Amed is one of the most recent places in Bali to be hit by tourism. It wasn’t until the year 2000 that development started and Amed has come a long way since then. Due to its location on the east coast, it has at times been overlooked as a possible destination for tourists but the roads connecting Amed have recently been recovered making this lovely area a popular spot amongst travelers and scuba diving enthusiasts.
Amed is referred to as probably one of the best dive sites in Bali as many divers flock here to experience a dive on the USS Liberty wreck at Tulamben. Tulamben is a small village located around 30 kilometers north of Amed and it is popular for some divers to base themselves here so they can have easier access to the wreck. Most of the Hotels in Tulamben run as dive operations so it isn’t difficult to find a good operator. The beautiful thing about the USS Liberty wreck is that it can also be seen by snorkellers. The wreck lies 30 meters off shore so it is easily accessible. It can get a little busy around this sight so it is best to explore early in the morning. There are numerous other dive sites around Tulamben you will just need to enquire at your dive operation.
If you are not interested in Scuba diving, Amed’s coastline offers some fantastic snorkeling as the reef is relatively untouched. This is due to the low level of visitors Amed attracts, thus resulting in keeping the reef pristine. It is possible with your snorkel to see other wrecks in the area as the water is relatively shallow. A popular one for snorkellers is at Lipah bay and is commonly referred to as the Japanese Wreck although it has to be said this wreck isn’t Japanese. A few popular spots along Amed’s coast for snorkeling are:
1. A Japanese Shipwreck in Banyuning, this small ship rests only 20 m from the beach which makes it very accessible. The wreck is home to some amazing corals and is abundant in sea life.
2. Jemeluk, which is just south of Amed about 20 minutes drive is a very popular spot with amazing coral life.
3. There is a small wooden shipwreck at Lipah Beach.
4. Selang beach, in front of Good Karma Bungalows (visibility isn’t always good because of strong currents)
5. In front of Amed Cafe in Amed
6. Liberty shipwreck at Tulamben, some of which is in water shallow enough to allow snorkeling
Indonesia.Biz.ID is proud to recommend some of the below dive operation based in and around Amed.
- Adventure Divers Bali, Jl Jemeluk, Amed, PADI and SSI dive shop offering a full range of courses. Instructed by an Englishman who moved to Amed with his Dutch wife. Together they run the diving school and Geria Giri Shanti Bungalows. Great couple that makes you feel at right at home. You can contact them at their email: adventurediversbali[at]gmail.com
- Amed Dive Center, Jl Pantai Timur 801, Amed (Hotel Uyah). This operation offers a full range of PADI courses, fun dives, diving and sailing trips. English, French and German speaking. You can contact them at this address: info[at]ameddivecenter.com
- Amed Scuba, Bunutan, is one of the bigger operations and offers diving tours all around Bali as well as local Amed-based dive-safaris. It offers courses in all PADI from Open Water to Divemaster. German, English and French speaking. Instructed by a German biologist. Contact them here: halloscuba[at]yahoo.com
- Baliku Dive Center, Banyuning, Amed (Baliku Dive Resort). This centre is a PADI and SSI dive shop that offers a full range of courses. It is managed by a Belgian and courses and dives are available in French, English, German and Indonesian. You can contact them here: info[at]amedbalidiving.com
- Deep Blue, is located in Tulamben and is Czech owned. This operation is probably the closest to the Liberty wreck which makes it an ideal base. Deep Blue also doubles as a hotel and has 8 rooms and a restaurant with large open-air grill. There are daily fun dives, dive courses right up to instructor (PADI, IANTD, CMAS, UDI, DAN), they also operate dive trips to Nusa Penida, Menjangan Island. Contact them: info[at]selangresort.com
Aside from tourism, the local people of Amed make their living from fishing and salt. The salt produced here is some of the best Indonesia has to offer and if you get the chance to purchase some, it would definitely make a great souvenir.
To get to Amed from Denpasar International airport will probably take you around 2 -2/5 hours by taxi. If you have booked a hotel ask them if they could pick you up. This isn’t always a guarantee as the location is rather far. From Lovina it will take you around 45 minutes along some of the best coastal road in Bali.
There isn’t an ATM in Amed so make sure you have enough cash. The nearest ATM is a 30 minute drive located in Amlapura.
Amed’s location on the east coast makes it a very different Bali. You won’t see much in terms of rainforest as the area is very arid. Most of the rain falls south of here, making it a great place for sun worshippers.
Amed is a great place for people wanting to escape the hustle and bustle of everyday life. It really is very low key here and you can get the feeling you are staying in a small village. There is just one road that runs along the coast and it is rarely used by any form of traffic. There are a few shops scattered along the main road and you will find all necessities like shampoo, toothpaste and the odd snack. What you won’t find sure supermarkets and clubs. This is what makes Amed so special; the tranquility of a traditional Balinese village and you will be welcomed very warmly by its people.
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