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Like many travelers, I was shocked and amazed – in the worst possible way – upon arriving to Bali for the first time last year. Where were the picturesque beaches, the relics of migratory Hinduism and the laid-back vibe that drew millions of annual tourists here in the first place? The reality of Bali seemed so far removed from the myth.
And, more importantly, where the eff was Julia Roberts’ cute villa? (I was in search of her sexy Brazilian man, too, but let’s be realistic here.) I wanted to find where Julia Roberts had filmed the movie “Eat, Pray, Love” in Bali.
The Bali you encounter when you first arrive at Denpasar International Airport couldn’t be farther from the one depicted in “Eat, Pray, Love,” from steel-grey waters and trash-covered beaches in Kuta, to the disproportionate numbers of foreigners in could-be-charming places like Seminyak, to the blatant commercialism that has nearly wiped out the semblance of anything local around the island. It’s hard to imagine, upon arriving there, why Julia Roberts would hang out in Bali, let alone film the movie “Eat, Pray, Love” here.
The good news is that bits and pieces of Julia Roberts’ Bali are within your reach. Today I’m going to talk about my favorite of them, the Ubud region, which is home to the lush rice terraces, hindu temples and the gives you the opportunity to get up-close and personal with monkeys. It’s at least possible to imagine Julia Roberts’ Bali scenes from “Eat, Pray, Love” having been filmed here.
Ubud is beautiful, and is probably the closest place on the island you’ll find to the Bali Julia Roberts explored during the movie “Eat, Pray, Love.” Unfortunately, however, most of the rest of Bali is absolutely disgusting – you wouldn’t want to eat, pray or love there, even if Julia Roberts was with you in Bali!
Where to Stay in Julia Roberts’ Bali
You’ll probably remember, from the movie, that Julia Roberts stayed in a charming villa located near a rice paddy. Ubud is full of these types of accommodations, some of the best of which include Temuku Villas Ubud and Samkhya Villas.
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