Hipster Paradise: What You Need to Know About Life in Canggu
A Place That Everyone Wants To Experience
Canggu. One of the coolest and most sought after places in Bali. Mecca of health and business conscious individuals living their island life. Sound like your vibe? Find out about the pros & cons of staying in Canggu - when is the best time to visit, great dining options, where to stay, and much more. So keep calm and get your ‘Gu on!
Over the past few years, Canggu - pronounced “chang-goo”- was put on the map and quickly became the go-to place for travellers, digital nomads, and entrepreneurs. Bali's hippest new hotspot is in high demand right now, which explains the many expats calling it home.
You'll notice modern villas and western-style cafés popping up around this beach town, usually owned by expats. A handful of sustainable and eco stores as well. Everything from zero waste food shops to yoga clothes using recycled plastic.
What Is The Big Fuss About?
Canggu has this special vibe about itself. It's more a state of mind than a place. Stretching between Kerobokan and Echo Beach - cool Canggu ('Gu) is full of colourful beachfront bars, wholefood cafes, surf-ready waves, hipsters and beach babes. Place, where volcanic dark sand beaches meet rice field with epic breathtaking sunsets.
Sunsets are something like a ritual in Bali. They bring communities together, where locals and expats hang out every day. Whether it is at one of the Canggu's beaches or tropical beach clubs. Check out our favourite - La Brisa.
You will be amazed by breathtaking bohemian decor and its authentic vibes, sustainably sourced food and genuine Balinese hospitality. The very concept of the beach club is written in the name - La Brisa - which means sea breeze. We warn you, it's pretty addictive.
If you’re into a healthy lifestyle, you simply can't miss Canggu. Great news for plant-based folks and fitness enthusiasts. Don't worry meat-eaters, you won't be deprived of delish dishes either.
Canggu literally offers something for everyone. Heavenly food options and endless fitness and yoga choices. Welcome to hipster paradise with a bohemian twist offering a western lifestyle in tropical Bali.
When Should I Visit?
To be completely honest with you, the best time to travel to Canggu is a matter of your preference. Winter months, May to October, offer the best possible weather conditions. Summertime, November to April, comes with a decent amount of rain and humidity if you don't mind.😉
However, staying during the wet season comes with fewer tourists and more options for accommodation. If you are still keen to visit Canggu during the peak season, bear in mind the busiest months of the year - July and August. Temperature-wise, Canggu is pretty consistent all year-round. It hovers around 82 degrees Fahrenheit.
Where To Stay In Canggu
Hipster Canggu offers endless options for accommodation. Everything from luxury Balinese villas to affordable guesthouses, hotels and homestays. It all depends on your taste folks.😉
However, for 100% authentic, personal experience, we recommend sticking to villas or luxury guesthouses. Traditional hotels are also an option, but they don’t come with real Bali vibes.
As vacation should be a pleasant experience all the way, the place where you stay, and the fact how you feel in it, sets up your entire vacation atmosphere. No doubt you should stick to more luxurious places within walking distance to the beach. Berawa, Batu Bolong or Echo beach are our top picks for your ultimate vacay match made in heaven.
Whether you are planning on a vacation with your friends, family or want to explore by yourself, we recommend booking your accommodation via Booking.com or Airbnb. If you prefer luxury residences with all-day service, then Booking.com is your best friend. If you are after more personal touch and homey, modern Balinese feeling, while being away from home, Airbnb will get your back.
Imagine waking up in your private luxury villa with a smell of the ocean in the air. Cool down in your private pool and head for some beautiful brekkie with breathtaking morning oceanviews. La Brisa offers a great breakfast menu straight on the Echo beach.
Canggu Aka Foodie Paradise
Holy moly, where to start? The culinary scene in Canggu is something that stands out. Plenty of different dining options popping up monthly, where everyone's taste buds will be satisfied.
Do we have seafood lovers here? So let’s go back to the place called La Brisa. This MUST- experience venue in Canggu is one of the trendiest, yet sustainable eco-friendly venue on the island that serves up outstanding dishes and one of a kind cocktails in the ‘hood.
All fish is line-caught by Balinese fisherman and almost all of the ingredients used in the kitchen are sourced from the island itself. Cocktails with exotic fruits and homemade herb-infused spirits. Do we have to say more?😍
The Shady Shack, an ultimate vegetarian experience with an extensive menu of healthy dishes. They are so delicious, you’ll forget they’re meat-free. Don’t miss the Nori Bowl, Halloumi Bowl, the Choc Tops Smoothie and the fresh veggie spring rolls. So yum!
