Amed area in Bali
Amed is located in the easternmost part of the island of Bali. It is a very quiet area, far removed from the airport, approximately 100 kilometers away. Together with Lovina and Pemuteran, Amed is one of the least crowded tourist areas in Bali.
The term "Amed" often refers to several neighboring villages, all named after the most popular among them. In a broader sense, Amed consists of seven coastal fishing villages stretching along the 14 kilometers of Bali's east coast – Amed, Jemeluk, Bunutan, Lipah, Selang, Banyuning, and Aas.
Jemeluk, Bunutan, and Lipah are the most popular villages in Amed. Amed itself is the most budget-friendly for accommodation, while Aas is the least developed in terms of tourist infrastructure. These villages follow one another along small bays.
It takes about 3 hours to reach Amed from the airport. Despite the relatively short distance in kilometers, the road twists and turns in the final part before reaching Amed, making it unlikely to arrive quickly. If you are heading to Amed, it makes sense to take a taxi or a bus. Perama Tour company provides bus transfers to Amed. There is one route from Kuta at 7:00 for 175,000 Indonesian Rupiahs per person. From Sanur at 7:30 - 175,000, and from Ubud at 7:30 - 175,000. The current schedule can be found on the Perama Tour website. The Perama Tour bus stops between Amed and Jemeluk, approximately near Amed Cafe.
In the area, traffic is very light, with few bikes and cars. Roughly speaking, Amed and the surrounding villages form a single road along the coast. The road is not always in perfect condition and may have stretches with rocks for about 10 meters. The road winds along cliffs, so it's better not to speed, especially at night. There is almost no public transportation. In the early morning, local microbuses (bemo) run from Tulamben to Aas, but their schedule is poorly regulated, and relying on them is not advisable. It's better to rent a motorbike, with prices similar to those in the tourist south of Bali. Motorbikes can be found through roadside advertisements or at hotel owners. You can also post a request for a bike in the Amed Bali Community on Facebook. Some guesthouses offer bicycle rentals, but they are not very popular because many roads in Amed are steep, making it challenging to navigate on a bicycle.
Amed is renowned in Bali for its beautiful sunrises and picturesque narrow paths. Along these paths, you can venture into the heart of the island, witness the lives of the Balinese people, and discover ancient, lesser-known temples. The area is abundant with lush greenery, covering both rice fields and hills that ascend from the ocean towards the clouds.
Along the coastline, there are numerous vantage points with breathtaking views. In the evenings, the sun sets behind Mount Agung, casting early twilight and painting the sky with various shades of red. As a result, the evening twilight lasts for about an hour. The most popular and beautiful spot to witness the sunset is appropriately named "Sunset Point." Enterprising Balinese have set up a charming café called Waroeng Sunset Point here. The food is average, the drinks are decent, but the view is priceless.
The residents of Amed traditionally made a living through fishing, agriculture, and, to some extent, salt production. The climate in Amed is much hotter and drier than in other parts of Bali, making it one of the driest regions on the island. Unfavorable agricultural conditions historically led to Amed being one of the poorest areas in Bali. If you visit the island during the rainy season, it's advisable to plan a stay in Amed for a few days to enjoy drier weather. Rain here comes only from the east, from the sea. If it comes from the Bali side, the high mountain ranges block the rain clouds.
Amed got telephone service only in 2003, and paved roads were constructed between 2000 and 2007. The development of tourism has contributed to improving the overall standard of living for the local Balinese. Although salt production is decreasing, there are still rare spots along the coast where you can observe the traditional method of evaporating seawater to produce salt.
Amed remains void of large-scale parties or major shopping centers. Instead, you'll find black sand and pebble beaches, forested mountain slopes, and traditional Balinese villages. The transparent water and rich marine life make Amed one of the most interesting places for diving and snorkeling. The neighboring Tulamben, with the renowned Liberty shipwreck, is considered a world-class dive site.
Reasons to visit Amed include incredibly friendly local residents, the remoteness from the busy touristy south, stunning ocean views, vistas of Mount Agung, numerous affordable guesthouses and villas with ocean views, the atmosphere of a small town, calm waters for diving, freediving, and snorkeling.
Accommodations of acceptable quality can be rented for a price starting from 150,000 rupiahs per night. Pay close attention to the location of your accommodation because not all good guesthouses are situated right by the beach.
But if you have a bike and are willing to drive 5 minutes to the beach, you can save a little and get clean, beautiful and fresh housing.
If you are looking for expensive and luxury holiday accommodation, in Amed it is mainly represented by 4 star villas.
Most tourists visit Amed for beach relaxation and underwater activities. The best places for snorkeling are Jemeluk Bay, Lipah Beach, Bunutan - Selang, Japanese Shipwreck, Pyramid, and the reef in front of Kembali Beach Bungalows.
