Everything you need to know about Canggu, Bali

When we opened our luxury women’s Bali retreats in Canggu, this lesser-known area of Bali was a relatively quiet beach side town. There were some cafes, day spas and a couple of little beach bars that dotted the shoreline where people could sit with a cold coconut and watch the sun go down over the water. Yet there wasn’t too much more. Wandering along the roads you would see luscious green rice fields and traditional rice farmers and plenty of Balinese children playing games in the streets and local street vendors selling Bakso and other Indonesian delights from theri little carts.

Fast forward a decade or so and Canggu has planted itself well and truly on the map!

It is now perhaps the must-visit location for anyone headed on a Bali vacation. Gone are the days of people heading to Kuta for cheap shopping, cold bintangs and impersonal hotels. The savvy visitor to Bali is after much more than that, and funnily enough, Canggu offers something for everyone.

The best thing about Canggu is that while it has developed quickly, it maintains its charm.

It is very much still a tropical beach side town with people in flip flops carrying books and sarongs under their arm as they walk or ride to the beach. There are still rice fields, Balinese families, temples and the beautiful essence of Balinese daily life.

However, there are also incredible cafes, world renowned restaurants, boutique shops, luxurious day spas, instagrammable beach clubs and five star resorts.

Our Bali retreat guests absolutely love exploring Canggu.

Our wonderful retreat location means guests can easily walk around, borrow one of the bicycles for that true ‘Eat Pray Love’ experience, or ask one of our private chauffeurs to show them the best sights. After running Canggu retreats for many years, we know this beautiful area better than anyone and also have a little black book of the best places off the beaten tourist track.

Canggu is on the south west coast of Bali, only 15 minutes or so from Seminyak. Canggu is nestled between Berawa, which is also a very funky area of Bali with plenty of great cafes, galleries, beach clubs and boutique stores and Pererenan, which is a stunning beach side town that is still relatively undeveloped with plenty of rice fields, long stretches of coastline and rustic charm. Our Canggu retreat is right in central Canggu, tucked down a very quiet and tranquil lane but within easy walking distance to shops, cafes and of course, all the best beaches.

Canggu is a simple drive from Bali’s international Denpasar airport. Depending on traffic, the drive is 1-2 hours. We love greeting our Canggu retreat guests with a fresh coco coconut, cold face towel, bottled water and healthy snacks for the private transfer back to retreat which is included in the retreat pricing. Drivers are very easy to come by both in Canggu and at the airport, so getting to Canggu is very easy.

Canggu really does offer something for everyone. With its incredible waves, surfers from all over the world are enamoured by the beautiful beaches and pristine conditions. Which is one of the many reasons it is the perfect place for a Canggu surf retreat!

Canggu is always well known as a place of wellness. There are a plethora of yoga studios, wellness cafes, day spas, alternative healers, crystal shops and wellness retreats. On our Canggu yoga retreat we love partnering with some of the best yoga studios so that guests can experience a wide array of the world-class yoga on offer in this beautiful town.

Canggu also appeals to couples and families with a wide array of accommodation options to suit all needs and budgets. Whilst Canggu originally attracted more surfers and backpackers, in recent years it has also become a very popular place for honeymooners, young families, solo travellers and people from all walks of life.

Canggu also has a very prominent ‘digital nomad’ scene with plenty of co-working facilities for those who are ‘living the dream’ and being able to work remotely from a tropical island (#lifegoals) Maybe your Canggu retreat will inspire a work/life change in you 😉


At Escape Haven, our Canggu retreats last for a full week, offering you plenty of opportunities to explore Canggu in your own terms. We love sharing with guests our top tips and must-visit places within this beautiful town. If you are planning a Canggu holiday or a Canggu retreat, these are places we absolutely recommend you visit. For our retreat guests, these places are in the ‘Bali Bible’ that each guest has in their private retreat suite.

There is something magical about the atmosphere when you head down to Echo Beach at sunset. The water is still filled with ecstasy surfers, expats are there walking their dogs along the shoreline. Travellers are soaking up the last of the sunshine for the day. There’s plenty of people scattered along the little beach bars either enjoying a cold coconut or cold beer depending on their choosing! The sun goes down right over the water at Echo beach and it is always a sight to experience and treasure.

You can absolutely just wander around the shops in Canggu and explore on your own terms. At our Canggu retreat we love escorting women via our private chauffeurs around the best shopping in the area. This means you can enjoy air conditioned comfort and of course, have somewhere to store your shopping purchases! Our boutique shopping tour includes homeware stores, art stores and beautiful boutique clothing, gift and jewellery stores. You will be delighted by the array of quality shopping in Canggu and wont return empty handed!

