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Sanur, Bali

Sanur is a beach town in easy reach of Denpasar, and quite close to our Bali Volunteer project sites. It was during the 1920s when this sleepy backwater first began to welcome foreign visitors, and for a few years it was something of an artist’s haven. The Belgian painter Adrien-Jean Le Mayeur lived here. Since the 1960s the area has been attracting volunteers and tourists from all across the globe, and there is a sizable community of people who have chosen this as their retirement home. Sanur is favorite destination for those who want to get away from the wild party atmosphere of some of the other beaches in this part of Bali.

Sanur beach

Transportation to Sanur

Sanur is located to the south east of Denpasar in Bali. It is approximately 15.2 km (9.5 miles) from Ngurah Rai (Denpasar) International Airport (DPS). The options for getting here would include:

  • A taxi from the airport to Sanur ($10 – $20 USD), but they may try to charge more than this so it is best to stick to a metered taxi or a prepaid taxi. The trip takes about 20 minutes.
  • There is a shuttle bus service from the airport to Sanur that leaves from Tegal terminal. This costs approximately 25,000 IDR ($2.60 USD),
  • Those tourists who are staying in Nusa Lembongan can get a boat to Sanur – speed boats or normal service boats (trip time about 90 minutes).
  • Perma Tours offer transportation to Sanur from many parts of the island including: Ubud, Lovina, Candi Dasa, and Tirta Gangga.

Getting Around Sanur

The options for getting around Sanur would include:

  • Most of Sanur is manageable on foot. This beach side town is particularly pleasant to walk around in the mornings and evenings when it is not too hot. There is a path that runs alongside the beach and this is perfect for jogging.
  • There are many places to rent motorbikes, and bicycles in the town. It costs about 50,000 IDR ($5.20 USD) per day for a motorcycle, and it is usually possible to hire a bicycle for about 20,000 IDR ($2.80 USD) – prices correct as of mid 2012.
  • There is a taxi service, and it is also possible to hire a private driver for about 400,000 IDR ($41 USD) per day. These private drivers can be found around the main resorts and hotels where they tout for business.
  • There is a bemo service that covers the two main roads in Sanur – Jalan Danau Poso and Jalan Danau Tamblingan. The cost of a trip from one end of Sanur to another is usually 5,000 IDR ($0.50 USD).

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Sanur Attractions

The best places to see locally in Sanur would include:

  • The main attraction is the 5 km of white sandy beach and the shallow water is good for swimming. There are a plenty of resorts, restaurants, and bars nearby but the beach manages to maintain a relaxed ambiance, and this is why it is a popular area for families.
  • Pura Blanjong is the most important local temple, and it contains a stone pillar (Prasati Blanjong) that is said to be the oldest known artifact on the island.
  • Peek A Boo is a playground that provides 1,000 square meters of indoor and outdoor fun for kids, and there is also a cafe area where adults can relax. It opens from 09:00 until 18:00 and the admission fee is 85,000 IDR ($9 USD) for a child (this also allows one adult to go free).
  • Le Mayeur Museum contains some of the work of the Belgian painter Adrien-Jean Le Mayeur who developed a deep fascination for the local culture.
  • Serangan Island Turtle Conservation Centre is 3 km to the south of Sanur.
  • Bali Orchid Garden is located to the east of Sanur. As well as the many variety of orchid there are also tropical gardens to explore.
  • Waterbom Water Park is just 13 km (8 miles) away from Sanur. This is one of the best water parks in Asia, and it has 17 world class slides, and plenty of other fun amusements

Sanur Activities

Some of the most interesting things to do in Sanur would include:

  • Bali Marine Walk provides visitors with the opportunity of exploring underwater without the need for any scuba diving lessons. It involves wearing an open ended helmet that is pumped full of oxygen so that the person can explore the local coral.
  • There are some good diving sites close to Sanur, and there are a number of diving operators who can arrange tours or lessons.
  • Those who are in need of some pampering will find that there are a number of quality spas in the local area including a traditional Balinese spa.
  • The Bali Kite Festival takes place every July in Sanur.
  • There are some good shopping opportunities on Jalan Danau Tamblingan. There is also a beach market on Jalan Pantai Sindhu.

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Sanur Restaurants

Some of the best places to eat in Sanur would include:

  • Kayu Manis on Jalan Danau Tamblinga offers Asian fusion and western food. This is a good option for a reasonably priced romantic dinner.
  • Sarong Bali offers high class dining and reservations are usually required.
  • Ku De Ta offers fine gourmet dining in a stunning location.
  • Warung Blanjong is the best option for low priced Balinese dishes. They can be found on Jalan Danau Poso.
  • Mona Lisa Cafe on Danau Tamblingan offers tasty Indonesian cuisine.

Sanur Bars

Sanur is far less lively than nearby Kuta and some tourists even refer to this area as snore because of the laid back way of life here. It is possible to have a great night out on the town here though. The most popular drinking establishments in Sanur would include:

  • Arena Pub and Restaraunt can be found on the main bypass (Ngurah Rai) in Sanur. It is run by an Australian, and they probably offer the best selection of beers in the area as well as a nice wine menu.
  • The Cat and Fiddle Irish Pub offers live music and western food. They are located on Jalan Cemara opposite the Sanur Beach Hotel.
  • The Beatles Cavern Bar is a must if you are a fan of John, Paul, George, and Ringo. This is a Beatles museum as well as a bar. They have a happy hour every day between 10:00 and 21:00.