In Amed, there is a vast number of dive centers and dive sites. The average diving depth ranges from 5 to 50 meters. The water temperature never drops below 25 degrees Celsius. Most sites have weak or moderate currents, making them safe for beginners. Some coral reefs start right from the shore, allowing for shore dives. One of the most interesting diving spots in Amed, and indeed all of Bali, is the sunken American ship Liberty. It's not in Amed itself but in the nearby Tulamben area, just a 20-minute drive away. In Amed itself, there is a Japanese sunken ship right near the shore. Besides shipwrecks, the area offers reefs teeming with fish, turtles, and sometimes reef sharks, as well as artificial underwater reefs.
In Amed and Tulamben combined, there are four freediving schools that cater to students ranging from beginners to advanced freedivers, providing internationally recognized certifications. There are plenty of diving spots, including sunken ships like the Japanese and American wrecks, numerous coral gardens, and underwater temples with artificial reefs. Freediving centers in Amed include Apneista Bali Freediving and Yoga School (location on the map, website).
The oldest freediving school in Amed, offering SSI certification (3 levels) and the SSI instructor course. They provide dives, trips to manta rays, night dives, and also conduct yoga classes. Fusion Freediving (location on the map, website).
They provide training at all levels and offer certifications from AIDA, Pure Apnea, and SSI. They offer personal coaching, including short or extended training sessions from the boat. Specialized in teaching spearfishing and freediving for surfers. Fathom Freediving Amed (location on the map, website).
They have a good pool for training, their hostel, and an organic cafe.
Apnea Bali (website)
Located in the Tulamben area. They provide training at all levels, including competition preparation. Offer SSI certification. Conduct classes on the freediving platform.
Fishing enthusiasts can arrange trolling fishing trips early in the morning on traditional jukung boats with local owners, targeting tuna, mackerel, or barracuda.
Kayaking and Stand-Up Paddleboarding
Kayaks and stand-up paddleboards (similar to a surfboard but larger and with a paddle) are available for rent along the Jemeluk beach. They don't provide special instructions, but even beginners will find it easy to understand how to use them.
The hilly terrain around Amed offers many trails for hiking. Nature looks particularly beautiful during the rainy season (November-April). Ask the administrator of your hotel, and they will help organize everything you need for hikes in the foothills.
In Amed, there are tour agencies offering bike tours through rice fields. If you're passionate about such a trip, you can try this eco-friendly and healthy activity. East Bali Bike Tours organizes bike trips from the slopes of Mount Agung or Lempuyang to White Sandy Beach (Pantai Pasir Putih), one of the best on Bali. The routes range from 22 to 38 km. The tours include local fruit refreshments (pineapple, guava, mango, coconut, but only in season), meals, free hotel transfers, and stops along the way for memorable photos, acquaintances with local farmers' lifestyles, and traditional farming methods.
Salt production remains an important industry in the economy of the village of Amed. Sea water undergoes filtration, is scraped from long wooden troughs, sorted, and then sent to consumers. In addition to the village of Amed, salt is also produced on a smaller scale in the village of Jemeluk.
On the way to Amed from the tourist south, there are several attractions that captivate tourists taking excursions to the eastern part of Bali. If you live in Amed or are heading there to spend a few days in this region of Bali, it's worth stopping to admire these places.
Tirta Ganga Water Palace
This is a complex of fountains and ponds with fish. During the day, there are usually many tourists here, but if you come in the morning, you can experience the most beautiful time. Some are attracted to the fountains and ponds adorned with intricate Balinese stone ornaments. If you prefer living nature, you will be drawn to the huge carp, the size of a well-fed cat, that swim near the shore waiting for food. Fish food is sold on the spot.
Taman Ujung Water Palace
This is the former residence of the rulers of Karangasem, one of the regions of Bali. From a Balinese perspective, it is a luxurious and exquisite palace in the middle of a pond. But if you have seen much in your travels around the world, you will also find many interesting details in this charming and graceful pavilion.
Pura Lempuyang Temple
The highest mountain temple in Bali, located at the highest altitude. Of course, only the most dedicated pilgrims reach the very top temple of this complex. Most tourists content themselves with an Instagram photo from one of the lower and more accessible temples of Lempuyang.
By the way, it is also the largest and most picturesque. Surely you have seen many photos of it from the temple gates overlooking Mount Agung. If you want the same photo, be prepared to endure a queue of enthusiasts.
This volcano is the highest point in Bali and a spiritual landmark for the Balinese. From October 2017 to June 2018, there were eruptions, so now only a few tourists climb it, although it is possible. If you are in very good physical shape and this is not your first ascent of a volcano, you can try to conquer this summit. In the area of Amed and Tulamben, there are also plenty of viewpoints with beautiful views of the natural landscapes. One such point is located on the road to Tulamben. It has no official name. It's just a beautiful hill overlooking the sea, green forests, and Mount Agung. It is located about 200-300 meters after the turn from the main road.
