Nusa Lembongan: Paradise in Bali

Nusa Lembongan is one of those places that I’m not sure if I should write about. On the one hand I want to tell everyone about this perfect slice of paradise, but on the other hand I want to keep it all to myself and do everything I can to stop anyone else going there.

It’s a tiny island off the southeast coast of Bali. We caught a ferry there from Sanur in mainland Bali; well, it wasn’t really a ferry, more like a giant wooden canoe with a motor, but we couldn’t have been happier when we arrived on the little island. It was like stepping into another world.

We’d spoken to a German couple while we were waiting for the boat and they’d told us that Lembongan was a little ‘uncivilized’ so we were a bit worried before we arrived. I started imagining cannibals and rabid dogs but it was actually just the most peaceful and relaxing place you could wish for. It’s a perfect escape from the crowds of Kuta and a real Robinson Crusoe island experience.

We arrived in Jungutbatu Village as the boat pulled up on the beach. By ‘village’ I was expecting a cluster of shops and bars but it was simply a string of little restaurants along the shore. Behind the shore this there is a narrow but busy road that stretches for about 200m and has little shops and stalls.

The people who live on the island make most of their income from seaweed and everywhere you go there are bundles of it drying in the sun. I had no idea that seaweed could come in so many gorgeous colours until I saw it all.

Nusa Lembongan is also great for diving and one of the reasons we came here was to dive with Manta Rays. We spent 5 days here over Christmas at stayed at The Secret Garden. Our days were mainly spent diving, swinging in a hammock or exploring the island on scooters. We found some amazing little gems like ‘Secret Beach’, ‘Dream Beach’ and ‘The Blue Lagoon’. I recommend hiring a scooter to explore the island and ask a local how to get to these amazing places!

collecting seaweed Nusa Lembongan Bali

Nusa Lembongan Bali

chilling in a hammock in Bali

scooter rides on nusa lembongan

scuba diving with manta rays

Nusa lembongan

Dream Beach

Dream Beach

Things to do in Nusa Lembongan

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  • Visit Dream Beach
  • Visit the Blue Lagoon
  • Go snorkelling or scuba diving with Manta Rays
  • Watch the busy activity on the beach as the locals collect seaweed
  • Hire a scooter and explore the island – there are plenty of lcoals who would be happy to be your guide for the day
  • Find a hammock and a good book. Sit back and relax

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Where to stay in Nusa Lembongan

We stayed at Secret Garden Bungalows which is part of . The bungalows were fairly basic but comfortable with gorgeous gardens and a comfy hammock on each porch. They also made the best jaffles ever. A jaffle is an Australian version of a toastie but with much more cheese – yum. I know this isn’t exactly traditional Indonesian food but after a day spent scuba diving it’s a great little snack! You can also hire scooters from the staff who are working here during the day.

 

 

 

 

 

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16 Comments

  1. September 16, 2013 / 8:52 am

    Ahh when I was on Bali and Lombok a few years ago I met some people raving about Nusa Lembongan. I was gutted that I didn’t have the time to spend a few days there – as does this post! There was also a feature on the seaweed business in Nusa Lembongan on the Indian Ocean programme Simon Reeve did, if anyone was interested.

    • September 17, 2013 / 6:34 pm

      I saw that Simon Reeve program too. Love Simon Reeve – that was a great series.

  2. September 16, 2013 / 11:52 am

    We spent more than a week on Lembongan and we loved it. We stayed at Mushroom Bay, also worth checking out. Our days were filled with laying on the beach and exploring the island on our scooters. It was perfect!

    • September 17, 2013 / 6:36 pm

      Sounds perfect! I think we passed through Mushroom Bay on one of our many scooter adventures.

  3. September 16, 2013 / 12:26 pm

    Damn, that looks amazing and now I want to got there! Pity I’m flat broke… but Bali isn’t toooooo far from Australia! Maybe one day!

    • September 17, 2013 / 6:50 pm

      You’re lucky your pretty close to Bali then. It’s soooo far for me if I ever want to go back!

    • September 17, 2013 / 6:50 pm

      Turns out civilisation is over-rated!

  4. September 18, 2013 / 5:40 am

    The dilemma of travel bloggers… to share awesome, untouched destinations or not to share…

    Glad you shared this though! It looks so peaceful. 🙂

  5. September 20, 2013 / 6:31 am

    Looks gorgeous! My flatmate just got back from Bali. Maybe I should head there on my way back from Oz. It sounds incredible!

  6. April 5, 2014 / 2:25 am

    Staying on Nusa Lembongan was the highlight of my month long trip to Indonesia! We were conflicted about staying in Mushroom Bay or the main beach. We ended up at the Ketut Losmen Bungalows so we were close to the dive shop we used, but made a few trips out to Mushroom Bay for sunset dinners.

    • April 6, 2014 / 6:25 pm

      Sounds perfect. I’d love to go back to Indonesia for a month or two!

  7. January 12, 2015 / 8:37 pm

    I agree with you, Lembongan is a place, you want to stay a secret forever. I also wish that it wouldn’t become as touristy as Bali is in years to come.
    We’ve benn there in April and fell in love with the island. It’s picture perfect.

    Have fun 🙂

  8. August 20, 2016 / 5:42 pm

    This summer we also visited Nusa Lembongan. We had a rough start, but then started to love this island. It is probably the best place for maritime sports in whole Indonesia. We went fishing and also diving. We even saw 5 manta rays.

  9. September 18, 2016 / 10:27 pm

    I can’t even. Bali is such a bucket list destination for me and posts like this one make me super envious of all people that have spent time on the incredible beaches!

    Major envy. Thanks for sharing, love the pics!

  10. November 10, 2016 / 6:42 pm

    Oh may the Manta Rays look awesome!
    x

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