Travel Guide to Nusa Islands: Lembongan, Ceningan, Penida

When we began planning for our honeymoon, Thomas had first said that we should stay in one place the whole two weeks. Although it sounds nice to not move around much and be able to fully enjoy our stay, I knew we would become restless in only one place. So I suggested that we stay in three different spots in Bali and I am so happy we did! We loved being able to check out different areas in Indonesia, and trust me, staying 5 days in each place is plenty if you're planning a two week honeymoon! If you didn't check out our first stop in Bali, you can read our travel guide to Seminyak here

Our second stop on our honeymoon was Nusa Lembongan - A quaint little surfer's paradise off the coast of the main island of Bali. After our amazing, yet busy, stay in Seminyak we knew we wanted a more mellow vibe. We stayed in Nusa Lembongan all 5 days of our stay, and took day trips to Nusa Ceningan and Nusa Penida. 

To get to Lembongan from the main island, we booked a Rocky Fast Cruise boat from Sanur. The boats run in intervals throughout the day and it takes around 30 minutes to get to Lembongan. The ticket costs around $35 per person round-trip!

Continue reading for where to stay, what to do , and where to eat in the Nusa Islands!


Where to Stay

We used Airbnb for our stay in Nusa Lembongan! As you can see below, it's hard to go wrong with a beautiful view like that! We went with a private villa with a huge infinity pool looking out at the ocean. It would have been such a wonderful villa, however there was construction going on next door and the jackhammering was so loud that we had to switch to a new villa after staying there only one night. Luckily the property management company we had booked through made arrangements for us. The 2nd villa had an even more incredible sunset view plus an air conditioned bedroom, which the first one didn't so that was an added bonus!

Some things to note on accommodation in Bali - 
- You can get a homestay for as little as $10 a night and splurge up into the thousands per night. Bali is extremely affordable if you want it to be. Being that it was our honeymoon, we did splurge a little and each place we stayed in was around $200 a night. However $200 a night gets you a private villa and infinity pool, staff that helps you with transportation, cleans and makes your bed daily, and makes you a delicious breakfast every morning! 
-A lot of times in open air villas there could be mosquitos. Most places will come in and spray for you daily, but if not, make sure you use the mosquito nets over your bed and keep mosquito repellant handy.

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What to Do in Nusa Lembongan, Ceningan, & Penida 

 

We booked a motorbike for $5 dollars a day when we were in Lembongan which made It so easy to explore the island. We did day trips to Ceningan which is the smaller island in between Lembongan and Penida, which is easily accessible by motorbike and crossing the Yellow Bridge. To get to Penida, you take a 10 minute boat ride from the Yellow Bridge for around $10 a person and can rent a motorbike when you land on Penida island. 

Lembongan

  1.  Devil's Tears - This was one of the coolest things to see! The water gets sucked into the rocky cliff before exploding back out - aka Devil's tears. The spray of water also creates a beautiful rainbow a lot of times! 
  2. Dream Beach - A beautiful white sand beach we came across. Unfortunately the current had brought a lot of trash from surrounding areas which is so sad, but other than that it was a beautiful beach. 
  3. Sandy Bay Beach - Our 2nd villa we stayed at was on Sandy Bay Beach! Very quiet and not a lot of people. You can hang out at the pool at Sandy Bay Beach Club and have access to food and drinks all day.
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Ceningan

Ceningan was my favorite little island and the smallest of the three! It's great to take the yellow bridge over for the day and explore! I loved seeing the seaweed farms among the crystal blue water, and the cute boats floating along the shore.

  1. Blue Lagoon - This spot was on my bucket list! The lagoon is a rocky cliff surrounded by the most beautiful turquoise blue water. 
  2. Mahana Point Cliff Jump - We stumbled upon this gem right after leaving the blue lagoon and I'm so happy we did! We jumped off a 10m diving board into crystal blue water. To be honest it was a little scary because you have to swim around the side of the cliff to get to the ladder, but it's perfectly safe. See the video of us jumping below! 
  3. Secret Beach - This is a picturesque beach we relaxed on for several hours after our cliff jumping adventure. There's a little bar/restaurant nearby if you want a cold beer or snack!
                                                                  

                                                                

                                                                       

                                                                     

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Penida

  1. Be warned - Penida is awesome however it is a really large island and the least populated and the roads are really bad and bumpy. If you're riding a motorbike, then be prepared to be riding for a couple hours visiting all the sites and for a super sore ass the next day lol. 
  2. Kelingking 'T-Rex'  was the main thing I wanted to see on our day trip to Penida and was well worth the trek! Try and get there as early as possible, as this has become a very popular tourist spot and it really started getting crowded as we were leaving around 11 o'clock
  3. Monkey watching - Our first monkey sightings on the trip were at Kelingking and it was so cool! 
  4. Angel's Billabong - We didn't take much pictures here because by the time we got there it was so incredibly crowded. It's an incredible crystal clear tide pool in between two cliffs that leads into the ocean. 
  5. Marvel at the incredible Temples - Take some time to walk among the beautiful temples scattered among all of the islands. The architecture is amazing!
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Where to Eat

Everywhere we ate was on Lembongan since we wanted to stay close to our villa! A majority of the restaurants provide a free shuttle for transportation, which we used since we would have a couple of drinks at dinner and didn't want to drive the motorbike. Unlike the main island of Bali, the Nusa islands don't have as many great restaurants, however we found a few gems that we really enjoyed! Here are our recommendations: 

  1. Tropical Juice Corner - Right by our villa was a cute smoothie bowl stand called Tropical Juice Corner. The owner was such a nice man! We drank delicious fresh juices, milkshakes out of fresh coconut, and delicious smoothie bowls
  2. Tropical Burger - If you're feeling a burger then this is the spot to go on the island! Thomas got a classic and I got one topped with pulled pork, both were good yet expensive for Bali standards. 
  3. Bali Eco Deli - If you're looking for a chill place to read or do some work, eat a delicious healthy meal, and sip on some amazing fresh juices than this is your spot! I loved the vibe of this place - You leave your shoes off on the outside of the restaurant! We got a really good chicken pad Thai and green curry dish and two different juices to try.
  4. Pa Pa Tarros - This was our favorite! It was a little Thai place right on the side of the road near our villa. The food was incredible and the cheapest meal we had our entire honeymoon. It was around $14 dollars for a glass of wine, a beer, appetizers, and two huge entrees! The crack and slurp chicken noodles are incredible
  5. The Sandy Bay Beach Club - This restaurant and bar has the most incredible view of the ocean and sunset. It is pretty pricey and the food is mediocre at best, but definitely come here for a drink at sunset. The margarita's were really good! 
  6. Oishii - On our last night we went to Oishii for sushi! Very reasonably priced and the rolls were great! The Balinese family that runs the place is so kind and they are really working hard to make it a success which makes it even better to eat somewhere like that!

I can't wait for us to go back someday! Please comment below if you want any additional recommendations or questions when planning your trip!

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