The best known of the three Nusa Islands, Nusa Lembongan, is an island paradise with beautiful scenery, rich culture, without the hawker-type culture that is becoming more prominent in Bali.
Beach clubs offering stunning views and sunsets, coastal paths perfect for exploring, and gorgeous scenery make this island an easy and popular escape. Especially for scuba divers, as Nusa Lembongan is close to some of the Bali’s best dive sites.
Scuba Diving Sites in Nusa Lembongan
Nusa Lembongan is beside Nusa Penida which means that it also shares it’s dive sites. That being said, it also has a few of its own. Nusa Lembongan, like Nusa Penida, is a perfect base for divers hoping to see the areas many manta rays or to search for the elusive mola mola.
Here are Nusa Lebongan’s dive sites:
- Blue Corner: Strong currents and dramatic topography where you may see mantas, white tip sharks, and mola mola in season. Advanced divers only.
- Mangroves: Named because of where it is located, Mangroves offers a pretty reef with plenty of sea life. Keep your eye on the blue for passing sharks.
- Lembongan Bay: Perfect for new divers or those learning, the sandy bottom here has plenty of coral bommies where macro critters like to hide.
As previously mentioned, dive operators from Nusa Lembongan will also go to the dive sites around Nusa Penida which are:
- Manta Point I & II: Two of the area’s top dive sites as they are famous for having manta rays year round.
- Crystal Bay: Crystal Bay has a pretty reef and a wall, but can also be a good spot to see mola mola when in season. Also suitable for snorkeling.
- Vertigo Point: Also called Batu Abah, this is a popular spot for seeing mola mola in season.
- Malibu Point: A drift dive with strong currents. One of the best spots in Bali to see sharks and mola mola when in season.
- Sental, PED, and SD: On the north end of the island, these three dive sites are great drift dives with an abundance of marine life, good visibility, and colourful reefs.
- Toyapakeh: A big, colourful reef. Most popular duing mola mola season as they tend to be seen in the area.
- Gamat Bay: Can be a bit rough, but pretty coral reefs and plenty of marine life.
How to Get to Nusa Lembongan
Unless you are secretly a millionaire and can afford to rent a private helicopter, the only way to get to Nusa Lembongan is by boat. There are both fast and slow boat options with the fast boat options taking about 20-25 minutes to make the crossing from Sanur, Bali. There are several boat operators so we recommend shopping around ahead of time and bartering to lower the price.
If you are coming from Nusa Penida, you have three options. You can take a public boat, ask a speed boat headed to Bali if they are stopping at Nusa Lembongan, or offer to pay one of the boat-owning locals to take you across. Whatever option you chose, just make sure that you agree on a price beforehand.
Getting Around Nusa Lembongan
Nusa Penida isn’t very big, only about 8km squared which makes it easy to explore. The most common methods of transportation are to rent a push bike or a motorbike to explore the island, however it’s also walkable if you prefer to sight-see on foot. The island is covered in paths, especially along the coastal parts, that link back to many guesthouses and restaurants.
Most people consider motorbikes to be a bit of overkill on this small island (though they are available for rent) so choose push bikes instead. The roads here are better than on Nusa Penida but some are still poor quality so take your time.
Tip: You can also cross over to Nusa Ceningan (by foot or by bike) thanks to the bridge that connects the two islands.
Things to do in Nusa Lembongan
From natural beauty to watersports, Nusa Lembongan is a great island for beach lovers and outdoor enthusiasts. Here’s some ideas for things to do after scuba diving.
- Devil’s Tears: This rocky outcrop suck’s in the ocean’s waves and then releases it with a boom and a huge spray that often creates a rainbow.
- Explore the Mangroves: The northeast corner of Nusa Lembongan is covered in a Mangrove forest. If you are keen on exploring you can hire a boat to take you on a tour, or rent a kayak and explore on your own.
- Surf: Nusa Lembongan isn’t just for scuba divers, surfers love to visit this island as well. Make sure you go at medium or high tide though to avoid being scraped across the reef. Try: Playgrounds, Lacerations, No Man’s, Shipwrecks, and even Nusa Ceningan for great waves.
- Relax on the beach: If you just feel like soaking up the sun and swimming in the blue waves then Nusa Lembongan has plenty of beach space for you to do just that. Try Paradise Beach, Mushroom Beach, Jungut Batu Beach, and Tamarind Beach.
Where to Stay in Nusa Lembongan
Again, Nusa Lembongan isn’t very big so you can stay where you please without it being too much of a hassle. That being said, it’s always easiest to stay on site at a dive resort if your chosen operator has one. The majority of accommodation is located on the western part of the island so we recommending find a property on the beach it has some pretty spectacular sunsets.
A visit to Nusa Lembongan is a great way to escape the crowds and hassle of Bali. It’s small, friendly, and fun. Plus, it offers easy access to some of the best dive sites in the area.