Wondering how to visit Nusa Penida from Bali? This Nusa Penida travel guide will help you plan your itinerary and enjoy everything that this island has to offer.
Nusa Penida is a stunning island located southeast of Bali, Indonesia. It is part of the Nusa Islands, which also includes Nusa Lembongan and Nusa Ceningan. Nusa Penida is known for its pristine beaches, rugged landscapes, breathtaking viewpoints, and rich marine biodiversity.
It is a paradise for nature lovers, adventure seekers, and those looking to immerse themselves in the beauty of Bali’s neighboring islands.
In this Nusa Penida travel guide, we will cover the most beautiful places, the best beaches, cool snorkeling spots and even hiking in Nusa Penida. On top of that, you will learn how to visit Nusa Penida from Bali, how to move around, how long and where to stay, and much more.
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Things to know before visiting Nusa Penida
How to get to Nusa Penida?
Since there is no airport in Nusa Penida, you can only reach it by ferry or speedboat from mainland Bali. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to reach Nusa Penida.
From Bali, you can choose to depart from Sanur or Padang Bai. Sanur has a newly built port station and is more convenient for tourists. You can book a taxi or order a car via Grab to get to the port.
It’s recommended to buy your tickets in advance, especially during peak tourist seasons and 123go is the best place to do that. In both Sanur and Padang Bai, you’ll find several operators offering ferry and speedboat services to Nusa Penida. Compare prices, schedules, and reputations to choose the one that suits your preferences.
Arrive at the designated departure point at least 30 minutes before the scheduled departure time. Present your ticket, and board the ferry or speedboat.
The journey from Bali to Nusa Penida typically takes around 30 minutes to 1 hour, depending on the type of vessel and the weather conditions. Even though my ticket said 30 minutes, it took almost one hour both ways, so be prepared for delays.
There are multiple ports on Nusa Penida, so make sure you check what is closer to your accommodation. Additionally, keep an eye on the weather conditions, as rough seas can sometimes disrupt boat services.
How long to stay in Nusa Penida?
Most of the tourists choose to make a day trip to Nusa Penida, however, it is going to be a long and packed day. You certainly won’t be able to relax or do a lot of hiking & snorkeling. It is a great solution if you have limited time, but I really recommend spending at least one night on the island.
2 full days should be enough to cover all the main attractions and tick off the most beautiful places in Nusa Penida. If you want to add some beach time or hiking, 3 days would be even better.
More reasons to spend a night in Nusa Penida: beat the crowds, avoid all the activities during the heat and catch a sunset or sunrise at one of the top attractions in Nusa Penida.
How to plan a day trip to Nusa Penida?
Planning a day trip to Nusa Penida requires careful organization to make the most of your time on the island. The best and most convenient way is to join a small tour and visit the island with an organized tour from Bali.
⭐️ Top-rated tour: Nusa Penida Day Tour with Optional Snorkelling from Bali
This tour offers to explore the West or East coast of Nusa Penida and has optional snorkeling spots available. You can also choose if you want a private tour or join a group. A local guide is a good add-on as well.
If you want to visit Nusa Penida by yourself, arrange transportation in advance to see all the best places in Nusa Penida. You can hire a car or a scooter with a driver to navigate the island, or you can rent a scooter if you’re comfortable riding one. Keep in mind that the roads are very challenging and narrow.
Make sure you jump on the first boat departing from Bali and book one of the last boats to get back. From there, prioritize the top attractions that you want to see, plan your Nusa Penida itinerary, and start exploring.
This Nusa Penida travel guide will help decide what places you want to visit and give additional tips for visiting. But considering the limited time, I strongly recommend focusing on either the West or East Coast.
Remember, Nusa Penida is a beautiful island with much to explore, and one day may not be enough to cover all its attractions. If you have more time available, consider staying overnight to fully experience the island’s offerings.
How to move around Nusa Penida?
