Sanur is located in the southeastern part of the island. It is a fairly large and tranquil resort area in Bali, which is one of the oldest and most popular among tourists.
From Ngurah Rai Airport, it takes 20-30 minutes by taxi, 50,000 rupiahs by bike, or 130,000-140,000 rupiahs by car to reach Sanur. In Sanur, there is not much traffic except on the Ngurah Rai Bypass. Unlike Kuta, Seminyak, or Canggu, the streets are not congested, and there is less road hustle and bustle.
From the port of Sanur, you can also take trips to the neighboring islands of Nusa Penida or Nusa Lembongan.
In this area, bicycles and electric cars are popular. A stroll along Sanur's waterfront, which stretches along the ocean, is especially attractive. This is one of the few areas in Bali where there are sidewalks, and you can walk on foot.
Sanur is one of the oldest tourist areas in Bali. It is primarily visited by families with children or elderly tourists. The area becomes more popular during the rainy season because changing currents during this time bring plastic waste to the beaches on the west coast. Due to the shift in wind direction during the rainy season, Sanur's beaches become suitable for surfing.
The atmosphere here is one of tranquility and comfort. Most of the buildings in Sanur are designed in the traditional Balinese style. On the east coast, there are not as many villas; instead, you will find houses, guesthouses, and hotels more commonly.
Sanur is an excellent place to greet the sunrise. Many local residents and tourists spend their early mornings on the waterfront practicing meditation and sun salutations, such as 108 rounds of Surya Namaskar, or engage in jogging and morning exercises.
Sometimes, Sanur experiences incredibly beautiful and unusual sunsets as well.
The central street along the coastal part of Sanur is Jalan Tamblingan, running from south to north, situated between the beachfront on the east and the Ngurah Rai Bypass highway on the west.
Premium hotels are located on the beachfront, but the paved road that runs through the beach area makes walks along the Sanur coastline accessible to everyone.
The Sanur coastline stretches for 4 kilometers. The path takes you past resort hotels, beachfront cafes, wooden fishing boats, and surfers. From here, you can enjoy views of the imposing cliffs of the neighboring island of Nusa Penida.
Even before the mass tourism boom in Bali, Sanur was at the center of the Balinese kingdoms' life. One of the oldest historical artifacts on the island, the Blanjong Inscription, was found here. The traditions of Sanur remain strong, and many high priests hail from this area. On Danau Bratan Street, you can see intricately decorated gates of homes belonging to Bali's highest clergy.
The fishing tradition of this region continues daily, with Balinese fishermen setting out to sea each morning in their colorful painted boats, known as "jukung," to catch fresh fish off the shores of Sanur.
In Sanur, you can find both five-star hotels on the waterfront and more budget-friendly accommodations. For example, one night at the Hyatt Regency Bali costs $152, while a night in a guesthouse or a simple hotel will cost around $16. There is a difference in the price range for renting accommodations in different parts of the area.
Near the ocean:
- A large waterfront promenade along the ocean.
- Access to the ocean for swimming within walking distance.
- Cycling is a convenient mode of transportation.
- Stroller-friendly for families with children.
- A wide variety of restaurants and cafes.
- Presence of night bars.
- Higher prices in cafes and restaurants; it can be challenging to find budget-friendly non-Indonesian food by the ocean.
- Sometimes it can be noisy, especially if there is a bar nearby.
Closer to Denpasar:
- Lower accommodation prices.
- Availability of shopping centers.
- Presence of large hospitals.
- Closer proximity to other areas like Ubud, Gianyar, Seminyak, etc.
- Streets can be very dirty, especially in non-central areas.
- Roads can be in poor condition if you venture off the main streets.
- There is a landfill in Denpasar, and the smell can extend beyond its boundaries.
- The absence of elite hotels, villas, or high-end accommodations.
General tips regardless of the area:
- Avoid renting accommodation near schools as it can be very noisy from 7:00 AM to lunchtime.
- Avoid renting accommodation near construction sites and bars for the same reason, although local construction is often conducted quietly, it might still be disruptive if you're a light sleeper or work continues into the night.
- If you plan to stay for an extended period, it's usually more cost-effective.
