Cruises and Underwater Cruises in Bali
What better way to enjoy the ocean than to set sails? Sanur, Nusa Lembongan and Nusa Penida are the premier sailing points in Bali. The most common route is to depart from Sanur, stopover on a pontoon at Lembongan Bay for water activities and a village outing, then return to Sanur’s Benoa harbour by dusk.
The floating dock is set up to be a one-stop water activity and entertainment station, consisting of slides, a swimming pool, an underwater viewing chamber, glass-bottomed boats, banana boats, canoes and snorkelling equipment, and providing an international buffet accompanied by sounds from a live band. There are lots of travel agents that offer special packages for cruising and underwater cruises like Scoot, Quicksilver Cruises and Bounty Cruise.
Diving in Sanur Beach
As it has cooler water than Kuta, Sanur makes the best home for hundreds of species of fish, not to mention the various types of sea urchins, crustaceans, and coral reefs. Sanur can be your starting point to discover Bali’s treasures below the surface.
Bali International Diving Professionals have identified 12 diving sites that divers of every level can enjoy, including minors from the age of eight and disabled individuals. All official providers and instructors are P.A.D.I. Certified, so don’t hesitate to explore the spectacular underwater panorama.
Due to its smaller countryside acreage than Kuta or Nusa Dua, golf courses in Sanur don’t have more than 9 holes. The Grand Bali Beach Hotel’s own Bali Beach Golf Course is the only international-standard golf course in Sanur. Located in the heart of Sanur, Bali Beach Golf Course gives an extra challenge with its smaller range packed with shady pines and hibiscus trees.
The Club is also equipped with a restaurant and bar, professional store, private lockers, ATM facilities, conference room, and business lounge. This course is an ideal one for those who are on a tight schedule. To improve your swing only, Udayana Golf Driving Range is the best place.
Sanur’s shoreline is more than enough for kite hobbyists, but for die-hard fans the annual Bali Kite Festival at Padang Galak beach should not be missed. This three-day event covers Padang Galak with animal figures, giant fish, birds, and other traditional-shaped kites. It creates an artificial screen, which the sun can shine through, showing a vibrant and colourful animal-shaped cloud.
Balinese traditional kites are very big: with an average diameter of six to eight metres it takes a team of more than twenty people to fly it. In 2008, teams from 12 countries took part in this festival including Indonesia, Australia, Russia, Taiwan, New Zealand, The Philippines, Malaysia, Germany, The USA, Japan, India, and China – between them there were more than 700 kites. The festival usually takes place in July and it has been held since 1978, so don’t miss this 31st year.
The relatively new type of water sport could be more aptly called kite boarding since it uses a wakeboard instead of a surfboard. As evidenced by its name, kite surfing incorporates parasailing, wakeboarding, and waterskiing. Although more tricky to perform, kite surfing is similar to wakeboarding and waterskiing, except is uses a large kite to tow the wakeboard instead of a boat.
If you’re accustomed to either of the two better-known disciplines, this sport is definitely an upgrade but for those who are not, a professional instructor will gladly give you a short course. This challenge requires constant practice to gain balance and control.
As exciting as its name suggests, the marine walk is a new treat for underwater activity enthusiasts in Sanur. The idea is very simple: participants put on a scuba helmet connected to an air tank, step down a ladder and just walk across the sea floor normally. This method is actually adapted from the oldest diving practice of mankind whereby weightier equipment and a manual compressor for air supplies were used.
You don’t need to be a good swimmer nor an experienced diver to feel the excitement of an underwater stroll. It’s a totally safe activity, even for children of age nine and upwards – you don’t even have to remove your glasses or contact lenses because the helmet is impermeable. For safety matters participants can only dive five to eight metres below for fifteen minutes at a time to avoid decompression sickness. This exciting activity is provided by Bali Marine Walk and Sea Walker.
Snorkelling in Sanur Beach
For snorkeling, Sanur is the second best site on the island. To find the best spots you could rent a dinghy and reach places further away than the immediate vicinity of the beach, although to be safe perhaps it’s a good idea to sign up for a snorkeling package at your hotel or with a diving provider. Snorkeling in Sanur is better during the high tide: as the level gets higher the underwater life animates naturally.
Surfing in Sanur Beach
Sanur doesn’t have as much to offer as other parts of Bali, but it does own one surf spot that can be compared to the Bukit’s. Keramas Beach was discovered soon after rumours began circulating from local fishermen about the opposing twin swells reaching the reef break. Shortly after, a number of the world’s most famous surfers went to confirm the existence of the newly discovered break.
Another premier break is located a few kilometres north from Keramas Beach. Bangsal Beach has also become a surfing venue for the world series. To surf in Sanur you have to use a boat (or face a long paddle) to cover the half kilometre distance between the shore and the curly barrels.
Swimming in Sanur
Swimming is the prime water activity in Sanur. The lower tide, clean and cool water are some of the reasons you might choose to swim in Sanur over Kuta or any other beach in this island, not to mention its smaller crowds and safer waves. Swimming in Sanur is safe for minors as well as for adults. Aside from Sanur Beach, southern Sanur’s Sindhu beach is also the site of an excellent saltwater lagoon.
Windsurfing in Sanur Beach
Windsurfing happens to be more popular in Sanur than surfing. Its steady wind and constant currents create conditions perfectly suited to a combination of speed and manoeuvres. For professionals, the wind at Serangan Island is always a few knots stronger than elsewhere and the reef breaks make ramp waves for better stunts.
The sport itself combines rules and aspects of both sailing and surfing but to steer a sail attached to a surfboard requires some serious skills. Sanur’s waters are always suitable but the dry season serves you the best.