There is no public transport in Nusa Penida and you can’t order a car via Grab, so this part requires some planning, and here are the best ways to move around Nusa Penida.
Renting a scooter is a popular and convenient way to get around Nusa Penida. Many rental shops can be found near the main harbor or in popular tourist areas. Scooters are relatively inexpensive to rent, and they provide flexibility and freedom to explore the island at your own pace.
However, ensure that you have a valid driver’s license and wear a helmet for safety. Also, this is suitable only for experienced drivers as the roads are in bad condition and very narrow.
Hiring a private driver is a suitable option if you don’t want to drive or if you’re traveling with a group. The driver will know the island’s roads and attractions, and they can customize the itinerary based on your preferences. This option allows you to relax and enjoy the sights while someone else handles the driving.
You can arrange a private driver through your accommodation or book it online. Our hotel booked a driver for us, however, he was 30 minutes late, which was a bit annoying considering that we woke up early to beat the crowds.
Taxi on the island
Once you arrive at the harbor, you will find many taxi and scooter drivers offering their services. This can be a great way to reach your accommodation and is suitable for a shorter ride, but not a good deal if you need a driver for a full day.
Also, it might require a bit of negotiation, so we asked our hotel to send a car for us instead. Depending on your accommodation, the price will be around 300k-400k IDR.
Where to stay in Nusa Penida?
Considering the size of the Nusa Penida, it is important to find the right hotel for your stay. For me, it was important to see the sunset from the Kelingking viewpoint, so I was looking for a hotel within walking distance away from it. Some people choose to sleep near Diamond Beach and the choice is yours.
If you don’t care about a location, there are many unique and luxurious options as well, so here is the list of the best hotels in Nusa Penida.
Luxury: Pramana Natura Nusa Penida
If you want to make your stay in Nusa Penida luxurious, this is the right choice for you. This wonderful villa overlooks the sea and boasts a private pool.
A wonderful suite with a sea view is also available. The decor is lavish and bright. A fabulous choice for couples and groups.
If your spirit is more adventurous and you are looking for an unforgettable stay, this is the perfect location for you.
These bamboo suites are stylish yet sustainable and offer an intimate atmosphere. They are equipped for a short yet comfortable stay.
Near Kelingking View point: Penida Bambu Green Suites
This was my choice and I was initially a bit scared by the booking score which is 7+, but overall the experience was more than pleasant. There is a small intimate pool to relax in, essential and clean rooms, and a comfortable bed.
The location is the key as you are walking distance away from Kelingking Viewpoint.
Near Diamond Beach: Diamond Beach Villas
If you are looking for a beachfront villa on one of the most iconic places in Nusa Penida this is where you need to go.
There are villas to accommodate up to 6 people and they are fantastically equipped for short and long stays. Perfect for couples and families who want to relax and explore Diamond Beach.
Most beautiful places in Nusa Penida
- Kelingking Viewpoint
- Diamond Beach
- Rumah Pohon Treehouse
- Thousand Islands viewpoint
- Paluang Cliff Viewpoint
- Banah Cliff Point
- Teletubbies Hill
- Broken Beach
- Angel’s Billabong
- Goa Giri Putri
Kelingking Viewpoint is without a doubt one of the best places to visit in Nusa Penida. It offers a stunning panoramic view of the coastline and an impressive cliff that will take your breath away. Here’s what you need to know about visiting the Kelingking Viewpoint.
The Kelingking Viewpoint is located on the southwestern coast of Nusa Penida and it is accessible by road. It is a popular Nusa Penida attraction and can get crowded, especially during peak tourist hours. To enjoy a more serene experience and avoid crowds, consider visiting early in the morning or later in the afternoon.
From this viewpoint, you can also embark on a challenging but rewarding trek down to Kelingking Beach. The descent involves steep and rugged terrain, so it’s essential to be prepared with proper footwear, water, and sunscreen. The hike down usually takes around 30-40 minutes.
