The Best of Bali’s Southern Beaches

Being an island and all, Bali is littered with beaches.  However, most tourists congregate to the South, and for first timers it can be tough knowing, and even deciding where to go.  So, here are 5 of Bali’s Best Southern Beaches.

Jimbaran – Jimbaran beach is one of the best in Southern Bali, and is located just south of the airport.  It’s white sands and calm water make it ideal for swimming and snorkelling.  Many high-end hotels are located in Jimbaran, meaning the beach is generally free of drunk backpackers and spring break revellers.  Once a fishing village, boats still bring in fresh catch every morning to be sold for dinner that same day.  Many restaurants line Jimbaran beach, with tables and chairs being brought onto the sand later in the afternoon in preparation for the freshest seafood dinner on the island.  If taking a taxi to Jimbaran beach for dinner, your driver will most definitely bring you to a place he guarantees is the best.  What you may not know, is that he receives a commission for your business, so it may not in fact be “the best”.  Spend some time walking the beach to find a restaurant to enjoy the sunset.  They’re all virtually the same, and bargaining is a must!!  Most times you’ll be able to score close to a 50% discount off the menu price!!

Nusa Dua – Home to a large number of luxury and high end resorts, the beaches in Nusa Dua are the peace and quiet you’ve been looking for.  The water is calm, the breezes are light, and the sun always seems to be shining in Nusa Dua.  Located on the eastern side of the island, you’ll need to be up early to catch the beauty of the sun while it’s low.  Beaches here are in absolute pristine condition.  The water is ideal for swimming and the beaches seem to go on for ever.  When you need a break from the sun, take a walk to the “Blow Hole”.  **Be prepared to pay at least 3x what you’d pay in Kuta for a Coke, Bintang, water, etc.  Nusa Dua is expensive compared to the rest of Bali, geared towards those who can afford to stay here.

Padang Padang – What was once a quiet, secluded, almost secretive beach, Padang Padang has become quite popular as of late.  With big surf competitions held here frequently, and word getting out that this was the beach you see in Eat, Pray, Love, everybody seems to want to get their taste of paradise.  And Padang Padang is definitely paradise.  The water at Padang Padang is crystal clear, making it ideal for swimming and snorkelling.  There are a few warungs set up for food and drink, and many ladies offering the usual sarong, massage, and pineapple.  Monkeys have also been known to frequent this beach, so watch your things!  Beach area at Padang Padang is very small, so you may be fighting other foreigners for sand space in the high season.  To get there, rent a motorbike and head toward Uluwatu, or hire a taxi…he’ll know where to go!  **New surfers beware**  The waves can be rough, and the area is full of coral reef.

Sanur – Located on the east side of the island, Sanur can be described as a quiet beach with lots to do!  There’s plenty of room to lay a sarong in the sand to catch some sun, but Sanur is also known for its water sports: jet skiing, parasailing, kite surfing, sea kayaking, wake boarding, and water skiing to name a few.  A 5km pathway lines the beach, which is ideal for a morning cycle or jog when the sun peaks from the water’s horizon.  Sanur is loaded with restaurants and shops, and you’ll definitely be offered your fair share of massages and pedicures.  The hawkers are generally restricted to the boardwalk area though, so you should find quiet on the beach.  **The wind in Sanur can be deceiving, tricking newcomers into thinking it’s cooler than it is.  Be sure to layer the sunscreen!

Kuta – While not the idyllic beach you’d expect in Asia after watching films like The Beach, Kuta still has a lot to offer.  Undeniably the most visited beach in Bali, Kuta offers its fair share of fun in the sun.  If you don’t mind fighting off other tourists for sand space, that is.  With it’s sandy shores and forgiving breaks, Kuta is ideal for learning how to surf.  Sign up at a local surf school, or better yet, rent a board from the hundreds available along the beach, and hire a local beach bum to help get you started.  Bargaining is a must, and expected!  If surfing isn’t for you, there are plenty of locals offering massage, pedicures, manicures, cold drinks, ice cream, and temporary tattoos.  **Warning** If peace and quiet is what you’re looking for, Kuta is not for you!

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Categories: Bali, Destination Guides, Tips For Travellers

Author:Thomas & Katherine

A love for travel, adventure, and photography. We just can't help but write about it!

2 Comments on “The Best of Bali’s Southern Beaches”

  1. theelectriccane
    March 30, 2012 at 6:09 pm #

    Reblogged this on Theelectriccane's Blog and commented:
    Great post! Definitely brush up on your bargaining skills though!


  2. theelectriccane
    March 30, 2012 at 6:10 pm #

    Very good post!


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