The Most Beautiful Beaches In Bali – Top 5 Beaches You Must Know
No holiday in Bali can end without relaxing on one of the many wonderful beaches in the south of the island. Clear water, golden sand and picturesque cliffs are just some of the main advantages of Balinese beaches. Our starting point was Balangan beach located on the rocky coast of the Bukit Peninsula. And what other beaches are worth seeing in Bali? Especially for you, we have prepared the following list, where you will find the most beautiful beaches in Bali that we managed to visit. Happy reading!
1. Balangan Beach
The first place we visited right after settling in our guesthouse Le Yanandra run by a couple of nice French people, is one of the most popular and probably the most picturesque beaches in Bali, i.e. Balangan Beach. This beach is located on the south-western edge of the island and can boast a half-kilometer stretch of golden sand sandwiched between two steep cliffs. Due to the high waves, the beach attracts crowds of surf fans from all over the world. Getting to Balangan Beach is very simple, it is impossible to get lost, and for a motorbike left in the parking lot we will pay five thousand rupees. Before visiting the beach, you must first go to the viewpoint overlooking it, from where there is a breathtaking view of the whole area. This place is just perfect for photo enthusiasts who are eager to come here to capture the picturesque sunset. On the beach you will find several pubs and cafes where you can have a snack between swimming in the ocean and sunbathing but there are no fancy restaurants. In the evening, you can enjoy a delicious Mexican dinner at the Cafe La Pasion located a bit off the beaten track. This place is a real oasis of good atmosphere and apart from not pretentious food, also serves one of the best coffees in Bali. In addition, every day we can listen to live music played by local bands. We like such places!
The other face of Balangan
Unfortunately, the Balangan beach also has a second, less known face that is not spoken of loudly. The massive development of tourism in this place has caused a growing ecological problem, i.e. the mountian (literally!) of garbage. We have witnessed how one of the luxury resorts at Balangan Beach gets rid of its waste by throwing it directly to the beach… And thats all in front of us. Shock! It made us so angry that we gave up the sunbathing on that day. This was our last visit to Balangan Beach. Fortunately, recently the Balinese authorities have introduced a tourism tax to help solve the problem of pollution and waste management on the island. As it will be in practice, we will see..
2. Padang Padang Beach
If someone discourages the view of the littered Balangan beach, they can always go further south to the Padang Padang Beach. This beach gained its popularity primarily after in 2010 it became the background to the fate of the main character of the movie Eat, pray, love played by Julia Roberts. Of course, in reality Padang Padang Beach looks a bit different than in the movie (for example, we do not find on it a bar where Liz meets his lover Felipe).
Like its neighbors, Balangan and Dreamland Beach, Padang Padang Beach is a true mecca among surfers (there are regular international surfing events such as the Rip Curl Cup). Right next to it (just a kilometer) there are also other places visited by tourists, i.e. the Uluwatu temple. As for the beach itself, it has long since lost its unique charm. Yes, we can find there interesting rock formations and the river flowing into the sea but the beach is very small and crowded and in order to get to it at all, you have to pay a fee of ten thousand rupees per person (!?). Despite the obligatory payment, we hardly managed to find a piece of free space on the beach… There are a few souvenir stalls on the beach (where ladies do not want to bargain at all) and bars with medium quality food but the prices are so high that it is better to bring with you your own provisions. We definitely do not recommend it.
If you are going to Padang Padang beach by motorbike, you should also go a little further south and visit one of the most important and oldest temples in Bali - Pura Luhur Uluwatu. This temple is a place of worship of Rudra-Siva, the Hindu deity of time and death, healing, as well as nature and storm. Balinese people believe that the Uluwatu temple protects Bali from the evil spirits of the sea. Recent discoveries of archaeologists prove that the history of the temple dates back to the 10th century.
What distinguishes the Uluwatu temple compared to others is definitely a phenomenal location - the complex is located on the top of a steep slope, measuring around 100 m above sea level, which is hit by the turbulent waters of the Indian Ocean. The temple is especially beautiful at sunset, then it is also visited by most tourists. The setting sun is majestically reflected in the restless waters of the ocean, gently illuminating the cliff on which the temple rises. Something amazing! Another reason why you should visit this place is taking place here daily at 6.00 pm kecak performance, i.e. traditional Balinese dance show. The performance takes place in an open amphitheater, from which there is a wonderful view of the sunset. As we had the opportunity to see a similar spectacle in Ubud, we resign from the performance in Uluwatu. Anyway, when we arrived at the place around 5 pm, all tickets were already sold out. Well, maybe next time?
