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10 of the Best Villas in Seseh-Tanah Lot, Bali

A few kilometres to the north west of Canggu, a towering banyan—one of the ‘elders’ of the tree kingdom—heralds the turning to Seseh, a traditional beachside village approached via an avenue of coconut palms.

Seseh and the tiny neighbouring villages of Sogsogan and Cemagi still retain the customs and culture of old Bali. Here, you will see farmers in conical hats riding rusty old upright bicycles, as well as frequent, colourful processions to Seseh’s large beachside temple. There are no international restaurants here, but you might just see a barong (a high-spirited, benevolent beast representing the power of good; danced by two men inside an ornate costume) dancing on the street. The good news, for folks who want to immerse themselves in the customs and culture of old Bali, is that the villagers encourage and welcome congenial visitors. Although there are now many private rental villas in these three villages, they have seamlessly integrated without detracting from the simplicity and charm of the location. This is an ideal destination for those who want to get lost in the beauty of the countryside, and for those who want to engage with the local people and gain privileged insights into the Balinese Hindu lifestyle.

A little further up the coast is Tanah Lot, famous for its dramatic and venerated sea temple, which is perched on a craggy wave-lashed rock at the edge of the glistening black shoreline. It is probably the most photographed sight in Bali, especially in the late afternoon when its splendid profile is silhouetted against the setting sun. The Tanah Lot locale is also home to a number of private villas due to presence of the 18-hole, 72-par, championship-standard Nirwana Bali Golf Club, which is frequently voted the number one golf course in Asia. This is, however, still a far-flung area with few facilities other than the souvenir stalls and simple eateries within the temple grounds, and three international restaurants within Pan Pacific Nirwana Bali Resort.


Villa Semarapura

Villa Semarapura

Indonesia  »  Bali  »  Seseh-Tanah Lot

Although there’s no doubt it's a visually striking villa, Semarapura’s luxurious functionality seemed to unravel itself slowly so that the more we experienced, the more it drew us in. As we relaxed in one of the sea-view balés, swum in our (huge) private pool, sipped drinks from our own bar (sat on one of the ‘wet seats’ at sunset – wow!), enjoyed the pampering of the friendly and personable (17-strong) staff team and the comforts of our well-facilitated bedroom, we realised what a great villa it was as it appeared to cater not only excellently for group arrangements but also individuals within a group too; everything has been thought of and there are plenty of private places as well as sociable spots. The pool deck and its adjoining media room was very congenial; you can either watch a movie here ‘en famille’ or select one from the library to watch in your own room ‘à deux’, as every bedroom has a TV. Note that the bedroom TVs can only play DVDs and are not connected to cable channels. It’s no wonder that the villa is a very popular place for weddings and other special events; not only is the location idyllic, but the experience and hotel-like approach of the staff clearly shows through too. The food was good at the villa and the kitchen a delight; if we had mustered up the energy to cook for ourselves, it would have been plain sailing as the kitchen was equipped with everything that we might have needed. As it was, the villa’s suggestion menu listed a range of dishes and we only had to pay for the cost of the ingredients (plus 20% handling fee which is subject to service charge and government tax) so it was much more fun to sit back with a cocktail from the bar until long after sunset whilst someone else rustled up something delicious to eat. The dining room was atmospheric; however it could do with a ceiling fan as well as the air conditioning option so you can comfortably have all the doors open. The villa’s out-of-the-way location could be a good or bad thing depending upon your preference, however we liked the unspoilt coastline and thought that the fact that the villa had its own car (to sweep us into Seminyak for example) really made up for this. For the active, there’s also a shared tennis court and a rowing machine.
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Villa Belong Dua

Villa Belong Dua

Indonesia  »  Bali  »  Seseh-Tanah Lot

For a two-bedroom villa, Belong Dua delighted us with its generosity of space. The sitting room is huge and there’s a home theatre as well (a surprise, as this is usually reserved for at least a three-bedder). The garden and pool are also unusually large; the owners could have easily snuck one more bedroom pavilion in, but we are so happy they didn’t because it has left a wonderfully open space with wide sky views fringed by coconut palms and towering mature trees.     

