Bali is always a good idea for a weekend escape. The north part of it is eventually an addictive destination to be. So talking about a weekend escape in North Bali, you can take a flight to Bali on Friday night and stay a night anywhere in south. Then the next day, as early as possible, you can head directly to Lovina. It takes around 3-4 hours trip depends on your choice of transport.
1. Getting Here
There are not many affordably reasonable options to go to Lovina. Renting car and driver will cost you like IDR 1,000,000 per way, it will be convenient if you are in group as you can share the cost. But if you are traveling solo or in a small group of 2 or 3, it is better to take a shuttle bus from a transport Company like Perama bus. Perama bus will cost you IDR 125,000 for a one way trip Kuta-Lovina, which is quite a good price for a hassle-free experience but they have a specific time schedule to respect.
Renting motorbike can be an option but I would not recommend this option if it’s only for a weekend trip. The journey from south to north is not short, you will lose your energy for driving both ways (south-north-south) instead of exploring the area.
Alternatively, if you appreciate so much having a journey like a local, you can head to Terminal Ubung and find a public car in blue color direction to Sukasada Terminal Singaraja with around 2.5 hours trip for IDR 30,000. From Sukasada you will continue your journey with another blue car to Banyuasri Terminal for IDR 15,000 and in the end there is another blue car from Banyuasri that will take you to Lovina for another IDR 10,000. In total, the transport from Terminal Ubung to Lovina will cost you IDR 55,000.
2. Getting Around and Attractions
The most popular and convenient way to explore North Bali and basically anywhere in Bali is by renting motorbike, so that’s what I did. Normally, the motorbike rent’s price starts from IDR 60,000 to IDR 75,000 per day for a normal 125 cc matic-bike.
The followings are the destinations that I’ve visited for my one-day motorbike trip with starting point from Lovina beach.
Everything gets better with coffee, so start your better day towards Moola Pedawa coffee. I was actually lost on the way to Munduk village; I took unexpected turn to Pedawa village and ended up having coffee here. I agreed when the café crew suggested me to have a coffee in Pedawa’s way where the black coffee is served with a hunk of palm sugar. So every zip of coffee, you take a little bite of palm sugar.
After such mood booster from some dose of caffeine, let’s proceed to the right way to Munduk village. I made several stops just to adore the paysage all the way to Munduk village. There was a spot, a kind of hill, where I could see the north coast of Bali. The track itself is quite zig-zag up-and-down, which require a medium skill of motor driving; it is not suitable for beginner.
Munduk is famous for its rice terrace, even though it is not as big as the ones in Ubud or Jatiluwih, it still catches attention of some visitors who look for a more tranquil and quite ambience. It’s a perfect place for me to have my lunch peacefully in Puri Sunny.
Tamblingan and Buyan Lake View Point
On the way to Pura Ulun Danu Bratan, I made a stop to Tamblingan & Buyan lake view point along Raya Wanagiri road where I could see both lakes sitting next to each other. It’s literally two lakes in one view.
The view points are surrounded by restaurants that offer seats with the lakes’ view and some touristic decorated spot for taking photos.
Pura Ulun Danu Bratan
If you ever own Indonesian currency, Rupiah, with nominal 50,000, you can see Pura Ulun Danu Bratan as a featured photo on it. We call it Pura Ulun Danu Bratan as it’s located at the edge of Bratan (Beratan) lake (Danau Beratan). Bratan lake is known as the Lake of Holy Mountain.
The temple itself was built in 17th century not only to worship Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva, but also Dewi Danu (Goddess Lake).
In the complex of Pura, the visitors can enjoy the lake by taking a water-cycle or jetski. There is also a booth where the visitors can take their photos with reptiles and other animals.
The best moment to be there is during sunset or sunrise when the light of the sun is reflected by the lake with the colorful sky as a background.
When the afternoon has come, time to go back all the way to north again. You can reach back to north by going to another direction and make a stop in Gitgit Waterfall. Jump into the waterfall is really the best way to refresh after a long day of driving.
There is an entrance ticket to this waterfall, not much though, around IDR 5,000. Ask for the ticket when you pay as some visitors were getting ripped-off for the entrance fee.
As you take another way to go back to your starting point in Lovina, you will pass by Singaraja town. I was in rush to catch the sunset in Lovina, but coincidentally I passed by a small rice field somewhere in Singaraja along my way. So, there I made a short stop just to enjoy the view.
The name “Lovina” is generated from 2 words, “Love” & “Indonesia”. The word “Indonesia” is commonly shortened with “INA”, so that’s how the name Lovina is created, which means Love Indonesia.
The best way to end a long day of motorbike trip is nothing better than a color of sunset in Lovina beach accompanied by a cold beer. Unlike in the south coast of Bali, Lovina beach during sunset is less crowded, an elegant and tranquil ambient that I love so much.
Actually, Lovina is well-known for its Dolphin trip. Visitors can hire an early morning boat to bring them to the dolphin’s spot to witness some group of dolphins jumping with sunrise sky on the background. This is the reason that Lovina beach has a Dolphin’s monument, to strengthen the image that the dolphins inhabit the beach.
There are some activities and spots to visit around North Bali other than those mentioned above. Around Lovina itself, you can make a quick stop in Pura Dalem or chilling at the surrounding bars. Then, you can just simply laying on the black sandy beach, or else, enjoy a Balinese massage.
3. Travel Tips & Cautions
- Beware of the zig-zag up-and-down track when riding motorbike, if you’ve never been driving motorbike before, it’s better to get a local to drive you to follow this itinerary.
- Travel scam occurs everywhere in the world, so it does here. Especially, in Gitgit waterfall, you can be asked for over-priced entrance fee. Need to be noted, the entrance fee for Gitgit waterfall shouldn’t be more than IDR 10,000.