What to do in Amed

What to do in Amed if you are interested in more than diving and snorkelling? Discover hidden spots and find out how you can explore this part of East-Bali by land and by sea. Amed is actually a long coastline of small villages, connected together, as places to visit for those who love water sports, nature and agricultural landscapes.

Amed the long coastline of connected villages seen from the Bali Sea.

Enjoy a magnificent sunrise

Rise up at 6 in the morning and find a place where you can see the sunset. Easy if you happen to stay on the beach. Otherwise take a nice early beachwalk or head out on a boat to see the sunrise at sea. This is a great opportunity to see the fishermen on their traditional sailing boats, called ‘Jukung’.

Sunrise in front of Villa Sinar Cinta
Sunrise in front of Villa Sinar Cinta in Amed, captured by our special guest Michael Geerings. Michael has been here many times and photographed the sunrise from the upper terrace.

Catch your own fish

Amed is a traditional fishing village, where the fishermen go out to sea early morning or at night. If you like to go fishing, you can go sailing with a local fisherman and combine this with a sunrise or sunset sight seeing trip. If you happen to catch fish, you can have it prepared at the place where you are staying, either grilled or steamed in banana leaves.

Max is very lucky with his catch of the day, caught at sea during his boattrip.

Taste Amed sea salt

Amed is known for their sea salt that is popular among chefs in and outside Indonesia. You can visit the Amed Salt center to learn about the production and buy the salt.

Jl. I Ketut Natih, Purwakerti, Abang, Kabupaten Karangasem, Bali 80852
80852 Karangasem, Bali, Indonesia, telephone: +628819-3645-1718

What to do in Amed_salt_production_on_the_beach
Baskets with sea salt on the beach in Amed, a traditional craft in Amed.

Walk around the farmer fields

If you walk around in Amed, you will find fields of corn, peanuts, vegetables and rice plants. If you love to see the local agricultural life, you can see farmers planting the fields or prepare for harvest. Sometimes before or after school children help to wash their cows and feed the pigs and chickens.

A ricefield along Melasti Road on the way to Villa Sinar Cinta in Amed is one of the beautiful landscapes.

Go tracking to a refreshing water fall

The hills behind the coastline of Amed are great to explore especially if you love tracking. Here you will see panorama views and even find a ‘hidden waterfall’. To visit this area you have to be an experienced driver or go with a guide.

This ‘hidden’ waterfall is to be found in the hillside part of Amed.

Learn how to dive

There are many great spots in Amed for diving and snorkelling as I have described my experiences on my blog. If you can spent a few days here you will have a good opportunity to learn how to dive and get your PADI certificate. There are SSI dive instructors who teach in multiple languages.

what to do in Amed_dive_course_east-bali
Me at Villa Sinar Cinta following instructions from SSI dive instructor Lena from the Amed Dive Center. She is fluent in English, German and Bahasa Indonesia.

Take in the views on Mount Agung

Wherever you go in Amed, you will see the volcano Mount Agung. Especially during sunset it looks spectacular. Combined with a drink or dinner on the beach or from the hills, it’s a sight to enjoy at the end of a perfect day.

Sunset Mount Agung Amed East-Bali
Sunset view on Mount Agung from a cornfield at Melasti Road in Amed.

Find out more about what to do in Amed

To discover more about Amed and hotspots in East-Bali, feel free to contact me. I can connect you with drivers, special guides and fishermen.


Favourite places to eat in Amed

If you are looking for delicious food here are my favourite places to eat in Amed. There are many choices for Indonesian dishes, western, vegetarian and vegan meals. Some places are within walking distance of our Villa Sinar Cinta. A big plus is that some restaurants offer free transport for your convenience.

Meeting Point Amed

The Meeting Point restaurant is on walking distance via the beach in front of Villa Sinar Cinta. It’s a nice place with a small garden where you can have a great lunch or dinner. They are linked to restaurant Gusto (where you can also order pizza!) by the same owner who has a bakery. So they have lots of fresh baked bread and serve for instance sandwiches and baguettes.

