We’ve just come back from 11 more stupendous days in sleepy, gorgeous Amed, located on the North Eastern tip of Bali. And, just like our first trip here, we extended our stay from 5 days to 7!
And we decided to help you discover Amed too, in case you are planning to go there, or considering it as a next destination!
So here are our 12 tips on getting the most out of one of Bali’s most stunning locations.
First of all, a bit of history on Amed!
Amed is located in the North East of Bali. It was originally fishing village, spread all around the coast. Meanwhile, even if it is a place growing fast in tourist activities, local traditions and customs are still upheld. And from free diving, scuba diving, yoga, restaurants & bars, and the beautiful sea life they hide; it is very popular with Australians and French tourists.
Discovering the place on a recommendation from a beautiful soul that we met in the Yellow Flower cafe, in Ubud, we booked a taxi over the weekend. The only plan to spend two nights in Amed…we ended up spending five! And going back for Xmas as a special destination!
We stayed in Good Karma. A stunning bungalow, on the seaside, 14m from the sea: breakfast included, infinity pool, a great homely restaurant and the best location we’ve ever had for snorkelling!
But, what to expect from Amed and its surroundings? And what to do, if it is your first time there? Let us help you with 12
Summary of those things to do in Amed Bali:
- Scuba diving
- Cruise in a traditional fishing boat
- Discover the Black Sand Beach
lifemusic in Reggae Bars
- Yoga Classes
- Driving yourself a scooter in Bali.
- The Heaven’s Gates at Pura Lempuyang
- Tirta Gangga Water Palace, and their famous Stepping Stones.
- Climbing Mount Agung
- Watch the salt being made
Massage! A pampering day.
- Bonus, the most popular thing to do in Amed Bali
With a very large diversity of tropical fish, and very clear water (If it hasn’t rained in 1-2 days), Amed will stun you! Also, don’t worry, they are all easy to access, and swim.
Some of the best snorkelling points of interest are:
-Japanese Wreck in Banyuning Beach. And you will take some stunning pictures with an underwater camera (also with a good Instagram husband/wife). Even if it is an impressive dive, we sadly know very little about the wreck, from how it sank to the year. Or even if it is REALLY Japanese.
-Jemeluk Bay and the underwater mailbox! Between us, a lot of locals/boat owners will say it is
-That beach in front of Good Karma Bungalow! I don’t want to show off, but I saw a white-tip shark, that was 1.5m in length! First, I
Keep your luggage light! On every beach, there will be a Beach Boy (or four) who will try to rent you some snorkelling equipment. (30-50 000 IDS/day, which is £2.50, 3€ or $3.5 USD.)
2. Scuba Diving
From diving taster courses to doing your full PADI
You will be able to scuba dive all around the famous coasts of Amed. So
Reefs, the wrecks, some great muck dives, drift dives and anything else possible around Amed! One of the most popular
- The USAT Liberty, or called USS Liberty shipwreck. Once a war army cargo, carrying animals, it was torpedoed by Japanese on 11 January 1942. Then in 1963, one of Mount Agung eruption made the ship slide into the sea. One of the largest and most devastating eruptions, known in Indonesia. To finally become the well-known site dive we know, with a very large diversity of marine life.
The White Sand Divers have a German instructor, fluent in English, who gave us an amazing experience of the USS Liberty!
Adventure Divers are the most and best-reviewed divers in all the Amed divers on Tripadvisor.
Abyss Dive Center
3. Cruise in a traditional Fishing Boat
As long as your hotel or residence is on the coast, you will have fishing boats parked all along the beach! Some locals will wander near you, and ask if you fancy a tour around and about. For bringing you snorkelling somewhere, to a simple boat tour.
The fishermans gladly convert themselves into guides, to make some easy money! So you won’t have to ask twice.
Also, if your tour finishes at the sunset, you will be lucky to see it behind the volcano Mount Agung. If you’re invited to a midnight beach BBQ, by any of these beachboys, we recommend that you definitely take them up on the offer, but make sure you are able to stagger back to your room in the wee hours.
4. Discover some of their Black Sand Beach
Are you a fellow beach snob?
To start, the black sand from Amed is most often from the lava of the volcano Mount Agung, close to Amed, deposited into the sea or on the beaches. From the years of rage from the wild waves, transforming it in the tiniest dust they can! Black sand can be as soft as the sandy dust of Mars, if you have been there yet.
As the sand is from basalt, the particles are slightly different and lighter. So the larger waves will sort out the grains, leaving deposits of heavy minerals, from different colour to our sleepy holiday iris and pupil. They will then be visible on the surface of erosion scarps.
Jemeluk Bay has a a stunning black sand beach! A
Luckily for us, our beloved Good Karma Bungalow hotel had some black sand!
For any of those beach snob who only judges the beach by the
So dear readers! If you want more information about Black sand, have a look at our blog post “Are you a fellow Beach Snob? Black Sand Beach is the cure for you!”. Meanwhile, don’t forget to come back on this blog post for the seven other best things to do in Amed Bali!
