10 Bali Hidden Beaches
Hidden Beaches of Bali
Here’s a fact: Most people go to Bali for its fine collection of beaches. There is one for everyone, whether it be the long stretches of soft white sand on the south, the combinations of exotic black volcanic on its west, and the tranquil fishing coasts in the less-explored east. You might have done Kuta, Sanur and Nusa Dua and would be forgiven for thinking that these are all that make up Bali’s wealth of shorelines. So how about those not for everyone? There are some under cliffs, some beyond the mainland, and others away from the beaten path.
With a slight penchant for adventure, a set of wheels and our maps to guide you, you can discover some of the island’s coastal gems that will have you coming back for more. Here we share with you our roundup of Bali’s 10 ‘hidden’ beaches that we have discovered so far. With a bit of exploration, you are in for some rewards.
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Perasi Beach, referred to by various nicknames such as Pasir Putih or ‘White Sand Beach’, ‘Virgin Beach’ and simply, ‘Hidden Beach’, is a secluded stretch of coast between two hills that lies between the villages of Bugbug and namesake Perasi, both in the Karangasem regency – approximately 4.5km east of Candidasa. Boasting parasols, sun loungers and various local seafood restaurants, this hidden gem can be an added adventure to your trips to the island’s east shores. Read More…
How to get there: From Candidasa, continue on to the Jalan Raya Candidasa-Bugbug main road to Perasi. A dirt road opposite the village’s Pura Bale Agung temple leads to the beach.
A favourite surf spot, Balangan is on the northern side of the cliff that forms the signature hole 15 of the New Kuta Golf course. The name ‘Balangan’ itself was thought to apply to the whole coastline including Dreamland, before surfers nicknamed the specific shore area south of the cliff. Several beach shacks serve simple local ‘surfer meals’, cold refreshments and beer. Accessing Balangan is easy, compared to other beaches along the Bukit peninsula’s shoreline, with only a dozen steps down from the limestone hill. Read More…
How to get there: Head up the hill to Pecatu. Various signs at the main intersection bear directions to Balangan.
Despite the cease in operations of the Bali Cliff Resort, this hidden gem on the southern coast of Bali beside the hotel site continues to appeal to lovers of quiet and exotic shores. This beach deserves to be in the ‘hidden’ category due to its access – a descent of hundreds of concrete steps down the cliff face. At the base are several bat caves. There are variations in the origin of the name, one inspired by the view of green seaweed and corals exposed at low tide, another owing from the name of the company slated to develop a resort there. Getting down is easy. Back up is a challenge, but a scenic bird’s eye view keeps you going along the way.
How to get there: Follow down the road known as Jalan Bali Cliff, and go around the derelict hotel site to a small parking space before the steps down.
Amed spans seven different seaside villages: Amed, Jemeluk, Bunutan, Lipah, Selang, Banyuning and Aas. All are fishing villages, hence the classic scene of traditional jukung outriggers lining the coast. Famous as a dive spot, the quiet shores with its dramatic sunrises are a not-to-miss sight if you’re staying here. Among the overland highlights that you can find on your way back from Amed is traditional salt farming in the area of Purwakerti. A two-and-a-half hour’s journey back to the south will offer you more viewpoints that are scenic and other attractions in the Karangasem and Klungkung regencies, such as the Tirta Gangga water gardens and the Goa Lawah Temple.
How to get there: The long drive east is straightforward, passing the Klungkung and Karangasem entry points. Various road signs provide you a fail-safe journey.
Nusa Lembongan itself is a destination for the adventurous, a 27km boat ride from Bali mainland’s Benoa Harbour or Sanur coast. And the islet is dotted with several sandy bays that add further seclusion to your escape. Dream Beach is located on the southern shores of Lembongan and features fine white sand, behind a row of palms and thorny shrubs. You’ll find a set of bungalows of the same name here, along with Pandan Cafe.
How to get there: Head southward to the villages from the main eastern resort-filled bay and look for the signposts for ‘Devil’s Tear’, ‘Cafe Pandan’ and ‘Dream Beach Bungalows’.
Formerly known as Nammos Beach after Karma Kandara’s Beach Club, this private beach is accessed by a funicular ride down a sheer cliff where a stretch of clean white sand and blue sea awaits. Karma Beach features a laid-back tropical beach setting and five-star services for guests who wish to sip signature cocktails and indulge in a Mediterranean-inspired menu of selections prepared from a kitchen housed under a raised bamboo structure. You’ll have to pay an entrance fee here that is set against the price of food and drinks.
How to get there: Various road signs up in Ungasan lead you to Karma Kandara Resort on Jalan Villa Kandara.
Another private beach that easily falls into the ‘hidden’ category is the 165m stretch of sand below the Semara Uluwatu in Ungasan. A minimum deposit of IDR 250,000 applies for outside guests, later deducted for food and beverage purchases. Its only access is via a two-minute funicular ride down between two cliff walls. The sea here is swimmable and crystal clear. Here you can also enjoy Mediterranean cuisine under breezy, thatched-roof shades with ocean views served from the semi-open kitchen. Finn’s Beach Club is a great option for a laid-back day on a clean and quiet coast, with fun beach activities to keep you and your family or friends busy.
How to get there: Follow the road down Jalan Pantai Selatan Gau in Ungasan. The Finn signage is hard to miss.
On the island’s west coast, you have a different beach scene, with dark volcanic sand and waves that appeal to surfers the world over. Some are fringed by rice paddies and palm trees, adding to its exotic appeal. For non-surfers, it’s a nice sandy spot from where to watch the action. Staying in Balian is made easy with accommodation options on the coast such as the Gajah Mina Resort. Local seafood warungs come to life in the evenings. Another favourite surf break worth checking out while in the west is Medewi, a half-hour drive further west from here.
How to get there: Head west towards the Selemadeg district in Tabanan.
Not quite a secret beach anymore but still slightly ‘hidden’ due to its far-flung location, Dreamland, Balangan’s ‘next door neighbour’, remains a mention on our list. Following the development of the Pecatu Graha and ‘New Kuta’ expansions, much has changed over the recent years. Still a favourite among local and international visitors, Dreamland also remains a favourite surf break. With the concrete and other developments aside, the cliffs, sand and blue still hark back to its pristine days when its moniker came to being.
How to get there: Head up to the massive Pecatu Graha gate, and go down the long and winding paved road and past the golf course.
This beach is accessible down a few flights of steps and through a limestone crevice beside a bridge. Across the road before the bridge, there is a spacious parking lot. Among the island’s most favourite big surf breaks, Padang Padang’s white sand beach offers a great view, and a small sandy area for sunbathing and doing just nothing. Local seafood warungs serve grilled fresh catches-of-the-day. It is a nice stopover if you have time along your visit to the Uluwatu Temple nearby.