Spread out along the eastern shore of Amuk Bay, Candi Dasa is east Bali’s most popular beach resort. It is not one but a series of small coastal villages that comprise Candi Dasa lagoon, Senkidu, Mendira, Buitan and Manggis. It covers a total of three miles of golden sands yet it is a laid back place with low key nightlife. Its main attractions are scuba diving and snorkelling with a number of pristine coral reefs located just off the shore and at the nearby islands of Gili Tepekong and Gili Mimpang.
Further west, picturesque Balina Beach is the area’s main water sports centre and Candi Dasa makes an excellent base for exploring farther afield. It is invitingly close to Bali’s most fascinating traditional village at Tenganan, the sacred Mount Agung volcano and the historic water palaces of Tirtagangga and Ujung. Candi Dasa village itself has a long history and features an imposing Hindu temple that dates back almost 1,000 years.
Candi Dasa guide – Hindu temples, diving and ethnic villages
For something a little different, head into the hills to visit fascinating royal water palaces and traditional artisan’s villages that have change little in centuries and boast a breathtaking array of artizan goods.
There is a huge choice of places to stay in town suitable for every taste and budget. There is also a wealth of fascinating history and natural attractions all within reach and tours and excursions can be easily arranged in the town. There is a fabulous range of eating options in Candi Dasa and the bar scene is very low key but there are a few atmospheric pubs with live music and late night movie screenings.
The simple pleasures of sunbathing and refreshing cocktails and seafood on the beach is what life in tranquil Candi Dasa is all about and it has more than just a hint of refinement and style. There is, however, plenty of choice for every taste and budget and it makes for a laid back alternative to the hectic pace of life in south Bali.