Attractions in Candidasa and the nearby areas in Bali’s eastern region range from mysterious temples that make up the list of must-see landmarks in Bali, ancient villages seemingly untouched by modernity, and a variety of beautiful landscapes and seascapes of this secluded and laidback coast.
Candidasa also serves as a great stopover along tours to the north-eastern parts of the island, such as the island’s major dive sites of Amed and Tulamben. The main Jalan Raya Candidasa road traverses through the region and it is a good base to discover the exotic and less-explored highlights of Bali’s remote east.
- Quad or Buggy Driving Adventure & Tubing Excursion
- Royal Mengwi Temple, Monkey Forest & Tanah Lot Excursion
- Bali Hai Sunset Dinner Cruise
- Devdan Show: Treasure of the Archipelago at Bali Nusa Dua Theatre
- Lembongan Island Leisure Day Trip
- Elephant Safari Park & Elephant Ride with Spa
- Highlights Of Bali Full-Day Tour
- Sunset Kecak Dance at Uluwatu & Barbecue Seafood Dinner
- Seawalker, Fly Fish Adventure & Underwater Tandem Scooter Ride
- 2-Day Lombok Island Tour
1. Goa Lawah Temple
Goa Lawahb - the ‘bat cave’ temple of Bali - is unique and mysterious, featuring a temple complex that was built around a cave opening home to hordes of bats. The 11th century temple is one of the first landmarks that you will encounter along your way to the eastern region before entering Candidasa. Locals on pilgrimages to Besakih Temple in the Karangasem regency generally make their mid-journey stop here for brief prayers. The outer perimeter features majestic temple gates and tall shrines, while the main cave opening is loud with chirping bats even in broad daylight. The height of frenzy is at dusk, when the bats feed on airborne insects.
- Location: Jalan Raya Goa Lawah, Pesinggahan Village, Dawan District, Klungkung
2. Lempuyang Temple
Lempuyang Temple is one of Bali’s oldest and most remote temples, but if you manage to reach here, be prepared for one of the most breathtaking temple and mountain sceneries on the island. The journey here resembles a mountain trek, with steep ascents, and comprises two parts with the main temple at 1,175m above sea level on the peak of the namesake mountain. A steep staircase with over 1,700 steps lead up to the peak, through a forest inhabited by grey long-tailed macaques. The midway temple is sufficient for most visitors, with towering shrine and temple gate structures and dragon staircases. The high panoramas over the hilly region make great travel photos.
- Location: Karangasem
3. Amed Beach
Amed Beach is a diver’s haven, one of the main destinations in East Bali. The coast is an hour’s drive up from the main Candidasa area, and another major dive site, Tulamben, is another 25km north. Amed’s underwater beauty is in contrast to its overland terrain, which is arid and usually dry, and the coast features a combination of black volcanic sand and pebble beach. The coastal villages are inhabited by traditional Balinese fishermen who set their sails and wooden jukung boats out to sea in the early mornings, creating a spectacle on the horizon at sunrise. Amed is also known for its traditional salt farming still practiced until today.
- Location: Amed Village, Karangasem
4. Jemeluk Viewpoint
Jemeluk Bay, part of the coastal area of Amed, features a high viewpoint from where you can enjoy the best seascapes comprising the beach dotted with traditional jukung fishing boats, and the majestic outline of Mount Agung in the distant background. The viewpoint also features small sheltered areas and some gazebos where you can have a lazy siesta or enjoy a brief lunch before hitting the road again.
- Location: Jemeluk Village, Karangasem
5. Candidasa Lotus Lagoon
One of the focal landmarks of Candidasa is the lotus lagoon, which provides a spectacular sight with its expansive body of water filled with pink and fuchsia lotuses, and a small garden island with statues at its centre. The lagoon is free to the public, and is accessible from the roadside. Across the road on a higher elevation is the temple that the area is named after, featuring twin shrines under a densely forested hillside. From here, you get a better perspective of the whole lagoon, including a glimpse of the sea and the small offshore rock formations iconic to the Candidasa seascape.
