Nusa Penida, the largest of the three Nusa Islands is located just off from mainland Bali. We highly recommend you to visit one or all of these three islands, whenever you visit Bali. The other two islands, namely Nusa Lembongan and Nusa Ceningan, are closely located and can be visited in a day. All of them are gifted with uniquely picturesque landscapes. There are a lot of places to visit in Nusa Penida, but we’ll focus on a select few.
Nusa Penida being the largest of the three Nusa Islands has a lot to offer. There are so many impressive landscapes to visit in Nusa Penida, but before we get to places to visit in Nusa Penida, let’s get the planning sorted.
How to get to Nusa Penida from Bali?
We’ve been to Nusa Penida twice, and both of these times we took a speed boat from Sanur to Nusa Penida. We paid around $40 to get there both the times. Our suggestion to you is to bargain and get the price down as much as you can, because these guys charge a bomb initially.
If you’re staying in Bali… you can book the tickets at the port nearest to you or ask your hotel / taxi guy to help you book it. There’s a tour guide in almost every market of Bali selling tickets to Nusa and Gili Islands, catch hold of them and get your job done. You can either take day trips to Nusa Penida or stay a night or two to explore the most of it. We suggest staying 3 days to make the most of the Island.
You can book your tickets online too, but then you can’t bargain. The top rated Nusa Penida day tour includes hotel pick-up and drop-off from Bali, lunch, travel and guide.
Navigating Nusa Penida
You’ve two options here, you either rent a bike or hire a taxi. Which is cheaper is not a surprise. You will have to be practical when choosing between the two.
The roads when we first visited the Nusa Penida island were pretty rough which didn’t compliment the sharp turns. This is not the case now. Owing to the increase in the number of tourists in Nusa Penida, the roads are being maintained and some of them feel heavenly combined with the breathtaking view. There are still a few which are extremely rocky and unsafe for a bike. Thus, to be safe we would always recommend hiring a taxi, but if you’re an expert rider then you can try your luck with the bikes.
A taxi for 8 hrs comes for around 400000 IDR, whereas a bike comes for around 70000 IDR. You do the math, calculate the risks and take a call!
6 places to visit in Nusa Penida
1. Pura Goa Giri Putri Cave
The Pura Goa Giri Putri Cave sits in the middle of a mountain, accessible by a steep staircase. To be allowed in the temple, you’ll have to rent a sarong. We were greeted by a few rogue monkeys on our way up, so ensure you keep the food items away to avoid attacks. We were absolutely unsure of what to expect when we reached the top, to our surprise we were greeted with some holy water on the forehead. Post that a priest led us through a tiny crack in the ground. Again unsure of what was ahead, we were pleasantly surprised.
The roof opened up and we were inside a 300m long cave, the priest left us there and we explored the rest of the cave on our own. There were idols which we knew nothing about and pretty stairways. We took in the view but missed the history behind it. So we suggest you to hire a guide to take you through the cave. The end of the cave opened up to a lovely view of the mountain. There are stairs to take you down, but we didn’t take that risk as there was nobody to accompany us. Overall, the cave is cold, the eerie atmosphere is worth enjoying and this is for sure a different experience.
2. Atuh Beach
Usually, the guides in Nusa Penida will skip adding Atuh beach to your places to visit in Nusa Penida list. Reason being that it’s too far and will require a day to visit. But we recommend you stay that extra day and visit Atuh beach.. here’s why
Atuh beach is far off from the rest of the Nusa Penida attractions, and you will almost need an entire day to explore it. The road that leads to Atuh beach was super rocky and unfit for bike rides. But the view… the view is spectacular.
Atuh Beach is a white sand beach encircled by huge cliffs and remarkable rock formations. We had to climb a few flights down (about 10 mins) to get to the beach. The going down is easy, the coming up is challenging! God bless the unfit.
While climbing down the stairs of Atuh Beach, we spotted a baby shark swimming close to the shore. It was a matter of few seconds and we failed to capture the moment clearly. But, we’re super happy to have spotted it. We explored the shore and the ocean before enjoying fresh coconut and indulging in a fresh sea food meal.
3. Kelingking Beach
Your places to visit in Nusa Penida list will be incomplete without the Kelingking Beach. This is A MUST VISIT!
Kelingking beach, famously known as ‘T-Rex’, is by far my favourite attraction in Nusa Penida. This coastal cliffs cape is super famous on Instagram and doesn’t disappoint. I remember the first time I saw the beach from the top, it was mesmerising. We watched the crystal clear water form into a wave before reaching the shore.
We couldn’t hike down to the beach as we were short on time, but we definitely recommend it to you. Wear your best sports shoes before you trek down to the beach.
We enjoyed the view from the top and went half way down to click those Instagram worthy pictures 😉
4. Crystal Bay Beach
Crystal bay is usually the last or second last attraction the guides will take you to on Nusa Penida. The crystal clear water takes all your tiredness away and offers you the rejuvenation you desire. The view from the beach is eye-pleasing but the boat ride to the middle of the beach is what will impress you the most. The guides on Nusa Penida island ensure that crystal beach is included in your places to visit in Nusa Penida list. This is due to the popular tourist reviews and the crystal clean water. Don’t think twice before diving in the crystal clear water of the Crystal Bay Beach.
5. Angel’s Billabong
Angel’s Billabong is the real infinity pool! As it is with all the tidal pools you need to arrive at the right time of day. If you visit Angel’s Billabong during high-tide you will experience an extremely different pool, you must visit it during the low-tide to enjoy it to the fullest. The uniqueness of this landscape makes it the highly photographed spot in Nusa Penida. The crystal clear water lets you see beneath the surface and is perfect for a little deep.
6. Broken Beach
Broken Beach is an incredible coastal inlet on the Nusa Penida island. The reason why it is called Broken Beach is because of the archway that wraps around the bay, while the water flows in and out from the ocean. When thinking about places to visit in Nusa Penida, listing down Broken Beach is a must!
The arch at Broken Beach has been formed over many years and is now a beautiful spectacle. Sadly, there is no way to go down to the beach and take a refreshing dip. Thankfully, Angel’s Billabong blesses you with that. So, enjoy the view at the Broken beach and dip at the Angel’s Billabong.
To sum it all up, just enjoy the view, be safe and make the most of your time at Nusa Penida Island. Please note, that there’s a lot more to do and see on the island but these 6 are a must!
Do check out our other blogs & keep exploring!