Munduk is a remote town in the north of Bali set on a ridge running down from the northwestern rim of the Bedugul caldera. The ridge tumbles steeply on either side into the valleys below, where distant paddy and spice plantations create a spectacular scene both to the north and the south.
The town itself is located approximately 800 metres above sea level, giving it slightly cooler and less humid weather than the lowlands on the coast. It’s a world away from bustling Seminyak and Kuta. Within Munduk itself there isn’t much to see or do, aside from taking in the amazing views of the surrounding landscape, but step out of town and a range of nature activities is there for the taking.
The town was historically used by the Dutch colonial administration as a mountain retreat and some of the old Dutch houses are still standing today. Most of the houses within the village are now private residences, but a couple of hotels have converted the houses into rooms for guests and their charm is a good enough reason to visit in itself.
Most guesthouses and hotels in Munduk are able to arrange trekking within the local area and the nature reserve at Lake Tamblingan is a great spot to commence treks into the surrounding forest. Just north of Munduk town are Tanah Barak and Melanting waterfalls, which are excellent local attractions.
Eating options in Munduk are mostly confined to what your guesthouse has to offer and the local warungs on the side of the street, including a small satay stand opposite the market. A great place for a pot of coffee is at Karang Sari Guesthouse, which has a lovely garden popular with butterflies and offers great views of the surrounding countryside. For a proper restaurant setting, Don Biyu is excellent, delivering very solid Western and authentic Indonesian fare at reasonable prices in a comfortable setting, again with fantastic views. They even have free WiFi that works well! Recommended.
Moving onwards from Munduk, you’ve got three main choices: Lovina on the north coast (via Seririt), Bedugul or, via a long, windy and very scenic road, Medewi on the Java-facing south coast.
There are no ATMs in Munduk — the closest ATM is in Bedugul, around a 20-minute drive away. Many guesthouses and hotels offer free WiFi, as does Don Biyu restaurant. Do not expect a high-speed connection and you won’t be disappointed. The closest medical care is in Singaraja.