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Bali and Nusa Lembongan

Bali and Nusa Lembongan 🏝️ 2-island itinerary

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Bali is a universal favourite with travellers and tourists alike, but it is not so well known for its beaches. If it’s clear blue sea and uncrowded white sand beaches you’re after, then you need to venture a little further afield. So why not try a combination of Bali and Nusa Lembongan – one of Bali’s sister islands to the south?



Bali and Nusa Lembongan

Unlike the rest of Indonesia, Bali is an island apart – almost like a separate county. This is partly due to the predominantly Hindu population and their related culture.

Having previously spent several weeks in the largely Muslim cities and towns of Central Java, we were keen to see how Bali compared.

This would be our 2nd trip to Bali, following a gap of around 30 years. It would be interesting to see how much the place had changed.

We planned a relatively short stay in Bali – just 2 weeks – including a stay in Nusa Lembongan. However, flying with Cathay Pacific from London, our trip would also allow us 2 short city breaks – one in Hong Kong and the other in London.

Bali and Nusa Lembongan 2-island itinerary

Bali and Nusa Lembongan 2-island itinerary

Our 18-day Itinerary

We would be flying with Cathay Pacific from London to Bali, with a stopover in Hong Kong. Currently rated at No.8 in the World’s Top 100 Airlines, Cathay Pacific were offering reasonably-priced flights at €490 per person, including the 2-day stopover.

It’s a long way to travel but we intended to include as much as possible in our 18-day itinerary.

The initial breakdown was as follows:

♦  Flight from our home base to London Luton
♦  Overnight stay close to London Gatwick
♦  Flight from London Gatwick to Hong Kong, with a 2-day stopover in Kowloon
♦  Flight from Hong Kong to Bali
♦  4-night stay in Bali
♦  Bus and ferry from Bali to Nusa Lembongan
♦  8-night stay in Nusa Lembongan
♦  Ferry and bus from Nusa Lembongan to Denpasar, Bali
♦  1-night stay in Denpasar
♦  Flight from Bali to London Gatwick
♦  6-hour speed-tour of London
♦  Onward flight from London Luton back to our home base


Our plan called for a lot of travelling in a fairly short time period. Hopefully the benefits of a secluded island paradise would justify the efforts it would take to get there.

Ferries from Bali to Lembongan

Hong Kong

Following a brief overnight in London, our first stopover would be in Hong Kong. We reserved a minuscule room in the center of Kowloon for 2 nights.

On our agenda would be a trip to the top of Victoria Peak on Hong Kong island, as well as getting our mouths around some serious street food.

Read our Articles on Hong Kong

Bali and Nusa Lembongan 2-island itinerary

Bustling streets of Hong Kong

Visiting Ubud

Our first destination in Bali would be the spiritual city of Ubud. We would divide our time (4 nights) between 2 guesthouses on either side of the city center. One of the places we would stay had a large swimming pool – an important feature since Ubud is a good distance inland – 13 kms from the nearest beach.

We also earmarked a few promising restaurants.

Bali and Nusa Lembongan 2-island itinerary

Ubud Royal Palace, Bali

Read our Articles on Ubud

Visiting Lembongan Island

Our longest stay of the trip would be in Lembongan – a large, lush island off the south coast of Bali. Here we planned to stay for 8 nights. Again, we chose 2 guesthouses: one in the north of the island and the other in the south.

Our plan was just to relax on and around the island’s beaches, and enjoy some leisurely water sports.

Read our Articles on Lembongan

Bali and Nusa Lembongan 2-island itinerary

View from Lembongan to Bali

Visiting Denpasar

Since our return flight was from Denpasar, we decided to spend the preceding night in the city not far from the airport.

This would be a last chance to catch up on our shopping before heading back home.


Our Cathay Pacific flight would get us back to London Gatwick in the early morning. This would give us the chance to do a lightning-tour of the city before catching our flight home in the evening from London Luton.

Read our Article on London

Bali and Nusa Lembongan 2-island itinerary

The pageantry of London

Planned Costs and Budget

Our return flights to Bali from London came to €490 per person, including a 2-day stopover in Hong Kong.

We booked all of our accommodation in advance – the most expensive being in London and Hong Kong. Even so, our total hotel costs for 16 nights came to €278 per person, on the basis of 2 sharing.

On top of our flight and accommodation costs, we budgeted for €38 per person per day in London and Hong Kong and €13 per person per day in Bali, making a a total of €321 per person for all 18 days.

So our total budget for the entire 18-day trip was €1,089 per person.

Getting to and from London from our base in Malta added another €97 each to our final expenses.

So how did we get on?

At just over €65 per person per day all-in, this is quite an optimistic forecast for a 2½ week tropical break half-way around the world.

…and this is not really budget standards – We would be flying with Cathay Pacific and staying in some quite luxurious guesthouses, hotels and resorts.

You can follow our actual experiences in these articles. We offer you an insiders view on where to stay, and where to avoid…

All Hotel Options in Bali

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If you enjoyed our Bali and Nusa Lembongan 2-island itinerary, check out our other Tropical Travel Plans. You may also like:

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Lembongan Island Activities

Lembongan 🏄‍♂️ Best Chill-Out Spots in Indonesia

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If you’re planning to visit Bali, Indonesia, don’t miss out on Nusa Lembongan. This laid-back island is situated southeast of Bali and is part of the Nusa Penida district, which comprises three islands: Nusa Penida, Nusa Lembongan, and Nusa Ceningan. Nusa Lembongan is the most attractive among the three, so make sure to include it in your itinerary!

A week on Lembongan island is just about the right amount of time you’ll need to visit the main attractions and enjoy most of the popular activities that are on offer. We actually spent 8 days there, and were able to do all the things we wanted at a leisurely pace. From snorkeling to surfing, hiking and river tours, you’ll find plenty of activities to keep you busy.