- Sometimes, you can find very budget-friendly yet good-quality accommodations through locals.
This area is often considered for residence by families with children, choosing between Sanur and Nusa Dua. Firstly, Sanur is more budget-friendly in everything, from hotel prices to taxis, and even food. Secondly, in Sanur, there is a more diverse selection of cafes and restaurants.
On Booking.com, you can choose options that align with your preferences for check-in dates and price range. It's often more advantageous to book for a month at a time.
Among the hotels that are well-suited for families with children, Prime Plaza Suites Sanur, Segara Village Hotel, and Prama Sanur Beach Bali stand out. These hotels offer amenities like playgrounds, pools, and even spa facilities for kids. Additionally, these hotels offer day passes, so individuals who are not staying there can also enjoy their facilities.
One cost-effective way is to find budget accommodations on Facebook Marketplace. Often, homeowners or local real estate agents post listings there.
Entertainment in Sanur consists mainly of beach and water activities.
Sanur is a very popular place for water sports, including kite-surfing, kayaking, parasailing, stand-up paddleboarding (SUP), glass-bottom boat trips, snorkeling, canoeing, jet-skiing, and more. Every hundred meters or even more frequently along the promenade, you can find kiosks offering these water activities.
While Bali remains a mecca for surfing for many, Sanur is notable for its enthusiasm for SUP. Perhaps this is because it's easier to master and doesn't require as much effort as traditional surfing. The calm waters of Sanur are perfect for this water activity.
For SUP, a longer and wider board is used compared to traditional surfing. While it may appear simple at first glance, it provides an excellent workout for core muscle groups.
Massage and SPA
Here are the top five spa options in Sanur, Bali, with Sanctuary Bali Spa offering more budget-friendly prices:
1. Koa Boutique Spa
2. Chantara Wellness & Spa
3. Leha Leha Spa
4. The Nest Beachside Spa
5. Sanctuary Bali Spa
Sanctuary Bali Spa is an excellent choice for those looking for affordable massage options in Sanur, as it offers massages at significantly lower prices compared to the other spa centers.
In Sanur, during the peak of the windy dry season in July and August, an annual kite festival takes place. This festival features kite-flying competitions with kites that can reach lengths of up to 10 meters. Most of the festival events are organized on Padang Galak Beach. It's a colorful and exciting event that showcases traditional Balinese kite-making and flying skills.
Vintage Car Museum
Opening hours: every day 10:00-17:00
The museum's name translates to "Vintage Car Garden." It was founded by Jos Darmawan, who has assembled an extensive collection of 150 vintage cars. He purchased his first vintage car in 1996 and has been collecting antiques and vintage cars ever since. The ticket price is 100,000 rupiahs, and guests are welcomed with a complimentary drink at the entrance.
Among the exhibits, there are two billiard tables where visitors can play for free. There's also a shop where you can purchase branded merchandise and vintage items. The owner himself is often present at the museum and occasionally conducts mini-tours.
The museum also features a cafe with reasonably priced and delicious dishes. For a visit with children, this place will be interesting not only for the vintage cars but also because it houses talking birds. It adds an extra layer of entertainment and fascination for young visitors.
Not far from Sanur, to the northeast on the coast, there is an abandoned amusement park. Despite its long disuse, the park attracts adventure enthusiasts due to its mysterious aura. Some believe that spirits inhabit the area. For a time, crocodiles roamed the park, having been set free after its closure. More information about the park can be found in an article about it.
Le Meyer's House Museum
In Sanur, there is a museum dedicated to the Belgian Impressionist artist Adrien-Jean Le Mayeur de Merpré, who arrived in Bali in 1932, fell in love with the island and a Balinese beauty named Ni Pollok Chuglik, and decided to stay here forever. The museum allows visitors to explore both the preserved interiors of the artist's home and a collection of his numerous works.
Shops and markets
In Sanur, you won't find as many large shopping centers as in Kuta or numerous boutiques like in Seminyak and Canggu, but there are enough shops and markets to shop for souvenirs, clothing, and Balinese cosmetics.
