Just north of Kerobokan, Canggu is surfer’s paradise, with long beaches and bays that get consistently good surf. Head down any of the small laneways that lead to the water, and you will see rice fields galore, as well as a smattering of casual cafes, warungs and restaurants, gorgeous luxury villas and new hotel developments that seem to be popping up like mushrooms. Although the area seems to be on its way to becoming the next Seminyak or Kerobokan, you can still find pockets of natural beauty here and of course, the stellar surf breaks Canggu is famous for.
Follow the coast northwest of Canggu, and you will reach Pura Tanah Lot, one of Bali’s most iconic and important temples. ‘Tanah’ means earth or land and ‘Lot’ means sea, so the name translates to ‘Temple of the earth and sea’. This is an apt moniker, considering the the temple rests on a jagged outcropping of rock in the sea that can only be reached at low tide. Many myths shroud this ancient temple, including the belief that poisonous sea snakes protect the site, and that couples who visit will inevitably break up. Although non-Balinese people are not allowed inside the actual temple, everyone is welcome to enjoy the spectacular sight of the sun sinking into the ocean behind the outline of multi-tiered temple tower.
Things to Do
Surfing is the number one pastime in Canggu, and there are many beaches where you can hit the waves. Pantai Batu Bolong is particularly popular, as there is a large parking area next to the beach and great waves offshore. A single strip of warungs lines the back of the parking lot, so you can fuel up on nasi goreng and sunset beers after a day out on the water. Pantai Pererenan is slightly less crowded, so head here for deserted sands and waves that you can claim as your own.
If the ocean and beach start to tire, the Canggu Club offers plenty of outdoor activities, including croquet on the expansive lawns, tennis, polo, football, squash and swimming in the beautiful pool. Spend the day out in the fresh air, let the kids splash around in the kiddies pool, pamper yourself at the spa or enjoy sunset cocktails and fine Asian and international cuisine at the restaurant and pub. The club is a members only venue, but day passes are available on request.
For some of the best BBQ seafood dinners on the island, head to Echo Beach, a rocky strip of sand just around a headland from Pantai Batu Bolong. The surf breaks are great here, which means you get plenty of sun-kissed surfers during the day, as well as beginners testing out the waters with the instructors from the Canggu Surf School. By night, the waterfront restaurants and bars offer great drink specials and fabulous spreads of fresh seafood served with tempting sides like potato salad, mie goreng, deviled eggs and crisp veggies.
Canggu attracts a good mix of surfers, families, couples and single travellers. The vibe here is laid-back and quiet, so you also find many expats who settle down in the area to enjoy the sedate lifestyle and beautiful beaches.