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What To Do in Amed, Bali | Travelling to Amed, Bali | Tour in Peaceful Part of Bali - Amed
An hour from Candidasa is Bali’s hidden secret – the enchanting bays that make up the Amed village. Amed is located on the far east coast of Bali. A small village, Amed is referred to the string of villages from Amed to Aas. Yet to be spoilt by development and commercialization, this peaceful and beautiful place is a hidden paradise in Bali, which you should go before it turns into a place like Kuta or Nusa Dua. In Amed, you get a long stretch of bays. Every bay is unique; some rocky, some sandy and some shingle. In one bay, there is a Japanese shipwreck just 10m off the shore. Accommodation is reasonably priced and ranges from basic room to beautiful villas by the sea. We booked a villa (Aquamarine Villa) with excellent sea view and spacious rooms for about 200,000 Rupiah a night (for two adult and a child), and it came with a house maid who cooks and cleans. It was fantastic!
Food is adequate and cheap, averaging 30,000 to 40,000 Rupiah for one person meal. However, nightlife is minimal. Probably all you can get is several restaurants with Balinese dance.
Colourful double-outrigger fishing boats called “jukung” can be seen lining up the whole stretch of the seashore - a scenic view to take photograph. When you look out to the sea, the horizon is filled with literally hundreds of triangular sails as fishermen head off to the fishing grounds in the morning and afternoon. Amed is an ideal destination for families and the more mature travellers. Younger people will enjoy the places too but often overdose on peace and tranquillity after a few days.
Getting around in Amed
There is no taxi in Amed. Local bemo buses do run the length of the coastal road, but you will not have the flexibility to explore as you might like. You can engage a full time driver at the rate of 300,000-400,000 Rupiah a day, or alternatively, you can rent a motorbike for 50,000 Rupiah a day. Exploring this area is cheap, fun, easy and more flexible with a motorbike. The village is hilly, so riding motorbike in this area can be quite an adventurous and exciting experience, nevertheless safe, as there are not many cars on the road.
Tour Guide, Snorkeling and Fishing Guide, and Driver in Amed
When I was in Amed, I engaged Ketut Pasek as our tour guide and driver. Speaking reasonably good English, he is able to tell you the village life in Amed. He has a good air-conditioned car to bring you around places of interest in Amed and other places nearby. Growng up in Amed, he knows every single corner of this remote area of Bali. Not only he is professional, he is also a very caring guide, who ensures customers safety and well-being during their stay in Amed. He can be contacted at mobile number : +62 81 236 402 264, +62 828 970 01833. He can also be reached via email: email@example.com. At the end of the Amed tour, he also provided the transportation to bring us to Nusa Dua.
Amed Fishing Trip via Jukung
Using his boat (called jukung), Ketut brought three of us out to the sea at 5 o’clock in the morning for a fishing trip. It was an adventurous experience for us. We took the narrow boat ride without any life jackets ! However, the boat is very stable since it has extra “legs” to do the balancing trick. We did not experience nausea at all. He was a fisherman before, and he showed us how to fish using a single long fishing line carrying 200 unbaited lures. We didn’t have much luck that morning (it was December, not a good fishing month), we only caught two fish! A month ago, we would catch hundreds of fish, according to Ketut. However, watching the sunrise and the scenic Mount Agung from the sea made the entire trip worth it. We paid Ketut 250,000 Rupiah for the trip.
