* Canggu *
my favourite place in Bali…. It’s where you can learn to surf, eat at a variety of cool healthy cafes and watch the sunset to live Dj’s at epic open air bars.
Places to definitely not miss!….
- The Lawn – the perfect spot to listen to live music, eat great food, watch the sunset and chill on the hippy style rugs. There’s also free use of their pool which overlooks the beach.
- Pretty Poison – Grab a drink and sit around the skating bowl to watch the pros – sometimes has live music too.
- La Laguna – it’s like entering a mini festival, it’s all gypsy boho style with a lawn for chilling and drinking, also an amazing restaurant which backs onto the beach (definitely worth booking for a sunset meal)
- Finns – my favourite beach club, pay for a beanbag next to the pool, and get drunkkkk. They often have live music there and party nights.
- Love anchor market – go on a Saturday when all the stalls are open. Great for jewellery and clothes (always remember to haggle the price down!)
If you have more time-
Old Manns – great bar right on the beach front. Also where main party’s happen for full moon.
Deus– a place for everything: a motorcycle workshop, surfboard shaping bay, artist studio, gallery, bar/restaurant and retail space.
Black shores – often has live music or good Dj’s playing.
Places to eat.
- The Shady shack – my personal favourite spot for a smoothie. Great for breakfast and lunch. Loads of outside seating. The health shots are a hangover savour
- Betelnut – same owner as shadyshack, Mexican style food.
- Cloud 9 – get a bean bag outside which overlooks the rice paddies and watch people scooter down the precarious road! (There’s also a slackline and balance board to have a go on)
- Cafe Vìda – great food for any time of the day. (Great selection of health shots too)
- Milk & Madu – inside and outside seating
- Bungalow living cafe- such a great home shop for boho buys and also has a cafe
If you have more time I would also reccomend – organic cafe, avocado cafe, Eden cafe, Moana, Sprout, machinery cafe, bali bowls, cinta, peloton, crate.
Places to stay-
- Aston canggu beach resort – it’s pretty ugly from the outside but it’s in the BEST location (right next to the beach and on the same road as most the cafes and bars I’ve reccomended) it also has a great rooftop pool with super comfy bed pods and includes a breakfast in their rooftop conservatory which overlooks the sea
- The Haven suites Bali – the most beautiful rooms which back on to the huge pool. Very shoreditch house and located round the corner from Finns. It’s a bumpy scooter ride to the road where all the main cafes are but I’m so happy we had a few days staying there. You also have free access of their bicycles which is great if you only want to go up the road to Bali bowls for brekky.
* Seminyak *
Just up the road from Canggu – home to loads of beach clubs and restaurants.
Beach clubs – there’s a long stretch of beach clubs right next to each other…. W has a great bar, potato head is cool to have a look around but is always super busy and difficult to get a bed, then there’s Alila – great for chilling on beanbags and often has a live Dj. I found the staff much more friendly and we didn’t have to book a bed.
Double six – worth going to for a drink, it’s a rooftop bar where the booths are submerged in water.
Cocoon– I didn’t go but got told it was a cool bar to drink at.
La Favela – this bar is unreal inside, I would highly reccomend for a drink and dance!
Places to dine in the Evening –
- Da Maria – Italian with constant tunes playing (it kicks off late at night)
- The Bistrot – amazing food and cocktails – decor is super cool.
- Motel mexicola – for Mexican food and music
- Sardine – I didn’t go but go told it was a good spot for a romantic dinner
We stayed in the Dash hotel which was perfectly located next to Potato head and organic cafe but I’m pretty sure it’s main interior theme was sex. I’m talking word art on the ceiling above the bed and drinks named wet pussy in the hotel bar…very classy. I’m sure there’s better hotels to stay at! (You could even stay in Canggu and taxi in and out!)
NOTE- if you are driving a scooter in Seminyak make sure you wear a helmet as police will catch you out and make you pay a fine.
* Ubud *
Land of the peace and love people. if you want to buy things for the home, here is the perfect place. Sooo many beautiful shops (lots of carved cow skulls for cheaaaap….it sounds gross but they’re beautiful)
Things to do
- Monkey forest sanctuary – this place is amazing! Get one of the workers to help you take a photo with the monkeys (they’ll sit you down, give you a banana and tell you what to do!… IMPORTANT INFO- do NOT look at the monkeys directly in their eyes especially when they’re sat on you, they see it as an aggressive move and will go for you!
- Get a tour guide for the day -to take you to the holy water shrines (our guide told us so much about this place which was super interesting), Kopi Lewak coffee tour (the famous poo coffee!)…they should also show you this massive organic farm filled with every type of fruit and herb you can think of) …and my favourite place to be shown Tegalalang rice paddies (where they leave you to roam for as long as you want, it’s stunnnning!)
- Mount Batur – we didn’t do this hike as the weather wasn’t good so we wouldn’t see anything! Only worth doing if weather is lovely 🙂
Places to eat
- Clear cafe – My favourite place in ubud. The food is delicious and so cheap, the enterance and interior is super cool and also has a spa upstairs. (Note-You won’t find any meat or alcohol on the menu here)
- Kafe – great food and again super cheap
- Atman – fab for healthy desserts
* Uluwatu *
Beautiful cliff top views and hidden beaches
- Green bowl beach – there’s a gazillion steps to walk down but it’s definitely worth it
- Balangan – the largest stretch of beach with a few beach bars and bikini shop
Places to go-
- Single fin – for a Sunday Sesh! Dance and watch the sun go down, there’s three floors to this place and is so much fun!!
- Karma kandara – this place is ridiculous. Amazing infinity pool overlooking the most incredible view. You can get a cable car down to the beach (monday evenings they have as a movie night on the beach)
- If you wander up the beach from Karma kandara you will get to Sunday’s beach club- where you can rent a paddle board
- Alila – great place for chilling, has good house Dj
- Ayana – beautiful resort where you can dine in beautiful restaurants. Go to the rock bar for a drink (don’t go for food as the restaurants in Ayana are much better and less expensive…the rock bar is perfect to have one drink or eve just to go down their and see)
Random tip- there are lots of stray dogs in uluwatu which can sometimes get aggressive at night, I learnt from the locals to pick up a rock and lob it towards them to scare them away!
* Nusa Lembongan *
A beautiful island 30 minutes from Bali. The boat leaves from Sanur and docks at mushroom bay. I would reccomend buying your tickets on the day as you can haggle them down 🙂 we spent 200,000 there and 175,000 back. (Both were fast boats)
This is DEFINITELY the better alternative to the Gilli Ts (I’d say Gilli T is perfect for my 18 year old self. Lots of partying in cheap beach bars.)
Nusa Lembongan and Nusa Penida are beautiful and classy.
Places to go
- Sandy bay beach club – lovely restaurant and free use of pool overlooking a little beach.
- Cliff jumping from Mahana point – you can only do this early in the morning when it’s deep enough to jump in.
- Beaches to visit- mushroom beach (not where you dock in, it’s around the corner and sort of hidden), dream beach (where the devils tears is)
- Manta ray snorkelling trip – this will take you to manta point/crystal bay/manta bay) and you will 100% see mantas! All these locations are offf the coast of Nusa Penida which is suppose to be stunning and has a great view point. If I had more time I would’ve loved to stay a night there.
Places to eat-
- The deck
- Hai bar and grill – who also screen free outside movies on certain nights
- Indiana kenangan
I would reccomend staying somewhere super close to mushroom beach where you get dropped off, so you don’t have to walk far with your bag then you can rent a scooter to explore this amazing island!