If you love beautiful views, you will undoubtedly enjoy the road to the Lempuyang Temple, which comes from the east. It is not traveled as often because most tourists approach it from the west, but the eastern road is a hundred times more picturesque. It passes through mountain hills. In some places, it twists, but the asphalt is smooth and well-maintained. The slope does not exceed 30 degrees. If you decide to choose it, do not drive on it in the rain or after the rain. Along the road, after heavy rains, there may be landslides, but local residents promptly clear the fallen soil. There are a couple of sections where you can see that the road collapsed. Just move slowly on them and away from the edge. Adequately assess the power of your scooter, considering whether it can handle such a volume of passengers, and check the brakes before the trip. In general, for a reasonably experienced girl on a well-maintained Honda 115 scooter, this is quite a manageable trip. And incredibly beautiful. The road starts from the Grill Bar and Restaurant and goes up the hills, passing through hills and rice fields. Along the way, there are many viewpoints where you can stop and take photos.
Of course, dive sites are the main pride of Amed and the very reason why people come to this region of Bali. The most important and interesting ones include the sunken ship Liberty and a Japanese ship whose name has been lost in the depths of history.
Liberty (USAT Liberty)
The ship was damaged by a torpedo from a Japanese submarine in 1942. It was towed to Tulamben Beach, but due to another eruption of Mount Agung in 1963, the ship shifted into the sea and is now located 25 meters from the shore at a depth of only 5 meters. The ship's deck and bow are completely covered with corals and algae. The entire village relies on underwater activities, and every hotel offers diving equipment and snorkeling gear to tourists.
On the hill overlooking Jemeluk, there is an observation platform that offers a view of the bay and Mount Agung. Those living in the village of Jemeluk and, if you don't mind some challenges, from the neighboring village of Bunutan can reach the top of the hill on foot. If you reside in other villages in the Amed area, you can use a car. The viewpoint is located on the top of the hill on the eastern side of Jemeluk Bay, and there is a parking area nearby. Many visitors come during the day, but it's best to go in the evening to enjoy the sunset over Mount Agung. It's a fantastically beautiful sight.
Shops and markets
There aren't many shops and markets in Amed. Along the street stretching along the coast, you can find mini shops selling snacks, drinks, and also referred to as mini-markets. If you're looking for a local market with fruits and vegetables, you'll have to go to Chulik at the intersection of the main road passing from Amlapura towards Tulamben.
In Bunutan, there's a decent shop called Rumah Adi & Adi Shop where you can buy groceries. There are enough ATMs in Amed that accept both Visa and Mastercard. However, data theft from cards often occurs in Amed. Therefore, it's safer to withdraw money from an ATM located in the bank branch in the village of Chulik.
Galanga - Very creative menu. Delicious jackfruit curry, potato slices, samosas, coconut rice, and signature fish. Homemade ice cream with shredded coconut pulp. In the evenings, it can get crowded, and during the peak season, it's advisable to reserve a table. There's a beautiful gazebo in the garden.
Gusto Resto - The owner of Gusto Resto is from Hungary, so the menu includes not only local cuisine but also popular Hungarian and European dishes. They serve large-sized pizzas. Highly recommended are the Margherita pizza and the chicken curry pizza. Delicious mushroom ravioli, chicken burgers, and goulash. The pasta is made from scratch in the restaurant. The staff demonstrates excellent mood, dancing during work.
Sails Restaurant - The menu consists of local and European dishes with an open kitchen. The restaurant offers views of the beach and the ocean. Free transportation is provided to guests around Amed. Cleanliness and professionalism are evident. Highly recommended are the lamb, onion soup, and fish pies.
Good Stuff Cafe & Eco Store Amed & One Way Espresso A restaurant and store with healthy products. Live music is sometimes featured in the evenings. Delicious shrimp skewers are on the menu. They offer a children's menu and a highchair for little ones.
Rimba Cafe Almost always full. Interesting interior, tasty food, and desserts. Their homemade ice cream is particularly worth trying.
See You Again Cafe A restaurant with very tasty fish in coconut sauce and a stunning view of the bay.
Blue Earth Village A restaurant catering to vegans but also offering meat dishes. Interesting interior and a breathtaking view of the bay.
Trattoria Amed An Italian restaurant. Delicious seafood pasta.
Vienna Beach Resort A restaurant at a hotel on the shore of one of Amed's best beaches, where snorkeling is possible. There's a pool with loungers, and guests can use the pool. Excellent tuna steak, pasta, and juices. Prices are slightly higher.
