Be a Local On Your Day Trip To Canggu
Our son Nick had arrived in Bali a few weeks before we did and found his spot with the locals. Driving his Scoopi scooter like a local, he had been moving around to various home-stays in the Canggu area and was excited to share his discoveries with us on our day trip to Canggu.
Since we were going to be wandering around off the beaten path, we decided to get a driver for the day. When we had changed some currency in Cairns before leaving Australia, we were given the name and contact information for a local Bali driver. We connected with Joni by email and he was waiting in the lobby for our day trip to Canggu.
Our first stop on this day trip to Canggu was an iced coffee stop. Joni took us into Seminyak down a small alley to a busy coffee shop. Like our visit to Kuta the day before, we found Seminyak to be a bustling town, full of shopping and food stops, with lots of tourists walking on the sidewalks. The coffee shop was filled with half locals and half tourists. It would be the first of many coffee tastings for this day.
Nick had provided us with driving instructions following the route the locals take. Leaving the main road we headed past the rice fields and turned down an alley through the fields. Joni paid attention to make sure he did not wander off this path that seemed wide enough mostly for scooters!
Surfers and Bikers in Canggu
We met up with Nick at the Batu Bolong beach in Canggu. He would be our tour guide for our day trip to Canggu.
Dropping our shoes we walked to the sand and settled down to watch the surfers. Most of the surfers spent much of their time sitting on the boards out in the deeper water waiting for the big waves to come. Every now and then we could see someone ride in to shore. One experienced surfer chose the waves closer to shore, increasing his challenge by surfer right for the rock in the bay.
We had lunch at the local Old Man’s. David posed with a smile, fitting right in. Being right near the water, we could not pass on the fish and chips – which were great. We could sit on the outdoor patio and see the beach. This was definitely a hang out for locals to the Canggu area or people like Nick who felt more at home in this less tourist spot.
The next local spot on Nick’s agenda on our day trip to Canggu was for coffee at Deus. Deus is biker heaven, boasting an interesting display of vintage motorcycles and a shop filled with surfing supplies.
We settled in under cover as the skies opened up and poured. David found his Bali coffee (known as “Butterfly” brand) and his eyes instantly perked up. The bar had now been set for coffee.
Playing With The Luwaks
We were hoping that the weather would hold long enough for us to visit Tanah Lot Temple by the sea. Joni parked his car, pointed us in the right direction and waited with the rest of the drivers while we visited this site. There was a whole separate area of local shops for the drivers.
We had several temples on our list to visit while we were in Bali. A visit to the temple at Tanah Lot should be on your agenda even if you are not doing a day trip to Canggu. You will immediately recognize the iconic view when you hit the water site. Paying our entrance fee, we wandered through the lanes of shops you must navigate before you got to the temple. The grey skies seemed to be keeping visitors away, leaving most of the alleys empty of tourists and the store vendors not motivated to call to us as we passed.
As we hit one corner we saw the sign for CoffeeTab Espresso and the infamous Kopi Luwak coffee. We knew we were in the right place when we saw two luwaks playing on a stand. Even if we say nothing else this day, our visit to see the luwaks close up would make a great memory for our day trip to Canggu. We would be happy seeing the “wild” uncaged luwaks here before the horrible caged animals on our trip to Ubud.
Nicolas went to play with the luwaks. The two luwaks played with each other but were curious as Nick moved in. They let him stroke them but did occasionally try to nip at any loose part of your clothing hanging down as David found when he was trying to drink his coffee. The luwak faces were just one of the interesting animal faces of Bali we would capture in pictures.
David went to engage the shop owner Joe in a coffee discussion. David probed at the process of making coffee from coffee beans digested by the luwaks and passed in their poop. This extra processing created a coffee that was supposed to have a rich fruity flavour and justified the very high premium cost. We were not sure how you really knew that your coffee beans had this extra processing.
After looking at the owls, I sat with a watchful eye on the two giant bats hanging on the perch. They could have wrapped their wings fully around me had they decided to move. At one point, Joe woke them up with a banana so we could see them in action – eating while hanging upside down.
David and Nick tried the coffee. While it might be the most expensive coffee in the world, David was not tempted to buy a bag to take back home. I would pick up a smaller bag as a gift when we left the airport.
Tanah Lot Temple By The Sea
We continued through the shop to the Tanah Lot Temple in the sea. This is the highlight of a day trip to Canggu. At low tide, you could walk out to the temple and explore but we were around high tide and there were signs everywhere saying that you should not attempt to walk in the one metre waters to get to the temple.
The site was still quiet and we were able to wander around quite freely to catch different views of the temple as the waves pounded in.
But as the clouds moved out, the crowds moved in. As we wandered to the far side to get a view of the sea and another angle of the temple, we could see the tourists lined up with their selfie sticks getting their iconic pics of Tanah Lot.
Walking along the path above the water, we got a great view of the clear water and the other alter site at the far end.
For our last stop on our day trip to Canggu, we had originally planned to have a sunset dinner by the sea but we could see the clouds moving in again. It would not be much of a view if we were huddling inside from the rain. It had been a full day and we settled into Joni’s car for the slow drive back through the crazy traffic of Bali for our return to Jimbaran Bay.
When you visit Bali for a week and want to get out of the tourist bustle, consider a day trip to Canggu. While the Tanahlot Temple site is often over-run with tourists, the beaches and local eateries are busy mostly with locals and people escaping the more commercial parts of Bail.
Did you do a day trip to Canggu when you were in Bali? What was your favourite thing about Canggu?