Some practical information: the temple is open every day (except for the Balinese New Year) from 7.00 am to 8.00 pm, and for entering the area a thirty thousand rupees per person is charged (visitors must wear a suitable sarong that can be rented on site). There are two main entrances to the temple: from the north and from the south. The area of the forest adjacent to the complex, as well as the temple itself are inhabited by hundreds of monkeys, therefore before the visit it is worth to hide all valuable items. You must spend a minimum of one hour to explore the complex. If you decide to participate in the kecak dance (for one hundred thousand rupees per person), then you should add an additional hour.
3. Bingin Beach
Lovers of high waves should no doubt also go to located between Uluwatu and Dreamland Beach, Bingin Beach. Bingin is a unique beach, sheltered by white majestic cliffs that perfectly contrast with the depth of the ocean. A walk around it is a truly exciting experience! Although getting to the most beautiful part of the beach requires going through uneven and wet rocks, it is definitely worth the effort. There are many bars and restaurants near the beach where you can eat while enjoying the beautiful view of the ocean. As the beach is quite narrow, it is best to visit it at low tide. To get to it, you have to go down steep, stone stairs hidden in a narrow street between the buildings. Being here for the first time, its best to ask someone for directions. It is worthwhile to prepare some money (five thousand rupees) because for leaving the motorbike in the parking near the beach, a peculiar old man has been charging tourists for years.
4. Dreamland Beach
If someone is not afraid of powerful waves, extremely strong currents and urbanization that is proceeding at an alarming rate, they should go to Dreamland Beach. Like other beaches on the Bukit peninsula, Dreamland Beach stretches between high cliffs and boasts soft white sand. Due to the close vicinity of luxurious golf clubs and volleys, this one-hundred-meter long beach is an ideal holiday destination for those with a wealthier wallet. On the beach you can rent a sunbed and take advantage of a paid massage. Apparently the sunsets admired at Dreamland Beach are particularly special. Unfortunately, we did not have the opportunity to find out. Unfortunately, on the beach we witnessed a dramatic rescue action of one of the tourists who swam despite the ban… Fortunately, everything ended well.
5. Jimbaran Beach
The last beach we visited during our stay in Bali is the farthest north in the still-functioning fishing village, Jimbaran Beach. Due to the proximity of the airport and a wide, sandy beach gently sloping into the water, this place is ideal for holidays with children. You will also find a few world-class hotels here. However, the main reason why every evening the beach attracts crowds, there are restaurants serving fresh seafood, of which there are about fifty (!?). The tables are set directly on the beach, next to the roaring sea, so we can have a romantic dinner while admiring the beautiful sunset. After dark, candles are lit which further intensify the atmosphere of this place. Each restaurant offers basically the same menu, so its hard to decide on a specific one. We can choose a range of freshly caught seafood, such as fish, crabs, lobsters, shrimps or squid, which are usually served with several sauces, vegetables, rice and potatoes. The price of the sets ranges from 300 to 800 thousand rupees, for 800,000 we will get quite a big portion, perfect for a couple. If we do not like any set, we can always choose the option for kilograms (we will pay about 180,000 rupees per kilogram of seafood). A 10% tax will be added to the meal price. Of course, as everywhere in Asia, it is worth haggling. We, for a place of our romantic supper under the stars, chose located in the southern part of the beach the Lia Cafe. For a set of grilled seafood (including 0.5 kg of fish, 0.5 kg of crab, 10 shrimps and 10 mussels), two drinks, soup, salad, rice, potatoes, fruits and vegetables, we paid 325 thousand rupees. A place worth recommending.
If you are interested in a more exquisite cuisine, we recommend you visit the Spanish restaurant AKUA located near the beach. This place offers a surprisingly tasty, for this region of the world, Mediterranean cuisine. We will eat here both traditional tapas and aromatic paella. Although the prices are slightly higher than at the beach restaurants, we are convinced that all items on the menu are worth every single rupee spent. We tempted ourselves with spicy paella with seafood and refreshing cocktails. Heaven in mouth! We would like to see more places like this in Bali!
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