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In the 1960s, five small villages were fused into one under the collective name of Lovina or "Love Indonesia," by the Rajah of Singaraja. Because he thought that the area had great potential for tourism, he published many articles in the foreign press that led to Lovina becoming a new and popular destination for the hippie crowd.

To the west of Singaraja, this long stretch of flat, black sandy beach is good for swimming, snorkeling, and dolphin- and local-fishermen-watching, and is now a favorite haunt for backpackers and northern European retirees on low budgets. Some of the locals are doing what they can to smarten Lovina up a bit, but it is perhaps a little past its sell-by date and further, has become notorious as a red-light district in recent years. But, if cheap, cheerful, and low-key is your thing, this may be the place.

A sad part of the area's history is that it has historically quarried for coral and overfished. The coral used to be burned to make building lime for mortar -- a crying shame. Happily, as an unexpected and recent addition because of tourism, the coral is now protected and the local fishermen have much better respect for how to fish the sea without destroying their own source of livelihood.