After a 30 minute boat trip from Sanur, we arrived in the most idyllic bay. It was Mushroom Bay, and was to be our base for the following few days on Nusa Lembongan.
Nusa Lembongan island is so close to Bali, yet so entirely different. For a start, there are no cars allowed on the island, so there are only motorbikes and the occasional taxi truck (needed to transport luggage and people on tours) on the roads. It has miraculously evaded excessive tourism, and remains an authentic, relaxed island, filled with smiling locals.
The surrounding waters are so clear and blue, and there is so much forest on the island. You don’t feel trapped in an over populated, over developed area, but rather close to nature. The beaches are still quite pristine, and you can easily drive down a road and not see another tourist.
It’s safe to say that I certainly felt like I had discovered my own paradise island!
We stayed at a cute resort called Sadeg, owned by a local family that bought it when the then luxury resort went bankrupt. They are slowly renovating it and trying to regain its former glory. It nevertheless remains a charming place, and we loved staying there. It is located on the side of Mushroom Bay, so it has a panoramic view of the bay and ocean.
Nusa Lembongan has surprisingly many activities to offer, so we knew that we had to pack our 6 days on the island full. We planned to explore the island, I wanted to scuba dive, Norman wanted to surf, we all wanted to snorkel and we made a short list of restaurants to try.
On our first day on the island we rented 2 motorbikes and drove around the entire island, which is only about 8km in length. At the end of the trip we realised just how much of the island was still how it would have been years ago, and we were all smitten.
I booked a scuba refresher course the next day with Lembongan Dive Center because Nusa Lembongan is known to have some amazing diving. I hadn’t dived in quite a while and the diving conditions can be a bit tricky due to currents, so I thought it best that I do a review to revise my skills. I booked a dive for the following day and went back to the resort with butterflies from both nerves and anticipation.
The conditions for diving were perfect the next morning. We were off to a dive site known as Toya Pakeh, on Nusa Penida. It is known for its amazing coral and reef fish, and I totally felt like I had entered another planet entirely when I got down there. The time since I had last dived had blurred my memories, and I had forgotten just how spectacular it is. I swam around like a lunatic with ADD, desperately trying to capture everything on the GoPro, and ended up finishing my air before everyone else! The photos unfortunately turned out terribly because unless you have a red filter or proper camera, you can’t capture any colour except blue.
On a high, I booked another dive for the next day as soon as I got back, and raced home to tell my mom and Norman how it was. They also had some tales to share because they had gone snorkelling, and were also in awe of what they saw.
There is a spa at Sandy Bay called Glo Spa, and my mom and I had treatments booked for the afternoon. I got a pedicure, which I was impressed with even though I am extremely critical when it comes to my nails getting painted. We also had dinner at Sandy Bay Beach Club, and it was definitely one of the top restaurants on the island. It is right on the beach, there is also a pool, and the food was so tasty!
Somehow time quite literally flew, and our time at Sadeg Resort was up too quickly.. it was time to move to our next accommodation. After some bargaining with the ludicrous truck taxi drivers, we negotiated a (still expensive) price and they took us and all our luggage to Villa Nusa, which became our home for the next few days.