We love partnering with COMO Beach Club for our Canggu Pilates retreat and our Canggu Fitness retreat as they offer a beautiful, air conditioned, luxury gym and Pilates studio that our guests have access to for their retreat week. However you are also welcome to enjoy a meal at their beautiful beach front restaurant, or pay a small price to enjoy their luxurious and expensive pool area for a half or full day. Soak up the sunshine, eat amazing food and feel like a queen in this heavenly space.

Udara is a yoga studio and wellness space just northwest of Canggu. They have a very impressive rooftop yoga shala where you can enjoy sunset Aerial yoga classes! Watch the sun down down over the ocean from swinging in your silk aerial swing- this is definitely an experience you will remember!

Samadi is a beautiful eco-friendly wellness space with a yoga studio, health shop and wellness cafe. Our Canggu Yoga retreat guests have access to some of the classes at this lovely studio with a diverse timetable and excellent teachers on offer. Every Sunday Samadi opens to the public with a market that sells fresh produce, delicious food, eco-friendly wares, arts and crafts and jewellery. It is a lovely family-friendly atmosphere and a great spot to pick up some yummy treats or gifts.

La Brisa is a must-visit destination in and of itself. It is a very instagrammable restaurant right on the beach with lovely swimming pools, huge daybeds and various different areas that you can rent out to lounge, eat, swim and sunbathe for the day. On Sundays they also have a beautiful market, a little similar to Samadi, but with perhaps less produce and more food stalls, local clothing designers, body products and a focus on natural and local goods.

If you’re not market-ed out by now, Love Anchor is a fun marketplace area that opens most afternoons and evenings in the centre of Canggu. Our Canggu retreat guests love visiting here as it’s a great place to pick up some really lovely Balinese souvenirs. There are lots of bali-style homewares at good prices and a fun and friendly marketplace atmosphere.

There are so many terrific places to eat in Canggu, it can be hard to pick just one! However, dinner with an ocean view is certainly a must-do. See our list below of our favourite places to eat out in Canggu and pick one that sounds heavenly to you. On our Canggu retreat, all gourmet meals are included in the retreat, except for 2 meals that are enjoyed out as a group so guests can sample the delicious options and stunning restaurants on offer.

There’s nothing like cycling through the lush green rice fields as the sun rises ona new day. On our Canggu retreat we love offering this morning cycle every week and guests really enjoy seeing this quiet, tranquil and natural side of Canggu beyond what first may meet the eye. The cycle is very close to our Canggu retreat yet you will feel a world away, as though you have ventured back in time! Bikes are easy to rent if you want to experience this for yourself whilst in Canggu too.

If you have the chance to experience a traditional Balinese Ceremony in Canggu, do it. You’ll likely be able to find options through a tour operator. On our Canggu retreat, all guests have the chance to experience a real Balinese ceremony with our Priestess. This is an opportunity to really dive into Balinese culture and ritual and experience their ceremonies first hand. Not only will you feel uplifted and purified, you will remember this experience for many years to come.

There are SO many wonderful places to eat in Canggu and absolutely something for everyone! No matter whether you are vegan, keto, paleo, vegetarian, sugar free, gluten free or any other dietary requirement, Canggu is a hotspot for healthy eating as well as world-class global cuisine. We offer our Canggu retreat guests a few of our favourite places incase they wish to sample some of the options available whilst on retreat.

The chef’s passion for pickling, curing, fermenting and traditional techniques are all incorporated into the eclectic menu. Where ingredients will be sourced locally and organically where possible, and dishes low on ingredients but big on flavour.

Housed in a reconstructed 311-year-old temple with a terrace to a 180° ocean view, Ji serves the best Japanese contemporary cuisine and Asian inspired cocktails on the island!

A cute cafe to eat healthy vegan food and at the same time support a good cause as 100% of their profit goes to different charities. Give Cafe serves traditional Balinese food that is all plant-based and full of flavour.

Outstanding breakfast, beautifully-designed interior, and comfortable seating with a peaceful ambience. A perfect place for a sneaky late night cocktail or glass of wine if you’re looking to head out in Canggu.

A new kid on the block which offers mouth watering Japanese with an amazing beach sunset view. Highly recommended for delicious food and views!

Casual open air cafe serving inventive and mouth watering vegetarian dishes & sweet treats. Try the delicious vegan nachos, vegan burritos, hueg salads or vibrant smoothie bowls.

One of the original places in Canggu, this cool hip eater offers great western dishes and themed fun nights with live music on Sunday’s. A hipster’s paradise!