Where to eat in Amed_Restaurant Meeting Point
Meeting Point is known for the special bread from their bakery.

Chill Bar & Grill on the beach

If you have a craving for some Mexican food like taco’s or home made french fries with fresh fish and/or hamburgers Chill Bar & Grill is a great place on the beach with sunset view.

Taco’s with great sunset view on Mount Agung on the beach at Chill Bar & Grill

Galanga fusion food in Amed

Galanga restaurant is known for their yummy fusion Asian food. You will be pleasantly surprised by their food and drinks and the way it is served. Galanga has a terrace and a garden and more info can be found via their facebookpage. It is located in the Bunutan area of Amed and from Villa Sinar Cinta you will need to drive like 15/20 minutes up here, either by scooter or by car.

Where to eat in Amed_Galanga_Restaurant
Galanga serves Asian fusion food and drinks plus great desserts.

Local warungs and streetfood

Amed offers a great variety of streetfood and small restaurants, called ‘warungs’ in Bahasa Indonesia. You can get favourite Indonesian dishes like fried rice (nasi goreng), fried noodles (mie goreng), local soups, grilled fish and meat or chicken on sticks (saté), mixed vegetables with peanut sauce and several cooked or friend tofu (tahu) or wedges of soya bean (tempe). One of our favourite places to eat in Amed is Warung Ole. They have a menu for Indonesian food plus Western fast food like potato fries.

Favourite places to eat in Amed with special view

Our staff at Villa Sinar Cinta can tell you more about favourite places to eat in Amed with a special view and on the beach. They can arrange for your transport to the restaurant and for food delivery at our private villa.

If you are travelling from the south of Bali to Amed our drivers can give you advice for restaurants on the way or near the hotspots that we recommend in East-Bali. Read this post if you like to find out more about what to do in Amed?

Sunset Mount Agung Jemelukbay East-Bali
There are several restaurants near this sunset viewpoint at Jemeluk Bay in Amed.

Special service at Villa Sinar Cinta

As guests at our private Villa Sinar Cinta you can enjoy homemade food for breakfast, lunch or dinner, especially vegatarian. Plus famous Bali dishes, like suckling pig (Babi guling) and stuffed chicken (Ayam betutu) are on special delivery. If you want to celebrate a birthday or wedding anniversary, we can also arrange special cakes and festive fruit baskets with flowers and other decorations.

Enjoy this fish in banana leaf (ikan pepesan), with green vegetables and white rice. A homemade meal at Villa Sinar Cinta.

11 Hotspots enroute to Amed

Explore amazing hotspots enroute to Amed in East-Bali and discover fascinating temples, waterpalaces, great panorama views on Mount Agung, rice fields and the Virgin beach. All locations can be found via roadsigns on the main coastal road and your navigation program.

Lake Yeh Malet

Yeh Malet is a tiny lake and one of the newest attractions enroute to Amed. Local villagers offer you a roundtrip on a bamboo raft. It is located near the main road before the harbour of Padang Bai.

Mary Afdan at Yeh Malet pond in East-Bali
It is very nice to explore the lake full of water flowers while being on a bamboo raft.

Batcave Goa Lawah

Goa Lawah is one of the most popular temples in East-Bali. It has a big batcave and many Balinese ceremonies are being held here. On the beach opposite of the temple Balinese people especially gather here for the festive cremation ceremonies.

Batcave temple Goa Lawah East-Bali
One of the entrances to the bat cave temple know as Goa Lawah.

Lotuspond Candidasa

The lotuspond in Candidasa is a popular hotspot near the sea. Many people like to walk around here and have a meal at the nearby restaurants.

Candidasa Lotuspond East-Bali
The many water flowers open up in the morning. Photo Bert Vrolijk, Guest Villa Sinar Cinta

Panoramaview Mount Agung

Enroute to Amed you can also decide to have a (lunch)break at the Virgin Beach aka White Sandy Beach. The Bukit Asah hill road has this amazing panoramaview on Mount Agung and the Bali Sea.

