Ketewel villas in Bali, Indonesia

Surrounded by terraced rice fields, tobacco plantations and banana groves, the sprawling fishing community of Ketewel presents a picture-perfect version of Bali. Comprising of a string of coastal villages, the area boasts awe-inspiring views across the ocean towards the beaches of Sanur and Nusa Dua, the islands of Lembongan, Ceningan and Penida, as well as the stunning mountains of East Bali.

Despite its outstanding natural beauty and excellent location a mere 40-minute drive from the airport, Ketewel still attracts relatively few visitors and provides a peaceful respite from the hustle and bustle of some of the nearby beach towns.

There are plenty of things to do in Ketewel and its neighbouring areas. The best way to experience its rural charm is by walking or cycling along the many quiet rural roads and rice-field walkways. Ketewel’s beaches, with their glistening black-volcanic sands and offshore reefs are world-renowned for their excellent surf breaks.

A holiday in Ketewel should definitely involve a visit to the Bali Zoo and/or the nearby Bali Bird Park. Both are a short drive away and offer a great day out for the whole family. For lovers of art, crafts and culture, Ketewel is only half an hour away from the mountain town of Ubud, with its excellent markets and royal palace.

While there are a number of local 'warungs' (eateries) to choose from in Ketewel, you’ll find a great variety of restaurants and cafés just down the road in Sanur – a popular and laid-back beach town a mere twenty-minute drive away.

If you’re a little more adventurous and don’t mind getting wet, you could also hire a guide and explore Beji Guwang’s spectacular hidden canyon in nearby Sukawati – an incredible experience which involves bouldering, climbing and wading through waist-high waters.

Exotic, peaceful and untouched – Ketewel’s rural charm offers a glimpse of Bali at its very best.

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Villas in Indonesia by region

Bali, Lombok
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Villa Samadhana

Villa Samadhana

Indonesia » Bali » East Coast » Ketewel

The first thing we noticed on entering Villa Samadhana was the wide open space, rarely seen these days in the more popular tourist centres of Bali. The kids ran a good 70m sprint from the entrance up to the living area, across manicured lawns and past flowering trees. Being a family of four, we had our choice of three separate sleeping pavilions but, as our youngest still wakes in the night, we opted for the master suite so we could be close together. With a king-size bed in the sleeping chamber and upholstered couches in the adjoining sitting room, the kids were excited about sleeping in an unconventional, yet comfortable space – especially with access to their own 32-inch flat-screen television.

The owners obviously love to spend quality family time here and the poolside pavilion is a well thought out covered area that provides unlimited opportunities for action, relaxation and play for the entire group. With a 25m lap pool, generously sized shallow area for toddlers, inflatable pool toys and four umbrella-shaded sun loungers, this was our ‘go to’ spot each day after breakfast.

The butler and his attendants soon realised that our small, low maintenance group didn’t require them at our beck and call all day and discretely left us to our own devices until we needed them. However, the villa’s extensive amenities and big team of full time staff are perfect for large groups and special events such as weddings. And chef Wayan is a magician in the kitchen. He and his team took care of the grocery shopping before our arrival, based on our selections from the vast menu emailed to us. As a first night surprise for the kids we’d ordered ice cream sundaes and banana splits - the perfect treat before watching a family movie in the air-conditioned media room.

The Pabean Beach area serves up a refreshing slice of unhurried Balinese life. Our daily strolls to the beach provided glimpses of an authentic village lifestyle: local children laughing and playing on the glittering, black-sand beach, elderly men chatting beneath their shady roadside shelters and ibu (mothers) skilfully wielding long, skinny sticks to knock down frangipani blossoms for daily prayer offerings.

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The Ylang Ylang

The Ylang Ylang

Indonesia » Bali » East Coast » Ketewel

Initially, The Ylang Ylang can come across as quite daunting, especially the atrium, but it doesn't take long to settle in and feel comfortably at home. The staff are incredibly welcoming and gracious; some of them have been working here for nine years. The black and gold theme will not be to everyone’s taste – it is a bit glitzy – and we never did figure out what the blue lighting under the beds was all about!

Given its seafront location and the salt water environment maintenance is a continual battle and, in places, the villa is definitely showing its age. Some fittings may not work and some of the huge doors maybe stiff – it shouldn’t affect your enjoyment of Villa Ylang Ylang though, and staff are on hand if you need help with anything. Some of the bathrooms feel a little dated but they function just fine.
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From $670 ++ Special 4br Rate

Bedrooms 6

Sleeps 8

Our
Rating 7.5
Guest Rating 8.9

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The Ylang Ylang

The Ylang Ylang

Indonesia » Bali » East Coast » Ketewel

Initially, The Ylang Ylang can come across as quite daunting, especially the atrium, but it doesn't take long to settle in and feel comfortably at home. The staff are incredibly welcoming and gracious; some of them have been working here for nine years. The black and gold theme will not be to everyone’s taste – it is a bit glitzy – and we never did figure out what the blue lighting under the beds was all about!

Given its seafront location and the salt water environment maintenance is a continual battle and, in places, the villa is definitely showing its age. Some fittings may not work and some of the huge doors maybe stiff – it shouldn’t affect your enjoyment of Villa Ylang Ylang though, and staff are on hand if you need help with anything. Some of the bathrooms feel a little dated but they function just fine.
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