- Location: Samuh Community, Bugbug Village, Candidasa
6. Kerta Gosa Hall of Justice
Kerta Gosa, locally referred to as ‘Taman Gili Kerta Gosa’, is one of Bali’s most important historical landmarks, and is located right in the centre of Semarapura, the capital of Klungkung regency. This former courthouse is part of the royal complex of the Puri Semarapura palace, and is fully open to the public. A ticket booth is at the main entrance on the eastern side of the complex, and admission for adults is IDR 12,000. Inside, you will find two main structures – a grand hall or the namesake Bale Kerta Gosa with ceilings filled with Kamasan or wayang-style paintings, and the Bale Kambang ‘floating hall’ in the centre of the complex. Ceiling paintings depict spiritual teachings and guidance, each telling a different story of karma, reincarnation, and rites of passage.
- Location: Jalan Puputan, Semarapura, Klungkung
- Tour Available: Highlight of Bali
7. Pasir Putih Beach
Recently popularised as the ‘secret beach’ of east Bali, Pasir Putih, literally ‘white sand’, is indeed a great place to escape to if you’re looking for a remote setting and unique coastal features. This beach in the village of Perasi features a pristine stretch of white sand with faint streaks of black volcanic sediments near the cliffs, and the seascape includes the small rocky islet of Gili Biaha on the horizon. Following its rise to fame, several locally-run restaurants and cafes have sprung up along the coast, serving some light meals and refreshments. You can also book a fishing, snorkelling or sailing tour from the kiosks here. On the beach you can enjoy sunbathing, and the waters are good for swimming.
- Location: Perasi Village, Karangasem
8. Taman Ujung Water Palace
Taman Ujung Water Palace, locally referred to as Taman Sukasada Ujung, is a royal water garden that consists of various large pools and historic structures set against a backdrop of Mount Agung and the eastern shoreline. It showcases a combination of Balinese and European architecture throughout three large ponds that are connected by elegant dragon bridges and stone pathways. The physical features and superb setting with the forested hills to its north, and open sea to its south make it a favourite location for pre-weddings as well as photo enthusiasts. The park is open to the public, and usually sees more local crowds during the weekends.
- Location: Tumbu Village, Karangasem
9. Tirta Gangga Water Gardens
Another royal water garden reminiscent of the palace of Karangasem is Tirta Gangga, built in 1946 during the reign of the late raja of Karangasem. The lavish water garden complex spans 1.2 hectares, featuring a collection of freshwater pools, ponds and functioning fountains surrounded by well manicured gardens. The garden is within an hour’s drive up north from the main Candidasa area, and offers a cool highland retreat for locals and visitors. Besides many small warung stalls selling snacks and refreshments outside the main entrance gate, there’s also a restaurant, part of the hotel run by the royal family just behind the main fountains, where you can enjoy local and western cuisine and ice-cold beers with open views to the beautiful scenery.
- Location: Jalan Abang, Ababi Village, Karangasem
10. Tenganan Pegringsingan
A visit here lets you take a closer look into the old Balinese village life. One of the oldest villages on the island, Tenganan Pegringsingan, or Tenganan for short, is within only a 15-minute drive uphill north of the main Candidasa area. The Bali Aga (original Balinese) village is well-preserved and predates the arrival of the Majapahit kingdom to Bali. One of the most unique attractions here includes the namesake ancient textile produced here, namely the double-weave ikat cloth called Geringsing, which is believed to have mystical value. Another highlight is the Perang Pandan battles, which involves village boys coming of age engaging in friendly but bloody matches using woven thorny pandans as swords. The battles take place around a village temple anniversary, usually around the Gregorian months of June and July.
- Location: Jalan Raya Nyuh Tebel, Tenganan Village, Karangasem