1. Bamboo Blonde is a boutique that sells designer summer clothing created in Bali. They offer a unique range of dresses, tops, skirts, and pants made from comfortable materials.
2. Utama Spice is a signature store where you can purchase facial care cosmetics.
3. In Sanur, there is a branch of the well-known Bali brand Sensatia Botanicals, which offers affordable organic skincare products.
4. Bali Buda, a branch of the well-known Bali network, allows you to enjoy dishes made entirely from organic ingredients and buy natural, healthy products, cosmetics, and home accessories.
5. Kapal Laut, a jewelry store, will delight jewelry enthusiasts. The design of this brand is very beautiful and modern, and their jewelry retains its original appearance for a long time.
The main street for shopping in Sanur is Jalan Tamblingan, adorned with stalls selling souvenirs and clothing. You can also find many shops with T-shirts, handicrafts, and footwear on the side streets branching off from Jalan Tamblingan. Tamblingan runs parallel to the beach from south to north, and the convenient sidewalks make it a pleasant place for a shopping stroll.
On Pungutan Street, you can find Sindhu Market (Sindhu Beach Art Market), which is a delight for souvenir lovers. It's a collection of small souvenir shops starting from the Sindhu beach street and extending for 400 meters. This street isn't too crowded, and you can find clothing, sarongs, jewelry, and wood carvings here. You can turn into this market if you're walking along the beach promenade.
A couple of hundred meters north of Sindhu Market, there is the Baruna souvenir market.
Within walking distance from Jalan Tamblingan, you'll find the local food market, Pasar Senggol. In the evening, they sell ready-made food. About a dozen carts open during sunset, allowing you to explore Balinese street food. You can find Balinese fried sweets, rice with toppings (nasi campur), small meat skewers (sate), fried noodles (mie goreng), fried bread with various toppings, and other Indonesian dishes.
In the morning, the same market opens in a nearby indoor building. You can purchase fresh fruits, vegetables, fish, and meat at the morning market.
If you're looking for unique souvenirs with history and soul, the Sunday Market Sanur, held near the Mercure Resort, is perfect. Here, you can find Balinese handicrafts, jewelry, eco-friendly gifts, accessories, swimwear, toys, and presents. The market also offers a wide variety of delicious and healthy foods, such as pastries, pies, organic vegetables and fruits, nuts, and granola. Live music plays at the market, creating a relaxed and friendly atmosphere.
The grassy area near the market's location serves as an excellent playground for children. First, face painting sessions are held there. Second, there is an open children's playground by the ocean. For adults, there are sports equipment near the children's area.
The market is held every last Sunday of the month from 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM.
For grocery shopping for the whole family, the Artasedana supermarket is an excellent choice. They offer a variety of fruits, vegetables, groceries, pastries, alcohol, household products, and home goods. The second floor is dedicated to clothing and souvenirs. You can also find a wide selection of vegetables, fruits, alcohol, and household goods at Grand Lucky.
Lotte Mart is a South Korean hypermarket where you can find various food products, clothing, toys, electronics, and other goods.
Diving and snorkeling enthusiasts can purchase equipment at specialized stores like All 4 Diving Indonesia, Master Selam, DiveHub.id, and Dive Sport.
If you're looking for interesting restaurants in Sanur, we recommend the healthy eating oasis Warung Dapur Deli, the excellent grilled chicken restaurant Juicy and Crispy, the charming coffee shop with a wide selection of handmade chocolates, Bali Bon Bon, the local warung with large portions and budget-friendly prices, Warung Baby Monkeys, and the small modern warung with air conditioning and a mini library, Warung Kecil.
For mid-range dining options, the following places come highly recommended: the organic beachfront restaurant Soul on the Beach, the cozy coffee shop in Sanur where you can find fresh bread and pastries, Bread Basket Sanur, and Daily Baguette, the beachfront co-working space and restaurant for those who appreciate quality cuisine, Genius Cafe, and the acclaimed Italian restaurant, Massimo Italian Restaurant.
Beachfront restaurants are suitable for families with children, as they offer enough space for kids to play while waiting for their food. Excellent choices for dining with kids by the beach include Nelayan Sanur Bay and Byrd House.
