Candidasa is a beautiful East Bali town with lots to offer to all kinds of travelers. It definitely isn’t a place to party but if you love nature and culture you will love it. This coastal town is a little under 2 hours from Bali’s Ngurah Rai International Airport by car, yet many people don’t venture this far from the busy south of the island. There are many things to love about Candidasa but here is our top 10.
1. The Views
Candidasa is a really beautiful area of Bali’s coastline. It may not have the white sand beaches of the south, but it does have quiet strips of oceanfront to enjoy. In front of Lotus Bungalows the views out towards the small islands of Gili Tepekong, Gili Mimpang and Gili Biaha are absolutely beautiful.
2. The Diving
Speaking of these islands, these are some of the best dive sites in the area. Gangga Divers at Lotus Bungalows will show you the best of Bali’s underwater life just a few minutes from the coastline.
3. Sunrise and Sunset
Because of Candidasa’s position on the east side of Bali, you get gorgeous skies both first thing in the morning and in the evening as well. There isn’t much more relaxing than a cold beer by the pool looking out to a beautiful pink and orange Bali sunset.
4. The People
You could argue that the Balinese people are friendly and genuine all over the island, but there is something special about the locals in Candidasa. The tourism in their village is developed but not over-the-top so they have kept much of their traditional way of life. They are welcoming and remember visitors well no matter how long it’s been since they last came. The people in Candidasa will make you feel 100% at home.
5. The Quiet
If there is one thing that people go to Candidasa for, it’s the quiet life. Each day you can wake and go to sleep to the gentle sound of the waves lapping on the shore. There are a few restaurants and bars with live music but it winds down early and everyone is tucked up in bed snoring well before midnight.
6. The Food
One of the things to love about Candidasa is its fresh out of the water seafood. There isn’t much better than grilled fish with rice and a little of Bali’s famous spicy sambal on the side. The restaurant at Lotus Bungalows serves local dishes and also Mediterranean favorites using locally caught seafood.
7. The Culture
Not strictly in Candidasa but only a few minutes away is the village of Tenganan. This is said to be one of the very first villages in Bali and has been preserved by its people the Bali Aga. These original Balinese have many traditions that differ from other villages, even laws that prohibit villagers from marrying outside Tenganan. If you visit in June make sure to see the Mekare-kare or Pandan War festival that honors the God of War.
8. The Interesting History
The first known evidence of the village of Candidasa, dates all the way back to the 12th century. The village was originally known as Teluk Kehen or the Bay of Fire, but was sometimes called Cilidasa (10 children). This comes from the legend of Puri Candidasa temple where there is a statue of the fertility goddess Hariti surrounded by 10 children. Cilidasa developed into Candidasa (10 temples) as the village grew.
9. The Mixed Crowd
Candidasa attracts visitors from all over the world. Many are European divers but Australians and Americans also enjoy the laid back vibe. If you enjoy meeting new people, you definitely can’t go wrong by staying in Candidasa.
10. The Ease of Getting There & Around
It really is simple to get to Candidasa. There is only really one road in and out of the town so you don’t have to worry about twists and turns. Most likely you’ll have a driver but if you decide to rent a car or motorbike it near impossible to get lost. In the town it’s easy to walk around and even go for strolls into the nearby hills and villages.
Doesn’t Candidasa sound like the ideal getaway? Ask us anything about getting to, staying, or diving in Candidasa in the comments below!