By Vicky · Published Jul. 21st, 2022 · Updated Nov. 21st, 2022
Walk from the ancient Tenganan Village to the gorgeous Tirta Gangga Water Palace, passing rice fields and villages on the way.
Tenganan Village to Tirta Gangga Hiking Map
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This walk starts from Tenganan Village, about 5 km north of Candidasa. We took a local taxi from our hotel in Candidasa to Tenganan Village. The walk ends at Tirta Gangga Water Palace. We stayed here, but it’s easy to get a taxi back from here.
Tips for Tenganan Village to Tirta Gangga Water Palace Walk
- We carried our rucksacks and stayed at the end of this hike by Tirta Gangga Water Palace. However, it’s very easy to take a taxi back from here to Tenganan Village or Candidasa.
- Set off early to avoid the heat of the day.
- Remember sunscreen, sunhat and sunglasses
- Take plenty of water and snacks, there are not many warungs on the route.
- The night before, in Candidasa we stayed in Hotel Genggong*.
- In Tirta Gangga we stayed in Pondok Alam Bukit*.
- For more activities nearby, check out a hike to a temple and beach from Candidasa, walk onwards from Tirta Gangga to Lempuyang Temple, or discover the Best Hikes in Bali.
Entry to Tenganan Village (Tripadvisor Reviews*) is by donation. It’s open during daylight hours, so roughly seven to seven. It’s called a Bali Aga Village because the people living there are descendants of the original Balinese people, the Bali Aga. They lived in Bali before the Hindu Majapahit court and its people arrived in the 11th century.
Today, the community owns all the agricultural land surrounding the village. Decisions are also taken communally as the villagers sit and discuss everything in some of the large buildings designed especially for that purpose. Motorbikes are supposed to be forbidden from the village, though we did see a few around the back. The streets remain lovely, with grassy cobbles rather than tiles.
It can be the case that the villagers try and pressure you to buy things. Many of the original houses are now actually touristy shops selling everything you can imagine. When we visited there were not that many people about and the village was relatively quiet, with only a few ladies trying to sell us things.
Walking From Tenganan Village to Tirta Gangga Water Palace
Once you’ve finished looking around Tenganan Village, head to the cross-street one in from the entrance. This cobbled street leads out of the village up towards the jungle on its eastern side. Take the small path that leads off to the left. There’s quite some rubbish here, but soon you leave it behind. The route is sometimes narrow but often paved, and even motorbikes can make it this way.
You’ll pass the village on your left, and shortly afterwards can see a temple hidden in the jungle. The path then heads upwards and can be slippery after rain. The hill doesn’t last long and soon you’ll reach the top at a road junction and a little warung.
Continue walking onwards, to the left. The road bends around the corner and downhill. Cross over the stream and head slightly upwards along the road to a village. Take the first left and walk along this road for roughly 3 km until you reach the town of Bebandem. On the way you’ll see many rice fields to the left and right, and if it’s clear the volcanoes rise up in the distance.
Bebandem and Budakeling Villages
Bebandem has a little market in its centre, but not that many food places. We ended up eating in ACK Fried Chicken (like KFC), which was cheap and fine.
Head right in the centre of Bedandem, then the first left and right again to get onto the road towards Budakeling. This is a village known for metalworking and is surrounded by rice fields. Continuing through Budakeling, on the right you can see some interesting waterworks, essential for the irrigation of the rice fields.
After more views of rice fields and mountains, you’ll cross a river and the road bends to the left. At the corner on your right is a smaller road. Take this smaller road, which leads to a path and then dirt tracks. This means you’ll avoid walking on the main road and will come out right at Tirta Gangga Water Palace.
Shortly after the smaller road turns the first corner, take the path to the right. You head through some fields and then turn left back to a track. Head up the track, then right to reach a main track and continue on this.
After about 1 km, cross straight over the main road. Continue on the narrow concrete walkway which follows a water channel. After 400 metres you’ll reach the walls of Tirta Gangga Water Palace. From here you can look through a gate for a beautiful overview of the palace, but to reach the entrance head right to walk around the walls. Head left in town and the entrance to the water palace is on your left.
Tirta Gangga Water Palace
The name of Tirta Gangga Water Palace (Tripadvisor Reviews*) means Holy Water from the Ganges River. It’s a very beautiful water palace, even when it’s raining like when we were there. A local king built this palace in 1947. It’s free to enter, but you have to pay a small fee to bathe in the bathing pools.
We stayed overnight at Pondok Alam Bukit*, near Tirta Gangga Water Palace, just up the hill in a homestay. It was very convenient and we could easily walk there from the Palace. To return to Tenganan Village or Candidasa, it’s easy to get a taxi in town, and the drive back takes about 30 minutes.