This is a real Bali experience, well away from the fashionable see-and-be-seen café culture of downtown Bali, but still with four-poster beds and gorgeous outdoor bathrooms to rival any of the big boys. When swimming in the pool, make sure you look up at the reflection in the big mirror that sits on the living room wall: the illusion doubles the size of the villa’s garden. And when have you ever seen yourself swimming before!? Sunsets on the beach are a short stroll away and do jump on one of the villa’s bicycles and head off out among the rice fields to explore the real Bali even further. The area is relatively flat and shady and the local people will never let you get lost.

 
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Taman Ahimsa

Taman Ahimsa

Indonesia  »  Bali  »  Seseh-Tanah Lot

If you’re looking for nightlife and shopping, Taman Ahimsa is probably not the villa for you, but if you want to retreat from the world, awaken your soul, practice yoga and meditation, eat healthy food and experience therapeutic massages, this transformative place will inspire you more than you ever imagined possible. Even if you’re not really into the spiritual concept, and you don’t understand much about chakras, mandala thankas, crystals and healing circles, you will still appreciate the beautiful close-to-nature setting, the sight and sound of the sea, the romantic architecture and the peaceful ambiance.

Although the villa promotes the holistic concept, you don’t have to be on a spiritual retreat to come here; but who knows, you might just be inspired to experience something new. The gardens and interiors are fun to explore too, in every room we found a traditional Balinese instrument, an extraordinary crystal or an antique, or a funky lamp or table. Floors and doors are made from old teak, ironwood and two-toned tamarind wood, which has been recycled from boats and old buildings. Please note the villa has a no smoking policy.

Taman Ahimsa is managed by Fivelements, a company that specialises in holistic healing retreats, centred at Puri Ahimsa, 20km away. For a truly amazing experience arrange for the villa’s driver to take you to Fivelements Puri Ahimsa for a holistic treatment performed by an authentic Balinese healer.
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Taman Ahimsa

Taman Ahimsa

Indonesia  »  Bali  »  Seseh-Tanah Lot

If you’re looking for nightlife and shopping, Taman Ahimsa is probably not the villa for you, but if you want to retreat from the world, awaken your soul, practice yoga and meditation, eat healthy food and experience therapeutic massages, this transformative place will inspire you more than you ever imagined possible. Even if you’re not really into the spiritual concept, and you don’t understand much about chakras, mandala thankas, crystals and healing circles, you will still appreciate the beautiful close-to-nature setting, the sight and sound of the sea, the romantic architecture and the peaceful ambiance.

Although the villa promotes the holistic concept, you don’t have to be on a spiritual retreat to come here; but who knows, you might just be inspired to experience something new. The gardens and interiors are fun to explore too, in every room we found a traditional Balinese instrument, an extraordinary crystal or an antique, or a funky lamp or table. Floors and doors are made from old teak, ironwood and two-toned tamarind wood, which has been recycled from boats and old buildings. Please note the villa has a no smoking policy.

Taman Ahimsa is managed by Fivelements, a company that specialises in holistic healing retreats, centred at Puri Ahimsa, 20km away. For a truly amazing experience arrange for the villa’s driver to take you to Fivelements Puri Ahimsa for a holistic treatment performed by an authentic Balinese healer.
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Taman Ahimsa

Taman Ahimsa

Indonesia  »  Bali  »  Seseh-Tanah Lot

If you’re looking for nightlife and shopping, Taman Ahimsa is probably not the villa for you, but if you want to retreat from the world, awaken your soul, practice yoga and meditation, eat healthy food and experience therapeutic massages, this transformative place will inspire you more than you ever imagined possible. Even if you’re not really into the spiritual concept, and you don’t understand much about chakras, mandala thankas, crystals and healing circles, you will still appreciate the beautiful close-to-nature setting, the sight and sound of the sea, the romantic architecture and the peaceful ambiance.