We recommend a visit to Cafe Bloom Bali, even if you don't have children.
It's a delightful place for breakfast or brunch. The café operates from Monday to Saturday, from 7:00 AM to 4:00 PM, and remains closed all day on Sundays. This establishment features a friendly staff, an interesting design, and interior. In the café, there's also a flower shop, adding fresh scents to the atmosphere.
In Sanur, there are several interesting establishments that are definitely worth a visit. For example, Parisi French Cuisine. The café is open every day from 12:00 PM to 10:00 PM. It exudes a French atmosphere in terms of its dishes, drinks, and restaurant interior. The menu p
rimarily features French cuisine. You can also take home jars of pâté and various types of cheeses from different countries.
Another place worth mentioning is the family café Pierogi Pierogi, which serves Polish dumplings (pierogi) with a variety of fillings, including vegan options. They are open every day from 10:00 AM to 8:00 PM.
Despite the fact that geographically Sanur Beach appears as a single entity, each section of the shoreline has its own name and unique features. The main advantage of Sanur's beaches for families with children is that there are no waves. The waves break far out at the reef. The water is clear, transparent, and warm.
The downside is that there are many areas on the seabed with seaweed, interspersed with sandy patches, and it becomes quite shallow at low tide.
However, the water doesn't drop off sharply. Sanur is very convenient and safe for children to swim in.
To find the best time for swimming when it's not too shallow, keep an eye on the tide schedules.
Bike parking at the beach costs 2,000 rupiahs. You can ride your bicycle along the entire beach shoreline for free.
Let's explore the beaches of Sanur from north to south.
The place known for hosting the annual kite festival is Padang Galak Beach. The sand here is fine black volcanic sand. It has a narrow strip of beach, and the shoreline is lined with large stones. Padang Galak is generally not suitable for swimming and not very conducive to leisurely strolls, as after festivals, the area can have a fair amount of food-related plastic waste.
The beach just south of it is called Matahari Terbit Beach, which means the Beach of the Rising Sun. This is a half-kilometer stretch of light beige sand, favored by photographers for capturing the most beautiful sunrise shots.
At the sunrise beach, there are several budget Balinese eateries selling local affordable food, snacks, and refreshing drinks.
Swimming at Matahari Terbit is unlikely as the waves are quite strong, and this beach has a parking area for fast boats that transport tourists to the islands.
Segara Ayu (Pantai Segara Ayu) is the first beach in Sanur from the north, and it's a good starting point to explore the beaches. This is where the legendary Inna Grand Bali Beach hotel is located. It was the tallest building on the entire island for a long time and still dominates the Sanur shoreline visually, although it's currently undergoing reconstruction.
The beach is well protected by a reef from the waves, ensuring calm swimming. Next to this part of the waterfront is a turtle farm. The entrance fee is 15,000 rupiahs.
At the beach, you can enjoy activities like kayaking, bicycle rides, and kite surfing. The sand is relatively coarse, with grains ranging in color from light beige to dark beige.
The beach features pieces of coral scattered on the sand, as well as some seaweed, including dried ones. There is no significant litter on the beach, but you may come across small plastic debris.
South of Segara Ayu beach, you'll find a string of restaurants, shops, and beach clubs. The atmosphere is very pleasant and relaxed. There are tourists, but it doesn't create the same level of tension as in Kuta, for example. About a hundred meters inland from the beach road, you'll find souvenir stalls.
Пасар Баруна (translated as "Baruna Market") is a bit smaller, while Pasar Sindu is a bit larger. At these markets, you can buy clothing, Balinese textiles, accessories, home decor, paintings, and souvenirs. Prices are reasonable, but you can still haggle.
On this stretch of the beach, there are two beach clubs: Birdhouse and Artotel, where you can enjoy a hot day by a picturesque pool. BaliForum has compiled a selection of beach clubs and hotels with day passes. Among them are Griya Santrian Resort and Spa, Mercure Bali Sanur Resort, Prama Sanur Beach Bali, and Puri Satrian.