If you are a photographer and want to take some beautiful Nusa Penida photos, I have a secret tip for you. From the parking area follow the steps up that lead to the abandoned bar area and then follow the trekking path. After 10 minutes, you will find a unique view over Kelingking. And the best part? No other tourists around.
It is free to visit the viewpoint and the beach, but there might be a small parking fee. Nearby you’ll find several small warungs where you can purchase snacks, drinks, and souvenirs.
While everyone is busy visiting Kelingking, Paluang Cliff is a true hidden gem in Nusa Penida that most tourists usually miss. It can be easily combined with Kelingking and won’t take much of your time, so it is a must-do when visiting Nusa Penida.
Paluang Cliff offers stunning panoramic views of the coastline, with dramatic cliffs, turquoise waters, and the vast expanse of the Indian Ocean. The picturesque landscape makes it a favorite spot for photography and enjoying the natural beauty of Nusa Penida.
And just like the Kelingking Viewpoint, Diamond Beach is another beautiful place in Nusa Penida known for its pristine white sand, clear turquoise waters, and dramatic cliffs. Here’s what you need to know about visiting Diamond Beach.
Diamond Beach is situated on the eastern coast of Nusa Penida and to reach the beach, you’ll need to descend down a set of stairs carved into the cliffside. The stairs can be steep and narrow, so exercise caution while going down and coming back up. There are even some parts where you need to use a rope to climb up and down.
It is one of the best photo spots in Nusa Penida, so come prepared. If you are hunting for the photo locations, the beginning of the stairs is the best spot and you don’t even need to climb all the way down. However, you can take some fantastic photos from the beach itself. And find the famous swing nearby the water.
Like other popular attractions in Nusa Penida, Diamond Beach can become crowded, especially during peak hours. However, I personally think that the water looks best around midday. Sunshine paints the shades of blue even more impressive.
Rumah Pohon Treehouse
Just a short drive away from Diamond Beach, there is Rumah Pohon Treehouse. However, this is one of the most Instagrammable places in Nusa Penida, so if you are not hunting for photo locations, you can certainly skip this location.
This famous treehouse used to be an Airbnb, but nowadays it has turned into a photo spot. The treehouse together with some stunning landscape views makes it picture-perfect, but there are some things that you should know before visiting Rumah Pohon Treehouse.
First and foremost, be prepared for a lot of stairs. From the parking, you will be climbing all the way down to the treehouse and then taking the same road up. It takes 15-30 minutes, but it can get pretty intense. Make sure you have some water with you.
Then there is also a fee that you need to pay just for taking the photo which is 75k IDR per person. And you need to pay another 15k IDR per person in order to access the treehouse as the stairs lead to the famous Thousand Islands viewpoint.
Another important thing that you should know is that there is a time limit during the peak hour. You will have 2 minutes to take photos and videos, so make sure you find the right angle before. If you come early in the morning before the crowds, you will have unlimited time.
There are more photo opportunities on the way for an additional fee. After the entrance, there is a small booth where you can see available options and prices for each spot.
Thousand Islands viewpoint
A few steps upper from Rumah Pohon Treehouse, you can reach the Thousand Islands viewpoint. At the top, you’ll be rewarded with breathtaking panoramic views of the Thousand Islands (Pulau Seribu) and the surrounding cliffs and ocean.
This is a great alternative if you don’t want to queue for the famous treehouse. And if you are visiting Treehouse, you can certainly make the last steps to the Thousand Islands viewpoint.
Just like the treehouse, you will have to pay 15k IDR to access the stairs, but there is no additional fee for taking photos.
Enjoying the mesmerizing vistas at the Thousand Islands Viewpoint is one of the best things to do in Nusa Penida. And if you are planning to visit Diamond Beach, you can easily combine these locations.
Banah Cliff Point
If you are looking for the best views in Nusa Penida and you want to avoid tourist crowds, head to Banah Cliff Point. The rugged beauty of the cliffs and the crashing waves below create a dramatic and picturesque setting, making it a great photo spot in Nusa Penida.
