Most people who visit Bali never reach the North of the Island. They stay in the South. It’s a pity, because there are plenty of things to do around Lovina. The area retains the pretty historical traditions of Bali and is a lot less hectic than the South of the island. The town is busy with budget hostels, small stores, massage parlors, bars, tour and dive operators, local restaurants and some high end restaurants – which you will find around Kalibukbuk. I want to share with you some of the best things to do around Lovina.
There are several things to do around Lovina. You can go to the traditional market “Pasar Banjar” and look at what the Balinese traditional market has to offer. You can learn about the history of Buleleng kingdom, go snorkeling around Lovina and so much more. Two activities that I would like to highlight are: the sunrise trip to watch dolphins and visit the holy hot spring, Banjar.
I am the kind of person that always gets excited whenever I see dolphins, manta rays, even small colorful fishes from a boat, so I was looking forward to watching dolphins at Lovina. We started the tour around 6 am, taking a traditional fishing boat – in Indonesian we call this type of boat ‘Jungkung.’ We paid Rp. 60,000 / person, for a trip that should have taken 1-2 hours, which included watching sunrise and visiting the dolphins feeding grounds.
I guess that the dolphins are always around there every morning. On the morning we visited there were probably around 40 boats in the water to watch the dolphins. Unfortunately I felt that there were too many tourists and it would be better if they limit the number of boats that go out for the dolphin watching and increase the price of the ticket.
The boat engines are loud and almost certainly scared them. Luckily for me, my boat man was not that excited about hunting the dolphins here and there like the other boats. He just liked to calmly wait until the dolphins naturally appeared. I totally didn’t mind that!
Banjar Hot Springs
Banjar holy hot springs are a lovely place in the North-West area of Bali. The springs are a short 15 minute drive from Lovina and I would recommend visiting if you have a chance. The ambiance is very peaceful and the springs will instantly make you happy. The entrance fee is only Rp. 5,000, which is a bargain!
The hot springs are a popular place to go bathing. It is very nice and relaxing – it is as nice as a hot shower in the morning! There are three pools in Banjar hot springs, the big one below is dedicated for those that want to swim a little bit. All the pools offer a small waterfall massage for your tight shoulders. Fantastic!
Have you ever been to Lovina? What did you do or see around there? I would love to hear some stories from you!