Further to the north is Karang Beach (Pantai Karang), also known as the Reef Beach. The beach scene becomes quieter here. The strip of light sand widens. Swimming is only possible here during high tide. There are some decent restaurants on the beach.
Continuing south, you'll reach Semawang Beach. It's located opposite the well-known Fairmont hotel. Chemara Beach is even further south, opposite the Puri Santrian and Prama Sanur hotels.
The last beach in this collection of Sanur beaches is Mertasari Beach (Pantai Mertasari), located near the Mercure Resort Sanur. Local residents use this beach for fishing, while tourists have embraced it for windsurfing, kitesurfing, and paragliding.
The total length of the Sanur coastline is approximately 4-5 kilometers.
Surfing becomes popular in Sanur during the rainy season when changing winds and currents make the west coast of the island less suitable for surfing.
Sanur is located north of Serangan and east of Denpasar and features a double reef with Sanur and Tanjung. Be prepared for crowds at this spot, and watch out for sharp rocks and pieces of coral.
Sanur's wave is typically ideal for regular-footed surfers and can reach heights of 4-6 feet on good days, forming very decent barrels. However, this spot is not as reliable as some other spots on the island. The right end of the spot is suitable only for experts, while the left part is more suitable for less experienced surfers.
The spot is located quite far from the shore, so it's better to reach it by boat. You'll find fast and long (up to 100 meters) right-hand waves that won't disappoint you. But this spot works best with a significant swell.
Wave type: Right
Swell direction: South, Southeast, East
Swell height: 6-15 feet
Best tide height: Mid to high
Wind: West, Northwest
Sports, fitness, yoga
There are excellent yoga classes at Power of Now Oasis. In addition to numerous adult classes, they also offer yoga classes for children.
In Sanur, there are two fitness clubs and one professional swimming pool. Prime GYM and SPA offer the option to purchase an annual membership, and they have a spa and sauna. Energy Gym is an affordable gym with a local style and no air conditioning.
Sanur is one of the few areas on the island that has playgrounds, even outside cafes and restaurants.
Due to fewer tourists and a relatively developed infrastructure, Sanur is considered a safer area compared to places like Kuta. However, it's always advisable to observe standard safety precautions at any resort.
Sanur has several hospitals and medical facilities. One of the newer medical centers that caters to tourists is Bali Mandara. Additionally, there are Bali Royal and Prima Medika.
You can get blood tests done at the Prodia laboratory.
Kimia Farma Sanur is a pharmacy that operates 24/7. Non-prescription medications can also be ordered through the GoJek service.
Reviews and comments:
Review by Dasha Orlova:
I live in Sanur without children and retirees. I like the abundance of cafes with good Wi-Fi; it's convenient for work. I enjoy the night market with fruits. I like Grand Lucky with plenty of groceries. I appreciate the friendly atmosphere in the Sanur Community Facebook group. I like walking along the beach in silence at 10-11 at night and swimming when it's high tide. I like that I can almost always get around on a scooter without traffic jams. I like that you can, in principle, go anywhere and walk everywhere on foot. I like that you can easily find a full lunch for 50k or less. I appreciate that it's easy to reach the airport quickly and meet friends from the plane. I also enjoy a massage for 90k. I like that there aren't too many people, and you can get to know the shopkeepers and restaurant owners and maintain friendly relationships.
In short, I've been here since December, and I've already found my favorite stores, restaurants, warungs, massages, cafes, pharmacies, pools, beach clubs, and spots on the beach, so I'm not really ready to go anywhere else.
Review by By the Ocean:
Sanur has noticeably "rejuvenated" if you compare it to 2015 when we first came here. So, stereotypes aside)) Besides, not everyone needs the noise and nightlife)) Everything is within walking distance, a vast number of cafes, stores, supermarkets, and the area continues to develop. Yet, there are no traffic jams (extremely rare in the evenings on weekends). The 5-kilometer waterfront is excellent for strolls and bike rides. It's easy to get anywhere from here, whether it's Ubud, Nusa Dua, Seminyak - it takes about the same amount of time. In Renon nearby, there are parks and bus stops, and you can reach many places by bus if you don't drive. Plus, it's a safe area, with much lower crime rates compared to other popular regions.