We regularly visit Ubud in Bali. It’s our home away from home, and we recently enjoyed a massage at Taksu Spa. I’d seen Taksu Spa and Restaurant advertised in numerous magazines and read several online reviews, so decided it was time we checked it out.

Taksu is a Balinese word for spirit and you can feel the tranquillity of this place. Taksu is a cool, peaceful oasis compared to the traffic, markets and busy streets in this area of Ubud.

First impressions

Taksu is so much more than a day spa. We called in to have a look around first because I always like to view a spa in Bali before booking since I’m a little bit fussy about cleanliness.

Walking through the main gate at Taksu, the café area before us looked like a tidy market garden or plant nursery. Tables and chairs are set amongst vegetable beds which are packed with veggies destined for use in the café. The sound of running water irrigating the plants is soothing.

We enjoyed a fresh pressed juice in the garden café while we looked over the spa menu.

The reception staff greeted us with big smiles and were helpful booking our massage treatments. There are so many massage styles to select from, I’d love to sample them all.

TIP: It’s easier to communicate your booking by visiting in person rather than by phone or email when in Bali.

Spa welcome

When we arrived for our massages we were greeted at reception by our spa therapist who escorted us on the longest walk through the garden, along a path, down what felt like 100 stairs, across a stream (where a bridge is being built), and up what felt like another 100 stairs.

I needed a massage after that epic journey. I tried not to think about the climb back after the massage.

The massage room was old, but clean and quiet, with soft music playing as my therapist, Dami, left me to pop on disposable undies and a sarong.

The disposable undies ripped to shreds as I pulled them up. I threw them in the bin, lay down on the comfy bed and put the sarong over me. The sarongs and head towel were clean and fresh and I felt ready for a massage.

Esalen Massage: Yoga for people who can’t be bothered!

I chose the Esalen Massage, which uses slow movement and flowing palming strokes that work on multiple muscles at the same time. The palming strokes move from one part of the body to another giving the feeling of one continuous movement.

The massage started on my feet, legs and buttocks with a wonderful stretching of my thighs. What I really loved was the small amount of oil used, giving a better connection with my skin and requiring less pressure by the therapist for a good, medium-pressure massage.

Soon my back, arms and neck were engaged by a flowing massage that repeatedly covered the areas I needed focused on. As Dami progressed through the flowing massage, she moved my arms and shoulders to stretch them and worked those areas at the same time. I was loving the massage and trying to stay awake, so I could fully experience it.

Soon it was time to turn over for extensive stretching to my feet, ankles, legs and hips. This felt like someone else doing yoga on my body, releasing tension with flowing massage strokes to each area while I was being stretched at the same time.

I knew the massage was coming to an end when every part of my body had been massaged, including my stomach. I love a stomach massage, as it is the area where many people, particularly women hold emotional tension, in the solar plexus area. A stomach massage is an instant boost for the digestive system, lymphatic drainage and the release of emotional tension.

Just when I thought it was all over, Dami moved to the top of the bed. After washing her hands she massaged my face, neck, décolletage and scalp. Divine, is the only way to describe how I felt when she was done.

TIP: Ask to have your stomach massaged next time you’re at a day spa because it’s so good for you and the therapist will be happy to oblige! If you’re female, the therapist will cover your breasts for privacy.

TIP: Forget your body image issues while at the day spa. Therapists don’t look at or care about body shape or size as bodies are our business. Body treatments are what we do, and life would be boring if all our guests were the same shape and size.

Day Spa Details

  • I highly recommend the Esalen massage at Taksu and look forward to going back. It was well worth the stair climb.
  • Refreshments – We also enjoyed staying on for lunch in the gardens. There are some vegan and organic options and the food and surroundings are refreshing.
  • Value for money is excellent at about $65 for a 90-minute massage

Star Rating

Definitely 5 stars for Taksu’s Esalen massage.

Can you recommend any amazing day spa experiences in Bali?

I’m a paying guest at all day spas I review for Day Spa Oracle. The spas and therapists are not aware of who I am, what I do, or where I come from. I like it that way; it’s nice to just be me.

I hope this day spa review helps you select day spas and treatments when you travel to Bali.  Experiences like these are how we get to know others and ourselves.