A GUIDE TO BALI’S BEST PLACES TO WORKOUT
Just mention of Bali cues images of holistic, healthy living.
People come to Bali to heal and work on themselves for a reason.
With endless wellness retreats, studios hosting some of the best teachers in the world, a never-ending roster of class and workshop options, and mega spiritual vibes, Bali is the place to be if you’re looking for a healthy holiday, or trying to create the best version of yourself.
Whether you’re in Bali for holiday or to live for a few months, staying fit (or getting in shape) will be a cinch. On an island with a heavy expat population, options are varied and plentiful.
You can expect prices to be a fraction of what you’d pay in the Western world. By way of example, a CrossFit drop-in in the US or UK can easily range from $20-30 USD per session. In Canggu, an entire week of unlimited CrossFit classes costs $30 USD. Expect to see similar savings on yoga classes, and gym memberships.
And, with Classpass’ recent launch in Bali, there’s bound to be more options than ever in 2020 and beyond.
Bali’s Best Places to Workout: My Favourite Places for Getting Fit in Balinese Paradise
CrossFit (Canggu): I’m preferential to S2S, a smaller, tight-knit CrossFit community in central Berawa. Credited with bringing CrossFit to Bali back in 2013, I love the team and programming here, and always drop in for at least a week of classes every time I’m in Bali. CrossFit Wanderlust is also a great option, only a short scooter ride from the main bits of Berawa or Canggu. Wanderlust is known for being a much larger box, which may be right up your alley if big group workouts are your jam
HIIT, TRX Classes (Canggu, Seminyak): Google the best places near where you’re staying, Seminyak, in particular, has some seriously swanky studios.
From outdoor HIIT in Canggu to speciality studios (enter Odyssey Movement, Avenue Fitness, Nirvana Strength, Motion Fitness), offering a rotating array of small group classes, speciality classes are ever-expanding. In fact, it’s my opinion, these classes and studio amenities rival that of any major city
Running Outside: I’m not super keen on the prospect of running outside when I’m in Bali, solely because of the amount of stray dogs- some are nice and in need of a major cuddle, others- not so much.
But, if you do decide to run outside, you can, of course, stick to the side of the road in Canggu or sidewalks in Ubud, or choose to head places a bit more scenic.
Two places I used to love walking that would be perfect for running- the beach in Canggu during sunset, and the Campheon Ridge trail in Ubud.
Gyms (Ubud): There are a handful of gyms around the island- most of which are outdated equipment and no-air conditioning.
Upscale hotels will have nice, small-scale amenities.
My favourite gym, which I called my go-to for the three months I lived in Bali was Ubud Fitness.
Said to be the best gym on the island, it’s mid-size, with moderately new equipment- some things are in better shape than others.
Expect to find complete cardio and weight equipment, as well as boxing, squash, aerobics and more. Best yet, there’s strong air-conditioning and WiFi, making it easy to access online workouts if that’s part of your training. And, with flexible pass options, you can go for a day, a week or longer.
Ecstatic Dance (Ubud): No trip to Bali is really complete without trying a free form dance class.
You’ll see these classes advertised at all the major wellness hubs- Sayuri, Earth Cafe and Yoga Barn, just to name a few. They usually occur at night, and often there’s a specific reservation process, so be sure to ask questions if you’re new.
And, if you’re visiting Ubud during a full moon, consider joining the legendary full moon parties at Akasha. Few better ways to feel connected to the earth, and each other.
Yoga: Spirituality is rooted in Balinese culture and the Hindu religion, so it’s no surprise that world-class, dreamy yoga studios are plentiful on the island.
This tropical paradise marries the healing power of yoga with the energy of the ancient temples, and deeply rooted religion and culture. Bali is a literal oasis of peace for the body, mind and soul.
Favourite Studios in Ubud-
- Yoga Barn: More than a simple studio, Yoga Barn offers healing, massage therapy, wellness, and community. With seven yoga studios and over 100 yoga, meditation, and dance classes per week, it’s paradise on Earth. As much as I love Yoga Barn and was a regular there, their class make-up is a bit different from other studios I visited in Bali- more visitors and tourists, also larger sizes, which can mean less 1:1 time with instructors. That said, I strongly recommend hitting up Yoga Barn for a class (or several) during your time in Bali, it’s a vibrant community of high-vibe people
- Intuitive Flow: On Penestanan hill, you’ll find an intimate and airy shall that overlooks the lush Balinese jungle. The classes are beautiful, with options bending traditional yoga and ancient Balinese teachings
- Radiantly Alive: With three studios and a weekly workshop rotating schedule, Radiantly Alive is an excellent option for anyone looking for yoga in the heart of Ubud town. With smaller class sizes than Yoga Barn, you’ll get your money’s worth when it comes to atmosphere and attentiveness
- Ubud Yoga House: Located in a quieter area of Ubud, Ubud Yoga House is exactly what you need if you’re looking for yoga flows in stunning nature
- Samadi Bali: Specialising in Ashtanga yoga, this studio teaches traditional yoga
- The Chillhouse: Successfully combining yoga classes with surfing, and body and soul treatments, Chillhouse’s yoga classes are exactly that- chill
- Desa Seni: More than a meditation retreat, if you want to discover traditions and local culture in Indonesia, this is the place to be. I loved taking yin classes here, just a beautiful experience
Note: Most yoga studios provide free mats, props and water. Schedules change monthly, so check websites before you visit for timings and drop in fees.
Other ways of staying fit on the island are only limited to your willingness to try new things, and your time in Bali- there’s stand-up paddle boarding, volcano hiking, rice terrace trekking, surf classes, pole dancing, horseback riding, and more.
Being fit on holiday was never so beautiful, or fun.
What would you add to this list of Bali’s best places to workout?
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