Canguu, pronouced Chan-goo, is an upmarket area 20 minutes up the West coast of Bali from Kuta. It is a collection of spread out villas, restaurants and rice paddies. The waves are mostly beach breaks so it caters for a wide range of surfing abilities, and the beaches are also good for swimming.
We stayed there for 5 nights in a surf hostel. It was actually 2 connected villas that had been converted into a hostel, so there were 4 kitchens, 2 pools and 2 TV areas. With all that space the hostel never felt crowded even though it was full the majority of the time we were there.
The day we got there the people in the hostel were throwing a pool party to celebrate a few of their birthdays. That night I went along with the hostel people to a restaurant/bar called Deus, to watch a live band. The music was so eclectic and awesome, and I have no clue what genre it fits into. The band was set up in the garden behind Deus, so we all danced to the rhythmic music in front of the stage, drank Bintangs and had a great time.
I wanted to walk back to the hostel because I wasn’t keen to jump on the back of a motorbike of someone I hardly knew, and that had been drinking too. This wasn’t the plan – I was supposed to drive but the guy whose scooter it was changed his mind at the last moment and insisted on driving it. So I refused a lift and started the walk back to the hostel. I genuinely thought I knew the way back, but I obviously didn’t because I got so lost. There were no street lights in areas, and I was so scared sometimes that I would actually run. Eventually, very much on the verge of tears, I walked into the reception of a hotel and asked for directions. After using Google Maps on the computer and explaining where I stayed, the friendly guy at reception had an idea of how I could find my way back. I had walked so far in the wrong direction that I was a pretty long distance from the hostel. Struggling to hold back tears, I thanked him and started to leave. This guy clearly realised that I wasn’t going to find the way back, so he offered to take me on his scooter. I offered him the last bit of money I had but he refused it. I got back to the hostel safely, thanks to that kind samaritan, and learnt a very valuable lesson that night.
I love staying in hostels because it is fun to meet all the diverse people who stay there. I also love having a kitchen to cook in, and I even made pancakes in this one! It was so interesting to hear everyones different stories, and it is such an eye opening part of traveling. The one guy is a photographer and chef, and is traveling around to various countries, getting recipes from the locals and compiling a cook book. Others are studying online while living in Bali, and another guy is launching a business in coconut products. It gave me so many ideas about how I could work and travel one day, and it was truly astounding, and also comforting, to realise how many people are doing it already.
Canggu is just a really nice area, not too commercialised but not remote by any means either. It is a 15 minute drive away from Seminyak if you want to go shop or eat there, yet it is just far enough away so that you don’t at all feel like you are caught up in the hustle and bustle. We loved our stay there, and it is definitely on my list of places I want to go back to!
Beach: Echo beach. It has beach loungers for rent, a nice water to swim in and restaurants serving yummy seafood BBQ’s.
Indonesian restaurant: Bumi. Local food served in a slightly modernised restaurant, with good prices.
Restaurant: Warung Satya. Not the most elaborate place, but really tasty food and served in a beautiful setting, overlooking the fields. It’s cheap too!
Bar: Deus. They have live music on Sunday evenings in their back garden, and travellers gather there in hoards.
Tourist attraction: Tanah Lot. Not strictly in Canggu, it is is actually a bit of a drive up the coast from there. A temple almost in the ocean, nice for photographs and also drinking some holy water and being blessed.
That’s all the favourites I could think of, and I didn’t do any shopping so I don’t have a favourite shop. Please comment if there is some things I should add to the list!