Great for delicious coffee & very traditional (and addictive!) cinnamon rolls and pastries. This cute and friendly cafe is just a short walk up the road from retreat- they open early if you’re looking for a sweet spot to grab an early cuppa and watch Bali life go by.

Motion Cafe is a well known local spot for the best keto/paleo meals, as well as more general fresh, healthy food. They have a huge menu and are well known for their paleo protein pancakes, protein shakes and keto desserts! A great pre or post gym haunt!

Another Canggu institution, Crate cafe started as a small hole-in-the-wall cafe in Canggu and grew to a bigger space. They serve up incredible, abundant breakfast, smoothie bowls, big salads and fresh coconuts. A great spot for a morning coffee and big brekkie to fuel you through the day!

Sitting at the heart of Canggu’s Batu Bolong beach, Skool offers a curated modern culinary experience set between a line of fire and the Indian Ocean. It is an intimate space designed to gather and share good times, food, drinks, and culture. The cuisine at Skool is pure and stripped back. On the modern menu, every item is touched by flames powered by natural wood and charcoal embers. This relatively new restaurant in Canggu has become a very popular dining experience for guests from all over the globe. This is a restaurant we love taking our guests to for one of the special dinners out in Canggu.

If you’re looking for pampering on your Bali holiday, look no further than Canggu. Sure, you can get an $8 Balinese massage down by the beach, but for a little more, you can sample some of the best spa treatments in Bali. On our Canggu retreat, guests have unlimited spa on their retreat packages. Yet if you’re coming to Canggu on a vacation, or if you’re on retreat and wish to sample some other great places, here’s a few of our favourites.

AMO spa invites you to indulge in an unbeatable selection of beauty and wellness treatments at their chic, multi-level spa in the heart of Canggu. Amo also offers a full range of hair treatments and also has hot and cold plunge pools and sauna.

Glo is located just up the road from our Bali retreat and is a popular one stop shop for all your beauty and hair needs whilst in Canggu! Glo is a contemporary and welcoming space offering an extensive selection of options including manicures, pedicures, waxing, eye lash and brow tints, eye lash perms and spray tans, massages and body treatments. These are all offered by a team of well-trained and service-savvy technicians.

This is the place to try their famous 24-carat facials and eye masks! It’s also the best waxing in town. Gold Dust is one of the original Canggu spas and has a cosy feel to it with great therapists and an amazing signature massage that also included hot stones.

Maria Curaru is a beautiful wellness oasis next north of Canggu that offers stunning nail art and nail rituals alongside relaxation, pampering and bliss. It starts with your hands and feet being bathed in hand-blended coconut milk and gently massaged with only the purest essential oils. Your experience at Maria Curau is personal and unique and you can sit back and relax with a herbal tea or cold kombucha as the artists and therapists do their work. From start to finish, you will feel their commitment to green beauty through a fully sensorial experience. Be guided through a non-toxic beauty journey with all products vegan, natural and cruelty free. On retreat, we love stocking the Maria Curau products to use for all manicures and pedicures.

Bali has long been known and loved as one of the most popular and abundant yoga mecas in the world. There really is nothing like unrolling your mat, taking a few deep breaths and inhaling the sweet smell of Balinese frangipani or delicate incense, taking in the beautiful Hindu statues of the yoga deities, and flowing through a practice with the warm tropical breeze surrounding you.

If you’re new to yoga, there really is no better introduction to the practice than experiencing it here in Bali. If you’re already a seasoned practitioner, or if you’ve dipped your toes into yoga before, you’re likely to develop a deep love affair with the practice! Just as many of our Bali yoga retreat guests do. Canggu has a plethora of great places to practice yoga. Here are some of our favourites below. Guests who join us on the Bali yoga retreat package also get to experience classes at several of these studios.

The Practice, a stunning bamboo studio located in Canggu, has become very well known as a leading institution in lineage-based Traditional Hatha classes and yoga education. The teachings offered at The Practice have been passed down from teacher to student over thousands of years. The Practice offers three primary class levels or options, called Moon, Sun and Fire. All classes follow the path of traditional Hatha Yoga and include meditation, pranayama and yoga asana. There are also Yoga Nidra, Restorative Yoga, Meditation and Breathwork classes on the schedule.This is a must-visit Bali yoga studio whilst you are in Canggu!

Samadi is another terrific Bali yoga studio that is based just up the road from our Bali retreat sanctuary in Canggu. They are well known for their excellent and diverse yoga classes and programs. Classes are offered daily and include Vinyasa Flow, Hatha, Power Yoga, Mandala Flow, Restorative, Yin and also some unique classes such as yoga for surfers, fly high yoga and athletic yoga. Sound Healing Ceremonies, Breathwork, Movement Dance and a Chanting Circle are part of the weekly program too.

