Whatever you do or wherever you are, you have to get out of that place at least once a month. That’s my motto and it works like clockwork that never fails to remind me that it’s time to travel again. But May was different. I went more than a full month without leaving the house. I can’t believe it myself. I didn’t go anywhere, not even somewhere near like Rizal or Laguna. Oh well, I was sick so that’s an exemption.
Third day in Seminyak, which was our base in Bali, and we had to get out. We were so over the trendy shops and coolio cafes and we were not about to spend another day in serene UbudUbudUbud. We needed to go somewhere rugged and “rural” for a change. And that day found us in Canggu.
Canggu is the surfing destination in Bali. At least, that’s what initially comes to mind when you mention Canggu. It’s just a 15-20 minute drive from Seminyak so even if you’re staying in Seminyak, you can spend a full day of surf and drinks without worrying how to head back to your villa or hotel.
Deus ex Machina
First on the agenda was to buy souvenirs for family and friends at Deus Ex Machina. I had to be really careful here and set a budget for if I didn’t do that, I’d come home broke. There were a lot of things I wanted to buy here. Shirts, caps, sunglasses, stickers, including surf boards and motorcycles (not really)! Deus ex Machina is a surf & bike shop, cafe and bar housed in this one huge space in Canggu. It’s one of those places you should never miss when visiting Bali. They even hold movie screenings here at night. And parties here are said to epic!
From Deus ex Machina we went to Tanah Lot. Tanah Lot is one of the most popular landmarks in Bali. Tourists by the busload come here for the amazing sunset while locals consider Pura Tanah Lot as a significant sea temple. During low tide, you can even walk to the temple although non-Balinese people are not allowed to enter. It was noon when we arrived here and we were already feeling a bit hungry. We didn’t get to explore as thoroughly as we could have. So my suggestion is to visit in the late afternoon when the sun is not as harsh and bright.
After the temple, we decided it was time for lunch and some drinks. We were torn between Betelnut Cafe and Old Man’s. Old Man’s won, obviously. The fact that it’s fronting the ocean, a cafe that serves a good cappuccino just can’t win over. It was just too hot that day and the promise of a good coffee wasn’t cutting it.
Old Man’s in Batu Balong beach is an open air surfers’ hang out. More than the food, the bar i s probably why surfers flock to this place. There’s also ice cream, and in hot Bali, anything to cool you down is definitely a crowd pleaser. I didn’t get to try the ice cream though but I’m sure it’s good. I had a Frozen Strawberry Margarita instead. So refreshing to drink while watching surfers catch the strong waves.
Believe it or not, we only went to these 3 spots in Canggu. Although we still had more than enough time to explore the neighborhood, I wanted to go to a local grocery to purchase pasalubong. I always go to a local supermarket no matter which country we visit and buy items such as chips, chocolates and noodles we don’t normally have back home. We also needed to devote at least 3 hours for our Uluwatu trip later that day.
If I had an extra day in Bali, I would include the following in our itinerary.
- Have coffee at Betelnut Cafe and try one of their wraps.
- Visit the Samadi Sunday Market. It’s a small market that carries a mix of organic produce, handicrafts, homemade products as well as jewelry and accessories.
- Bike or ride a horse around the village or on the beach.
- Surf the famous waves of Canggu.
- Sunset cocktails at Echo Beach House.
- Have dinner at Red Salt Cafe just a few meters away from Echo Beach.
Next time I would really love to stay here in Canggu. Accommodation is cheaper compared to Seminyak and it would be nice to experience a little bit of rough and rugged.
Not fond of DIY tours? You can join one of these tours, and don’t forget to compare hotels, vacation rentals, rooms, or even homes for your trip before you go. And never leave home without Travel Insurance!