The road leading to the cliff viewpoint may be challenging, with uneven surfaces and steep sections, so cautious driving is essential. There is a nice view from the parking area, however, follow the pathway that leads you to the narrow steps and you will find an even better spot. You will see a massive archway in the middle of the ocean and some mind-blowing postcard views.
There is no entrance or parking fee at Banah Cliff Point.
Teletubbies Hill, also known as Bukit Teletubbies, is a popular attraction in Nusa Penida. Teletubbies Hill is characterized by its rolling green hills, which resemble the iconic landscape from the Teletubbies show. The hills are dotted with small shrubs and grass, creating a picturesque and serene setting.
Located in the central part of Nusa Penida it is an easy stop in between coastal attractions. Once you arrive at Teletubbies Hill, you can explore the area by walking or trekking. The vast expanse of greenery offers a peaceful and tranquil atmosphere.
There is no entrance or parking fee and you don’t even need to hike from the parking area to find the best views. But I have to add that Teletubbies Hill looks the best during the rainy season on a sunny day. During the dry season, you lose lush colors and it can be quite disappointing.
Broken Beach is a natural phenomenon formed by the erosion of the surrounding cliffs, creating a circular-shaped cove with a hole in the center. The turquoise waters of the Indian Ocean flow into the cove, creating a mesmerizing sight. The broken cliff serves as a natural bridge, adding to the uniqueness of the landscape.
Even though the name of the place might suggest otherwise, you actually can’t swim at Broken Beach. This is a perfect spot to appreciate the beauty of nature and to play with your drone if you have one.
There is a 5k IDR entrance fee and from the parking area, there is a short walk along a paved path that leads to the viewpoint overlooking Broken Beach.
Angel’s Billabong is a stunning natural pool located on Nusa Penida. It is famous for its crystal-clear waters and beautiful rock formations. It is located near Broken Beach (Pasih Uug), and both attractions are often visited together due to their close proximity.
Angel’s Billabong is a natural infinity pool formed by the erosion of the surrounding cliffs. During low tide, the pool is filled with calm and clear water, creating a mesmerizing natural swimming pool effect.
While the pool may appear inviting for swimming, it’s important to exercise caution. Only swim during low tide and pay attention to the local conditions and currents. As with any natural pool, be mindful of the rocks and potential sharp edges. It’s advisable to wear appropriate footwear, such as water shoes or sandals, to protect your feet.
Some visitors may be tempted to jump into the pool from the surrounding cliffs. However, cliff jumping at Angel’s Billabong is not recommended due to safety reasons. The water depth can vary, and hidden rocks may pose a risk. It’s best to enjoy the pool from its edges and admire the natural beauty.
You will find the parking next to the Broken Beach and from the parking area, there is a short walk down to the pool. You may encounter some rocky or uneven paths, but that is just part of Nusa Penida. There is no fee to visit Angel’s Billabong, so it is one of the best free things to do in Nusa Penida.
Goa Giri Putri
Goa Giri Putri, also known as Karangsari Cave, is a unique and sacred cave temple located on Nusa Penida. It is a popular spiritual and cultural attraction on the island.
The cave temple is considered sacred by the local Balinese Hindu community. It is dedicated to Lord Shiva, and religious ceremonies and rituals are regularly held here. Visitors can experience the spiritual ambiance and witness the devotees’ prayers and offerings.
The entrance to Goa Giri Putri is relatively small, and you’ll need to stoop or crawl through it. Inside the cave, you’ll find spacious chambers with high ceilings, housing shrines, statues, and sacred objects. The cave’s unique rock formations and natural lighting create an otherworldly atmosphere.
Since Goa Giri Putri is a place of worship, it’s important to dress respectfully. Wear attire that covers your shoulders and knees, and avoid wearing revealing clothing.