Panoramaview on Mount Agung Bukit Asah East-Bali
This new road with amazing views has just been opened a few years ago.

White sandy beach

Virgin Beach aka White Sandy Beach is a special spot as the North East coast of Bali is known for its black sandy beaches. The secret beach’s bay is secluded by huge rocks on both sides. You can relax by yourself at the far end or rest in the central part of the beach. Here free sunbeds are available in front of the restaurants where you might like to eat and drink.

Virgin Beach East-Bali
The sea current in front of this beach can be very strong and refreshing.

Waterpalace Ujung

In 1909 ‘Taman (meaning garden) Ujung’ was built by one of the kings of Karangasem. The water palace was destroyed by the eruption of Mount Agung in 1963 and rebuilt again after an earthquake in 1979. Although not all the buildings were restored the remaining ruins give it a certain archeological charm.

Waterpalace Ujung East-Bali
Viewpoint towards the Ujung waterpalace with the sea in the background, photo Bert Vrolijk guest of Villa Sinar Cinta

Traditional market Amlapura

If you like traditional markets than this is one of the favourite hotspots enroute to Amed, the market in Amlapura. Here you can buy groceries, fresh fruit, spices, hot peppers and also local handicraft.

Spices at Amlapura market East-Bali
The use of hot peppers and spices are very popular in the Indonesian cuisine.

Waterpalace Tirtagangga

The Tirta Gangga water palace is a beautiful water garden, where you can cross the water basins via stepping stones and watch the giant Koi fish. After you have finished your early morning walk a cool dive in the special royal swimming pool is the best reward. Here you can bathe in the holy water coming from Mount Agung.

View on waterpalace Tirtagangga East-Bali
This is the most popular waterpalace in East-Bali, as many visitors like to share their pictures on social media.

Rice fields Tirtagangga

The rice fields in Tirtagangga are a green oasis and a special landscape in East-Bali. A local guide brings you for an unforgettable walk up the hill, through the forest, the villages and the rice fields where you can photograph the daily process of seeding, growing and harvesting rice.

Tracking ricefields Tirtagangga East-Bali
Rice fields in East-Bali as far as your eyes can see.

Heavens Gate at Lempuyang

The area of Lempuyang consists of many temples on different levels. If you don’t want to climb all the way up, you can choose to stay at the first level of the so called Heavens Gate. If you are lucky and it’s not cloudy you can see Mount Agung through the impressive gateway at the temple. As this is one of the most popular places for pictures on social media, the waiting time to take your picture can be more then one hour during high season. Luckily there are many more alternatives to take amazing picture.

Mary Afdan at Heavens Gate Lempuyang temple East-Bali
At Heavens Gate facing Mount Agung. Here at Lempuyang temple it is tradition to wear a Bali ‘sarong’ around your waist.

Sunset view Jemeluk Bay

Even if you just visited a view hotspots enroute to Amed, you might like to conclude the day with a drink and a great sunset view in Jemeluk. This is actually also one of the favourite hotspots for snorkelling and diving in the Bali Sea.

On the hill overlooking Jemeluk Bay in Amed you can see Mount Agung and mountain top of two other giants in East-Bali. Cheers!!! Selamat minum!

Drinking Bintang beer at sunset View Jemeluk Bay Amed East-Bali
Bintang beer is one of the favourite local beers in Indonesia.

Contact me

Feel free to contact me if you like to book a tour to hotspots enroute to Amed and discover the spirit of East-Bali. Also if you are interested about what to do in Amed?


Private villa Amed East-Bali

Enjoy your own private villa in Amed East-Bali just steps away from the beach and the sea. Relax at the big swimming pool in the middle of the colourful tropical garden. Eat delicious food and fruit and have a unique holiday in old Bali style.

