I’ve lived in Canggu for a while now – it’s safe to say this is my base. I love this beach town and all its tropical feels. There’s nowhere else in the world where creative energy is so strong, vibes are so laidback, and adventure is at every corner. With the town being only a 5km stretch, you know every expat here yet each day is it owns. You never know what to expect. When you settle in Canggu (whether it be for a month or a year), there are little parts of your routine that really makes you appreciate this town even more. Below are the top reasons that has me head over heels for Canggu, Bali - and are guaranteed to make you fall in love with it too.
Travellers + Expats:
No matter where you go in the world, the people you go with either make or break your experience – facts. Remove judgement, racism, and ego and that’s how every interaction in Canggu is like. It took me a while to get used to it. There isn’t any other place where people are this welcoming and open to conversation, but now it’s part of life. People go out of their way to introduce themselves and you never know who you’ll meet. You’ll soon realize it’s a super small world, and everyone is family no matter what background.
Easiest ways to meet people:
I’ve talked about Facebook Groups before, and I’m the biggest advocate for them. If you’re new to town, introduce yourself on the Canggu Nomad Girls page! Girls will be inviting you to grab coconuts on the beach in minutes! There’s also a Nomad Girl’s lunch every Wednesday at Mocca (Rain or shine!)
I really settled into my routine once I joined a fitness studio in town! I highly recommend joining to meet tons of people! See my recommendations below!
Coworking spaces are a huge favorite for digital nomads, but I personally don’t like them. There are really great cafes in town that are great to work at while offering amazingly well-priced food! My overall favorite cafes are Cafe Cinta and Duatiga! You never know who’ll end up sitting next to you!
Lastly, you can always see whose posting on Instagram from your favorite spots in town. If they work in your field, it’s a great opportunity to message them asking to meet up for a coffee!
There is such a difference between my first month in Bali to now. Mentally, I was completely a different person – there was so much stress and disappoint involved. Physically, I was bloated and weak. I’ve only been exercising consistently for a month now but there’s already been drastic improvements. The shine in my hair has returned, my face is glowing, and I’m all around so much happier. Yes, the price tag for studio memberships are high and comparable to western pricing – but you get much more in return. The expertise of trainers and their level of commitment to ensuring you get the best sessions makes it entirely worth the investment. Also, if you’re regular, your gym becomes your family – one of the biggest reasons I love going to Canggu Nest!
There’s ton of gyms all over Canggu - each has their own personality and style. You have to try a couple out to find where you most comfortable! Even though I’ve found my home at Nest, I know a ton of people who go to Body Factory and Crossfit Wanderlust! While Crossfit has a cult following, Body Factory is the new guy in town that I’ve been dying to check out!
You couldn’t come to Bali and not fall in love with yoga! I started with the unlimited pass at The Practice which is a style of Hatha yoga (slower paced yoga in my opinion) and then went to Odyssey Mvmt (faster paced vinyasa, which I love much more!)
If you ever swing by the main area of a coworking spot or hostel, you’ll also find tons of free sessions that are hosted around town by great instructors! A great opportunity to get in a good workout and meet a few locals!
My Scooter – beep beep!
So if you live in Canggu, you know about The Shortcut. It’s this bumpy road with lush green rice fields on either side. It connects the two main Canggu neighborhoods together (Batu Bolong and Berawa). As I live in Berawa, my favorite morning ritual is driving across The Shortcut every morning on my way to yoga! I genuinely love driving my scooter everywhere, but the shortcut is extra special when the sun is shining, air is breezy, and there’s no traffic! My scooter is my baby and it’s been one of the biggest steps I’ve taken in Bali to feel so independent!
Once you get your confidence going, you’ll be riding everywhere too! When I had just got here, I was genuinely terrified of driving my scooter. At first, my main excuse was that it was too heavy. My first month, I got around using Gojek or Grab (Ride share apps that are available in the area). Please be away of the psycho Taxi Mafia, a lot of tourist spots especially around Batu Bulong don’t let rideshares pick you up. This became really risky when girls want to leave beach bars like Oldman’s or Sandbar at night. If you aren’t on your scooter yet, I highly recommend getting a Whatsapp number of an affordable driver and make prior arrangements!
The reason I fell in love with Bali was because of the nightlife. Island parties are not like big city parties, and that’s what makes them so damn amazing! Wear whatever you want, any day of the week, have a great time with your girlfriends and dance till you start craving pizza! I never make plans until an hour before I go out. When you become a regular at certain spots, you recognize people and that’s how your plans are made.
Bali nightclubs also share the love. There really isn’t one bar or club that dominates the entire nightlife scene – everyone has one or two big nights in the week. Once you get the routine down, you’ll never be wondering where everyone’s going tonight – everyone already knows. And, everyone always end the night at Sandbar.
Canggu Nightlife Schedule:
Mon – Luigi’s
Tues – Pretty Poision/Vault
Wed – Oldmans
Thurs – Luigis/Lost City/Pretty Poision
Fri – The Lawn
Sat + Sun - Look out for billboards on the roads, bars and clubs generally throw big day parties that go into night! There’s always something new going on. La Brisa really does it best!
Honorable Mentions: Once every few months, I take the free shuttle from Canggu to Uluwatu to hit up Omnia. The DJ’s throw it down, the pool is amazing, views are unreal, and the crowd is so chic. Totally worth the visit!
Also, if there’s ever a time when you need to escape Canggu for the night - take a quick driver over to Seminyak to dance all night at La Favela.
Alternative Beach + La Brisa:
No questions asked, you will catch us at Alternative Beach every Saturday afternoon and La Brisa any sunset of the week. I secretly hate public pools, but both of these are flawless. There’s something about the ambiance that you can’t find anywhere else. I’m obsessed! If you’re visiting for about a week, you should definitely spend a couple days at Alternative and an entire afternoon at La Brisa!
Canggu is life:
Overall, there are so many different reasons that make you so easily fall in love with this little town. Whatever you come looking for, Bali will return it in more ways than you can imagine. Have a good time, try everything, and always feel free to say hello!