Nusa Penida Travel Guide: Things to Do in Nusa Penida
One of my New Year’s resolutions for 2019 is to finally share all the amazing places I visited on my travels that due to having the busiest few months of my life, I haven’t got round to sharing just yet. As well as to inspire you to visit these incredible places, I love documenting all of my travels so I can look back in months or years to come and reminisce! I guess a blog is a bit like a diary and it’s nice to have all of your special memories in one place. So I thought what better way to kick off my New Year’s resolution than sharing with you one of the best places I’ve ever visited and one I’ll 100% go back to despite the fact I know that when I do, it will probably have changed so much.
I fell in love with Nusa Penida. I’m talking head over heels in love with the island from the moment I stepped foot on it. Bali is an incredible place and we all know what incredible places attract…a whole lot of tourists! Unfortunately, this often takes away some of the beauty of these places. So I’m gonna let you in on a little secret which thanks to social media isn’t quite so secret anymore…Nusa Penida is still a bit of a hidden gem. It’s a relatively untouched part of Bali that will one day be so touristy that it’ll probably get ruined. So I’m telling you now, get booking that flight because you need to visit Nusa Penida ASAP. Not convinced? I guarantee this post will change your mind…
Although the island has become popular for day trips, I personally wouldn’t recommend this. To me, you need way more than a day to appreciate the beauty of Nusa Penida. We planned on 2 nights and stayed 5 and if I’m honest, if it wasn’t for a flight to Australia already being booked, I wouldn’t have left. After spending a week at the neighbouring island of Nusa Lembongan (another place in Bali you just have to visit but more on that in another post!), we then jumped on board a wooden boat with the locals and headed to Nusa Penida.
As a blogger, everyone knows we love nothing more than an instagrammable spot and Nusa Penida was made for the gram. It’s beaaautiful. Let’s just say, your iphone storage will be full in no time…To experience everything Nusa Penida has to offer, you’ve really got to explore the island and the best way to do that is live like the locals and get yourself a moped. I’m not gonna lie, the roads in Nusa Penida are seriously bad, especially leading up to the main sites on the island so be very careful unless you wanna spend the remainder of your holiday in an Indonesian hospital! Simply driving around the island is an experience in itself. Everywhere you look are stunning views but if you want to know what to do in Nusa Penida, there’s some sights you just can’t miss when your visiting this tropical paradise…
It’s the picture you’ll have seen all over your Instagram feeds and for a very good reason. Kelingking Beach in Nusa Penida is breathtaking. Standing at the top of the beach, you’ll come face to face with the whitest sand and turquoise waters surrounded by a cliff shaped like a Tyrannosaurus Rex. Basically, it’s like no other beach you’ve ever seen before. The view from the top is enough to impress anyone but if you’re feeling brave, take a long stroll down the steep cliff edge (health and safety isn’t Bali’s strong point…), to the stunning beach.
It may take an awful bumpy and again, dangerous journey to get there but once you do, you’ll realise it was worth all the complaining you did on the way. Angels Billabong is a natural infinity pool positioned in between cliffs. Again, it’s like nothing I’ve ever seen before and it was incredible to see. Everyone swims in the water but what they don’t tell you, is that it can also be pretty dangerous if you stand too close to the edge. Whilst we were there, a huge wave came and knocked a group of people against the sharp cliff edges. Despite this, it’s a must-see but like I said, you’ve gotta be careful too. Just don’t sacrifice your safety for that pic!
A walk away from Angels Billabong lies Broken Beach where a tunnel in the cliffs lets water flow in and out of the sea to create what almost looks like a separate pool. Although a busy spot for day trips, the views were amazing and it still felt so peaceful. Make sure you walk around the beach, over the tunnel and take in the views.
The thing about Nusa Penida is that no two beaches are the same which means you can’t skip any because they’re all beautiful in their own ways. Atuh Beach is a hidden beach on Nusa Penida that takes some finding but when you get there, it’s 100% worth the journey. From the views on the way down to sunbathing on the beach, I loved this little isolated place that felt like you were hidden from the world. It was practically empty too! Whilst we were there, we were cooked a fresh octopus on the bbq on the beach and it was delicious!
Like I said, no two beaches on Nusa Penida are the same. Crystal Bay is a secluded beach where you can soak up the rays or snorkel in the beautiful waters. It seemed to be the most built-up (despite not being built-up at all) beach out of them all and definitely the most popular, maybe because it didn’t require quite as much effort to reach it. As well as being a beautiful beach, Crystal Bay is also an amazing sunset spot and we sat and watched the sunset there after a beautiful afternoon. On your way in to Crystal Bay, palm trees line the roads…
Goa Giri Putri Temple
Whilst I was travelling Asia, temples became the norm and although they were all unique in their own ways, there was something so different about Goa Giri in Nusa Penida which is why it’s a must-visit if you’re in Nusa Penida. It’s a temple in a cave and honestly, it’s so fascinating to see where they pray. Just watch out for the monkeys at the end of the cave, they’re definitely not shy!
Food on Nusa Penida
Okay let’s talk food. In Bali I became obsessed with smoothie bowls but one of the best smoothie bowls I had whilst travelling Bali was on Nusa Penida island. It was at a place called Penida Espresso and I’m pretty sure I had a smoothie bowl from there every day because they really were THAT good. Definitely try the Rock Butter smoothie bowl! Honestly, I could eat about 5 in a row. Or maybe that’s a bit extreme…Next up, for lunch or dinner, Penida Colada is a must. As well as the incredible views you can sit and watch whilst you eat, the food is also delicious. Another place for foodies has to be Penida Kekinian. It’s a small restaurant on the roadside but it was always super busy because it was so good. I don’t usually like going to the same restaurant twice on an evening but I did here because the food was so tasty and so cheap too.
Just driving around the island is one of my favourite memories. I just remember feeling so free with gorgeous views everywhere I looked.
If you’re visiting Bali then you have to take a trip to Nusa Penida – I promise it’s worth the effort getting there! If you stay for longer than a day then I’d recommend staying at Deva Devi Beach Inn. It’s in a super convenient location on the island and the people running it are incredible! Honestly, they are the nicest people ever so definitely stay there if you can. Even though I’ve given it a good try, I can’t even fully describe the beauty of Penida in a blog post, it’s something you’ve just got to witness yourself. If you have any questions about Nusa Penida or Bali then feel free to drop me a message, I would love to help!