Complete Guide: 7 Things to Do in Amed, Bali and Why You Should Visit
Amed is a wonderful destination in Indonesia, found on the far east coast of Bali! It’s a quiet little patch of paradise and an amazing place to visit if you appreciate the beauty of Bali but feel like getting a little peace from the crowds of tourists. If you’re planning a vacation there soon, you’re in luck! This complete guide contains all the best things to do in Amed, as well as where to stay, where to eat, how to get there and more. Scroll down to find out more!
Bali remains one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world. However, the fishing village of Amed isn’t really known for bustling crowds of tourists. Instead, it’s an oasis of relaxation and a great scuba diving spot! In fact, most people come here only for diving, but what they don’t know is that there’s so much more to Amed than that. If you’re like me, then you won’t mind avoiding the large crowds and Instagrammable beaches for a couple of days off the beaten track.
Don’t get me wrong, Bali is absolutely beautiful, but Amed offers a bit more adventure and exploration than the busy beaches on the western coast! That’s why I recommend staying overnight and spending a couple of days in Amed.
That being said, let’s dive right into it:
First of all, is Amed worth visiting?
The short answer, if you ask me, is yes. And not just for a couple of hours! If you want me to expand on the subject, I will gladly do so, as this place is totally worth it. Amed is a place for relaxation away from the hustle and bustle of the super popular tourist destinations in Bali. It’s also an excellent spot for divers, as well as people that want to chill on black sand beaches. In fact, Amed is for everyone from romantic getaways to families with children and solo travellers as well.
Amed is actually larger than you think, a 14 km-long area that encompasses several charming fishing villages; Amed, Banyuning, Jemeluk, Selang, Bunutan, Lipah and more. You’ll find recommendations scattered all along the Amed coastal area in this article, as they all have one or more special attractions.
7 Best Things to do in Amed, Bali
What to do in Amed, you might ask? Although you might not expect it, there are quite some exciting things to do in Amed and in East Bali in general! From scuba diving among shipwrecks to watching the sunset from the cliffside, below is my complete list of recommended things to do in Amed:
1 - Dive Sites
Surely one of the best things to do in Amed, so I just had to start with it. Diving is SUCH a popular activity around here, that some people even call Amed the “diving capital” of Bali. The cool thing is that you won’t have any problems trying it even if you’re not a diving expert (yet!). Amed is actually world-famous for scuba diving and there’s also the possibility to do night diving and freediving here, which I think is SO cool! Many divers love the fact that there are calm currents here and lots of marine life to explore, including bioluminescent plankton.
And here’s another cool perk: Amed has some incredible (and affordable!) freediving schools that can help you figure out how to move through the water and check out the incredible scenery and marine life this paradise has to offer.
If you’re eager to try it, here are some exciting, unmissable spots for diving in Amed:
USAT LIBERTY WRECK
This is a super popular sunken ship and dive site to check out while you have your head underwater! The ship is close to the beach in Tulamben (30 km away from Amed). This is also a great place to go snorkelling for a couple of hours. Oh, and might I say that the USAT Liberty Wreck is considered the best diving site in the country (and sometimes the world as well)? Yep, it’s no joke! Don’t forget to bring your underwater camera too!
This one often gets overlooked for the more popular USAT Liberty Shipwreck – but if you’re in Amed for diving, this site is another cool spot well-worth visiting! You’ll find it in Banyuning Bay, along with a couple of places where you can buy snacks and rent snorkelling gear. And what makes everything even more mysterious is that there isn’t much info on this shipwreck, unfortunately. It’s unclear how it got to Bali and how it sank. In fact, there isn’t even that much evidence to support the claim that it’s Japanese, haha! If you need a guide, here’s a cool guided snorkelling trip to this site.
JEMELUK UNDERWATER GALLERY
An underwater gallery? Where do I sign up?! No, really, this is a very cool local project: several popular diving spots in Indonesia, like Amed and Lombok, were “updated” with underwater statues such as mailboxes, pyramids, statues of people, mermaids, bicycles, and… a baby head! Yes, you can see these under the waters of Amed. This project is not a pretty tourist scam at all – it actually aims to stimulate coral growth and spread awareness. From the corals and sea life I saw on my trip, it seems to be working great!
In case you’re not ready to try diving and want to stick to snorkelling instead, I have found this amazing full-day snorkelling tour in Amed with lunch included that will take you to all the cool spots!
