In 2005, I jumped in a plane to start my journey to Southeast Asia and a ticket to Bali, an island that promised to be a haven of culture and natural beauty. At the time, my knowledge of this distant island was pieced together through documentaries and the vivid stories of the Lonely Planet, as Instagram and social media had not yet shrunk the world. Two places attracted me for an authentic Balinese experience: Uluwatu, with its majestic temple perched on a cliff overlooking the Indian Ocean, and Ubud, the cultural heart of Bali, nestled among verdant rice paddies. Back then, Bukit Peninsula, south of Bali, was a sparsely populated area with early signs of development like Pecatu and Dreamland Beach. However, Ubud was already a celebrated hub for its art galleries and rejuvenating spas, the epicenter of Balinese culture as I had imagined it.

UBUD the essence of Balinese culture

Fourteen years have flown by since that initial voyage, and the landscape of Bali has undergone profound changes. The island has become a magnet for investors and tourists from every corner of the globe. Amidst this transformation, while places like Canggu, Kuta, and Seminyak have seen fluctuating reputations, often swayed by the fleeting whims of influencers, Uluwatu and Ubud have risen above, now leading in terms of occupancy rates..

Despite the chatter among expats and long-term visitors willing to stay now in Uluwatu, my intrigue was drawn towards Ubud. I wanted to delve into why it had become an increasingly popular choice for investment and we had to deal more and more investments there. My recent time in Ubud revealed a bustling town with tourists from India, Europe, America, and Korea. It wasn’t just a matter of numbers or client interest; Ubud radiated a magnetism that drew people from all over the world.

Ubud as an investment place

Ubud has indeed been the last few years the place for Yoga, wellness and other mystical trends. Despite the trends, it seems that Ubud is this place magneting anybody to visit once in their trip. I was talking to a developer recently who also had the same understanding. Everybody includes UBUD on its list. People might choose to stay in Seminyak one night OR in Canggu but UBUD is always combined in the trip while other areas are an option. UBUD is not an option in a trip and it is a MUST. By correlation the occupancy rate makes UBUD a stable investment place in terms of recurring revenue.

The essence of travel has evolved. Visitors from hubs like Frankfurt, Paris, London, Delhi, or LA are not traversing the globe to stay in a small apartment. They seek an escape, an experience that transcends the ordinary. While some developers have eyed apartments as a lucrative venture, the true essence of travel lies in its ability to offer an escape from the day to day, a gateway to new experiences. Influencers may flock to Seminyak’s beaches for the perfect picture or story, but the majority of travelers yearn for tranquility and a chance to rejuvenate their souls amidst nature.

As an expat, when family or friends visit us, Ubud is invariably on the showcase list, often bypassing places like Sanur, Nusa Dua, or Kuta. The reason? Ubud has managed to preserve its essence. No place remains frozen in time, untouched by the years, but some manage to retain their core identity amidst the change.

Occupancy rate in Ubud

Average Occupancy rate in UBUD on Airbnb

average occupancy rate on Airbnb in ubud

Average Revenue per listing in USD in UBUD on Airbnb

Average Revenue per listing in USD in UBUD on Airbnb

The trends and numbers paint a clear picture, but Ubud’s charm transcends data. It offers a piece of its soul to every traveler who wanders its streets and rice fields by walking, motorbike or cars. Ubud remains a testament to the enduring appeal of places that manage to balance growth with the preservation of their cultural and natural heritage. It stands as a beacon for sustainable tourism, where development and tradition harmoniously coexist. In a world that’s constantly changing.

Ubud offers a slice of stability, a reminder of the timeless beauty and cultural depth that travel can unveil. The numbers and statistics below show that it is not just a feeling or an impression. Despite the absolute value, the trend is here and shows that Ubud is still Ubud and represents in the heart of travelers an essential part of what is Bali. I am seeking for UBUD to always be UBUD in 14 more years.

The statistic below shows obviously that Seminyak generates more revenue per listing on average than UBUD. However the initial investment is probably half or a third sometimes that the price of a property in Seminyak or south of Bali. The interesting trend here is that Ubud is already generating more revenue than last year while other locations except Seminyak are still below their occupancy rate from far and also in terms of revenue.

Average Occupancy rate in Seminyak on Airbnb Average Occupancy rate in Seminyak on Airbnb Source AirDNA

Average Revenue per listing in USD in Seminyak on Airbnb

Contact us if you want to know more about investment in Ubud Bali.