What is the first thing you do when you arrive in a new place? Or lets say once you have settled in the hotel/house you are staying at?
We always like to explore the area. Get a feel for where we are and what we have close by. Check if we actually have anything close by!
The first and longest stop of our first trip in Bali was in Uluwatu. This village is on the south-western tip of the Bukit Peninsula of Bali. It is the number 4 surf destination in the world for surfers of all abilities.
While the taxi was driving us to our Villa, I realized that I had probably misread the description of the house. It clearly wasn’t a 5 minute walk to the beach, we were going way uphill! Don’t get me wrong, I loved the place we stayed at, it was very welcoming and the manager was always very good to us However once we decided to go find a beach, it was a bit of a walk away!
After a long night sleep, the first morning there, after jumping in our little pool, it was time to figure where everything was!
What we learned during our walk
Cows are free to do whatever they want here and no one bothers them. Chickens and roosters wonder wherever they want as well, we have met quite a few all around! I wonder if the actually have an owner or they are free!
After walking for a while we realized that the beach was not that close! We had also been told before coming to Bali that beaches were mainly rocky. Of course we were a little concerned, since our kids love sandy beaches. However Uluwatu, as well as another couple of places we stopped at along the way have plenty of sandy beaches.
Let me give you a little overview of the ones we tried and liked!
Padang Padang Beach
It is also known as Julia Roberts beach (at least that is what our driver says, since they did a scene of the movie here).
This beach is sandy, however there is one important detail they forgot to share with us…..there are a “million” steps to get down there! Guess who has the worst stroller ever?! Luckily both on the way down and up, I found 2 men that offered to help me! So at least I can say that I got a good work out that day!
The beach is little and pretty busy, or at least in this time of the year. The water was clean and not too cold, so my kids were swimming all morning! If you forgot to eat before heading down, no worries there are plenty of little food stands as well as souvenirs and towels that you can purchase.
Nusa Dua Beach
This area has all world-class hotels, an upmarket shopping complex with well-maintained facilities and a luxurious 18-hole golf course and sandy beaches.
It was quite a change from the other areas we had driven to the days before, it did not feel like the real Bali. All I could think of was that they recreated an area that could be more appealing to tourists. It doesn’t have anything of the local feel.
What I enjoyed of this place, was the chance to stop at a restaurant right on the beach. The kids had the freedom to move around and I could relax for a few minutes. The beach was big, not very busy and it was low tide when we were there so all 3 of them enjoyed just laying in the water and looking for shells.
In order to spend the day here you have to pay a higher fee of 300 IDR (about $23) per adult and 150 IDR (about $12) per child, but is was worth it!
The only access to this amazing beach is via a funicular, with a two-minute descent between two hillsides. The view is breathtaking and the welcome once you get down to the beach is wonderful. You are offered a drink and since they have the rule of ‘first-come, first-served’, you are accompanied to the available parasols and sun loungers.
Best advise I can give you is to come early, in order to get some good seating! Of course there is a restaurant where you can order a great variety of food and you can dine there or simply sitting at your lounger. With 3 kids a table was the safest choice.
As for the beach, well the pictures say it all! We enjoyed some awesome waves in the morning and then a relaxing low tide in the afternoon. Once you are done with the beach you can go back up and enjoy the rest of your day in the pool, what more can you ask for, oh yes, a massage at the spa! You are in for a treat here!
If you are in the area you have to check it out: Sunday’s Beach Club
Honestly this wasn’t my favorite beach. First of all, it is a bit complicated to get here. You have to park and take a bus (of course they charge you for that). Once you get there, you have to walk by many stores (everyone wants you to stop) and then when you finally get to the beach, they are trying to sell you water, souvenirs, massages and of course overcharge you for the loungers!
The waves were our favorite aspect of this beach. They were wild and got got really high. In fact this was a favorite surfing spot for surfers in the 1970s, now there are simply lots of people jumping into the waves. While we were there a few got hit pretty rough, myself included! One person also lost his water camera!
Not the best beach for a family with younger kids. However our oldest loved the waves and we couldn’t get him out, while the other two barely touched the water!
I must admit it was fun to explore different beaches in this area, but we did we wish we had some extra days so we could go back to our favorites at least once more!
Click here to see more of our posts from Bali!!!
Check out the lovely hotel we stayed at Hakuna Matata Villas!!