And if you’re looking for some great diving schools in Amed, I can help with that as well. Personally, we went with Adventure Divers Bali. We had a blast! They gave us a super fun experience, along with being very patient and professional, so I can definitely recommend them as my top pick. Some other good alternatives are Amed Scuba Tauchzentrum and No Fear Diving.
RELATED READ: East Bali Adventure – My Recommended 10-Day Itinerary
2 - Jemeluk Bay
There are many tourists that are excited about diving in Bali, but Jemeluk Bay is also a good place for those who prefer to remain on the surface! Great for snorkellers, Jemeluk Bay is a family-friendly area too with lots of shops and restaurants.
If you’re feeling active, there are places to rent stand-up paddleboards for a couple of hours or the day – or you can arrange the rental with your accommodation. By the way, you should consider taking a sunset SUP, it’s such an awesome thing to do here as the sunsets over the bay are fantastic!
If you’re travelling with children that are eager to see some marine life, Jemeluk Bay is a great, well-known spot to start. Jemeluk Beach is actually made of volcanic black sand, but the area is considered to be one of the most serene places in Amed.
TIP: Another good place for snorkelling and admiring the local coral reefs is Lipah Beach. For something a bit more adventurous, the Japanese shipwreck in Banyuning Bay is another great snorkeling option as the wreck is so close to the water’s surface.
RELATED READ: A Guide to Paragliding in Bali – Uluwatu
3 - Jemeluk Viewpoint / Sunset Point
Sunset Point used to be the best sunset spot in Amed, with incredible panoramic views over Amed Beach. However – recently the land directly in front of the viewpoint was bought and the start of a hotel build popped up. Rumour has it that the owners didn’t have the correct building permits to complete it, so building has stopped and a large, half built construction site now sits in the middle of this view. Nope – not ideal.
Either way, it’s easy for you to check the spot out for yourself. Amed consists of one coastal road, which is where you will find all the restaurants, shops and this viewpoint Sunset point (at the highest point of road). You can’t miss it.
MY ADVICE: Personally, I would skip Sunset Point altogether and go grab a cheeky bintang or sunset coconut at one of the cliffside warungs across the road from the viewpoint. My top pick would be See You Again for sunset drinks. With no view obstructions, this locally owned warung is the perfect spot to end your day – watching the sunset beside Mount Agung and over Amed Beach. They serve great food and drinks here too, the family who own the place are lovely and they offer the best view over the bay.
4 - Amed Beach
You may already know about the black sand beaches in Bali, but Amed Beach is probably the most special of them all! No, really, the sand here is really, really black – which makes for incredible photo opportunities. And to top everything off, you can also get a gorgeous view of Mount Agung while you’re here.
TIP: The black sand can get super hot during the day, so make sure you bring some flip flops or sandals. And don’t forget the sunscreen too – highly recommended!
5 - Take a scooter and explore the rice terraces
I told you Amed is more than just diving and snorkelling! If you want to get away from the beach for a bit and explore the countryside, one of the best ideas is to rent a scooter (they’re cheap, I’m talking more about them below in the “How to get around” section) and drive for 10-20 minutes until you reach the hillside rice terraces. There are multiple tracks that you can take and all of them will lead to beautiful sceneries around Mount Agung, you just need to be a bit adventurous!
If you ask me, travelling is all about discovering the hidden gems of each place and not just sticking to the world-famous attractions. And, luckily for us, Amed is here to cater. Getting lost (not literally, ofc!) in the rice fields might just be the highlight of your Amed vacation.
RELATED READ: 10 Best Things To Do in Uluwatu, Bali – A Complete Guide
6 - Visit Tirta Gangga Water Palace
A former palace and a very special place for a day trip. What you’ll find if you travel to Tirta Gangga (“Water from the Ganges” in English) are fountains, statues, ancient carvings and more. It’s an amazing place to experience old Bali and to take some beautiful pictures with the pools and the stepping stones. And the best part? Tirta Gangga is only a 30-minute drive away from Amed, so it can easily be done in half a day!
TIP: You can also visit Tirta Gangga on your way to Amed from Canggu if you want to save some time and break up your journey.
7 - Visit Lempuyang Luhur / Pura Lempuyang
Here’s another incredible trip suggestion for you near Amed, this time to one of the most famous photo spots in all of Bali: Lempuyang Luhur! Many, many people come here to take a photo of Mount Agung framed by the temple gates. It’s pretty impressive, although I’ve heard it can get overcrowded very quickly. In order to avoid this, I recommend visiting very early in the morning, preferably at sunrise!
