Located on the east coast of southern Bali, Sanur is less than half an hour from the international airport. It is what you would call a mature town and as a result it has a laid back pace and is the perfect location for relaxation. In Sanur’s early history there were very few hotels. In the early 1960’s there were in fact only three. Eventually as time progressed, the area started becoming more developed as more hotels and dining establishments started being constructed. Presently, the infrastructure of Sanur continues to develop with the inclusion also of many villa accommodations for visitors as well.
To move around Sanur, there are several modes of transportation to choose from. You may choose to use a rented car, which gives you the freedom to navigate the area and sightsee at your own leisure. The roadways are adequately marked with signs so you don’t have to worry about getting lost.
There is also the option of using metered taxis or shuttle buses which cater to tourists. Regarding the bus shuttles, it is advised that you make your bookings 24 hours prior to when the service will be required. There is also another bus option known as the Trans Sarbagita which runs along a specific route, including the airport. Yet another bus option which is common for locals and tourists who want to have the full local experience are minibuses or bemos which are readily to be found all over Sanur. They offer a quick method of getting around.
Tourists have the further option of renting bicycles or motor bikes to navigate the streets of Sanur.
There are also scheduled boats which take you from Sanur to other areas in Bali, leaving from Nusa Lembongan.
If you visit Sanur between June and August, you will be able to enjoy the kite flying which takes place around this time of year. An international kite festival is generally planned for July in which some huge kites are made and villagers from all over Bali come and compete. This event is a large part of their culture as the kite flying is believed to petition the Hindu gods for a fruitful agricultural season. The festival takes place in Padang Galak.
The eastern coast of Sanur boasts a Mangrove forest which would be an ideal place for nature lovers to spend some of their vacation time. The Mangrove Information Centre actually has a very good program going, to inform students as well as tourists on the importance of these plants to the ecosystem and the region.
Further opportunities to appreciate nature can be had at the turtle conservatory. In the past, turtle meat was a popular dish on the menu in Sanur, but with the issues arising from the mistreatment of the turtles, this is no longer done. At the Serangan Island Turtle Conservation Centre, a rich program of education teaches visitors to the facility about the measures being used for conservation.
A popular site for visitors to take in all across Bali is the various temples. In Sanur, the Pura Blanjong is no different. What is special about this temple is the inscription it contains of a king from Java who visited Bali in 10 AD and is held to be the oldest ever artefact in Bali.
Sanur’s main street Jalan Danau Tamblingan is littered with shops of different types such as jewellery, craft items and clothing. To get your hands on authentic fabric, the perfect store is the Nogo Bali iKat Centre. For ceramic items there is also Gudnag Keramik on the same main street and for regular or everyday food items there is the supermarket, Hardy’s Grosir. Further items for purchase can be picked up at the beach front art market or the Sindhu market, both of which are in close enough proximity to the main street.
Where to Eat
No vacation is complete without knowing the best places to eat and sample the local cuisine. Reasonably priced local food can be purchased at the Night Market which is located at the north most end of the main street. For a more structured dining experience, there are many more options.
Balinese dishes and entertainment is served up at the Abian Boga Restaurant. More Balinese dining can be experienced at the Warung Blajong. For many tourists and visitors, getting accustomed to local foods may take some getting used to so for more familiar flavours there is an organic Chinese restaurant, Fortune Cookie, as well as a Japanese one, Kokoya. Italian delights are available at the Village and Massimo and Swedish cuisine is served at Smorgas Coffee which is a popular coffee shop. These restaurants are only a light sampling of your dining choices available in Sanur.
Depending on your budget, you will be able to find suitable accommodation and lodging to enjoy your stay in Sanur. If you are hoping to find a place to stay on a budget, located on the main street are the Mango Guesthouse, Flashbacks and Yulia 1 Homestay.
If you can afford more mid range priced accommodations there is the Puri Dalem Hotel, Bambu Villa Sanur by the beach, The Pondok Ayu if you are looking for a family setting and also the modern Apel Villa Sanur.
More luxurious accommodations can be found at the Bali Beach hotel, the Gangsa Private Villas by Kayumanis which boasts a round the clock butler service and the Villa Mahapala which offers guests their own private pools and a restaurant which serves French cuisine.
This guest post is written by Joshua Gulliver in support of Bali Ferry.com. If you’re on the lookout to cruise your way to and from Sanur, Lombok, Lembongan and the Gill Islands, do hop into a Sanur boat today.