Information before you go
Pemuteran Bali is as far as you can get from all the hustle and bustle in the south of the island. Located north-west of Bali this village is probably the less visited. Travelers who do come here often stay for just a day to do one thing: scuba diving.
But after staying in this quiet village for a couple of nights I think it's a really relaxing place which unfortunately isn't often included in the itinerary of many travellers.
A piece of North Coast that still isn't discovered by most
This pretty unknown village is about a 1 hour drive from Lovina. If you are coming from this direction and you have almost arrived you'll be greeted with stunning green mountain slopes (during the rainy season) which dominate the village.
The village consists mainly of the main coast road with mountains on one side, the beautiful beach and most big resorts on the other. Surprisingly though, between these resorts there are still little dirt roads that take you to the houses where the locals live.
That's when you realize that here tourism is still very much underdeveloped and that the local people of this fishing village are relatively poor compared to other parts of the island.
Little houses surrounded by a garden and a cow munching next to the front door is a very common scene here. I can imagine that this area is how Lovina or Candidasa looked liked in the 1980's!
One one side the mountain slopes dominate the landscape
But the great thing is something you won't immediately see when you stay there. Unlike the south the villagers here are pretty much involved in preserving the valuable nature in their area.
For instance the community have set up their so called 'Sea Guardians' who ensure that laws to prevent destructive fishing and to preserve the coral reefs are maintained. Local trained staff are also hired to grow new coral reefs just off the coast of the beach. This marine conservation project which is managed by the villagers has become a success and is world wide acknowledged by being awarded with the 2012 Equator Prize, an UNDP Equator Award for Community Based Development.
So despite the arrival of the big resorts the local people still take pride of their nature and culture.
Here you can still find local people living right at the beach
Nevertheless this area of Bali is very poor and the tourism facilities are quite minimal. For one, internet access it not widely found maybe at big resorts only. There are no shops selling colorful Balinese souvenirs to take home with you, instead you'll only find those that sell food, drinks and other household utilities.
And one important thing you should know when you plan to stay here is that there are no ATM machines. The nearest is probably Lovina. So bring a credit card to pay at the resort and some extra cash.
As mentioned before the main attraction of this village is Bali scuba diving and snorkeling. Most travelers don't even stop at Pemuteran when they go on a diving tour as the best diving is about 20 minutes drive towards the west coast around Menjangan island.
However besides Menjangan being one of the best places for diving, just off the coast of you can do some snorkeling as well.
Resort Dive operator in Pemuteran
Most of the resorts have their own dive center while in the village along the main road there are dive operators like Easy Divers and Yos Dive that offer Padi courses too. They also provide the possibility to charter a boat while offering guided dives.
The beaches in in this part of the island are also far nicer than the ones in the south of Bali. From what we have experienced there are beautiful stretches of beach in front of Taman Salini and Taman Sari hotel.
From several beach resorts you can find rehabilitated coral gardens, great for snorkeling...
We have also found a deserted beach that is really eye-catching. To get there you need to find a little red sign on the side of the road pointing towards the sea side with 'Pura Pucak Gunung Beratan Pemuteran' on it. It's somewhere near Adi Assri and Taman Salini.
Sounds a bit vague, but I'm sure that once you are there you will easily spot it.
You can still find secluded beaches here...
When you want to do something cultural then there's Pura Tirta Pulaki. With the mountain wall looming behind the complex, this recently restored temple is a pretty mystical sight.
But while you admire this temple, beware of the naughty monkeys. Like in other places in Bali they can get pretty aggressive so watch out that they don't snatch away your sunglasses, bottles of water or even worse your camera.
One part of Pura Tirta Pulaki
Besides diving you can also go hiking at West Bali National Park (also known as Bali Barat National Park). If you are lucky enough you might spot the Bali Starling in its natural environment. This beautiful bird is only found on this island. You can arrange trekking tours (around USD30) and bird watching tours (around USD55) at the resorts.
But you can also drive to Labuhan Lalang (the same location if you want to go snorkeling at Menjangan island) were park rangers can arrange the necessary papers and a guide.
At Labuhan Lalang you can arrange snorkeling and hiking tours...
Here at the National Park office they offer one day trekking tours. Tours can also start at Cekik village on the other side of West Bali National Park. You need an authorized guide to get into the park and depending how long you want to go the price ranges between USD 15 and USD 50 excluding transport and food.
If you return to Pemuteran village after a dive or tour make sure you make some time to visit the Turtle Hatchery at the dive resort Reef Seen. Their turtle breeding and release program aims to increase the survival chances of turtles. They do this by conservation awareness among villager plus they actually keep hatchlings so they can grow big enough to survive the open sea.
You can help them out by becoming a sponsor and if they are planning a turtle release, you can actually join them.
Compared to other villages in Bali you won't find an abundance of choice of restaurants in Pemuteran. You can either eat at the resorts or go for a stroll along the main road and check out the small number of local warungs.
