4/5 with 70 reviews on Trip Advisor
Located on Nusa Lembongan Island, about a 30 minute boat ride from Sanur, Ketut's Losmen is a quaint family-owned simple beachfront affair with 12 basic Balinese style bungalows. The bungalows run back from the beach and are surrounded by garden. Even if you had the farthest bungalow from the beach you're never more than a few metres from the beachfront pool and the calm kid-friendly beach.
Whose little gem?
Ketut's Losmen was first recommended to me by a friend who was living in Ubud at the time with her partner and kids. She is a seasoned traveller and has worked all over the world - Timor-Leste, Indonesia, Liberia, Pakistan just for starters.
Photo Credit: Ketuts Losmen Facebook Page.
The stand out features for families are the amazing location right on nice little sandy beach which has calm waters for paddling and the beachfront pool (but no pool fence). Although not fancy, it's great value for the beachfront location. The sunsets are fabulous on Nusa Lembongan and you have a front row seat every night if you stay here! It's also a locally-owned joint which is always good to support and I've read many good reviews on Trip Advisor about the friendly staff, especially Ketut, the owner and his son, Wayan.
Although on the main bay where the boats arrive from Sanur, it's down the quieter end so you are still located conveniently close to local warungs, restaurants, mini marts etc., but not in the thick of it. A perfect compromise perhaps if you are travelling with family?
Photo Credit: Agoda
Each bungalow has either an upstairs or downstairs room and they are slightly different so check their website and ask questions about the specific facilities the bungalow has, e.g.; aircon, king bed, mini fridge, TV/DVD balcony etc.
Need to know
If you want a flash, upmarket style pad with daily housekeeping and a nightly turn down service this isn't the place for you. The bathrooms are perhaps a bit run down and there may be some issues with the showers (drainage, hot water etc.) according to some of the Trip Advisor reviews.
If you need super fast wifi you need to go down the road. So, it seems you can definitely get a nicer room elsewhere, but not a budget, beachfront & family-owned gig. Although the beach and bay out the front is calm for kiddy splashing, seaweed farming is one of the key industries on the island so there are plots of seaweed farms along the bay, and it's a bit tidal.
Photo Credit: Trip Advisor
Snorkelling, diving, stand up paddle boards can be arranged close by
Scooter can be organised
Lots of lounges to hang by the pool and watch the sunsets
No restaurant on site or breakfast included (but places close by and some can deliver)
No pool fence
Transport to and from Nusa Lembongan on a fast boat can be arranged at booking
Close to warungs, restaurants etc.
Bali Eco Deli is worth visiting
Some fabulous restaurants offer pick up and drop off service (in the back of the covered mini trucks with bench seats) which is good to know if don't want to take the kids on a scooter. Or favourites are Sandy Bay Beach Club, Dream Beach Bar and the upmarket beachfront French restaurant Indiana Kenanga (which is an easy stroll from Ketuts).
Photo Credit: Ketuts Losmen
What Kristen had to say..
Kristen, Richard and family have spent the last four years splitting their year between their homes in Melbourne, Australia and Sanur, Bali at The Villa Sanur. Their kids, Felix (7), Anna (5) and Louis (3) are equally at home hanging out in the lane in Sanur or catching the train into the CBD of Melbourne to go to a musical or the football. A blessed life straddling two worlds. They found out about Ketut's Losmen via the Growing up Troppo Facebook page. I was keen to find out what they thought.
Thanks Kirsten for taking the time out to give your feedback!
I have done a review on their gorgeous villa in Sanur.
Who did you travel with?
We travelled with our 3 kids - 7, 5, 3 and nanna.
What made it special & unique?
It's locally owned and run which I always like to support. The manager who is the son of Ketut was great. The price is good for families. The location of Ketut's Losmen is awesome! It's right on the beach with a pool looking out over the sea. Beach front accomm on Nusa Lembongan does not come cheap generally. So if you are looking for good value, great location and don't need too many frills this place is great. Perfect for families with teens. We loved the easy going vibe, with a few extras thrown in not usually seen at budget end.
Photo Credit: Agoda
Have you got any tips on good places to eat?
There is no restaurant, but there is a good warung right next door, and it's only a few doors down from Indiana Kenanga, an amazing French restaurant on the beach - so we saved on accomm and spend on food!
Why is it good for families?
There were lots of return guest families - which is always a good sign! There is no particular kid stuff there, but it is good for kids because there is a pool and it's right on the beach. They also rent Stand Up Paddle boards, and organise snorkelling etc from next door.
Need to Know
There are a few rickety staircases etc, which is typical for the budget end accomm in Bali. There is no pool fence, just ask for a bungalow away from the pool of you are worried. There are no adjoining rooms so the kids are either in with you or separate. If you are anxious about unrailed stairs etc then this may worry you. There isn't a restaurant on site, but there are restaurants and warungs close by.
Can you tell us the basics?
The rooms were basic but big, clean and comfortable. They could fit 5 of us easily. The beds are big. The hot water and aircon was all functioning. I'd recommend booking the front bungalow - which is newish and looks out over the ocean. There are two story bungalows with external stairs, 1 room up, 1 down with verandah/balcony. They are simple rooms. But, there is a little bar fridge in the rooms and they have a DVD and TV.
Photo Credit: Hotels Combined
What are the best things to do with kids?
Hire a golf cart for the day and go touring (and let the kids drive!),
Do a snorkelling trip. My big tip on this is to hire your own boat, especially with kids. It won't cost much more and you can go where you want for how long you want.
For Stand up Paddle Boards walk along the beach path toward Mushroom Bay as far as you can get.
Watch the surfing at Playgrounds from the Warung in the little cove there - but be warned the waves do break over it at times!
Photo Credit: Lembongan Hotels
What are you tips on where to eat with kids?
We loved Indiana Kenanga for breakfast (and dinner without kids) and the warung next door to Ketut's and Dream Beach. We also quite liked Batu Karang and their little bar down on the cliff. Last time we were there it poured for the whole weekend so we didn't venture to far from Ketuts.
It's important that the information on Growing up Troppo is as accurate as possible so please let me know if I have gotten anything wrong about this place or you, think it's not accurate please let me know. I’m not getting any freebies or incentives for this post. I hope this helps to take the legwork out of finding a special family-friendly place to stay.