Sanur Beach Bali

 

A prosperous and historic resort area, Sanur is Indonesia's answer to Waikiki. It's nine km southeast of Denpasar and crowded with high-priced luxury hotels and clusters of serene bungalows in leafy compounds along the shoreline of a gentle, reef-sheltered lagoon.

Guesthouses started appearing here as early as the 1940s and heralded the age of modern tourism on the island. Large hotel enclaves, shady lanes, trees, and coral walls give the village a park-like setting.

Sanur Beach Sanur Beach

The sunrise over Pulau Nusa Penida each morning is magnificent. At sunset, sailboats dot Sanur's horizon. Sanur is smaller, quieter, prettier, safer, and more sheltered than Kuta 15 km to the southwest. It's also more expensive. The big luxury hotels which have made Sanur famous are on side streets off the main street and its 'dukun' and trance mediums are renowned all over the island.

Despite the throngs of tourists, the village still retains its Balinese character. Sanur is one of Bali's largest traditional villages. Nevertheless village life goes on and visitors can really experience the real Bali.

The trees are mature, the streets in good repair, and there's less construction than in Kuta or Lovina. Sanur is the preferred long-term residence for those Bali expats who prefer the ocean and the city. The most exclusive private estates, separated by vine-draped coral walls and palm-fringed lanes, are in the Batu Jimbar neighborhood.

Within these elegant compounds are luxurious gardens, swimming pools, lotus ponds, well-tended lawns, and elegant, traditional thatched-roofed villas. Because of its glamour, and snob appeal, the Sanur area is also a favorite of diplomats and foreign consulates.

Only 2.5 km south of the Grand Bali Beach Hotel, just beyond the village of Kesiman, is an important place of remembrance, Padanggalak. From the beach enjoy fine views of the coastline and Sanur's 'hotel row'. It was on this beach that the Dutch forces which eventually subjugated the Balinese landed in 1906.

Thirty-six years later Dutch fleeing the Japanese also came ashore here. And in 1946, the Dutch were back here again, attempting to re-establish control over their former colony, using KNIL units and meeting stubborn resistance from the Balinese.

Padanggalak also commemorates a tragedy. A monument here is dedicated to the people who died in the crash of a Pan Am Boeing 707 that crashed into the side of Gunung Patas west of Singaraja on 22 April 1974.

Mistaking the lights of boats and fishing platforms off the north coast for the landing strip lights at Bali's airport in Tuban in the south, the pilot came in low and crashed headlong into the mountain, killing all 107 people onboard. Visitors from 11 nations still come here to pay their respects to the dead, laying flowers and offerings at the small altar containing the ashes of the victims.

The village of Sanur located on the eastern coast of Bali is the ideal beach for snorkeling as it is protected by a coral reef. Sanur is Bali's first beach resort.

Getting There

From Kuta to Sanur, take a 'bemo' first to Terminal Tegal in Denpasar, then a dark blue 'bemo' all the way to Sanur. Or take a dark green 'bemo' from Denpasar's Kreneng Terminal to Sanur. A two-km-long four-lane highway runs six km from the southeastern edge of Denpasar (Renon) to northern Sanur, dropping you off just north of the Grand Bali Beach compound, then continuing down Jalan Danau Tamblingan.

With or without prior booking, look for the name of your hotel on signs or vehicles at the airport for a free air-conditioned ride to Sanur. A different way to reach Sanur is to walk along the beach from Lebih, south of Gianyar. This involves crossing the mouths of several rather large rivers-exercise cautions.

Getting Away

The Sanur Terminal is at the south end of Sanur near the Trophy Pub Center at the end of Jalan Danau Tamblingan. On Jalan Tanjung Sari, flag down a blue or green public 'bemo' heading northwest to Denpasar's Kreneng Station or a blue one heading south to Tegal Station. From here you get another 'bemo' to Kuta.

Take yellow metered Praja taxis, tel. 62361-289090/191, to the Matahari Department Store in Denpasar. You can also take private cars or minibuses into Denpasar. If you have your own vehicle, drive the beautiful new superhighway via Batubulan in the direction of Ubud. This highway-perhaps the best on the island-makes Sanur a good base from which to explore the regencies of Bangli, Gianyar, and Klungkung.

Sanur village is also blessed with the majority of the head offices of international airlines serving Bali, most located in the Grand Bali Beach, so it's easy to confirm or change your departure date here.

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