There’s no better way to become immersed in Balinese culture and traditions than a visit to Bali’s best rice terraces (often referred to as “rice fields” or “rice paddies”). Amongst the oldest and most picturesque in all of Asia, a visit to some of Bali’s most famous rice terraces, like Tegalalang and Jatiliwuh, is one of the best things to do in Bali.
When choosing which rice terrace is best to visit, the main consideration is typicallyyour location. Whilst some of the rice terraces in this list are truly spectacular, it’s preferable to not have to drive many hours to get there! There are rice fields all over Bali, and it’s not usually difficult to find a popular rice field located near most major towns like Ubud and Canggu. Other factors to consider when deciding which rice field is best to visit include the type of visual landscape you most want to see, proximity to other landmarks, and any value-add experiences on offer like swings, markets or cafes.
In terms of the best time to visit Bali’s rice terraces, they are typically at their lushest and greenest between April and November, but provide stunning scenes all year due to succession planting.
Rice is a staple food in Bali and has been grown and cultivated here for more than two thousand years. Bali’s rice fields are considered sacred, with many statues, temples and rituals dedicated to Dewi Sri, the goddess of rice and fertility.
Bali’s rice fields rely on the unique Subak irrigation system, which dates back to the 9th century and is World Heritage Listed by UNESCO. Subak allows water management, preserves biodiversity and reduces fertiliser and pesticide use, contributing positively to the environment while providing farmers access to good water without compromising quality or productivity. Subak is tied to Tri Hita Karana (literally: “three causes of wellbeing”), a Balinese philosophy which emphasises the connection between humans, agriculture and spirituality.
The three best rice terraces in Bali are as follows.
1. Tegallalang: Tegallalang Rice Terrace in Bali is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, offering incredible views of its visually delightfu shaped ricefields. Located 20 minutes north of Ubud in the Gianyar Regency, Tegallang is Bali's most famous rice terrace. Many visitors to Bali stop here to enjoy giant swings, photograph opportunities and ziplining, in addition to the amazing views.
2. Jatiluwih: Jatiluwih Rice Terrace is Bali's largest rice field, covering 600 hectares on the slopes of the Batukara mountain range. The views are breathtaking, and the concrete pathways are ideal for families, who often choose to rent bicycles and ride their way through. Aerial photograph shots are available for a small fee.
3. Sidemen: Sidemen Rice Rice Terraces, located about an hour's drive east of Bali, is a less touristy spot offering incredible views of rice terraces, which cascade across the slopes of Mount Agung, Bali’s highest mountain.
For our full list and more information about Bali's best rice fields and terraces, read on below!