Any avocado lover or smoothie crusher will be in heaven at this little green hub called The Avocado Factory. The first avocado bar in South East Asia ever featuring local avocados from both Bali and Java. Try the avocado pancakes for brekkie and the avocado burger for lunch filled with a crumbed and fried avocado pattie!🤤 Finish it off with an avo-licious mousse for dessert. It’s all avo everything!
As much as we love Indonesian cuisine, it comes in phases. You either feel like it or you don't. And this is when smoothie bowls and western-style food take their turn.😍
How To Get Around In Canggu
Canggu is pretty spread out. Walking is doable, but it's not very safe. Footpaths are usually taken over by scooter drivers, so you must be very careful. Traffic is also thick and usually doesn’t show much regard for pedestrians. And forget the pushbike, way too dangerous.
Scooters are the most popular way of getting around. They are affordable and give you lots of freedom to swap between your daily activities. Rental averages around $3.50 per day. The longer you rent, the cheaper it gets. And remember, a negotiation is always an option.
As traffic gets hectic, getting around might be a stressful experience for a beginner. If you are not an experienced scooter driver, we recommend getting a lesson. It doesn't take long to get into the routine. Count on $10 per hour.
Think safety folks. Doesn't matter how far is your destination, always wear a helmet! Accidents in Canggu happen on a regular basis. If you are a non-experienced driver, avoid driving through backstreets and shortcuts in the afternoon. Traffic gets heaviest heading towards the sunset time.
There is something you should know about the most popular shortcut located in Canggu connecting two well-known places, Berawa and Batu Bolong. It leads through the evergreen rice fields and takes you to the main road. Sounds like a scenic route, isn't it?
But here comes the madness. It’s an 800m narrow two-way cobbled road with a width of barely two cars, where the bike riders are constantly trying to get past the cars. It takes about 5 to15 minutes to get through depending on the traffic.
Also, be careful about your belongings. Ladies, in case you have your Jenn Lee ata bag on you 😉, keep it in front. Make sure you get your travel insurance with a motorcycle-riding coverage as well.
Ok, so you are good to go now. But what if you are running low on gas? Besides ordinary gas stations, you can also rely on small portable ones. They are part of some local shops you can spot on the side of the road.
You might also see Absolut vodka bottles fill in with a yellow liquid aka gas. So don't even worry about running low on gas again.🤭
If you are not up to this challenge, you can opt for GoJek or Grab. Works on the same principle as Uber. Download the app and get a driver whenever you need one. Also, you don't need your own helmet, it is a part of the service.
The price depends on the distance. If you are commuting in your area, it will cost you about a dollar. Yup, you heard that right, $1!
Get Fit In Canggu
Canggu is famous for its thriving fitness scene that attracts all kinds of health-conscious travellers. If you’re planning to be a part of the fitness community, it’s well worth getting a multi-entry pass. Plenty of CrossFit, yoga and pilates classes, gymnastic strength training, climbing walls or Muay Thai centre. Whatever you fancy!
Our top pick would be Finn's recreation club which offers something for everyone. Cardio, yoga, strength exercise, group classes, trampoline centre and many more. Relax your body and mind in 'Body Temple Spa' or head to the 'Splash Waterpark' with your little ones. It all comes with the option for dining. Everything under the one roof for your ultimate vacation comfort.
Canggu is also very popular with experienced and beginner surfers. It has a huge bustling surf scene so don't expect uncrowded waves anymore. Batu Bolong Beach gets the most crowded. Quieter spots can be found at Berawa or at Echo Beach. If you are very new to surfing, there are plenty of surf camps you can join.
Cash Money Baby
Cash or card? When it comes to any location in Bali, cash is always a winner. Nowadays, most of the places offer card payment but they might be restricted to a minimum amount.
Cash withdrawal is not a problem in Canggu, as there are plenty of ATMs around. The banks will be the most reliable for finding ATMs in working conditions. Other options are larger local convenience stores, like Indomaret, Alfamart or Cocomart.
To cut the risk of getting your card skimmed, use ATMs attached to banks or businesses. Avoid private money changers as much as you can. Most of these places will give you a low rate on your dollar.
Why We Love Canggu
No doubt, the best feature of Canggu is the social scene. You are practically a part of a big community regardless of your daily activities. Whether it’s a Sunday session on the beach or the best happy hours in town, Canggu has it all.
An incredible destination for travellers, digital nomads, surfers, hipsters, vegans, yoga enthusiasts, dog lovers, and everyone in between. If you are looking for a change of scenery, the hip, trendy and inspirational Canggu might be a decent spot to base yourself in Indonesia.