideal for those who want to really explore and enjoy a moment of serenity in nature.
Munduk Rice Terraces
More well-known for its mighty waterfalls and as the home of the Ulun Danu Beretan temple, Munduk features its fair share of gorgeous rice terraces.
Sitting quite centrally in the island, there are tons of mesmerizing rice fields, especially if you stay near the Gesing and Gobleg villages.
In Munduk you can find some pretty affordable, stunning guesthouses and hotels that overlook the rice terraces! You can enjoy a scenic hike or two exploring the incredible landscape and basking in the untouched nature.
Entry is free to the main chunk of the rice terraces in Munduk, you can wander the gently sloping fields for as long as you please.
It is located around 2 hours from Canggu and just over an hour and a half from Ubud, though this it calculated without the infamous Bali traffic.
A day trip here is possible, though spending a few days in the area is best to avoid long travel times.
Jatiluwih Rice Terraces
Jatiluwih Rice Terraces are another of the most well-known rice terraces in Bali. Set across over 600 hectares, they are what most people imagine when thinking of the famous Balinese landscapes!
You can find these magnificent rice paddies on the foothills of Mount Batakaru in west Bali, showcasing awe-inspiring green tiers and palm trees for as far as the eye can see.
Biking through the paddies is a popular thing to do for those who love an activity. There are a few different routes to try out. The shortest route, known as the Red Route, stretches for 1.5 km, and the longest trail, the Green Route, is a 5.5 km loop.
Recognized as a UNESCO Cultural Heritage Site, there’s an entrance fee of IDR40.000 which goes towards maintaining the paddies.
Jatiluwih is just over an hour north of Canggu and Ubud, and an hour and 15 minutes south of Munduk. Over the years, it has become an increasingly popular day trip destination, so try to get there as early as you can.
Pererenan Rice Terraces
Somewhat of a hidden gem – for now – the sublime rice fields in Pererenan are lesser known despite being just a short drive from bustling Canggu.
The Pererenan paddies are an excellent place to see authentic, working rice fields. They aren’t tiered terraces, but sprawling fields with the traditional Subak irrigation system. You will find the hard working locals caring for the crops throughout their life cycle.
You can escape the hustle and bustle for a calm walk in nature, looking out over the vast fields.
Less than a 10-minute drive or 30-minute walk from the centre of Canggu, these rice terraces are easy to reach and ideal for a morning trek before the high temperatures kick in.
Tirta Gangga Rice Terraces
Everyone knows Tirta Gangga for being the home of the famous water temple. A stunning, holy spot to visit you can feed koi fish, wander beautiful pathways and take in magnificent Balinese architecture.
The Tirta Gangga rice terraces are an excellent addition to an adventure around the area, with a restaurant situated at the edge of the terraces for a tasty lunch, before wandering through the magnificent, lush nature.
The Bali rice terraces are located in the east of the island, and are quite a drive from Canggu and Seminyak. You will definitely want to make the most of your day trip by adding on some more things to see in the area!
Papuan Rice Terraces
Over on the western side of the island, the Papuan rice terraces are another worth checking out!
Tabanan is a less visited area of Bali that is just a short drive from Canggu and Ubud. Incredibly rural and sprawling, if you are looking to get away from the crowds for exploring and enjoying the nature of Bali – Tabanan is where to go.
A rich area for fruits, spices and vegetation of all kinds, the rice terraces may be the main attraction but there is a lot more to see! Spend some time venturing through the paddies, checking out the local farms and dining over delicious Balinese cuisine at the quaint local warungs.
Papuan rice terraces aren’t on the top of must-visit lists so you are bound to have a more peaceful experience.
There’s an incredible array of beautiful rice terraces in Bali, from popular, easy-to-reach hotspots to lesser-known hidden paradises.
Generally speaking, heading to any of the rice terraces early in the morning is best to get the most out of your visit. The temperatures will be cooler and more bearable, crowds will be significantly smaller, and you will have that hazy, cloudy air that makes it feel more magical.
Be sure to pack all the essentials for your day trip like sunscreen, water, and sunhat!
Whether you want to swing above the steep terraces, trek through the bright fields, or snap some jaw-dropping photos, Bali’s rice terraces should be a must-do on every traveller’s bucket list.
Featured image: Jatiluwih Tabanan sunrise