5. Enjoy live music in some Reggae bars!
Before you ask innocent tourists like us where to buy some w**d, just know there is a DEATH penalty for illegal drugs. (example here with just oil) So don’t try to sneak some “medicine” in Bali. It isn’t worth anything. They have well-trained sniffer dogs at the airport (I am just keeping some of my beloved readers alive for my next posts..!).
But, all you’ll need to relax in Amed is sweet live reggae music and some honey-flavoured Arak. Be sure to take a taxi; don’t drive after. Arak is very strong. You will
- Amed Kedai Restaurant & Bar. A restaurant on the beach, who convert itself as a live music bars
onthe evening! We stopped there for a coffee at 11am, ant the waiter gently played reggae for us with his guitar, while we were enjoying the (still) morning breeze on a table in the sand!
- Pacha Bar and Restaurant. Many recommend the Arak of this bar. With their regular singers, it is often very full.
MysteriousPeace Bar Amed! Wow!! I looked for them for at least an hour on the internet! I will have to add them on Tripadvisor myself. We went there and had an absolutely amazing time! Great music and atmosphere, there will always be someone dancing on the scene.
You will cross a lot of other Reggae bars in Amed. So comment for your favourite one below, to add it to the things to do in Amed Bali!
6. Yoga Classes
Many come to Bali only for the Yoga and finding spirituality. But the real one, is mainly in yourself. And it is only you, who can find it. If you still need a little motivation and want to meet some like minded people, I do recommend those places!
- Blue Earth Village is ranked as the second favorite Yoga place in the whole Amed, by Culture Trip. With a goal to have a non-judgmental and open mind & body; the dream of us all, who always judge without knowing. Also with many different classes that overlook the impressive volcano Mount Agung!
- Apneista! A mix between the serenity of the underwater world, and the deep self-meditation. They, of course, organize it separately, but for the ones who want to spiritually relax and be in another underwater consciousness, they will make you discover parts of meditating you completely ignored existed. Or you can simply scuba-dive. (I think I will leave my boyfriend meditating with his leggings – or “Yoga pants” – and do my PADI Level 2. These guys have a very good Blog!
- Life in Amed Yoga Shala. A Hotel who use their amazing location on the seaside for the best Yoga experience. From staying 4-5 nights and having the best yoga experience, to just crossing for one night with yoga in the morning, and diving in the afternoon! They will welcome you!
7. Driving yourself a scooter across North Bali.
If you haven’t been to Bali yet, it will sound a bit ridiculous. Meanwhile, once you arrive and see the numerous number of motorcycles against the small number of cars… You will see it makes sense to have a scooter!
92% of all the Indonesian
Also, you will not need an international driving license, for renting a scooter in Bali. But you will have to get a local license, as you will get at any Balinese police station. Bring your visa/passport and your home license!
Finally, to find your scooter, there will be scooter rental at every corner of Balinese streets, and even your hotel and or AirB&B will have some scooters to rent or know someone who can bring it to you.
IF you need tips on how to drive a scooter in Bali, find our blog post on our page! And do not forget to come back for our last 4 tips on what to do in Amed!
8. The Heaven’s Gates at Pura Lempuyang.
The famous Balinese heaven’s gates, with view on the Mount Agung. Located 35 min by scooter from Amed.
From Lempuyang Temple, one of the 6 most sacred temple in Bali, and the highest
The entry fee is only a small donation of your choice. And if you still forget your sarong don’t worry, you can borrow one of theirs, for free. It is one of the things to do in Amed Bali the most popular, so beware to come early morning, at the sunrise, for the best shots and no queue.
Lempuyang Temple is a formation of 8 temples. If you want to see all of them, it is a 2h hike to walk to all of them. And Balinese strongly believe you should not complain during the hike, as if you do, you will never reach the main temple at the peak. (They use this also in a spiritual way, for any of your objectives.)
Meanwhile, you are not in the shape or mood for exercise, you will find many locals with their scooters, who will offer to bring you to the top, for a reasonable fee. 😉
You will hear of many legends and strange facts, that happen in this sacred complex temples. From the clothes, that do not become wet when you cross a cloud on the walk, to bamboos providing holy water, after being cut a thousand time and still, always, growing.
The picture is from the first temple, the easiest one to reach. 🗻
9. Tirta Gangga Water Palace, and their famous Stepping Stones.
Built-in 1946 by the Raja of Karangasem (Royal Family), the palace have known many restorations after the famous volcanic eruption of Mount Agung. It is located 30-40 minutes by scooter from Amed Bali!
The place is well known from influencers for the polygonal stones making a path all around one of the pools. You can step on each of them, and feed the old, giant koi carp in the pool! But don’t forget to observe the surrounding. A beautiful garden, surrounded by pools and fountains. And also some temples, but as you will/must have realised, they are mainly for prayers, and not for Instagram posts.
Finally, those other pools will have a lot of fish will jump at you, hoping to get lucky for food!
I really don’t know why tourists use all their fish food to feed only the big ones, surrounding the Tirta Gangga stepping stones! So please stock up on food like we did (12 bags…).