Salt Making Process in Amed
Salt making is one of the major industries in Amed. No machine is used here, only manual labour is employed. You can view the entire salt making process by the Amed seaside, and it is free. Firstly, the salt water is collected from the nearby sea and transferred to shallow evaporating ponds. Natural sea water contains approximately 3 percent of salt. The salt water is exposed to the sun to allow the water evaporates until the water contains approximately 5 percent of salt. This concentrated salt water, also called brine, contained various salts such as calcium sulphate (lime), calcium carbonate, magnesium, potassium, bromine and other sodium compounds. The brine is then filtered and drained through a series of evaporation basin so as to siphon off the calcium sulphate (lime). The filtered brine is then transferred to the coconut-trunk made containers, allowing sodium chloride (salt) to crystallize at the bottom. Next, the crystallized salt is scooped out from these harvesting containers. Finally, the salt is washed using concentrated brine to prevent the salt from dissolving. It is then crushed and strained before packaging. The entire process takes 2 to 3 days. Since the salt is left under sun without any cover, when it rains, the crystallized salt will dissolve, and the salt making process will be ruined.
500g of Amed salt costs about 10,000 Rupiah and you can buy them beside the salt making places, by the roadsides. Many salt sellers, consists of middle-aged women and their children, will gather around you asking you to purchase the salt from them.
Hiking Trip to Taste Five Holy Waters of Bangle
About 20 minutes (or 10km) motorbike ride from Amed is a small village called Bangle. You will pass by scenic paddy or corn fields with mountains at their background. Riding motorbike in this scenic road was a very therapeutic experience for me. We stopped at one corn field and walked through the fields, it was nice feeling so close to the nature.
A challenging short hike to the five holy springs of Bangle Hill will bring you a fascinating insight and discovery of Bali. The Bangle Holy Waters, also called Toya Masam (Acid Waters) include a set of five springs, each with a different taste, and are believed to contain healing properties – curing cancer, diabetes, kidney stones, stomach and skin problems. You can taste every spring as long as the water is flowing. If you are sceptical, you can dip your lips into the water without swallowing it. We drank the first and second spring water and did not have any stomach problem. The first spring tastes sour (or acidic), the second tastes sour and astringent. The third one is sweet, the fourth neutral and the last extremely butter. The springs get their tastes from the mineral-rich, volcanic rocks of Mount Seraya.
The hike will take about one to 1.5 hours long, going through steep terrain, scenic paddy fields and forest. Wear comfortable shoes or hiking sandals. Bring a few empty bottles with you if you would like to bring back some holy water. The holy water can be kept for a month or longer without turning bad. All the five spring water is holy, and harbours a small shrine where purification ceremonies are held every half a year. Most hotels can provide guides for this tour. Our tour guide, Wayan, asked for 50,000 Rupiah for the entire hiking trip. The trip was so worth it that we gave him some tips. It is impossible to find the holy water without a guide, as there is no signs of where to go in the forest to find the holy water. If you are hiking for the first time, or come with very young children, the hiking trip maybe too adventurous to attempt.
Other Points of interest and Things to do in Amed
1) Picnic at Putih beach (Pantai Putih) where you find white sand beach.
2) Visit Ujung Seraya - a water palace, built in 1919. (A day trip)
3) Tirta Ganga - a smaller but really beautiful water palace. It comes with swimming pool for public to swim and play. So, please bring your swimming attire, towel and a set of new clothes for change. Overlooking the swimming pool is a beautiful restaurant or café for you dine in or just to have some tea.
4) Tulamben is an excellent diving and snorkeling spot from the shore. In 1942, US Army Transport ship was torpedoed by a Japanese submarine, and the wreck lied just off the shore since then. During peak season, up to 100 divers descend to the wreck daily.
5) Ubud is about 2.5 hours away. A good place for shopping, visiting bird Park or Monkey Forrest, or white water rafting.
6) East Bali Bike or mountaining biking trips (There are signs along the road after Amed).
7) Mt. Agung mountain climbing or hiking trip.
8) Watch how Jukung boat is built in Amed village.
Tirta Ganga (Water Palace)
Amed, Bali, Indonesia
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Additional Note :
The villagers in Amed are quite poor, you can help them by :
1) Donate some writing books, pencils or pen for the local children if you can. They will need it for their school.
2) Donate some clothing to the villagers.
3) Buy the local products such as sea salt.
4) Give the tour guide more tips.
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