My recent trip to Ubud gave me the chance to check out some of the budget accommodation options. I quickly reviewed guest houses (homestays) in 3 different areas close to downtown. Firstly I stayed at Puri Jati Homestay on Jl. Hanoman and visited many of the other guesthouses on that street. I visited 3 guesthouses on Jl. Kajeng, the funky little street off of Jl. Raya Ubud. Lastly I checked out some places on a small alley of off Jl. Penestenan, in the west of Ubud.
Needless to say there is a lot of repetition, both in what is offered and price. I don't think reviewing every guesthouse in Ubud is going to reveal any secrets and this brief look gives a realistic view of the scene.
What have we learned from this exercise? Well there are plenty of budget guesthouses, that are 50,000rp and up. They are not in any hotel booker, don't expect to see them on any other website in Bali. Most are extensions of a family compound where the family still lives. An excellent way to observe the culture, right from the start of the day when a family member will give offerings and prayers, to the little bits of life that occur like the preparing of traditional food and religious events.
Most of these places offer a basic room with fan, twin or double beds, hot water, breakfast. Being located downtown makes life a lot easier on people without transport. Another thing is that for people on RTW trips who want to relax as well as explore, when you are only paying $6 a day you won't feel too guilty for not having a productive day.
Staying slightly out of town in Penestenan costs more. People are prepared to pay for that rice field / Bali village feel. There are also some fine hotels in places like Campuhan and Sayan. In fact the Best Hotel in the World (the Four Seasons Sayan) according to Travel & Leisure, is only 15 minutes from downtown.
I have visited very nice place for 150,000rp too, such as Nick's Homestay 2 off of Jl. Raya Ubud. You have plenty of options and I hope the guesthouse guide helped those without Donald Trump's wallet.