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Once a sleepy fishing village on the southeastern coast of the island of Bali in Indonesia, Sanur has grown into a beachy tourist destination in southeast Asia. Learn more about Sanur, its beaches, and its delicious foods in this Everyday Postcard from Annette.
With seven continents, nearly 200 countries, and more than 7.5 billion people in the world, there is a lot to experience. The world is so vast and amazing that even the most avid traveler with a large bank account couldn’t truly do it justice in one lifetime!
Through the Everyday Postcard series, one of the world’s everyday wanderers shares postcard-worthy photos and real-life travel experiences to bring a piece of the big wide world to you.
After enjoying delicious chicken satay on the beach with her toes in the sand, Annette jotted off this postcard from Sanur, Bali:
If you wander along the promenade on the beachfront at Sanur you’ll see these Bali Huts dotted along the shoreline. There is a platform to sit on and a roof to shield from the tropical sun. Sanur is Bali’s oldest fishing village, hence the fishing boats. The seafood here is plentiful and delicious. You’d love it!
Your Down-under friend,
Meet Annette Jones
Annette fell in love with Bali 20 years ago and continues to explores Bali at least a few times a year. She has spent more than a month driving around Bali, and she calls Sanur her second home. She’s planning her escape Australia to live in Sanur with her partner Kevin in Sanur full-time within the next few years.
In addition to checking out Annette’s Sanur Bali Guide, be sure to follow her adventures in Sanur, Bali, via social media.
Where is Sanur?
Sanur is on the island of Bali in Indonesia. The once sleepy fishing village is located on the southeastern side of the island.
The main tourist destination of Sanur stretches along the coastline for around 4 1/2 to 6 miles (7 to 9 kilometers). The promenade is one way to get around. The other is via the main street, Jalan Tamblingan, that runs through the center of Sanur.
How did you decide to visit Sanur?
We have been travelling to Bali for over 20 years. Sadly, we have witnessed the island transform from a sleepy, laid-back piece of paradise to a busy, bustling tourist mecca on the western side of the island. Sometimes with traffic jams lasting up to an hour.
About 6-7 years ago we ventured over to the eastern side for our holiday to explore Sanur and we fell instantly in love with this little village. It was as if the clock was rewound 20 years! Apart from driving around Bali, we haven’t returned to the other side to stay since.
How did you get to Bali?
Visiting Bali is fairly easy for most Australians and is a popular holiday destination. It’s a short 6-hour international flight for us. (Yes, we consider 6 hours a short trip!) It’s only a 3 hour flight if we lived in Perth, Western Australia.
Once clearing customs, immigration and collecting our luggage, we are met by a private driver who drives us to our accommodation. This costs around AUD $15-$20 depending on the driver and distance they have to travel.
Most people arriving in Bali hire a private driver to collect them from Denpasar International Airport. Drivers are also hired for private day trips to explore the island at a cost of $50 Australian dollars (about $35 US dollars) for the day.
What was your favorite moment during your visit to Sanur?
True, feet in the sand dining experiences. We sat on the beachfront, gazing at the ocean, eating delicious food and sipping beautiful cocktails.
There is an abundance of seafood in Sanur and throughout Bali. Popular dishes are whole fish, prawns (shrimp) and crab.
The sunsets in Bali are spectacular, and although the sun sets over the water on the western side of the island, the sunsets in Sanur are equally spectacular. Sunrises even more so as the sun rises over the ocean
How did you travel around Sanur, Bali?
In Sanur we find the easiest way to travel around is by pushbike. We even ride to dinner on a pushbike if the restaurant is close! Pushbikes are hired for around $15 Australian dollars (about $10 US dollars) for the week.
The traffic in Sanur is nowhere near as busy and congested as the other side of the island. It’s perfectly safe to ride around and the Balinese are extremely patient on the roads, especially with tourists!
If we are staying at one end of Sanur and having dinner at the other end of Sanur, we will get a Go-Jek. This is the Asian version of Uber, and a the ride typically costs a whole Australian dollar (about 70 US cents)!
One of the best parts of travel is experiencing the local flavors. What was your favorite meal in Sanur, Bali?
My favourite Balinese dish is ayam satays (chicken satay). And one of the best-known Balinese dishes is nasi goreng (Fried Rice). The satays are cooked over a hot charcoal fire with a peanut (satay) sauce as an accompaniment.
The Nasi Goreng is quickly fried in a wok over high heat. It may contain a few finely chopped vegetables and is always served with a fried egg on top. I’ve been known to eat nasi for breakfast!
Every eatery has its own version of the dishes. This always makes for fun times to find the Holy Grail of satays and nasis.
Did anyone travel to Sanur, Bali, with you?
Yes, my partner Kevin travels with me. In fact, we are planning to live in Sanur for a year or more very soon. Once we wrap up a business here in Australia, we’ll be venturing to Sanur through Southeast Asia and Portugal.
Did you learn any local expressions in Sanur?
Like anywhere in the world the locals appreciate when an effort is made to converse with them in their language. We’ve picked up the basics, such as:
- Terima kasih – Thank you
- Tidak – No
- Selamat pagi (pah-gee) – Good morning
- Selamat siang (see-ahng) – Good day
- Selamat sore (sor-eee) – Good afternoon
- Selamat malam (ma-lahm) – Good evening
What sights cannot be missed when visiting Sanur?
Definitely the beachfront. Standing and sitting on the beach or restaurant, looking out across the bay to the outer lying islands and Bali’s active volcano Mt. Agung.
What was the weather like when you visited Sanur?
Hot! There are two temperatures high humidity in the rainy or wet season and warm to hot with lower humidity in the dry season. The wet season runs from November to March and Bali has a windy season in August and September. That said, it can be still hot.
We hear a lot about “smooth sailing” travel moments, but were there any rough patches during your visit to Sanur?
One airline flying from Australia is notorious for cancelling flights. We’ve experienced this first-hand, both coming and going to Bali.
What activity or attraction did you enjoy most in Sanur?
Taking a month to explore the true Bali. We ventured out of the touristy places of Bali and drove into the countryside. We hired a car and drove around the entire island with no set plans. We loved it.
Did you meet any of the locals in Sanur? What were they like?
It’s impossible to not meet locals in Sanur or throughout Bali. The Balinese are incredibly friendly and possess an uncanny for remembering you from past trips. The Balinese are typically Hindu by religion, and they honor their Gods throughout each day.
Did you bring home any memorable souvenirs during your trip?
In our initial trips to Bali, we brought back souvenirs every trip. We purchased artwork, mainly paintings and wooden carvings of Buddhas. The odd t-shirt also makes it into our suitcases occasionally, too. Now we don’t buy any souvenirs, preferring to spend our money on experiences and creating memories.
What’s one thing travelers can’t forget to pack when they visit Sanur?
Sunscreen and feminine products are both are very expensive in Bali, so it’s best to bring plenty of both from home. But, if you forget anything else, you can always buy it there.