10. Climbing Mount Agung
The CLIMBING of Mount Agung. It is something that is bucket-list worthy. Climbing this volcano is more challenging than you can think. Definitely not for kids, and beware of aching muscles for the 3 next days, as you will not do much afterwards…
“You do not need to be a professional, but don’t underestimate this climb“Silke Teubener
If you take the challenge to climb it by night, to see the sunrise, you will climb in the deep silence of the jungle. With few tourists who will give up, and climb back down. Nothing will be more in your mind, than the determination of achieving the climb! Also a good sense of humour! It will be a hard, 6-7h climb, in the dark, just. It is actually easier in the dark, as you just look at where you put your feet. But the reward of seeing from the top, the whole of the island, and the sun rising to welcome you in the world! Who can achieve everything! (And also freezing to death, if you did not die of exhaustion already, as the wind up there is very strong!)
It is a very special and amazing experience, if you succeed.
Finally the way down! But actually, it will be a bit harder to come down than go up. When it is dark, you only see the way up, and where to put your fit and the other. On the way down, you will not believe what you achieved. If you have good shoes, it will be a lot easier. Time to be very brave!
What you will need:
- Most importantly, you must have a good, reliable, guide. You want someone you can trust and will help you. So when you book, ask about the guide, and their experience. Ideally, recommendations, from fellow travellers or Facebook groups, are best.
- Good shoes with great grip!
- A head-mounted torch – this is generally provided.
- Gloves – optional, but useful for tackling nasty branches in the dark.
- Clothes suitable for the high altitude wind and wind chill.
- Snacks (you will not find a warung (Balinese restaurant) on your
wayor even the top!)
- Motivation and humour. It is not impossible! But it is not a walk in a French countryside.
I must thank Silke Teubenerwho made an absolutely amazing blog post about her experience! If you consider it, or simply ar more curious about it, I highly recommend you to check it out for more information about Mount Agung.
But don’t forget to come back here, for the 12 best things to do in Amed Bali!
11. Salt being made
You would be impressed to see how the salt is made; it is a lot more complicated than it seems! Sometimes, you will see on the side of the road, brown bags piled high. They are actually bags of salt on sale.
-If you go early morning, or around noon, you will be able to observe the salt farmers carrying the water from the sea, using 2 buckets on a wooden stick, that they balance of their strong shoulders.
-They then will drop the contents of the buckets into prepared soil fields and let it dry. This can take up to 3 days.
-Once dry, they break the hard soil paddies and put it inside special cones.
-They stamp on the soil in the cones, add more sea water, and let it seep down through the soil.
-Then, they put the filtered water collected into a wooden tray.
-It will finally dry by evaporation, and the salt will be ready to be collected and sold.
A hard tradition, for a very small reward.
Meanwhile, as you can guess this tradition is very physical, and the money not very generous. With 1kg sold for 10 000 IDR, which is the equivalent of 0.55£, 0.7USD or 0.62€.
They will produce between 50 and 70kg, so as it is a lot of hard work for not much. Younger generations prefer the easy money of the jobs related to tourism – if they can get them. And slowly, the tradition starts disappearing..
For now, there are still a couple of salt makers located in Amed itself. You can go and observe them. And if you wish to help them, you can pay generously for some salt. A useful souvenir to bring to the family, like your dad or grandmother who cooks so well every time you go and see them!
Grab a coffee at Cafe Garam, or “the salt cafe”.
Finally, you can also visit Cafe Garam (or the salt cafe). Opened by a local, you can observe a photo gallery to see how the salt is made. And you can see up close what is used in the process by the farmers.
To make a more equitable trade for those hard-working families, he also sells perfumed salts from the village, that he buys at an honest price from the salt farmers.
I am planning a drink there next time! If you go before me, please let me know how it is, with your opinion on the 12 things you liked to do in Amed Bali!
12. Bali Massages. A pampering day!
No matter who you are! Boy or girl! No one says no to a massage (legit massages with a slightly “different” happy ending)!
The Bamboo Sweet Spa. A little bit expensive for Bali’s massages prices, but an absolutely great place! They will offer you a ginger tea and cookies while preparing the massage table. Then, with relaxing music, you will be able to hear the waves, under the hands of the very competent masseuses. who only have good reputation, and always make their tips worth it.
Swatsy Dewi Salon & Spa. From massages for couples to flower baths, they offer the perfect atmosphere to fully relax and a very professional service. With the usual welcome drink, they relax you from the beginning to be sure you have a good time! A lot of their reviews are from a 2nd and 3rd visit.
Finally, If you want a massage, but prefer the security of your hotel room/ residence, you can ask at the reception of your residence. And very often they will have someone in their contacts, who can come to you to give a massage.
13. Bonus, the most popular thing to do in Amed Bali:
Well… it’s just lizzarding (I love my new word!) near the pool of the relaxing residence you will stay in. Enjoying the Gekko calls around you, and topping up your suncream. But beware as the suncream destroys the coral if you go decide to go snorkelling. Doing nothing is already doing something!
Finally, here for yourself, with no worries than the sun on your skin. And maybe the kids around…
How many of those 12 things will you do in Amed? Please share your experience in Amed! And if you liked our article, you will like “The road trip from Ubud to Lovina Beach”.
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