If you’re in a more relaxed mood, the beaches, spas and restaurants do not disappoint.

Lembongan Island Activities

Surfing at Lembongan (you could also just go for a walk…)

Lembongan Activities – Devils Tear

Devil’s Tear is a suitably dramatic name for an equally dramatic natural phenomenon on the south-west coast of Lembongan.

Here the tides smash the sea into a cave located on the inside of a steep and rocky inlet. After each surge, the water is forcibly blown out again in a loud and explosive spray – the tears of the devil. The whole effect is enhanced by the vivid rainbow that is created in the surf.

Lembongan Island Activities

The dramatic inlet known as Devil’s Tear

Unsurprisingly, this is a huge tourist attraction. You do however need to take care if you’re attempting to capture the action on camera. This is a wet and slippery area with no safety rails. Over-enthusiastic visitors often get a soaking, or worse can end up slipping down the rocks.

Photographers beware – the cost of that selfie could be disastrous.

You can find Devil’s Tear in the south of the island between Sandy Bay beach and Dream beach. It’s around a 30-minute walk from Mushroom Bay.

Lembongan Island Activities

The explosive Devil’s Tear rainbow

The Mangrove Forest – North Lembongan

In the north of the island, at the far eastern end of the road, you’ll find the entrance to the mangrove forest. If you haven’t pre-arranged a boat trip through the mangroves, you’ll find plenty of hawkers here trying to sell you one. This is quite a busy area, with a number of beach restaurants catering for the large groups of tourists that periodically arrive by bus.

If you’re up for it, you can walk here from Jungut Batu or from the south of the island – it’s quite a pleasant hike if you just follow the beaches around the west coast.

Lembongan Island Activities

Lembongan island activities – Hire a boat and visit the mangroves

Once there, you can negotiate a price for a trip around the mangroves with one of the local boatmen (or women). These traditional boats accommodate up to six passengers, so its cheaper to travel with a group.


Also on the north coast of the island, not far from the mangrove forest, you’ll find a popular snorkeling spot. The full-day snorkeling trips from Mushroom Beach usually make a stop here, but you can simply find your own way there on foot and swim out from the beach (around 150 yards out).

If you don’t fancy the swim, you can hire a boat for an hour from one of the beach bars.

Lembongan Island Activities

Lembongan island activities – Another boatload of snorkelers

The snorkeling here is not terrific, but visibility is good and you’ll see plenty of small colorful fish. You should also try to avoid snorkeling mid-morning when several large boats arrive crammed with mainly Chinese tourists. They tend to snorkel close together in large groups – wearing life jackets – so you won’t get to see much apart from hordes of flailing legs.

Surfing in Lembongan

If surfing is your thing, then the place to head over to is Song Lambung beach just south of the Jungut Batu fast-boat landing area.

Here you can hire a board and head out into the great blue. Late afternoon is a great time to be hanging around for the best waves.

In fact, there are three popular main breaks, all off the top half of the west coast. These are known (in order from north to south) as Shipwrecks, Lacerations and Playgrounds. They are all not far offshore, and can be reached with an energetic paddle. Alternatively, you can just charter a local perahu boat from the nearest beach.

Lembongan Island Activities

Lembongan island activities – Waiting to catch a wave at Playgrounds

Lembongan Island  – The Main Stretch

The upper west coast of Lembongan island is where you will find the main stretch. This is a continuous length of sandy beach running for about a kilometer from the boat landing area in the south to Light House beach at the northernmost point.

Here you can find most of the shops, bars, guesthouses and commercial outlets, including an all-important ATM machine. There are only a couple of ATMs on the island, so make sure you top up your cash: They are not always in working order.

Lembongan Island Activities

Get the cash while you can (or get fleeced by money-changers)

It’s a pleasant walk up the beach as far as the Lighthouse, where the sand turns a bit shingly (and there is absolutely no shade). From there, you can continue east along the north coast for another kilometer as far as Mangrove Point.

Jungut Batu fast-boat landing area

Jungut Batu fast-boat landing area 

Getting around on foot: Discover a useful shortcut!

If you choose to get around on foot you’ll see a lot more of the beauty of the island. However, the distances by road between Mushroom Beach in the south and over the hill to Jungut Batu in the north can be a little daunting in the heat of the day.

… but there is a very pleasant little shortcut.

It runs along the cliff edge between Tamarind Beach (just next to Mushroom Beach) ending at the boat-landing area at Jungut Batu. It’s not easy to find, so you need to ask the locals. It saved us a lot of time and effort travelling up and down the island.

Shortcut path between north and south

Shortcut path between north and south

Lembongan Island Activities – Shops and Spas

It took us a few days to find shops selling the products we required at the right prices. For bottles of spirits we found a shop close to Sandy Bay, and another in Jungut Batu (see Lembongan Island Eating Out). There’s also a good shop on the Jalan Raya Tuban which sells small Schweppes tonic waters for IDR 8,500 (€0.50) a bottle.

The shop on the Jalan Raya Tuban

The shop on the Jalan Raya Tuban

You’ll find spa boutiques all over the island, with lots of different treatments. A typical one-hour session will cost around IDR 270,000 (€15).

Choose your spa treatment

Choose your spa treatment

Of course, if you just want to chill out there’s a good selection of soft sand beaches dotted around the island, and some interesting offshore snorkeling locations that you can reach by boat.

Although it’s tempting to stick to the beach closest to your guesthouse, you can find more secluded swimming locations if you scout around a bit. This is also a good way to discover some of the less expensive and good quality eating venues on the island.

All your hotel options in Lembongan

If you like these Lembongan Island Activities, be sure to check out our Bali & Lembongan 2-island itinerary. You may also like:

Lembongan Activities


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