Swimmingpool by night Sinar Cinta Bali
The swimming pool at our private Villa Sinar Cinta is 15 metres long and two metres deep.

A beautiful Balinese style house with a great but deep pool. Relaxing and quiet surroundings. Excellent and generous breakfast. Great place for families and friends. Our guest Megan wrote about our private villa in Amed East-Bali in her AirBnB review.

Villa Sinar Cinta can accommodate up to eight people

The main house has a living room, a small kitchen, a master bedroom with kingsize bed and a bunkbud, two bathrooms with hot/cold water, and an upstairs and downstairs veranda.
The separate garden pavillion has two double bedrooms, two bathrooms and a terrace. All rooms have AC and extra fans. The whole property can be rented as one private villa and is also very suitable for your honeymoon.

“Très bon séjour à amed ! La maison correspond parfaitement aux photos, les chambres sont propres, la villa forte agréable à vivre. Rien à redire ! Je recommande” Clémence & les amis de France

Freshly made lumpia at Villa Sinar Cinta
Yummy spring rolls called lumpia freshly made by our staff at our private villa in Amed East-Bali. It is possible to order breakfast, lunch or dinner. Plus order (Western style) food from different restaurants.

Authentic villa in Balinese Style

The ground that Villa Sinar Cinta is built upon was farm land. We found a young talented Balinese architect, called Weda Asmara, who designed the buildings and the swimming pool. He also became our contractor and with his help Villa Sinar Cinta was created as an authentic Balinese private villa in Amed East-Bali. Everything was manually build with almost no machines.

Architect Weda Asmara at the building site of Villa Sinar Cint
Architect Weda Asmara, at the building site of Villa Sinar Cinta.

Unser Aufenthalt in der Villa Sinar Cinta war unglaublich schön! Nicht nur das die Anlage, die schönste war, die wir jemals gesehen haben, ein wahres Paradies, übertrafen die Angestellten mit ihrer offenen, herzlichen, liebevollen Art, alle Erwartungen! Sie haben sich um uns gekümmert, als gehörten wir zur Familie. Tanja von Hamburg, Deutschland

‘Old Bali Bliss’

Private Villa Sinar Cinta Amed East-Bali in Balinese style

Many guests who stay at our private villa enjoy the ‘old Bali’ as some of them call it. Our staff is much appreciated and loved for their service. Whatever your needs are, we will ensure that you will have a great time at Villa Sinar Cinta in Amed. You can read more about me and our private villa in Amed in this article of travel writer Bill Dalton in the Bali Advertiser. If you are interested in snorkelling and diving in Amed I’m happy to share my experiences.

Mary Afdan & staff Villa Sinar Cinta
With Putu our manager, our friend Paula, our staff Wayan and Komang and me in the middle at our private villa in Amed.

Health protocols

Villa Sinar Cinta is a registered and fully licensed tourist accomodation. We follow all necessary health protocols for the safety of our guests and our staff during the covid19 pandemic. This applies to the cleaning of the entire villa and to welcoming our guests. We expect our guests to wear masks and follow the rules of the Balinese government in preventing the spread of the virus.

Amed East-Bali women entrepeneur

Life and Career of Mary Afdan

When I turned age 50 I had the pleasure to be interviewed by travel writer Bill Dalton, who wrote the first ever travel guide about Indonesia! This is his article about Amed, East-Bali and life and career of Mary Afdan.

Bill Dalton about Mary Afdan in the Bali Advertiser

Mary was born, of a Javanese mother and Moluccan father, in the small country village of Hardenberg in the east of Holland in 1962. Her father had been a member of the Dutch Colonial Army (KNIL) and after Indonesia’s independence former KNIL soldiers and their families were forced out of Java when it fell under the control of Indonesia. In 1951, a total of 12,500 were transferred to the Netherlands where they were housed in provisional camps socially and physically isolated from Dutch society.

