This Secluded, Lesser-Known Island Will Feel Like A Vacation From Your Bali Vacation

Overtourism has become an issue for many destinations around the globe. The influx of visitors to popular places tends to drive prices up, muddle out local cultures to appease Western travelers, and, oftentimes, destroy ecosystems. There can be a fine line between wanting to explore the world and being a responsible tourist. One place that has undoubtedly been affected by overtourism is Bali. Because of this, many people have been looking for a dazzling Bali dupe destination. While Bali still holds a certain level of charm, it's certainly not the Bali it once was. 

For a nearby Indonesian destination that will feel like a vacation from your Bali vacation, head to Nusa Lembongan. Just a quick 30- to 40-minute boat ride away, Nusa Lembongan is one of the three Nusa Islands; the others are Nusa Penida and Nusa Ceningan. Nusa Lembongan hasn't quite gotten the tourism influx that nearby Bali and Nusa Penida have, making it a perfect addition to any Bali trip for a little off-the-beaten-path exploration.

What to do in Nusa Lembongan

Providing natural beauty all around, most of Nusa Lembongan's top activities revolve around taking in the serene setting of the island. Snorkeling and scuba diving are simply top-notch here. When exploring the underwater world of Nusa Lembongan, expect to see pufferfish, manta rays, lionfish, the beloved sea turtle, and even the occasional moray eel or stingray. Kayaking through mangroves is another popular activity in Nusa Lembongan. You can also opt to explore them via standup paddle boards.  

Bali might be known as one of the best places to watch the sunset, but Nusa Lembongan is no weak contender. To catch a sunset like you've never seen before, head to Devil's Tears, known for its rigid coastline and intense waves that splash up along the rocks. If you're a real adrenaline junkie, this is a great spot to cliff dive into the water. What's especially lovely about Nusa Lembongan is that it can act as a quiet home base for visiting other popular nearby islands. Nusa Penida, one of Indonesia's most Instagrammable spots, is an easy day trip from Nusa Lembongan. 

How much time is needed

Nusa Lembongan can be done in just a few days, or you can take your time and stay a while. It depends on your travel schedule and your flexibility. It's highly recommended to explore all three Nusa islands if you're determined, so you have two options. You can either base yourself on one of the islands, like Nusa Lembongan and take day trips to the respective Nusa Penida and Nusa Ceningan. This means less packing up and moving for you and generally less transport on your end. 

Your other option is to spend a few days in each of the Nusa islands. For Nusa Lembongan, you'll want to spend a minimum of three days here to get the best feel of what the island offers. If you're going to stay in Bali, you can also take a day trip to Nusa Lembongan. Many tours combine Nusa Lembongan and Nusa Penida, allowing you to see both islands simultaneously.