Updated: Apr 19, 2019
Just 40 minutes off of the coast of Bali, you will find a few amazing islands perfect for a day trip, or a weekend getaway. When arriving at the harbor in Penida, you will be right in between some of the main attractions. Most tour guides/drivers will offer two tour options: East or West. They're both a full day packed of adventures. Keep reading on for the top places to see if you choose to go WEST.
For tips on the EAST tours click here.
1. Kelingking Beach (and the famous "T-Rex Mountain")
Undoubtedly the most popular view on Nusa Penida, and the main reason why I went there in the first place, was to get a top down view of this incredible mountain. The drive to Kelingking is only about 40 minutes from the main harbor area (Toya Pakeh), and the hike to the viewing spot that overlooks it is super easy and short. It does get a bit tricky if you want to go down to the bottom, thought. There's somewhat of a path, although pretty rudimentary, leading down to the walking path below. It's a pretty steep slope down - which means you're basically climbing it coming back up.
If you do chose to take this path, you can also get down to the beach level. When I was there at around 10 am, it wasn't packed by any means, but there were a good amount of tourists at the overlook point. However, looking down, I only saw two people on the beach! So if you're up for the challenge, you may just be rewarded with a semi deserted beach (if you don't count all of the people gawking at you from above!)
If you're not so adventurous, the trip is still worth it. The overlook point offers amazing views and it's not hard to get some great shots if you get there early enough to avoid the crowds.
2. Angel's Billabong
Think of Angel's Billabong as a nature made infinity pool. This natural pool is super easy to get to from the parking lot - only a few minutes walk on flat ground. Getting down to the actual pool requires a little bit of climbing (at least I didn't see any stairs). When I was there, there were only three people in the actual pool, though the area above it had about 20 people walking about and taking pictures.
This pool is in the same parking lot as Broken Beach and the Manta Ray viewing point, so it's worth a stop even if I didn't find it particularly incredible.
3. Broken Beach
Broken Beach is breathtakingly beautiful, and again, very easy to get to from the same parking lot as Angel's Billabong. The walking path actually goes all the way around, so you can view it from every possible angle. If you wait around for a few minutes, you may even see some boats going through the arch! I was able to catch one, below:
From above, the whole thing actually looks like a giant whole in the ground! It's pretty crazy. If you have a drone, I definitely recommend flying it here. Unfortunately, due to my eyes being drowned in sweaty, I wasn't able to get anything amazing... But the photo below will at least give you an idea of what it looks like from a bird's eye view.
4. Giant Manta Ray Viewing Point
Unfortunately, the giant mantas were absolutely nowhere to be found when I was there. But if you get lucky, you might be able to spot them. As you walk around the Broken Beach Path, you'll reach a point where you can also see the ocean on your left side (Broken beach is on the right), that's where you want to stop.
Be careful here because there are no fences or rope or anything. But if you get lucky, you will be able to spot the Giant Mantas directly below you!
5. Crystal Bay
The last part of my West tour was Crystal Bay Beach. As the name suggests, the water here is crystal clear! They have quite a few snack stands and restaurants here, so you can easily spend and entire day at this beach. The lounges can be rented for 100,000 IDR (about $7USD) for two chairs and an umbrella for the whole day. They also have snorkeling equipment for rent, as well as plenty of boats that can take you around if you fancy some adventuring. There are some awesome rock formations poking out of the ocean, and I can imagine it would be really cool to see from one of the boats. Honestly, I was too distracted enjoying the actual beach after a long day to take that many photos, so the one above is the only one I have! Oops.
The total time of my tour was about 7 hours, and I booked through Nusa Penida Holiday Trip. Your driver can tailor the trip to however much time you want to spend in each location. I took my sweet sweet time at each one, and at the end, I still had 3 hours to spend laying about on Crystal Bay.