This list is by no means complete and even worse totally subjective. These places worked for me and my taste. If you like them, cool, leave a comment, if not, also cool, leave a comment, but don’t go to Lembongan – you’ll be bored. 😉
Let’s start with the most important:
#1 – Diving with Big Fish Diving
Great little dive school with cool staff and a relaxed atmosphere. They bring you to all the amazing divesites around Nusa Penida and Lembongan. You can see mantas during the entire year and between June to October they have Mola mola season, sunfishes.
Top 3 dive sites around Lembongan:
#1 – Manta Point, what the name suggests
#2 – Crystal Bay, with Mola mola in season – tipp: ask the staff, they have another secret spot 😉
#3 – Mangroves, beautiful coral reef
(#4 – Blue Corner – strong current with lots of big stuff, but time was too short)
Additionally, they cooperate with the MMF, the Marine Megafouna Faundation. So in case you care for the marine environment while diving (most readers here do), then you are in good hands. And as if that wouldn’t already be enough, they offer a very nice discount to dive pros, divemaster and up.
Above that they offer all the standard courses from PADI and SSI.
#2 Secret Garden Bungalows
Okay, that might seem a little biased, but what can I do if they are good?! Secret Garden is the little resort attached to Big Fish Diving, which makes it very convenient for divers to stay here. The place bears its name for good reason with its beautiful garden that is very well-tended.
Furthermore, the resort stresses ecological awareness, which is the reason why you wont find ACs in the rooms. Nevertheless, the rooms are still not hot, because of their great architecture. A fan is all you will ever need. Oh and the beds are gigantic.
Another thing that some people might find interesting is their in-house yoga school, Yoga Shack. They have regular classes and also occasionally offer yoga retreats.
#3 Chill House Homestay Lembongan Accomodation
Super cool, all-in but cheap place to stay. These places are slowly dying out in this world. I had my own room with air con, fan, TV (only indonesian programmes), a huge bed and a very clean bathroom. Believe me, no girlfriend will ever complain about this room. And now hold on tight, all this came for just 200.000 Indonesian Rupiah, in April 2016 that was roughly 15 US$.
Oh, and they even came in daily to make my bed…
Generally speaking, homestays are the local version of small private pensions. They are usually very affordable. The only downside is their wide range of quality. But it can be easily evaluated by asking the owner to see the room before to move in.
You should also always talk about the price, as you can always get it cheaper. There are too many accomodations on Lembongan.
#4 Maria’s Boemboe Bali Waroeng (Eatery)
What a revelation, a true jewel of Lembongan. This tiny little eatery just outside of Big Fish/Secret Garden, is a true culinary delight. Maria, the owner, cooks wonderful meat and vegetarian dishes for absolutely affordable prices (main courses in April 2016, between 25 and 35.000 Rupiah).
Unfortunately, she closes quite early around 2 o’clock pm, just after lunch time. But they have a second resturant at the very end of Lembongan village in the North, right on the beach.
Make sure to have lunch at this place. I ate here pretty much every day during my stay. My favourite was Chicken Tum, spicey but simply excellent.
Generally, I want to recommend eateries on Lembongan. They are a great and affordable alternative to all those fancy-prancy and hip expensive places that pop up everywhere else. The only downside can be their cleanliness, but that’s something the fancy places just hide better.
So try ’em out and get yourself a portion of the national dish, Chicken Satay.
#6 Bali Eco Deli
I’m slightly embarrassed to admit it, but yeah, that’s one of these fancy places and I confess, I love it!
The food and drinks at Bali Eco Deli are out of this world. Especially their brownie and fruit slushies are amazing. Don’t miss the Lemonana and the watermelon mint thingy. Vegetarians will be delighted… and that says an omnivore!!!
Only downside, this place is pretty expensive, but worth the money.
#7 Big Screen Cinema and Restaurant
A cool and laid back place to enjoy one or the other movie and some fairly decent food. It can be very relaxing after a day of diving to eat something and watch a movie straight afterwards. The choice of movies is very hollywood orientated, but does come up with one or the other surprise every now and then.
Foodwise I can recommand the theatre chutney, which comes in three sizes, small, medium and large. Fairly expensive, though.
#8 Getting lost on Lembongan
Sounds easy, but actually takes a good portion of curiosity before you’ll discover the hidden jewels of Lembongan. The first problem you’ll have to overcome is the convenient need to stay on the main road with all its hustle and bustle. Of course there are loads of attractions on this road and it is a lot of fun to walk it and look at all those people that pass by, but those stories that you tell at home are hidden in the small side streets. You can find temples, shrines everywhere and maybe the next big thing.
Also strolling along the beach with its sheer endless number of bars and restaurants is a nice walk. Just watch out for those wanna-be yogis that meditate right next to the beach bars, while everyone else is drinking. Though… might be fun to just run them over, claiming you didn’t see them. 😉
#9 Agus Shipwreck Restaurant and Bar
Hey, of course I have tipps where to spend your evenings. You always have to save one or the other goody for the end, right?!
Agus Shipwreck is my first recomendation. The restaurant was way too expensive for me to even try, but the beer prices are the same as everywhere else and that’s what I did here. Why? Their bean bags are right in front of the water and face straight west. If you want a nice chilled sunset with a crispy cold Bintang in your hand… well, that’s the place to go. Guess where the title picture was made?
#10 Blue Corner Bar
Last, but most certainly not least, the only real party place on the island. Unfortunately, this is only true on Fridays. During the entire rest of the week, you will have a hard time to find a place to party.
Yet again, this is the very reasons why everybody heads to Blue Corner on Fridays.
Enjoy your stay on Lembongan with great diving, amazing food and relaxed evenings. On Fridays you might opt for partying at Blue Corner, with the great peace of mind that there is no better place to be. 😀
If you think I missed something really important, or if you discovered something new that should be in this list, please leave a comment and I’ll add it. Kudos are always welcome.