Desa Seni is a beautiful Bali Yoga Studio that has an open air yoga shala immersed in stunning tropical gardens. Also located in Canggu not too far from our Bali yoga retreat, Desa Seni has a small yet dedicated and passionate teaching staff that leads classes in Vinyasa, Master Class, Hatha, Restorative, Yin, Alignment & Adjustment and Meditation. They also host a variety of teacher trainings, continuing education series, workshops, retreats and community events.

Located in a quiet street in Canggu close to the beach, Serenity Yoga is a tropical oasis with several studios located around its green leafy grounds. This Bali yoga studio offers a great variety of options within its jam-packed yoga schedule with classes ranging from Power and Aerial Yoga to Sunset Flow, Yin and Hatha. There is also an extensive workshop schedule with local and guest teachers offering a deep dive into everything from breathwork to self-love to life-coaching to dance, kirtan and more.

Udara Bali is a beautiful beach-front healing yoga resort located just north west of Canggu and is nestled between the ocean, rice fields and ancient temples. Udara Features four beautiful yoga shalas, three with incredible ocean views. Daily classes on offer include Vinyasa, Hatha, Aerial, Restorative and many more. The highlight is certainly the aerial yoga classes where you can practice on colourful yoga swings whilst looking out over the ocean. This is a class not to miss!

No trip to Canggu is complete without a little retail therapy! At our Canggu retreat guests are welcome to explore the shops on their own, or enjoy a boutique shopping tour. If you’re on foot and sourcing out some high quality stores and goodies to take back home, don;’t miss some of our must-visit recommendations here-

High end vintage inspired premium garments for men and women. Hand printed silk shorts and cover ups. As well as clothing it has some gorgeous unique jewellery pieces also.

Asmara is a family owned and operated business aiming to bring you a range of clothing in printed and plain fabrics with a bohemian and eclectic vibe. Complimenting the range of clothing are a selection of natural bags, accessories and leather goods. All products are produced and sourced in Indonesia to support the local economy and artisans.

A well known Brazilian clothing label, based in Bali. Inspired by a handmade, summer and vintage universe, for all women. Certainly a place to splash on some beautiful new clothes.

Haze & Glory’s sister store. Cool and funky designs and beautiful yoga and active wear that is both eye catching and versatile.

A collection of chic, day to night resort wear makes this label the perfect way to add some glamour to your Bali style. Simple, yet beautifully embellished fabrics and designs. The collection includes to-die-for leather bags and shoes.

Bikinis Bikinis Bikinis! Wanderlust Swim was conceptualised with the beauty of exotic destinations. Their thoughtful yet simple swimwear offer the perfect seaside staple that you can forever treasure.

All clothes are hand made by local artisans in Bali and other Indonesian islands with a lot of love. Basics are meant to last and be the masterpiece of your everyday wardrobe. Who doesn’t own a white basic tee or a good pair of denim they cherish in their wardrobe?!

Gold Dust is your go-to for lovely resort wear with colourful dresses and flowing clothes perfect for that Bali vibe. They also offer jewellery and a great range of spa products.

Bungalow Living Home Store, Bungalow Living Gallery, and Giovanna Photography & Coffee House are located in the heart of Berawa Canggu. The Homewares store is a favourite with both locals and return visitors- a mecca for interiors and photography that are classy and quintessentially Bali. This is the perfect place to pick up something special to take back home with you- from an extensive assortment of beautiful homewares to bags, quilts, furniture, journals and more. Many of the items in the retreat suites are sourced from here.

There’s no better way to experience the best of Bali than with a Canggu retreat. Here, you get the chance to enjoy the character and charm of traditional Bali, alongside all of the great new additions to this beautiful beach side town that make it a hotspot for tourists and travellers from all over the world. Our Canggu retreat allows you to explore Canggu on your own terms with everything in easy walking distance. Or, our chauffeurs are also on hand to whisk you around the shops, spas, cafes and night hot spots to make sure you don’t miss anything while youre here!

Of course, you may simply like to enjoy all of the beautiful facilities at our Canggu retreat and not venture to far afield, and thats perfectly ok too. You will certainly get a beautiful taste of Canggu simply by being on retreat in our lush tropical oasis and with our friend Balinese team to support you every step of the way. If you’d liek to join us for Canggu yoga retreat, Canggu surf retreat, Canggu healing retreat, Canggu detox retreat or Canggu wellness retreat, simply contact us here. We would love to welcome you and introduce you to this beautiful slice of paradise that we call home.

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