Although the villa promotes the holistic concept, you don’t have to be on a spiritual retreat to come here; but who knows, you might just be inspired to experience something new. The gardens and interiors are fun to explore too, in every room we found a traditional Balinese instrument, an extraordinary crystal or an antique, or a funky lamp or table. Floors and doors are made from old teak, ironwood and two-toned tamarind wood, which has been recycled from boats and old buildings. Please note the villa has a no smoking policy.

Taman Ahimsa is managed by Fivelements, a company that specialises in holistic healing retreats, centred at Puri Ahimsa, 20km away. For a truly amazing experience arrange for the villa’s driver to take you to Fivelements Puri Ahimsa for a holistic treatment performed by an authentic Balinese healer.
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Taman Ahimsa

Taman Ahimsa

Indonesia  »  Bali  »  Seseh-Tanah Lot

If you’re looking for nightlife and shopping, Taman Ahimsa is probably not the villa for you, but if you want to retreat from the world, awaken your soul, practice yoga and meditation, eat healthy food and experience therapeutic massages, this transformative place will inspire you more than you ever imagined possible. Even if you’re not really into the spiritual concept, and you don’t understand much about chakras, mandala thankas, crystals and healing circles, you will still appreciate the beautiful close-to-nature setting, the sight and sound of the sea, the romantic architecture and the peaceful ambiance.

Although the villa promotes the holistic concept, you don’t have to be on a spiritual retreat to come here; but who knows, you might just be inspired to experience something new. The gardens and interiors are fun to explore too, in every room we found a traditional Balinese instrument, an extraordinary crystal or an antique, or a funky lamp or table. Floors and doors are made from old teak, ironwood and two-toned tamarind wood, which has been recycled from boats and old buildings. Please note the villa has a no smoking policy.

Taman Ahimsa is managed by Fivelements, a company that specialises in holistic healing retreats, centred at Puri Ahimsa, 20km away. For a truly amazing experience arrange for the villa’s driver to take you to Fivelements Puri Ahimsa for a holistic treatment performed by an authentic Balinese healer.
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Villa Champuhan

Villa Champuhan

Indonesia  »  Bali  »  Seseh-Tanah Lot

There is nothing like the hum of the rainforest and the rush of flowing water to lull you into a state of utter serenity, and our stay at Villa Champuhan left us glowing with wellbeing. We loved the raw beauty of the tropical setting, enjoyed from the comfort of a modern, thoughtfully designed living space; taking a rain shower on the private deck above the river in the first master bedroom was sheer bliss! During the day the sliding glass doors were wide open, creating a sense of open-plan living, but were conveniently shut at night time to keep out any lingering tropical bugs. The villa was so big that it was like having a mini resort all to ourselves, and our explorations revealed plenty of spaces to nestle in privacy or mingle in comfort. Staff seemed a little shy, (the villa had only just opened when we visited in February 2012), but the warmth and kindness we experienced was genuine and the service discreet, just the way we like it! On site manager, Gun,proved to be a wealth of knowledge on the area, while Dewi cooked us up a great Balinese curry. Lazy afternoons filled with flittering butterflies were spent lounging in the sun-drenched pool overlooking the river – which was so wide that we never felt encroached upon by the surrounding rainforest. Huge daybeds and couches provided ample comfort, and even the dining chairs were soft and plump. Lounging aside there was lots to keep us busy, with river banks and gardens to discover, (some of the gardens slope steeply to the river, so young children will need to be kept an eye on) and the charms of rural Bali on our doorstep. The villa was such a peaceful sanctuary that we didn’t feel overly compelled to leave, but we liked having a complimentary driver on hand, just in case.
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Villa Champuhan