Both the Indonesians and the Dutch government believed that the exiles would return in a couple of months, but it wasn’t until the end of the 1960s, while Mary was still a little girl, that the family emigrated to Java, moving eventually to the Kei Islands. Life was tough; at times Mary wore torn clothes and the family didn’t have enough to eat. One of her new songs is about a young girl in Saparua who keeps herself alive by singing for a living. This experience was torn from the pages of Mary’s own life.

Mary’s musical life began at an early age.

The family finally settled in Sorong in Papua in 1972. Mary’s musical life began at an early age when her father taught her to sing and play guitar in the church and in school choirs, winning several singing competitions. When her father passed away in 1983, Mary supported herself by making mosquito nets and giving guitar lessons to young children while she studied economics at university.

Mary arrived in Jakarta in 1989 where she performed with The Crown band in the nightclubs of Jakarta and Bandung. In 1991, the internationally acclaimed Jakarta live music venue Jaya Pub invited her to sing. When the Jaya Pub opened a branch in Kuta in 1992, Mary moved to Bali and on her own and in duet with other singers became the voice of Jaya Pub Bali during the Golden Years from 1992 to 1996 when south Bali enjoyed a vibrant nightlife. On saturday nights you could hardly walk through the crowds of tourists, expats and locals.

At the end of 1995 Mary returned to Amsterdam where she continued to sing professionally at private parties and pasar malams. It was at this point that Mary started to compose her own Indonesian and English material, a tropical mix of Moluccan and Papua elements with a little dash of Dutch.

Mary Afdan in Amsterdam. Read more about Mary Afdan in Bali

Wanting to have a place of her own in her homeland, Mary built Villa Sinar Cinta in 2006 and opened it for guests in 2007. Located on its own stretch of beach, the family who formerly owned the land on which the villa sits is now involved in the it’s operation, maintenance, security and guest services. Guests can now wake at sunrise to accompany Putu to market for the day’s shopping, join Wayan in the kitchen to see how a Balinese meal is prepared from scratch, or hire Kadek to drive them to the exquisite Pasir Putih white sand beach, a 45-minute drive via Amlapura.

Painted Jukung, Tasty Sea Salt, Unspoiled Coral

Though tourism didn’t reach the Amed area until the mid-1990s, by early 2012 every house seems to double as a cubby hole restaurant or homestay, creating an oversupply of some of the best accommodation deals on the island (Rp50,000 per night or Rp100,000 facing the sea). Family ties are still strong here and tradition prevails in everyday life. It’s not that uncommon that a hotel staff member will invite you home for a wedding, a cremation, a tooth filing ceremony or a sibling or cousin’s six-month-old-touching-of-the-ground ceremony.

Salt-making on the beach in Amed, East-Bali

The people along this coast make a meagre living out of dry crops like peanuts, cassava, sweet potato, beans and corn. Twenty years ago, the whole beach was lined with salt-making businesses. Salt making is still a significant source of income for the locals, but these family enterprises are now being eclipsed by the frenzied establishment of tourist-related businesses. The one industry that hasn’t changed is fishing. All the village’s boats have set out to sea by 5 am to fish for tuna and mackerel. For the best photograph over one of Amed’s jukung-lined beaches, climb the hill up to the Anda Amed Resort.

Amed’s slightly greyish unprocessed salt crystals, only Rp20,000 per kilo at almost any roadside warung, are sweeter and more flavorful than most Indonesian sea salt, don’t leave a bitter taste, and make a great gift for people who love to cook. Salt panning takes place in the dry season. While still dark, workers head to the beach carrying a pole with two hanging zinc containers that look like sagging accordions. The women fill the containers with sea foam, froth and sea water, carry up to 50 kg of water on the back of their necks, then climb the wobbly ladder of the square, roofless, two-meter high stack of coconut trunks to the cone at the top, then pour the water in. Workers carry up to 500 liters of water per day. The salt museum at Hotel Uyah (see the Cafe Garam sign), the “Salt Hotel” in the center of Amed, displays photos, samples and equipment showing how traditional salt making is done.