And, in all honesty, the views of Mount Agung are simply gorgeous, I must admit!
NOTE: You might have seen hundreds of pictures of this place online and in most of them there’s something resembling a reflection pool or a lake at its base. Well, sorry to disappoint, but there is NO actual reflection pool at the gates – just some locals with a mirror looking to make some extra rupiah by helping you get ‘that spot’. Eh, it is what it is! And let’s be honest, it does look cool.
If you’re interested, you can read more about this popular “scam” here.
Where to stay in Amed, Bali
When it comes to picking a place to stay in Amed, you will be spoiled with plenty of options: you can choose from resorts, villas, mid-range hotels and even homestays – something for every pocket! Depending on your budget, you’ll find cute accommodations on the beach or further inland.
TIP: Oftentimes, dive schools will provide accommodation if you sign up for a course or package, so make sure to double-check when you book if you’re interested.
Where to eat in Amed
Do I need to say that NO trip to Bali or Indonesia, in general, is complete without some incredible food tasting? Yes, sir, Amed is no exception when it comes to healthy, flavourful traditional dishes and colourful Buddha bowls. Here are the best places and restaurants in Amed, in my opinion. Beware, the list is long and full of flavours!
- LOCAL FOOD. Warung Enak and Warung Pantai
- LOCAL SEAFOOD. Amed Seaview Warung
- BRUNCH & SWEET TREATS. Rimba
- ITALIAN. Gusto
- INTERNATIONAL DISHES. Organik Cafe
- BEST BRUNCH. The Green Leaf Café
- VEGETARIAN & VEGAN. Galanga
- FANCY. Sails
- FOR SUNSET VIEWS. Blue Earth Cafe. By the way, Blue Earth Cafe is more than just a food place; they also have an on-site yoga studio and a dive pool!
How to get to Amed, Bali
As I mentioned before, Amed is located on the Eastern coast of Bali, a bit off the beaten path. There are several ways of getting there, depending on where you’re coming from and your means of transportation. The most popular choice is a taxi or a private driver.
Another convenient, inexpensive choice is scooter rental. This is great if you want to take your time to explore and admire the scenery and maybe even make some stops along the way – But I only recommend this option if you’re an experienced scooter driver!
As for prices, a private driver costs around 600.000 IDR/day (42 US$) and a scooter rental is around 60.000 IDR/day (4.20 US$).
Here’s a short overview of the distances and times from the most popular destinations in Indonesia to Amed:
DENPASAR TO AMED. 86 km, 2h30’
CANGGU TO AMED. 94 km, 2h30’
UBUD TO AMED. 77 km, 2h10’
ULUWATU TO AMED. 119 km, 3h
SANUR TO AMED. 85 km, 2h
GILI TO AMED. The only option, in this case, is to take a ferry – the ride will take around 3 hours.
RELATED READ: 6 Unmissable Things to Do in Ubud, Bali
How to get around Amed, Bali
The easiest way of travelling around Amed (and Bali in general) is either by renting a scooter that you can drive yourself or hiring a car and driver to take you around the island. Both have their own advantages. A scooter gives you complete freedom to adventure, while a driver provides comfort and relaxation.
You can rent scooters everywhere in Amed, from hotels to scooter rental shops and stalls. The price is between 50.000 to 70.000 IDR per day (3.50 to 5 US$). Don’t forget to negotiate and always check the bike!
TIP: For more advice on renting scooters while in Bali, I recommend reading this post – How to Rent a Scooter in Bali, which will tell you all you need to consider when renting.
This was my complete guide to Amed, full of exciting things to do other than just laying on the beach and going for a dive to see a wreck! I have also given you many hand-picked recommendations for hotels, restaurants, warungs and lots of information about how to get to Amed and how to get around as well. You’ll find everything you need here!
There’s so much to see and do in Amed that only one day won’t be enough if you ask me. It’s well worth staying for a while, especially if you want to completely relax and unwind. And this little guide is here to help you make the best out of your time on your trip to Bali and the entire Amed area.
If you want to travel to more places in Indonesia, I recommend clicking here to read all about my adventures in this incredible country, including places such as Canggu, Ubud, Uluwatu, Nusa Islands, Gili Islands and more!