Check why this hidden village is so captivating for the tourists from all over the world...
Diving – Amed has one of the best diving spots on Bali. That is why while you walk along the street (there's only one street ;) you'll find diving centres every 50-100m. Prices vary so it's good to shop around. For some reason most of the shops give you prices in Euro (which is actually quite irritating if you're not from a country that uses this currency). Those shops tend to be more pricey as well. Usually they want around 60 euro (~920 000 IDR) for 2 dives. But if you look around you can find a place with diving for around 700 000 IDR (~50 dollars).
There are 3 main diving spots in here:
1. Liberty Wreck in Tulamben - it's quite shallow and it's completely broken, so you don't need wreck diving specialisation to dive there. This is also the most crowded diving spot.
2. Japanese Wreck – it's a small ship submerged at the depth around 5-8m. This is a shore dive. Deeper you can see corals and pygmy seahorses. (also a frog-fish if you're lucky). It's a bit tricky dive because the current is pushing you up.
3. Jemeluk Bay – could be either shore or boat dive. There are a few statues submerged in here. If you pass them you'll get to the coral wall. You can see a lot of interesting fish (stingrays, seahorses, lionfish, stonefish, scorpionfish and devil-fish). Well... basically anything that is venomous and can sting you – you'll find it here.
Gear rental could be anything between 25 000/ day (at my homestay – Bubu Racok) to around 50000 IDR. Some diving centres offer to their clients free snorkelling gear rental if you've dived with them.
Massage – it's a perfect way to end the day full of adventures. Balinese massage is very relaxing. They do it literally from head to toe (including even hands and tummy). One hour costs 70-80 000 IDR (roughly 5$). There are a few massage shops in Amed but if you ask at your hotel it's probable that they can organize it in your room.
Well... Huston we have a problem. Unfortunately going to Amed on budget (read by public transport) might be a bit of a challenge. There is no direct bus. You can take a bus to Culik (6km from Amed) from Amlapura or Singaraja and than find a taxi or ojiek (motorcycle). It's the cheapest version but most complicated. Most people get to Amed by a shuttle bus (usually from Lovina, Ubud or Kuta). It costs 150-250 000 IDR (~12-19$) depending on the distance and the company. Problem is that in the low season (November-March) it might be difficult to find a shuttle bus going to Amed (they run with minimum 2-4 passengers). As a last resort (or if you have extra penny to spend) you can hire a car. From Kuta it would be around 500 000 IDR (~38$). For a car from Lovina I paied 400 000 IDR. Advantage of this kind of transport is that it picks you up at your hotel or airport and drops you exactly at the front door of your new place. If you travel with friends it might end up cheaper than a shuttle bus.
Most of the accommodation in the area is in a form of a homestay or bungalows. Prices start from 75000 IDR for a bed in a hotel up to.... well I don't think there's an upper limit. There are a few spa villas in the are for those looking for luxury. In general I recommend staying in any property at the beach (since snorkelling is really world class straight from the beach it's nice if you don't have to walk far to do it). It also isn't really necessary to have an AC. Amed is not as hot as the rest of Bali so if you travel on budget a fan is plenty enough.
Personally I stayed at Bubu Racok Homestay and absolutely loved it. It's not the cheapest option there is but I wanted to spoil myself. Property is at the beach, has spacious rooms with terraces (so comfy that I read 3 books in there ;), AC, hot shower and a fridge. Prices start from 275 000 IDR but if you book directly through email (email@example.com) it's possible that you'll get small discount (since they won't have to pay commission to Booking.com). Best thing about the place however was the family running it. If you're interested in learning something about the Balinese culture there's the place to go. Wayan an Anna can tell you loads of stories. If you're lucky you could be invited by the family to go with them for a Hindu ceremony. It's an experience you won't get at the hotel so I think that once is priceless.
There are a lot of restaurants on the beach. While they're providing nice view there tend to be more expensive as well. Rule of thumb is the closer to the beach and to Jemeluk Bay the more expensive. The cheapest warungs I've found were Warung Meker, Warung Amed and Warung Osin. In that last one try dish called Ayam Nienas – chicken with pineapple in a cinnamon souse – fabulous.
1. Sunburns – the Sun on Bali is vicious. I mean it. I went to snorkel in Jemeluk Bay on a very cloudy day. There was no Sun and I still got sunburned. For that very reason ALWAYS put a sunscreen and at least a T-shirt if you go snorkelling/kayaking. Believe me – you'll thank me for that advise.
2. Animals – reef is very shallow so it's totaly possible to step on something that stings (stingray, devil-fish, scorpionfish, lionfish or stonefish). If you're going in to water wear aquashoes or fins. Jellyfish are rare but they appear from time to time so watch where you're swimming.