Top 5 Beaches in Bali (my version)

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Summer is the best time to hit the beach. Unfortunately, this time I am not able to set off on a journey because I’m absolutely snowed under with work at the moment. Don’t be fooled! I am a freelancer, yes, I am, but It doesn’t mean that I am less busy than someone who works behind a desk! I also sometimes work behind a desk, but mostly I choose a park, cafe or sofa to do my own tasks. Or if it is very urgent, I can even work on the toilet. Anywhere, as long as they have connection to the internet. I am as flexible as a rubber!
So, while I am taking a break from my pile of documents, I would like to escort you in a fictive journey to some famous beaches in my homeland, Indonesia. Of course, I won’t mention every single one, from the east to the west, or from the north to the south. Today, we will just focus on Bali. Why Bali?

First, because I have lots of photographs of BaliSecond, because Bali is famous among touristsThird, because in Bali you won’t understand what the wet season is. They do have it, but the average annual rainfall in this region is relatively low compared to Java, for example.

1. Kuta Beach

Suitable for: Surfing, sunbathing, swimming, watching the sunset.
Kuta is situated on the southern part of the island. Besides the beach, this area (especially Legian) is also well known for its nightclubs, cafes, bars, hotels and other entertainments that can add a bit of colour to your holiday.
If you want a peaceful atmosphere, I would not recommend this beach. At noon, you will find a million tourists lying down like sardines just to get suntan or enjoy the sun. If you are curious what this beach looks like, please come around dusk before the sunset.

Picture

Dusk on the Kuta Beach

2. Jimbaran Beach

Suitable for: Surfing, sunbathing, maybe swimming, walking, having dinner.
This beach is within spitting distance of the airport. As your aircraft is descending, ready to land on the runway, take a look through your window and you will find this picturesque beach standing there, greeting you in its warmest way. But, please, don’t be mistaken. Despite its charms, Jimbaran is quite dangerous for swimming.
The best thing to do here is walking barefoot along the beach and, of course, filling your tummy with fresh local seafood.

Picture

Jimbaran after Nyepi Day
The restaurants open from 5pm till late at night. What you need to do is to sit down on one of the chairs available, look at the menu, choose the food you want (or sometimes even choose your own ‘prey’) and prepare your money. The prices vary, starting from around 70,000 IDR per portion (around 6 USD) up to 1,500,000 IDR (around 140 USD). Depends on your choice.
sorry for the quality of my pictures

3. Padang-padang Beach

Suitable for: Swimming, sunbathing, surfing, daydreaming
Obsessed with ‘Eat, Pray, and Love’ and want to experience how it feels to be Julia Roberts for a day? Then you should visit this beach. But, don’t dare to imagine that you’ll have what Julia had. This beach is always full of people, tourists and surfers that might have the same purpose as you do.
Different from the other two beaches I mentioned above, here you can have a swim because even though the wave is as big as any other beaches in Bali, the rocks that stand under the water and scatter over the beach succesfully block the wave in coming in further.
What I don’t like: I had to get there the most difficult way of my life. Due to its location which is lower than the land itself, you need to go down through a small path consisting of stairs. For a claustrophobic like me, the narrow steps, along with the big stones above my head were not a pleasant journey at all.

Picture

eww…I am suffocated even now

4. Pandawa Beach

Suitable for: Swimming, sunbathing, surfing, daydreaming.
This acclaimed beach was relatively new when I visited Bali. There weren’t so many tourists like the other three beaches at noon.
So, I removed my sandals, changed my clothes and jumped into its warm and pure water. The sand was incredibly white and clean, really smooth under my feet, and it didn’t burn like charcoal. I put this beach as my favorite one. Yet, according to one of my students who had been there lately, unfortunately, it has changed.
In the Mahabharata, a Hindu epic text, the Pandavas (Pandawa) are the five acknowledged sons of Pandu, by his two wives Kunti and Madri, who was the princess of Madra. Their names are YudhishthiraBhimaArjunaNakula and  Sahadeva. All five brothers were married to the same woman, Draupadi. (Wikipedia)
So, you will find these 5 statues along your journey to the entrance of the beach.

5. Uluwatu Beach

Suitable for: Surfing, watching the sunset, meeting the monkeys.
This beach is undoubtedly dedicated for surfers, no two ways about. The wave is too big for normal people without boards, no matter how pro they are, whether they are one of the members of Baywatch, professional swimmer or athletes. Yet, Uluwatu offers not only the beach, but also the temple where you can enjoy one of the most enchanting dances ever – Kecak Dance, which is performed every evening before sunset.
Or, if you are an animal lover, explore the temple with hundreds of chubby monkeys waiting for some evening snacks. Don’t get me wrong! You can feed them but you can’t stroke them! When I was there, I didn’t even dare to pass where monkeys were sitting happily with their family. There was too much risk of getting bitten on my way!

Tips for exploring the beaches in Indonesia:

  1. Don’t forget to bring a hat, sunblock and your own beach towel. Most of the beaches in Indonesia don’t provide beach chairs.
  2. Hire a motorcycle or a car. The access to some beaches is sometimes limited, and they can only be reached by motorcycle or even by foot. I recommend a car, as travelling on motorcycle will not only burn your skin but also your butt because the distance from one beach to another is something that you can’t underestimate.
  3. Choose the right time. In the ​morning or in the evening. At noon, the beaches are usually flooded with tourists. Locals never go out at this time.
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