When you look at the map of Bali carefully, you will notice some tiny islands in the Southeast, and these may pique curiosity. Are they inhabited? Have they become a tourist destination, just like Bali’s mainland? To all of the questions, the answer is yes. There are some beautiful sites that are worth a visit, especially on Nusa Lembongan, the island closest to the mainland. If you plan to visit, you can look forward to catching magnificent sunsets at the beaches, marvel at the phenomenal cliff walls of Devil’s Tears, discover underwater Buddha statues, enjoy a boat ride in the thick mangrove forest, and don’t miss the yellow bridge connecting the island to the neighboring island of Nusa Ceningan! Read on for more details!
1. Watch a unique, natural phenomenon in Devil’s Tears
The name, Devil’s Tears’ was created due to its unique natural phenomenon. After big waves hit and splash upon the cliff walls, you will notice how the walls are crying! Haha! Obviously, you won’t hear the sound of someone’s crying, but you can see the water flowing out of the tiny holes from the cliff walls right after the splashing moment. This kind of phenomenon may not be unusual, but this is the place where you can see it vividly from the top of the cliff. Located in the Southwestern part of Nusa Lembongan, this cliff faces the West, so this is also a perfect spot to view the sunset!
2. Relax and watch the sunset at one of the beaches
There are many beaches in Nusa Lembongan. Dream Beach, Sunset Beach, Mushroom Beach, and many more! Beaches on this island are way less crowded than those in the Southern part of Bali. Although they aren’t really for swimming due to the big waves, they are perfect places for relaxing, sunbathing, and watching the sunset. At these beaches, you can relax in serenity, a bonus that many beaches on mainland Bali lack! Located just a few hundred meters away from Devil’s Tears, Sunset Beach is one of the recommended beaches on the island for viewing the sunset!
3. Arrange a snorkeling trip to Ceningan Channel for The Underwater Buddha
There are many diving spots around Nusa Lembongan, but nothing beats Ceningan Channel, a diving spot located between the Lembongan and Ceningan Islands. Ask your dive guide to take you there, and you’ll be fascinated with the surprising discovery of the underwater Buddhist artifacts. You’ll also find a 2.5-meter-tall (8.2 ft) statue of Buddha in the middle of the domes along with smaller Buddhist statues! These artifacts have some similarities with those of Borobudur Temple in Central Java, except that these sacred items are under the water! What’s the history behind these things, you ask? Well, this is not a heritage site and the artifacts are not as old as you imagined. These are actually works of art done by the local artists in Bali that were bought and purposely placed into the sea more than 10 years ago. Additionally, environmental activists, hotel owners, fishermen, and dive shop owners were included in the process of setting up this dive site.
4. Take a boat ride into the mangrove forest
A large area of Nusa Lembongan is a mangrove forest, and this is good news for those who have never been to one. For a mangrove tour, you need to go from the ‘Jungutbatu’ village in the Northern part of the island. You can also find many wooden canoes here named ‘jukung’ floating on the swamp with the boatmen on them, ready to take you on a mangrove tour (it costs 150,000 IDR / ~11.00 USD per boat). This is a dense mangrove forest in the tropical area; much thicker than any of those you can find in sub-tropical areas. Not only will you get to see all the vegetation at the swamp’s banks, but in many parts of the route you are also well protected from the sun by the ‘green roofs’ made from the leaves. Most trees are actually growing sideways and their leaves meet somewhere in the sky! No dangerous predators have been spotted, and in fact, wild animals are rarely seen. You can look forward to different species of birds perching and singing somewhere on a tree though. Also, during the boat ride, you will get to spot seaweed farms and see how the farmers grow the crops! Now you know where the seaweed for your sushi is coming from!
5. Visit the neighboring island of Nusa Ceningan on foot
Have you ever gone to another island on foot? Nowadays, modern technology has made it possible for people to travel to another island by crossing the bridge by car. What about crossing an inter-island bridge on foot or by bike? You can do this at the Yellow Bridge (Jembatan Kuning), located in the Southeastern part of Nusa Lembongan Island. This bridge connects Nusa Lembongan to its neighboring island of Nusa Ceningan. In case you are wondering, the Yellow Bridge measures about 2 meters (6.5 ft) wide, and it is too small for a car to pass! Although it is not the only way to get to Nusa Ceningan, it is the coolest, fastest, and the most economical way to go to Nusa Ceningan; a beautiful island popular for cliff jumpers. So if you want to go to the island,, get ready to cross the Yellow Bridge!
Nusa Lembongan: a must-visit destination when you are in Bali
Bali has so much to offer, but Nusa Lembongan really should not be overlooked, especially if you are planning to stay in Southern Bali. It’s just a 30-minute motorboat ride to the small island from Sanur Beach. The wonders of Nusa Lembongan await you!