Over the years more local Balinese have opened restaurants, usually in conjunction with a homestay. Here you can taste freshly prepared dishes of which the grilled fish the best.
Restaurant at Pondok Sari
Other options are the restaurants at the resorts. From what we know none of them specifically try to serve local products or organic ingredients as much as possible. But of course, they do have Indonesian specialities on their menu.
When you are staying more then a couple of days it can be pretty difficult to find something different. We shameless admit that we even thought the Greek Restaurant at Taman Selini was a delicious change. They are known for their food so for a guaranteed good lunch or dinner you can always go there.
If you solely want to eat healthy conscious food where organic and local products are used whenever possible stay a few days at villa Puri Ganesha. The owner, Diana is a well known raw food chef and in her restaurant she mixes her skills into the delicious menu that varies from local dishes to strictly vegetarian. Red meat is not served here, only local chicken, fish and other ingredients.
As mentioned earlier the majority of the Bali accommodations are big resorts along the beach. Eco oriented hotels and resorts are almost non-existent here however the ones that you do find in Pemuteran seem to be more conscious then in the south of Bali. Perhaps owners who do choose to create a business here do so because of the beauty of the area and therefore take steps to maintain it.
Coral protection initiatives and/or community support are are part of their philosophy at the following resorts:
The wonderful thing about this little resort at the beach, besides only having 8 rooms, is that they focus on what they are most passionate about. Here everything evolves around diving and marine conservation. They keep the rates for their accommodation pretty low as they want visitors to fully enjoy their diving holiday.
Rooms with garden view have either an air conditioning or a fan and only cold water. The sea view rooms have hot water plus air conditioning. So if you need a piece of luxury then it is available.
On their premises you can visit the Turtle Hatchery where you can see cute turtles. The beach is also just a couple of meters away, so you'll have easy access to Pemuteran beach. You can also watch and join a local dance group who practice here.
Puri Ganesha Villas
This Bali boutique resort has 4 extraordinary villas located far away and it is hidden from all the craziness in life. Here you will enter a world of taste (and I don't only mean the villa's interior but the food too) and charm that will make you want to stay much much longer.
The owners are also very much involved with the community. All staff members are from the village and their Pemuteran Children Foundation aims at providing chances for children living under the poverty line. The foundation has provided children with shoes, uniforms, working experience and further education possibilities. (around USD550-USD877 p.n. min 2 nights, high season min 5 nights)
Matahari Beach Resort & Spa
As soon you enter this Bali beach resort you will be surrounded by the beautiful Balinese atmosphere and decorations.
On the premises you will find nice Balinese details while decorations in the rooms are all made locally.
Besides its beautiful setting and ensuring a relaxing holiday Matahari is actively involved in supporting the nearby community by providing basic education to children, creating a community meeting area 'Bale' for the villagers and financially supporting the 'Benih Kasih', a home for less fortunate children and orphans. (around US$100-US$500)
Taman Sari Bali Resort & Spa
Taman Sari has villas, suites and deluxe rooms. The villas are really massive and look more like private houses with swimming pools.
The suites and deluxe rooms are set in a tropical garden. The whole resort is pretty big including their stretch of beach. This mid range accommodation is a good place to do some snorkeling since the resort has joined the local coral restoration project. (around US$45-USD$150 per night)
Besides resorts there are also home stays in the village. All of them are located on the mountain side of the the main road, so you won't have direct access to the beach.
But if you plan to do some serious scuba diving only and don't want to spend too much on Bali accommodation then a homestay might be an option as most of them are owned by private dive shops in the village.
Home > Pemuteran
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Now and then people send us inspiring emails and this generates even more enthusiasm to share all of the things we know about this lovely island in the hope that you can plan your tropical holiday properly and have as such a great time as we always have. Hope to see you there!
When I wrote the mail I never really expected a reply. I might have expected a computer generated but never a personally written one. The information you provided is invaluable, thank you so very much. I have been using your website as a bible through Bali. Through your recommendation, I will be heading to Ubud then follow the sightseeing route to the coast of Candidasa.
WOW...what an awesome website. I could only dream that there would be a website like this for all our travel destinations! You guys have done an fabulous job and now, I am sooo excited about our upcoming trip to Bali. To be honest, I wasn't quite sure Bali was the place for us considering some of the travel warnings (we are Americans). But I can tell from your experiences that the Bali people are so very kind and peaceful.
hi and congratulations on the blog it s brilliant and helpful....we are going to Bali in September with my family (including 2 little girls) so we need to have nice spaceous rooms garden and pool access rooms preferably in Semikyak but not too far from it all...I hope you can recommend a great place thats not full of Australian crowds as we like meeting people from other countries.
Hi, I have been travelling for years and I want to say that this website is the best I have EVER come across. It is easy to navigate, it is really descriptive, gives all the info that you could ever want and is accompanied by the best photos and advice. GREAT.