Free your adventure: falling in love with Canggu, Bali

Amazing food, expats galore and beaches that invite you to stay forever

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Travel more, worry less!

For as long as I can remember, Bali has always been on my radar as one of *those* iconic travel destinations around the world that can, and does, change lives.

A popular hub for tourists from Australia and New Zealand, being close by, it’s almost a travel mecca in this part of the world, attracting explorers, surfers, expats, and tourists looking for a good time in a chill place, a vibe Bali exudes in abundance.

At the risk of being a total travel cliché, I definitely have had my own fair share of Eat, Pray, Love moments from Bali – minus a fling with Javier Bardem! With my first journey there five years ago to go diving and have a holiday away from my constant holidays (LOL), Bali has safely held a place in my heart as a beautiful part of the world, even with the monkeys.

Stay away from monkeys.

bali travel insurance

Since moving to New Zealand, travel has been a big part of my life.

Back when I first visited Bali 5 years ago, I used to just either buy individual travel insurance policies for each trip if I was forced to, or better yet, not at all. Oh to be young and naive again!

But with experience comes knowledge and I’ve seen enough misfortunes and experienced plenty of my own too, to realized that not having travel insurance is just plain dumb, especially when so many things could go wrong that are completely out of control.

Bali is one of those places that while it’s filled with Aussies and Kiwis (cough cough, Kuta, I’m looking at you) and can easily feel like home, it still is another country and unpredictable to a certain degree. Also monkeys.

bali travel insurance

Just like packing a bathing suit, sunscreen and beautiful twirly dresses are a must for my trips to Bali, so is travel insurance.

I used to just buy individual policies for each trip that I was taking, but it was adding up so now I just buy an annual policy – and after shopping around, Southern Cross Travel Insurance (SCTI) is now my go-to provider for all things insurance related on all my travels around the world.

I was doing more and more “hardcore” trips that often required me to have travel insurance with a high evacuation coverage – this means if I have an accident in Antarctica where it’s SUPER expensive to get back to mainland for medical coverage or riding horses in Mongolia or even just hiking in the mountains in a place where, if anything happened, I would need to be medivac-ed out, I’m taken care of.

I LOVE saying yes to seemingly crazy new adventures and SCTI really gives me the freedom to explore the world with peace of mind.

bali travel insurance

While my last trip to Bali was all about diving and having a real holiday, it was marred by getting a serious case of Bali belly or food poisoning waylaying me for two days in Amed. Totally uninsured at the time, I was really lucky to be staying at a luxury hotel that took care of me until I could move again, and it didn’t really impact my trip too much. All I can say is thank god it wasn’t the day I was flying home – can you imagine? Wait, don’t.


This time around I was headed to the little expat hotspot of Canggu with my business partners to work for a week together. Cheaper for us to all meet in Bali, I don’t think any of us could have booked our flights faster.

bali travel insurance

But being the total clumsy person I am and bit of a magnet for misadventure, I’m more likely to trip and break an arm in Italy or get my bag stolen in Australia then have something major happen. I think. touch wood.

I can count on SCTI look after me whether I’m chasing penguins in South Georgia to scootering in Bali to shopping in Sydney, freeing up my anxiety so I can travel more and worry a lot less.

As a total worrywart and a person who has developed a lot of anxiety and stress as an adult, this is so important to me, and it’s worth every penny.

bali travel insurance

I was so excited to see how Bali had changed, after watching it explode on Instagram over the years, and I knew I was in for a treat.

It didn’t disappoint. Bali was DIVINE.

From what I remember, Canggu was just a bunch of rice paddies and a surf beach the last time I was there; now it’s transformed into a veritable hub of influencers, creators, surfers and expats, a chill and relaxed place where you can prop up your feet for a $9 massage, sip a coconut and afford to stay for a good long while.

bali travel insurance

And man, has the food scene stepped it up! The cafe and restaurant scene in Canggu (and next door in Seminyak) is just incredible.

I didn’t have time in my schedule for Bali Belly Round 2, and luck and lady hygiene was on my side and there was no bout of sickness by any of us, and we didn’t skimp out on eating all the things.

Here are some of my picks for best meals in Canggu many of them recommended by Irish expat Janet from Journalist on the Run who is based there:

  • Coffee and Coconuts
  • Betelnut Cafe
  • Lacalita Bar y Cocina
  • The Slow
  • Crate Cafe
  • Fat Mermaid
  • The Loft
  • The Shady Shack
  • Milk and Madu (Seminyak)
  • Kynd Community (Seminyak)

bali travel insurance

bali travel insurance

And wow, let me just say, Canggu has quickly moved to one of my new favorite places in the world, and I do not say that lightly. I could even live there for a stint, and I hope to one day.

It’s like Canggu is a little haven for travelers just like me. I’ve found my people!

A beautiful place filled with lovely people, right by the beach, heaps of big comfortable and modern cafes where you can work all day in drinking the most lovely juices, heaps of healthy and clean eating that’s affordable, yoga everywhere, fast wifi and lots of creative people traveling solo too. It’s my place!

bali travel insurance

I really fell in love with Canggu on this trip, and my partners and I have already booked trips back later this.

Having travel insurance with SCTI is vital for me to continue feeling safe and worry free as I travel the world and spend more time overseas in places like Bali. I can eat all the things, drive and ride on scooters, go to new places and try new things while feeling safe and secure.

Now where should we go next in Bali?

Spill! Do you have travel insurance when you go exploring? Have you been to Canggu or Bali before? Any crazy travel misadventures to share? Spill!

bali travel insurance

Images by Lauren Bath and Liz Carlson

Many thanks to SCTI for sponsoring this post – like always I’m keeping it real  – all opinions are my own, like you can expect less from me!

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26 Comments on “Free your adventure: falling in love with Canggu, Bali

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  1. Hi Liz!

    You have a beautiful blog here! I’m writing my own travel blog for a class project and your blog is giving me so many ideas! Bali is actually one of my destinations on my list to write about. I have never been, but I would love to go! And from what I can tell from your post, Bali is a bucket list must. You make Canggu sound like an affordable, piece of heaven that is safe for solo travelers.

  2. Liz, how was Bali with your peanut allergy? I’m ANA to peanuts and am always in awe of the unique and exciting places you travel to while managing that. Beautiful post and pictures, as always!

  3. All the food looks amazing, so lucky that you didn’t get Bali belly round two haha. To be honest I think I’d want my Bali/Eat, Pray, Love moments to include Javier Bardem but I’ve never actually been to Bali so that complicated things. I hadn’t heard of SCTI before but I’ll keep them in mind for when I do eventually get to beautiful Bail!

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