A favorite among digital nomads, solo travelers, and expats, the laid-back, hipster area of Canggu has seen a rise in popularity over the last couple of years. With its close proximity to the beach, a smattering of institutional cafes and restaurants and relaxed atmosphere, it’s not hard to see why Canggu is quickly becoming the place to be in Bali.
So if you’re planning your stay in this place, read this comprehensive Canggu guide that has everything you need to know!
This 2020 Guide to Canggu includes:
- How to get there
- What to do
- Where to stay
- Where to eat
- How to get around
Bali only has one airport – Ngurah Rai International Airport – in its capital of Denpasar. From the airport, Canggu is approximately 20km away, but should take roughly an hour to get to by car due to the infamous Bali traffic. Opt for ride-sharing apps like Go-Jek or Grab or book airport transfers online for easy transport from the airport.
If you’re coming from other areas of Bali like Kuta, Seminyak, Uluwatu, or Ubud, you can get to Canggu by motorbike (either self-driven or taxi service), private driver (you can easily hire one), or ride-sharing apps (Go-Jek and Grab are a necessity!).
Canggu has quite the lineup of activities for all kinds of travelers that’ll be sure to keep your itinerary filled to the brim.
1. Ride the waves: Bali’s coastlines lend Canggu its surfing reputation, with famous spots like Berawa, Batu Bolong, Echo Beach and Pererenan as the crowd favorites. You can rent a surfboard for a day or attend a surf camp or take a lesson while you’re at it!
2. Stretch at a yoga class: Another thing Bali is known for? Yoga and wellness. Expect a lot of studios and resorts that offer classes and retreats for all kinds of yogis. Check out Serenity Eco Guesthouse, Samadi Bali, Desa Seni, The Practice Bali, The Canggu Studio, The Chillhouse, Ecosfera and even Udara Bali.
3. Visit Tanah Lot: Located approximately 20 minutes away from Canggu, Tanah Lot is one of the most famous temples in Bali. Take in the sights of this 16th century Hindu temple atop a rock formation in the sea (especially during sunset) and you won’t regret it!
4. Have a spa day: What better way to enjoy your vacation than with a little self care? Hit up popular and highly recommended spas and parlors like Goldust Beauty Lounge, Therapy, Maria Curau Bali, Spring Spa, Tonic Day Spa & Botanicals, Jet Black Ginger, Glo Day Spa and Salon, Anjani Bali Spa and Canggu Day Spa.
5. Hit up a beach bar: Beach bars and Bali go together like mac and cheese. So make sure to visit at least one (but really, try three!) while you’re in Canggu. Here are some of the best: Old Man’s, Finn’s Beach Club, La Brisa, The Lawn, Echo Beach Club, La Laguna (will reopen after renovation this year) and Sand Bar.
6. Go on a day trip to Nusa Penida: Indonesia is home to about 17,000++ islands, and it would be a shame to miss out on visiting at least one. Plan a day trip to the breathtaking Nusa Penida and snap photos of the t-rex shaped craggy headland and swim in the turquoise waters of Crystal Bay.
7. Explore the markets: If shopping is your version of a good time, then Canggu’s boutique markets will not disappoint. Visit Love Anchor Market, Samadi Sunday Market, Old Man’s Market and Bali Niki Natural Art Market for a variety of items and souvenirs. You can also find many kitschy shops along the main road Jalan Pantai Batu Bolong.
8. Watch the sunset: Ideally the best way to do this would be at a beach club or bar with a drink in hand, but even just taking your motorbike to the beach and taking a walk by the shore until the sun goes down works just fine too.
9. Hike Mount Batur: Beach chills and beautiful cafes are undoubtedly a big part of any Bali trip, but there are also plenty of unmissable opportunities for adventure. When else can you say that you hiked up an active volcano to catch the sunrise from the top?
10. Go to a waterpark: While not technically in Canggu itself, Splash Water Park is just a few kilometers away from the area. If you have kids in tow (or just want to have a super fun time) on a hot day, their cool water slides are definitely the solution!
Canggu has numerous options when it comes to accommodations. Whether you want a hotel, resort, villa, guesthouse or hostel, the hard part will be narrowing down your options and then deciding where to stay. But don’t worry, I’ve already made a shortlist of some of the best Canggu sleeps for all kinds of budgets.
Whether you’re feeling spendy or are on a budget, check out our blog Where to Stay in Bali: The Best Bali Accommodations By Area, and you’ll find Canggu on top of the list.
One thing you can be sure of when you go to Canggu is the amazing variety of places to eat. This hipster area of Bali is known for its healthy, vegan cafes that you can honestly spend the whole day in. But if you want some recos, here are some of my go-to’s while in Canggu:
1. Crate Cafe: An institution in the Canggu food scene, Crate is known for their laid-back atmosphere, large servings, hip music, and Instagrammable chia seed smoothies.
2. Peloton Supershop: A vegan-focused cafe and bicycle shop in one, this place’s cozy vibes and atmosphere – together with their amazingly delicious smoothie bowls – make for quite the unbeatable combo.
3. The Shady Shack: If you’re looking for colorful food with a nice breezy atmosphere, Shady Shack is the place to be. Their lengthy menu is top-notch with too many delicious items to name.
4. Betelnut Cafe: One of the most popular haunts for a good meal, this place also boasts a varied menu serving up dishes influenced by cuisines from countries like Mexico, Australia, Indonesia, and more.
5. Warung Dandelion: Got a yearning for some good Indonesian food? This place is one of the best. Their nasi goreng, spring rolls, and steamed fish dumplings are popular, but the friendly staff will be more than willing to give your their personal recommendations.
6. Milk & Madu Cafe: For something a little more international, head to Milk & Madu. Their breakfast dishes, gourmet pizzas, and coffee make this the perfect spot to hang out solo or with a big group of friends.
7. La Baracca: If you’re craving some seriously good pizza, this place will hit just the spot. Known as ‘the pizza place’ in Canggu, La Baracca’s extensive Italian menu can convert even the snobbiest of foodies.
8. Warung Varuna: People on a budget love this place that’s known for their cheap, buffet-style (yes, a cheap buffet!) Indonesian cuisine. Make sure to get there early though as it can get very busy.
9. Nude: Health-conscious eaters flock to this place that offers fresh and healthy meals that are perfect for vegans and vegetarians. Think poke bowls, zucchini spaghetti, barramundi burgers, and their entire breakfast menu.
10. Echo Beach Club: BBQ by the beach doesn’t get much better than this place. Choose your meats and sides and you’ll have them freshly grilled by the time you’ve finished your first bottle of Bintang.
The easiest (and cheapest!) way to get around Canggu is by motorbike. You can find many motorbike rental companies in Canggu with varying prices depending on the bike you choose. For a baseline average, it’ll cost you around US$4 a day to rent a motorbike. Be warned though that motorbike accidents are common in Bali, so make sure to wear your helmet and drive cautiously.
If renting a motorbike isn’t up your alley, you can always hire a private driver or download the Bluebird Taxi app to find reliable metered taxis.
Ride sharing in Canggu is not as popular as it is in other areas such as Seminyak and Kuta due to the local police wanting to promote the area’s local taxis and transport, so you’ll find it a bit more difficult to get around. However, Grab and Go-Jek still operate within Canggu; you just might have to walk to certain pick-up destinations to avail of their services.
Ready to plan your trip to Canggu? What’s the first thing you’ll be doing once you get there? Tag us on Instagram @trip_guru to get featured! If you plan on staying in Ubud, check out our 2020 Ultimate Guide to Ubud here.
Featured image: @windaimages