I have always fancied the notion of “glamping” – camping in a glamorous 5-star tent. From the moment I arrived at Menjangan Dynasty Resort in the far west of Bali, I was not disappointed. A team of enthusiastic safari gear clad “bush dwellers” greeted me, decked out in pith helmets. I was taken by safari buggy to my tent. On the way, we passed several tents, each with a private balcony and separated from the others. So this was glamping. Nature, privacy, simplicity – pretty good so far.
My safari driver opened our tent with an electronic room key. I was introduced to the “do not disturb” system – a sign with green on one side and red on the other hanging on a rope at the front of my tent. I soon discovered that these guys had thought of everything! I could not have chosen a better place to celebrate my wedding anniversary, and experience the world of “glamping”.
Swimming in the divine crystal-clear waters overlooking the West Bali National Park became a daily “must-do” and our “romantic couples dinner package” on the sand in a “love tent” was fabulous. We were the only couple on the beach, in our own little world, with the stars above us and the waves lapping close by. Fine dining and wine, in bare feet – a great combination!
The spa was also heavenly, with spectacular views out over the bay to a volcano on the distant island of Java. Another highlight was the sunrise yoga class in the most dramatic yoga setting I have ever experienced. Being guided through the sun salutation at the rim of the infinity pool with the volcano as a backdrop made it a yoga class I will never forget.
Evidence of sound eco practices was everywhere to be seen. The water canisters in the room and refill stations located all over the resort were a big plus for me, as someone who always travels clutching a water bottle. How refreshing to be at a resort that encourages a low plastic footprint. I found out that the staff even go to the nearby islands on a regular basis to pick up rubbish. I wish more resorts would adopt such responsible practices, so we could all enjoy a cleaner Bali.
Being on the edge of West Bali National Park nestled amongst the trees in a canvas tent angled to catch soft breezes, which dance gently through the different living spaces, was just divine. While we were busy getting lost on the beachfront at sunset, the efficient camp-team magically zipped up our tent, rolled down the flaps, secured ropes, and engaged the air conditioning, adding a few thoughtful touches with chocolates and tropical flowers.
As the national park is right next-door, there are plenty of nature-based activities to indulge in, plus Menjangan Island, an idyllic dive and snorkeling spot, is nearby. Water activities and boating options are accessible from the shorefront of the resort. I never did get around to exploring the surrounding bays and quiet coves by kayak. However, I can leave that for next time, as I will be back.
I loved the romance of being in an elegant 5-star lodging with spacious grounds, surrounded by the natural beauty of West Bali National Park and the peaceful, calm waters of Banyuwedang Bay. The resort simply ticked all the boxes in tranquility, luxury, service and amenities.
Story by Stephanie Brookes
Menjangan Dynasty Resort Beach Glamping & Dive Centre, West Bali, Indonesia
Tents have single and queen size bed options. Alternatively, guests may also choose to stay in spacious one bedroom “honeymoon” villas, or two bedroom villas which also feature a living room. All villas feature bathtubs and private infinity pools.
The drive from Denpasar International Airport is around 4 hours, passing through very scenic inland and coastal areas. The dive from Gilimanuk Seaport is around 36 minutes.
David Metcalf runs cultural photography tours in Indonesia and beyond. His photo gallery, Taksu Photo Gallery in Ubud, Bali is a showcase for beautiful photographic work from the many islands of Indonesia.