Nusa PenidaHidden Treasures of Bali
Nusa in the Balinese language means island, and also refers to group of three small islands to the south east of Bali, within the Klungkung Regency. The biggest island is Nusa Penida with its two smaller islands nearby – Nusa Lembongan and Nusa Ceningan in Klungkung Regency Bali . Located around 30 minutes by speedboat from Sanur beach and around one hour by ferry from the Padang Bai harbor, the interior of the islands are hilly with a maximum altitude of 524 meters, the weather is also much drier than on Bali
They work mostly as fishermen, farmers and lately growing seaweed. While Nusa Lembongan, once regarded as one of the most beautiful islands in Asia, has been vigorously exposed to tourism due to better infrastructure and facilities, Nusa Penida remains virgin from the hassle of tourism. Lack of facilities and of course promotion enables it to remain a hidden paradise, despite the islands enormous potential. Meanwhile Nusa Ceningan, the baby of the group is a quiet, sleepy isle.
For the locals Nusa Penida is renown as a sacred island and as a pilgrimage destination with its important temples: Pura Dalem Ped, Pura Puncak Mundi and Pura Goa Giriputri.
For some Balinese Penida is famous for the unspoken stories about the island as the source of black magic. Even to this day the Balinese still strongly hold this belief, and that’s why during certain periods of the year it is crowded with local visitors from the main island of Bali.
There are some stunning tourist attractions that are still rarely seen by visitors, and these are mostly beaches. Other than that there are a couple of waterfalls, and a traditional village with their unique homemade woven textile called tenun cepuk.
A good reason why these areas remain untouched is due to the lack of promotion and the challenging road access. An alternative route is available to visit these locations via speedboat allowing spectacular views from the ocean.
Places of interest
Pasih Wuug (Broken Beach)
This beach paradise is about one hour ride south from Toya Pakeh, the main harbor of Nusa Penida. Once again fasten your seatbelt and get ready for an adventure along the rough, winding road. The trip is very worthwhile, however as the view once you arrive there is like a dreamland. This location is also famous for its seasonal manta sightings.
A 30 minute bumpy ride east from Pasih Wuug brings you to Paluang Beach. From this point you will witness one of the most spectacular views Bali has to offer. It is said by the locals there is an access down to the beach but it is a risky climb down due to the steepn cliffs. Not far from this location is a unique temple, “Pura Paluang”, where you will see a statue of a car that features as one of the shrines.
Crystal Bay is one of the closest beaches to Toya Pakeh and is around 30 minutes ride. Just like Pasih Wuug or Paluang beach, the bay is not easily accessed by land, and is therefore often empty, fringed by solitary palm trees. Just outside the bay there is a big rock that appears like a small island that can be used as a point of reference, especially under water. The diving here is considered some of the best on the island with eels, Napoleon fish, Parrot fish and turtles common place. During the summer months Mola Mola (sun fish) are often sighted, they may also be seen during the wet season as well. The currents and swell can be very strong so diving here without an experienced guide is unadvisable. A bat cave located nearby offers an alternative attraction.
Goa Karang Sari
– at the east coast of Nusa Penida near Sampalan, about 4km north of Suana village, are some interesting limestone caves that are of religious and cultural importance. To reach the caves you have to do a short climb. You will need a local guide to bring you there, Do not forget to bring a flashlight.
is with its 521 metres above sea level the highest point of Nusa Penida and offers great views over the island and over the ocean. A temple stands on the top of a hill. In this area you will also find alternative energy facilities with wind turbines and solar panels.
is located next to Cacah Village (part of Sebuluh), about 5 km from Batu Madeg village.
Pura Batu Medahu and Batu Kuning
are interesting temples, at stunning locations on road along the east coast south of Suana. Continue on the minor road to the small village of Semaya and you will come to Pura Batu Madan first, after about 1.5 km and before you reach Semaya.
Pura Dalem Peed
according to the Lontar Babad Dalem the Pura Dalem Peed was built in the 14th Century, at a time that the people of Nusa Penida revolted against the occupation of King Dalem Waturenggong of the Gelgel Dynasty. This temple is important to all Hindus of Bali. Many of them do an annual pilgramage to this temple to offer and pray for protection against illness and diseases.
South coast cliffs
The remote and secluded south coast of Nusa Penida has high and spectacular white limestone cliffs with stunning panoramas over the ocean. The roads in this area however are very bad so be prepared when you intend to go there, but it will certainly be worth your efforts once you are there. There are many birds here which makes this area a paradise for birdwatchers