Nusa Penida is a small island southeast of Bali in Indonesia with some of the most beautiful beaches on earth. A lot of people are making daily trips from Bali to Nusa Penida. Therefore the “attractions” in the west and northwest of the island are sometimes very crowded. Nevertheless, we would recommend spending more than only one day at this paradise island. We spent 8 nights on Nusa Penida and could have stayed even longer, because we fell in love with it.
It is not death most people are afraid of. It is getting to the end of life, only to realize, that you never truly lived.
There are so many wonderful things to do. Therefore we made a list to give you an overview about our favourite things to do on Nusa Penida.
And here we go with part 1 (stay tuned, part 2 is following soon):
The map shows you where the different places we´re talking about are located. So you can get an impression about the distances between our highlights.
1.Rent a scooter
A scooter is the best way to discover this Nusa Penida. Don´t be afraid of the horrible roads there everyone is talking about. Not all roads are like this. And if you drive carefully and concentrated it won´t be a problem for you. If you´re unsteady on the scooter it´s better if you take two scooters instead of taking one scooter for two. You can ask at your accommodation for a scooter or you can rent a scooter directly at the harbour.
2. Buy fruits at the local market Pasar Toyapakeh
The market is located in a big hall near the Toya Pakeh Harbour of Nusa Penida (if you can´t find it, ask some locals for help). You can find a lot of different things there. Especially vegetables, blossoms (for the flower bath) and fruits but also meat, fish and some clothes. Our favourite fruits on Nusa Penida were mangosteen (you must try them, they´re unbelievable good) and the small bananas which are also very delicious.
By the way, the market is only opened in the afternoon (it starts at 3pm).
3. Eat Mie Goreng at Alam Selumbung
This super cute restaurant (and amazing accommodation) is located in Selumbung village around 20 minutes away from the harbour by scooter. The wonderful woman who is cooking there together with her mother is super friendly and makes the best Mie Goreng and Nasi Goreng ever. You pay for a whole lunch meal (included drinks) less than 3€. For dessert you should try her banana pancakes. The best pancakes I´ve ever eaten, and I´ve eaten a lot of them.
5. Snorkel at Gamat Bay
Gamat Bay is a one of the quietest beaches There´s no parking area where you have to pay. And there are also no bars or shops where you can buy drinks or food. So take enough water with you.
If it´s high tide the beach is more or less gone. So you have to walk through the water to reach the bay and the dry grass where you can leave your stuff (without getting wet). It´s useful to inform yourself about the tides if you want to lay down at the beach.
The bay is perfect for snorkeling. So you don’t have to book a tour there, you can do it on your own, just bring the necessary equipment with you. You can´t drive directly to the beach (on the way you pass Alam Selumbung, perfect stop for some food). You have to park the scooter around 10 minutes away from the bay and walk down a little hill. Don´t be afraid it´s not as exhausting as the walk to Atuh Beach or Kelingking Beach.
4. Watch the sunset at Amok Sunset
Amok Sunset is a bar (with pool) located at the edge of Nusa Penida. At the edge you have a wonderful view towards Nusa Ceningan and in the background, you can see Bali.
This place is a perfect spot for the sunset. Drinks and dishes are more expensive then at the local places. But nevertheless cheaper then in Europe (e.g. beer 2€, cocktail 6€, marinated duck with rice 11€, avocado sandwich 5€).
If you drive to Amok Sunset you pass Alam Selumbung and drive around 25 minutes more. The way to Amok Sunset is really beautiful and you pass a wonderful view point.
If you drive back home after watching the sunset you have to drive slowly and carefully cause, there some really big holes on the road. It´s very useful and safe if your scooter has a functioning light in the front.
By the way, Gamat Bay is on the way to Amok Sunset, so it´s a great idea to combine these two trips: snorkeling at Gamat Bay and watching the sunset at Amok Sunset afterwards.
6. Daytrip to Diamond Beach and Atuh Beach
Depending on the place of your accommodation, this could be the longest way to a beach. Because the distance from the harbour to these two beaches is around 30km. With the scooter you need around one and a half hour cause some parts of the road aren´t in the best condition.
It´s important to take the right way and park at “Atuh Beach Parking” (that´s how it´s called on Google Maps). Cause if you take the wrong way you´ll drive only to Atuh Beach and don’t have access to Diamond Beach.
At the parking area you have to pay around 1€ (for two people and a scooter). If you walk straight to the coast you can see on the right side Diamond Beach and on the left side Atuh Beach.
The moment you see Diamond Beach is when you realize that the long way was definitely worth it. Diamond Beach was one of the most beautiful beaches we´ve ever seen. It´s just a perfect place. You have to walk down some steps (15 to 20 minutes) to reach the beach. Especially the way upstairs could be really exhausting due to the sun and the big steps, but it´s definitely worth it.
Down at the beach you can find a little shop where you can buy something to drink and eat. There´s also the possibility to take some shots at a typical Bali-Nest or at a swing. At Diamond Beach aren´t any loungers. Therefore you have to be careful cause there are only some really small places which are in the shadow.
Furthermore, you should keep an eye on the tide cause the beach is getting really small if it´s high tide. So be careful that your stuff keeps dry. In comparison to other beaches is a quiet and empty beach. And of course, a perfect place for taking some shots.
Athu Beach is on the other side of the cliff and the way downstairs is a little bit longer, but the views are also great. Down at the beach you´ve a big choice of bars and restaurants and you can rent a lounger. Due to the parasols next to the loungers there´s enough shadow. Nevertheless, the beach is not crowded and a perfect place to relax, drink a coconut, eat some Mie Goreng and swim in the beautiful sea.
Stay tuned for the second part, cause we´ll share some more things to do on Nusa Penida with you.
If you have anything to add, some questions or some more tips, share your thoughts with us in the comments below. We would love to read them.
Lots of love,