The Bali Sea in front of Villa Sinar Cinta with Mount Agung on the background

With the Bali Sea at your feet, there are any number of watery pursuits like going out with fishermen in the early mornings, getting a lift out to the reef on a jukung to spot dolphins, or just laying on the beach. Fifteen minutes drive to the south in Lipah is a small Japanese ship sunk in World War II; one half of the ship is still intact. The nice sandy black beach offers safe swimming for children and easy access to snorkeling.

Further afield, walk to Amed village along the beach or through cassava gardens, hike in the nearby hills, rent a pushbike in the cooler hours of the morning or late afternoon, explore the coast on rented scooters, arrange a road trip to visit Bali’s premier dive center in Tulamben to the northwest or have lunch at the Tirtagangga Water Gardens or the Ujung Water Palace near Amlapura.

Amed is also an active trekking and eco tourism area. Aficionados claim that the sweet salak grown around Sibetan, 45 minutes away – Bali’s most prolific salak producing area – is incomparable. Known as the snakefruit because of its reddish-brown scaly skin, this variety of salak is called salak gula pasir. Pura Lempuyang temple sits gleaming white on the slopes of Gunung Lempuyang; access from Abang, north of Tirtagangga, by climbing the 1700 steps to the top.


Sinar Cinta Villa, Jl. Melasti 7, Amed,,, tel. 081-747-37869. Three double rooms with double beds, plus a bunk bed. Weekly rates (including breakfast): E700-E850 in the low season; E850-E1000 in the high season. Payment via bank transfer. The villa is ideal for parents with 2-3 children, a party of adults or two couples who rent the whole premises for average stays of from 1-3 weeks. Busiest in May and December (school vacations) and July-August (vacation time in Europe). Amed is 22 km (one half hour) north of Amlapura; Singaraja and Denpasar are both two and a half hours distant. Catch an angkot six km to Culik, then board another one for Amlapura. If coming from Culik, the road (Jl. Melasti) to Sinar Cinta is one and a half km before Amed on the left-hand side.

Copyright © 2012 Bill Dalton

All pictures on this page are made by us or by our guests. You can read more about the construction of the villa on my blog or visit the website of Villa Sinar Cinta for more information Or contact Mary Afdan directly.


Hello world!

Welcome to my Blog about how to travel and explore hotspots in East-Bali. Please allow me to share with you how Bali colours my life and answer frequently asked questions about the fishing village Amed. I like to inform you about my private villa in Amed and what activities you can do, like snorkelling and diving.

I am happy to give you some ideas of the beaten track, so you can experience the old authentic Bali. Just like the Dutch family Van Mierlo enjoyed their holiday when they stayed at our Villa Sinar Cinta in Amed twice. See their photo’s below as they loved to go rafting, sailing and tracking. They can’t wait to come back again.

Let me know

If you have a question or suggestions, please go ahead and post it as a reaction to this post. Thank you, terima kasih, matur suksma!

Ceremony on Melasti Beach in front of our house in Amed, Karangasem, East-Bali

Travelbooks I recommend

Ricefields Tirtagangga East-Bali
Imagine walking through these ricefields in East-Bali. This is part of our walking tours.
Driver Komang sharing fruit from the tree
Komang is from Amed and he is one of the most favourite private drivers for our guests. He can tell a lot about the culture in Bali and he has a great sense of humour. He is one of our experts on how to travel and explore hotspots in East-Bali.

Explore hotspots enroute to Amed

From the south of Bali, like for instance from the airport it takes about 2,5 hours to travel to Amed. If you like to know which hotspots you can explore be sure to read my article about these 11 hotspots enroute to Amed.

Health protocols

Villa Sinar Cinta is a registered and fully licensed tourist accomodation. We follow all necessary health protocols for the safety of our guests and our staff during the covid19 pandemic. This applies to the cleaning of the entire villa and to welcoming our guests. We expect our guests to wear mouth masks and follow the rules of the Balinese government in preventing the spread of the virus.