KopiKota Amed Delicious breakfasts with a view of the volcano, friendly staff, and reasonable prices.
Warung Pantai Very tasty fish, especially the mahi-mahi grill. They bring a large piece of fish with rice and vegetable salad. Tasty tuna steak. If you want to try something local, go for nasi campur or vegetable curry. Huge portions, delicious food, nice view, and pleasant service.
di Lipah Warung Large and very tasty fish burgers, Balinese satay lilith skewers. Well-cooked fish. Pleasant atmosphere. Excellent chicken with potato chips. The calamari portion is not large enough. Great and smiling staff.
Warung Osin Excellent food, excellent staff, and affordable prices. Few tables are available. Very clean - you can see the food being prepared in the open kitchen. Tasty pork rendang, Balinese chicken curry, and fresh fish satay are highly recommended. Also recommended are nasi campur, fish, and banana pancakes.
The Cup Coffee Shop & Cafe Delicious coffee and a magnificent view from the third floor. The food is quite mediocre.
Omoide Coffee to go Excellent coffee at a pleasant price. Very cozy place.
Amed Sea View Warung Offers a beautiful view of the bay. The restaurant is very cozy. Very tasty milkshakes, dadar gulung dessert. The dinner is excellent. Recommended for seafood barbecue, fish, and juices. Excellent service, happy and cheerful staff.
Warung Amsha Friendly staff and delicious food at a good price. Tasty cocktails (especially Amsha Breeze), the laklak dessert is highly recommended. Also recommended are fish in banana leaves, curry, fish rendang, chicken rendang, and French fries. It's a small restaurant where tables are right on the sand.
Warung Sabar Excellent place with delicious food and friendly staff. Traditional Indonesian and European dishes. There is a good selection of dishes for vegetarians. Recommended are fish pies, pepes ikan (fish in banana leaves), and shrimp in garlic sauce.
Warung Celagi Excellent food. The place itself is beautiful, located on the beach. Very tasty cocktails. Curry and fish are recommended.
Warung Enak Not only do they cook deliciously, but it's also quite cheap. Excellent Balinese and Indonesian cuisine, with many fish and seafood dishes on the menu. The quality of food is excellent. The restaurant owners organize culinary courses, including visits to the local market and an organic farm that grows vegetables and fruits without the use of chemicals. Pizza, coconut ice cream, and fish are recommended.
The beach consists of only small pebbles and volcanic sand, but the water is very clean, and there is an abundance of marine life right at the shore. Yes, the water is not always perfectly clear. After storms and strong winds, visibility can decrease, and it may drop to 5-7 meters. After storms, currents can also bring plastic into bays like Jemeluk, and small "islands" of plastic bags may float near the shoreline. In such cases, you can simply go to another nearby spot for freediving or snorkeling.
Waves are rare in Amed, making it safe for swimming, even with children. Overall, swimming is good, excluding the color of the sand. The total length of the coastline is about 14 kilometers. Many places along the beach have traditional fishing boats.
Swimming beaches are concentrated in Lipah, Bunutan, and Jemeluk. Lipah Beach generally has more sand, while Jemeluk has more large pebbles.
The sand on Amed Beach is of volcanic origin. Moving further south (away from Mount Agung), the dark color of the sand on the beaches changes to a soft gray-brown color. The most beautiful bays are Jemeluk and Lipah.
Most beaches along the coastline have fishing boats where locals go fishing. So, if you are diving into the depths, be careful not to surface accidentally under a boat. Either bring a buddy who can stay on the surface while you dive, or bring an inflatable ring or a signal buoy that you can resurface next to. Alternatively, just regularly survey your surroundings.
Sports, fitness, yoga
There are no waves for surfing. If you have come to Amed, planning to spend some time in the tranquility of this quiet corner but don't want to be bored, try practicing yoga. Even if you are an experienced yogi, the company of people passionate about the same activity will be enjoyable, and exchanging experiences will bring many positive emotions.
Yoga takes place in Amed at several locations. One of the main ones is Blue Earth Village. The place is located near Sunset Point. The pavilion is built from bamboo and is magnificent in itself.
The philosophy of the school is to conduct practices that address specific issues for students and help solve urgent questions. Based on this, on some days, classes may be more dynamic, while on others, the focus may shift towards restorative yoga. The school adopts a tantric approach, emphasizing acceptance of the body as it is, with all its imperfections and peculiarities, and utilizing the body's energy to reach a higher level. The cost of a single session is 100,000 rupiahs. They have a yoga studio and a restaurant offering healthy food. On Tuesdays at 7:00 PM, they screen the latest movies. Thursdays at 7:00 PM feature games, and Saturdays at 7:00 PM host quiz nights.