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Sanur Beach-Bali

lovely luxurious Sanur Beach, Bali


And so, on Dec. 1, 2010, I completed my bicycle circumnavigation of Bali in the same manner I’d begun three weeks earlier:


* in Sanur, my long time haunt in Bali and only great destination in South Bali.


* on a short 25 km, easy cruise. I’d started on Day 1 by cycling slightly uphill from Sanur to Ubud. I ended the trip gliding downhill from Gianyar to Sanur.


My final day was actually easier than Day 1 had been. Starting my trip, I’d miraculously become lost simply leaving Sanur, after which my chain had popped off and jammed between the cogs and wheel, and then I’d pedaled uphill all morning. Thank goodness my final day was so easy. I was already pre-tired from the previous day’s exceptionally long ride from Bali’s far north coast through central Bali, and down to Gianyar, practically all the way to Bali’s south coast.     ( Cycling Bali Day 12 )


Gianyar Losman- guest house-Gianyar- Bali
Gianyar losman

On the final morning of my trip I got up early in Gianyar then wandered through the city’s bustling local fresh market, where I’d picked up delicious Balinese kue (sweets) for breakfast. After eating and packing up my bags, I recognized that my body was still completely exhausted. So, despite the threat of rain, I went right back to bed and slept for two hours. After all, I only had to glide 25 km, mostly downhill, then I could reward myself by relaxing at Sanur beach.


rice fields near Ubud- Bali

rice fields and mountains near Ubud- Bali

rice fields near Gianyar and Ubud

My power nap worked a charm. I arose the second time that day feeling refreshed, well rested, and energized from breakfast in my belly. I mounted my bike and set off through the city on the very final leg of my Bali tour. Within 10 minutes I was already gliding through open rice fields westward. A few km later I hit the main N-S road between Sanur, Denpasar and Ubud.

stone carvings- Batubulan- Bali

stone carvings- Batubulan- Bali

From there my ride consisted mostly of gliding downhill through small artisan communities: Blahbatuh with elaborately carved wood doors and windows, Celuk with fine silversmithing, Batuan with intricately carved stone statues and delicately patterned batik. I glided down through the giant stone arch marking the border of Gianyar province then hit the busy main highways of south Bali.


The only real challenge on the day’s ride was navigating the crazy loop on the Bypass highway to get turned around towards Sanur. Then, before I knew it, I was back in ‘home territory’ on the outskirts of Sanur. I slipped off the highway and took the secret back roads that I’d discovered earlier that year all the way into central Sanur. I glided into my trusty guest house, announced my return, got a room and shower, and promptly sauntered out to Sanur’s gorgeous beach to relax, suntan, and swim in the calm cool Bali Sea.


Mt. Agung- Sanur Beach- Bali

Mt. Agung- Sanur Beach- Bali

Mt. Agung peaking through clouds from Sanur Beach

A lucky surprise awaited me at Sanur beach: a rare view of distant Mt. Agung shining down on South Bali’s shores. Agung must’ve been there to help me reminisce on all the adventures I’d just enjoyed under her watchful gaze. Just yesterday I’d cycled along Agung’s entire southern flanks, through wide open rice fields, up and over an unexpected mountain range, up and down ridiculously steep ravines flanked by neon green terraced fields, over gushing rivers, then finally downhill to Gianyar.


A few days earlier, I ‘d glided for hours along Bali’s north coast, with Agung smiling down on me from her northern side. On other days Bali’s Mt. Batur had partially defeated me as I grinded up it’s southern flanks to the crater rim. I’d been rescued on the final 3 km by a passing truck driver. Then I’d raced down Batur’s precipitous ridge lines to Bali’s north coast, cruised the entire north coast to Bali’s westernmost point, Gilimanuk. I’d explored the plains around Negara city, stayed at Medewi surfer’s beach, and cussed and sweared through Bali’s central ‘Killer Mountains‘. Oh, yes, I’d had many adventures.


Mt. Agung- Amed Beach- Bali

Mt. Agung from Amed Beach

Mt. Agung from Bali’s north coast

In total, I’d cyled:


* 14 days (‘Cycling Day 7′ in this series was actually a combined story of two days’ explorations)


* 643 km: 523 km on the circumnavigation  + 120 ‘extra’ km exploring


* 25 to 75 km per day


* a figure 8 around Bali, climbing up over the central mountains twice


* Bali’s entire north coast and half the south coast


* My hardest days were climbing mountains:


Day 2: Ubud to Kintamani, just 36 km, 6 hours
Day 10: Medewi to Seririt, 57 km, 10 hours


* My easiest days were:


Day 1: Sanur to Ubud, 25 km, 1.5 hours :))
Day 14: Gianyar to Sanur 25 km, 1.5 hours :)))


Mt Agung- Amed road- Bali

Mt Agung from Amed road- Bali

eventual cover photo for my guidebook Cycling Bali

Since my trip was also research for my Cycling Bali Guidebook, I’d kept detailed notes throughout the trip on road and traffic conditions, road grade, accommodation options, food and bike shop availability, and local attractions. I’d even made a pre-trip by motorbike, logging actual distances by odometer, scouting roads, and finding rooms in places I’d never been. Trips now completed, I had a thick notebook full of detailed notes and facts. Ready to write a masterpiece!


Lash-sake-Japanese restaurant

drinking sake at a Japanese restaurant

a toast of sake

But that day, upon the completion of my trip, I relaxed beach side under Agung’s graceful slopes. That evening I treated myself to a celebratory dinner of fresh sushi and sake. After all, Japan was where my world travels had all began and become funded, nearly 20 years earlier. For me, Japanese food will always make a proper, doubly grateful toast to my life of travels and adventures.

Cycling Bali Guidebook - Lash - LashWorldtour - book

Cycling Bali Guidebook by Lash


If you’re inspired to cycle around Bali, check out my guidebook-

Cycling Bali: Guide to Circumnavigating Bali by Bicycle






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