Villa Champuhan

Indonesia  »  Bali  »  Seseh-Tanah Lot

There is nothing like the hum of the rainforest and the rush of flowing water to lull you into a state of utter serenity, and our stay at Villa Champuhan left us glowing with wellbeing. We loved the raw beauty of the tropical setting, enjoyed from the comfort of a modern, thoughtfully designed living space; taking a rain shower on the private deck above the river in the first master bedroom was sheer bliss! During the day the sliding glass doors were wide open, creating a sense of open-plan living, but were conveniently shut at night time to keep out any lingering tropical bugs. The villa was so big that it was like having a mini resort all to ourselves, and our explorations revealed plenty of spaces to nestle in privacy or mingle in comfort. Staff seemed a little shy, (the villa had only just opened when we visited in February 2012), but the warmth and kindness we experienced was genuine and the service discreet, just the way we like it! On site manager, Gun,proved to be a wealth of knowledge on the area, while Dewi cooked us up a great Balinese curry. Lazy afternoons filled with flittering butterflies were spent lounging in the sun-drenched pool overlooking the river – which was so wide that we never felt encroached upon by the surrounding rainforest. Huge daybeds and couches provided ample comfort, and even the dining chairs were soft and plump. Lounging aside there was lots to keep us busy, with river banks and gardens to discover, (some of the gardens slope steeply to the river, so young children will need to be kept an eye on) and the charms of rural Bali on our doorstep. The villa was such a peaceful sanctuary that we didn’t feel overly compelled to leave, but we liked having a complimentary driver on hand, just in case.
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Villa Champuhan

Villa Champuhan

Indonesia  »  Bali  »  Seseh-Tanah Lot

There is nothing like the hum of the rainforest and the rush of flowing water to lull you into a state of utter serenity, and our stay at Villa Champuhan left us glowing with wellbeing. We loved the raw beauty of the tropical setting, enjoyed from the comfort of a modern, thoughtfully designed living space; taking a rain shower on the private deck above the river in the first master bedroom was sheer bliss! During the day the sliding glass doors were wide open, creating a sense of open-plan living, but were conveniently shut at night time to keep out any lingering tropical bugs. The villa was so big that it was like having a mini resort all to ourselves, and our explorations revealed plenty of spaces to nestle in privacy or mingle in comfort. Staff seemed a little shy, (the villa had only just opened when we visited in February 2012), but the warmth and kindness we experienced was genuine and the service discreet, just the way we like it! On site manager, Gun,proved to be a wealth of knowledge on the area, while Dewi cooked us up a great Balinese curry. Lazy afternoons filled with flittering butterflies were spent lounging in the sun-drenched pool overlooking the river – which was so wide that we never felt encroached upon by the surrounding rainforest. Huge daybeds and couches provided ample comfort, and even the dining chairs were soft and plump. Lounging aside there was lots to keep us busy, with river banks and gardens to discover, (some of the gardens slope steeply to the river, so young children will need to be kept an eye on) and the charms of rural Bali on our doorstep. The villa was such a peaceful sanctuary that we didn’t feel overly compelled to leave, but we liked having a complimentary driver on hand, just in case.
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Villa Maridadi

Villa Maridadi

Indonesia  »  Bali  »  Seseh-Tanah Lot

It’s hard to imagine a more perfect villa for families with older children, groups of friends or business partners, plenty of space and opportunity to enjoy meals and shared social times whilst being able to retreat to a terrace or garden daybed to read a book or enjoy a massage. You won’t be falling over each other on this manicured estate. Maridadi is also a spectacular backdrop for weddings, dinner parties, barbecues or sunset cocktails. Highly recommended is an evening cultural dance and music performance arranged by the villa staff, who can also prepare the famous Balinese Babi Guling (roast suckling pig) to make it an authentic Bali evening.

We particularly enjoyed long beach walks with ever-changing views – from wonderful villages with traditional outrigger fishing boats to stunning rice terraces, surfers and ceremonies. There is nothing nicer than returning from a long walk or bike ride to a pre-arranged massage or treatment selected from a menu at the villa (extra charge). Children of all ages invariably end up turning the front lawn into a football, rugby or cricket pitch and will find a variety of picnic spots, like the wooden rice barn, to add to their holiday fun.

The villa is a little off the beaten track with the nearest restaurants and shops 12 -14km away however with such a varied and expertly executed menu, and staff who will venture forth to purchase anything you wish for, we found this was of little consequence. If you do want to get out and about, the villa comes with a car and driver (petrol is charged).

When you have morning views over rice terraces and volcanoes, sunsets over sea temples and breaking surf, sublime comfort, superb cuisine and pampering staff there’s not much else to wish for.

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