Why you should Leave Bali and Visit Menjangan Island
Menjangan Island, located on the northwestern shore of Bali, is probably not included in many Bali holiday itineraries. This small yet exotic island is entirely protected and is part of West Bali National Park. You’ll need a license and an accompaniment of a park ranger/guide to explore the island. You only need one guide for a group.
Menjangan is different to Bali in a lot of aspects. It is a pristine small island with lots of unique flora and fauna on it. Also, the waters of this island are very rich, making it a great diving and snorkeling spot. Here are some of the reasons to visit Menjangan Island.
Diving and snorkeling
Menjangan Island has some of the best diving spots in Bali. Apart from its rich coral marine life, the visibility here is excellent almost all year round. The classic coral drop creates a wall of reefs teeming with many colorful species.
The waters are calm, making Menjangan Island an ideal destination for a snorkeling trip. Just remember to be very careful and avoid stepping on the reef.
Explore the savannahs and befriend the deer
Menjangan Island has roughly 3,800 hectares land area, most of them are pristine forest and savannahs. The Javan rusa deer is the native inhabitant of this small island, freely roaming the land. Since there is no natural predator here, many deer here are not afraid of human. Some even interact with visitors on the coasts of the island. If you are lucky, you might find one that is not too shy to come near you.
Enjoying the beach
Menjangan Island is a relatively undeveloped tourist destination, especially compared to other parts of Bali. However, that allows its natural landscape to be kept pristine and unspoiled, including the beaches.
Here, you can find many beautiful beaches with strips of white sand, rough cliffs, and green vegetation. Its calm waters let you swim in peace, or just enjoy beach under the sun. The best part is that this place is never too crowded.
There are several shrines located at some parts of the island, but the most popular one is the Segara Giri Dharma Kencana Temple. It’s a unique temple with a huge Lord Ganesh statue facing the sea. This temple is located on a cliff on the northeast coast of the island. It is a picturesque temple, and you can even access it directly from the sea via its staircase.
Menjangan Island is not the easiest place to visit in Bali. You’d have to go to Pemuteran Bay in North Bali, approximately four hours’ drive from Kuta. From Pemuteran, you can charter a boat to go to Menjangan Island. Alternatively, you can reach Menjangan from Java (Banyuwangi). There is no hotel in this island, but if you go via an excursion, you will be provided with decent meals.
You can also take part in the conservation effort in this island by transplanting corals. Lovely statues have been planted underwater as a platform for the coral reef to grow.