Once in a while, I went on a spontaneous trip. A friend asked me if I wanted to join a trip to Negara, Bali, and yeah we hit the road pretty soon. I didn’t even look on the internet about the things to do nor natural wonders in Negara, Bali. The only thing I know is the capital of Jembrana regency in West Bali isn’t a popular tourist destination, and the least-visited part of the island. Is the off-beaten-track journey to Negara, Bali worth the time and effort? What attractions can be seen & experienced there? How long should one stay while traveling in Negara, Bali? Find out more about Negara, Bali as I’ll take you there soon…
Negara, Bali, The More Authentic Part of The Island of Gods
Every part of Bali has its own charm, including Negara. Its indeed the least-visited part of Bali and doesn’t have many attractions and Western amenities, hence it does feel more like authentic Indonesia. Unlike most parts of Bali, Islam has a stronger influence on Negara due to the settlement of Bugis people from Sulawesi and the proximity to Java. When you travel to Negara, Bali, you would see a large number of mosques around the town and expect to hear the call prayer 5 times a day as part of life.
I felt a completely different vibe compared to other tourism centers in Bali when I visited Negara, Bali for 3 days. It’s not westernized at all. There aren’t many bars, restaurants, cafes, and yoga studios even in the center of Negara town. ACK fried chicken (a fast food restaurant) probably is the coolest place to hang out in Negara hahaha. It’s even hard to find chained minimarket like Indomaret or Circle K hence I went to the local supermarket there. I also didn’t see many hotels along the way, except the resort where I stayed and one more resort that I can’t remember its name. Negara reminds me of the town of Ninh Binh in Vietnam. Both are small towns but Ninh Binh has been receiving more tourists because of the growing popularity of Trang An and Tam Coc landscape complex among travelers.
If you’d like to get off the Bali beaten track a bit and see the more authentic side of Bali, I suggest you take a road trip to Negara, Bali. You would enjoy a completely different view and lifestyle compared to South Bali and even Ubud. Negara is home to many villages, warungs (Indonesia typical restaurant), hills, and nearly untouched black-sand beaches, except by the locals.
How to Go to Negara, Bali ?
Our motorbike trip to Negara, Bali was started at 10 AM. It took 2 hours to reach the resort in Negara, Bali from Berawa. As it’s located on the main coastal road toward Gilimanuk, the seaport which connects Bali to Java, the road heading to Negara, Bali was pretty crowded with buses and trucks heading to Gilimanuk and the air was also pretty dusty. There are some small restaurants on the side road approaching Negara, Bali. We stopped there to have lunch.
You can travel to Negara, Bali by using either a motorbike/ scooter or car. If you choose a motorbike/ scooter, make sure you have a proper motorbike useful for road tripping and make sure you have plenty of space inside the scooter to store things. Otherwise, you have to carry the bag on your back as I did. Road tripping with a motorbike is indeed fun. I did it before in Sapa, Vietnam when we went exploring the villages up to the border of China and Vietnam. But North Vietnam climate is different to Indonesia, its way cooler. By the end of this trip, I realized that the motorbike trip is just not for me…
Similar to other parts of Bali, the best way to get around Negara, Bali is to use either car or motorbike/ scooter. Just open Negara, Bali map, and follow it to get around. There are no public transportations there and I’ve heard that renting a means of transportation there is really uncommon.
Where to Stay in Negara, Bali ?
I stayed in Puri Dajuma Beach Eco-Resort & Spa, a 4-stars beachfront accommodation located in Pekutatan, Jembrana. The Balinese-themed resort has cottages, suites, and villas. I stayed in both villa and cottage for 3 days and 2 nights and both are nice & cozy. Since I came during the pandemic, there weren’t many tourists there but I don’t mind since I feel more peaceful. To be honest, I can’t find things to complain about this resort, although I am pretty a complainer haha.
In the evening, locals like to hang out around the gleaming black-sand beaches in front of the resort. I also took the chance to explore the beaches and surrounding a little bit. Besides Puri Dajuma, there is one resort adjacent to it, Kelapa Retreat & Spa. It just reopened after being closed off for quite a while.
Things to Do in Negara, Bali
- Bunut Bolong
Literally means “a tree with a hole” in Balinese, Bunut Bolong is a sacred tree with a giant hole cut through its base. Nobody dare to cut the tree as it’s forbidden to cutting down a sacred tree and the locals also believe that there are two tigers spirits residing in every tree. Two shrines are built on the south side of the tree to honor the great sage Dang Hyang Sidhi Mantra who happened to pass this area hundreds of years ago. To go to the other side of the road you need to go through the giant hole. It’s so big that even a truck can drive through it!
Bunut Bolong is located at Manggissari village, Pekutatan, Jembrana. As it is located up on the hill, the surrounding air feels cooler & nice. So does the view. I’d seen a banana plantation and forest all the way to Bunut Bolong. You don’t need to pay for the ticket but when we were there, a guy came to us and asked my friend to fill in the guest list.
2. Juwuk Manis Waterfall
Not too far from Bunut Bolong, located amidst a village is the hidden gem Juwuk Manis Waterfall. It’s not popular at all so you won’t see many tourists heading to the waterfalI. To reach Juwuk Manis Waterfall in Negara, Bali, I had to get downstairs for 20 minutes. The waterfall itself isn’t gigantic, consists of two adjacent small waterfalls with a clear water pool on the bottom. The waterfall might not very impressive, but the journey to the bottom itself was enjoyable.
3. Sing-Sing Angin Waterfall
On the way back to Canggu, we purposely made a stop at Sing-Sing Angin Waterfall. Located in Manikyang, Selemadeg, Tabanan regency, Sing-Sing Angin waterfall is another hidden gem in Bali. There weren’t other tourists there so I had all for myself. The twin waterfall looks decently wide, not particularly tall but looks beautiful in its shelter enclave in the middle of the forest. There’s one swing facing the waterfall for anyone who wants to take a selfie or just enjoying the view.
Besides the waterfall, there are some other scenic views nearby. We were passing through quaint villages and stunning rice terraces that look like Tegallalang near Ubud! It’s very stunning, I don’t think one has to go to Tegallalang once they’ve been here. If you wanna visit Sing-Sing Waterfall after/ before the trip to Negara, Bali, just follow Google Maps. Getting here is pretty straightforward. To reach the waterfall, head down the stairs for two minutes. Sing-Sing Angin Waterfall opens from 8 AM – 5 PM and is free to enter. Don’t forget to apply sunscreen, bring a towel and also an insect repellent.
A few days’ trips to Negara, Bali was indeed pretty fun. If you have plenty of time in Bali and wanna see the different sides of Bali you can do it for 1-3 days or more if you wanna explore the other parts of West Bali. I had only traveled around Negara and not the entire West Bali. There are some other places in West Bali that definitely interesting that you could visit such as West Bali National Park, Menjangan island, Medewi beach, and Perancak sunset point, Pemuteran area (for the beach and scuba diving), and many more.
Curious about my adventures in Europe and America ?. You can click the following links to see my traveling videos that have aired on Net TV :
- Desa Hallstatt, Desa dengan Arsitektur Klasik di Pinggir Danau
- Imutnya Park Guell, Dunia Fantasi Ala Gaudi di Barcelona
- Ada Turki Mini di Bosnia Herzegovina
- Nyobain Makanan Khas Bosnia, Kaya Rasa dan Pasti Halal
- The Bean, Seni Kontemporer yang Ada di Film – film Hollywood
Want to help support my travel? Help me to visit 50 more countries and write more travel stories & guides by donating here
Watch my adventures & subscribe to my YouTube channel : Dada Kimura