Known for its scenic views, amazing coral reefs and fantastic sightseeing, Nusa Penida is a cherished extension of Bali. Located just 45 minutes off the south-east coast of Bali, the limestone island is home to 200-metre-high cliffs that offer jaw-dropping views of stunning white-sand beaches. It is the biggest of the three Nusa Islands, followed by Nusa Lembongan and Nusa Ceningan.
With its towering green cliffs and remote beaches, this Indonesian Island is not for the faint-hearted. If you are feeling adventurous though, you can spend an amazing 24-hours here admiring the beauty of its uniquely breath-taking landscapes. An oasis away from the hustle and bustle of mainland Bali, here is a guide to exploring its expanse in 24 Hours.
Depending on the operator, the boats to Nusa Penida usually leave from Sanur several times a day. Take the early morning ferry which takes about 30 minutes to reach the island from the port in Sanur. This helps in making the most of your trip with ample daylight, freeing your day for all the destination highlights.
Fuel up for the day by heading to the local market for a hearty traditional breakfast. This offers you a chance to see the locals in their daily hustles prepping up for the long day ahead. With affordable souvenirs, exotic fruits and vegetables and authentic local experience, this is the perfect way to know the vibe of the island.
Overlooking the horizon, Pegunyangan sticks out at the side of a majestic cliff, dropping down directly to the ocean. A popular spot on the island, it offers you spectacular cliff views that are the trademark of this island. With a mix of tradition, culture and a magnificent waterfall, it is a blend of all the elements you need to see on the island. You can also observe and take part in the fascinating cleaning rituals in the water temple around the area.
Head next to the Diamond beach viewpoint on the right-hand side of Atuh Beach. There was no access to the beach earlier, but a few years ago, the locals constructed a way to view the cliffs from an incredible stairway. With the staircase leading up to the hill, the viewpoint looks out over the bay next door. The view alone from the top of the stairs will make your visit worth the effort.
If you are feeling even more adventurous, skip the beach and head over instead to the Seganing falls which gives you a chance to experience an incredible trek. With a giant vertical rock wall on one side and a tiny wooden fence protecting you from the other, this isn’t for those afraid of heights. Filled with scenic views at each viewpoint though, this is one of the best things to do on Nusa Penida.
After a busy afternoon, spend some time relaxing with a fun group snorkel tour from the island to swim with giant Manta rays. A popular and reasonably priced activity, it is one of the most popular things to do in Nusa Penida. Spend the next half an hour swimming and snorkelling with the playful Manta Rays to add a bit of thrill in your itinerary.
As you start wrapping up the day, visit a spot which has become the island’s icon, with its famed T-Rex cliff and breathtaking views. Kelingking boasts of teal water and an inviting white sandy beach. However, if you aren’t keen on making the effort of descending the stairs, then the view from the top of the cliff is equally magnificent.
Nearing sunset, hop onto the prized Crystal beach for its calming sunset views. As the sun goes down, relax on the smooth white sand sipping some delicious coconut drinks, reflecting on the day gone by.
After enjoying the sunset, head over to the nearest Wrung to get yourself a nice seafood dinner. With freshly caught produce and spicy, savoury condiments, enjoy food cooked in authentic Indonesian style. Head back to your hotel after a wholesome dinner to catch an early morning ferry back to exploring other parts of this beautiful country!
Tips: Carry cash as there are little or no ATMs on the island. Cafes and restaurants are located mainly on the beaches or in the main areas, hence it is also recommended to carry some snacks during your busy day of exploring the island.
‘Curated by Neha Bhise’