Immerse yourself in the spiritual ambiance of Goa Giri Putri and appreciate the cultural heritage of Nusa Penida during your visit.
Best beaches in Nusa Penida
This Nusa Penida travel guide wouldn’t be complete without some beach time, so here are some of the best beaches in Nusa Penida that you shouldn’t miss during your trip.
Tembeling Beach and Tembeling Natural Pool are two natural attractions located on the southwestern coast of Nusa Penida. It takes around 10 minutes of stairs to reach the beach, but you will be rewarded with some impressive views. It offers a peaceful atmosphere and a chance to enjoy the natural surroundings away from the crowds.
Atuh Beach is a popular and picturesque beach located on the southeastern coast of Nusa Penida nearby Diamond Beach. The white sand beach makes it a perfect location for relaxing and getting some tan. Be prepared for some physical effort when climbing back up after your visit.
If you are looking for a wild beach in the same area, Suwehan Beach should be your number one choice. Get ready for a good 20-minute walk on the stairs and avoid it during the high tide. Other than that, you might get a private beach experience in Nusa Penida as there are not many tourists around.
North Beach is another great alternative if you want to have easy access and a chilling experience. A lot of good restaurants in the area as well.
Snorkeling in Nusa Penida
Snorkeling in Nusa Penida is a popular activity due to the island’s rich marine biodiversity and stunning underwater landscapes. Once you get tired of panoramic views (how can you?), it is time to dive in and explore underwater life.
Nusa Penida is home to several fantastic snorkeling spots that offer a chance to explore vibrant coral reefs and encounter a variety of marine life. Some of the popular snorkeling spots include Crystal Bay, Manta Point, Gamat Bay, and Toyapakeh.
To make the most of your snorkeling experience, consider joining a snorkeling tour or hiring a local guide. They can provide equipment, take you to the best snorkeling sites, and offer guidance to ensure your safety and enjoyment.
Top-rated snorkeling experiences in Nusa Penida:
🐟From Nusa Penida: 3 Spots Snorkeling Tour with Manta Rays
Hiking in Nusa Penida
Hiking in Nusa Penida offers a fantastic way to explore the island’s diverse landscapes, lush jungles, and breathtaking viewpoints. Nusa Penida offers several hiking trails that lead to stunning viewpoints and natural attractions.
Some of the popular hiking trails include:
- Kelingking Cliff: The hike to Kelingking Cliff is a challenging but rewarding trek that takes you to one of Nusa Penida’s most iconic viewpoints.
- Atuh Beach: The hike to Atuh Beach involves a descent down a staircase and a scenic walk along the coast. It offers stunning views of the cliffs and the turquoise waters.
- Peguyangan Waterfall: This hike takes you to Peguyangan Waterfall, where you can witness a cascading waterfall and take a dip in the natural pools.
- Banah Cliff: The hike to Banah Cliff offers panoramic views of the coastline and nearby islands. The trail can be rugged and challenging, so it’s recommended for experienced hikers.
Where to eat in Nusa Penida
The best restaurants in Nusa Penida are located in the north of the island, so make sure you add a quick stop to explore some of the eateries. Here are my recommendations:
- Penida Colada Beach Bar
- Amok Sunset Restaurant
- Secret Penida Restaurant & Bar
- Cactus Beach Club & Restaurant
- La Vida Penida
When it comes to the other parts of the island, you will find multiple local warungs near the popular attractions. I highly recommend checking the reviews as it is hard to find a good spot. Also, make sure you bring some snacks to kill hunger in between stops.
Most of the hotels have onsite restaurants as well, so it can be a great solution for a meal.
What to pack for Nusa Penida
When packing for your trip to Nusa Penida, it’s important to consider the tropical climate and the activities you plan to engage in. Also, double-check the weather forecast before your trip to make any necessary adjustments to your packing list.
Apart from the weather-appropriate clothes, make sure you bring comfortable shoes, a swimsuit, and something warm for early mornings and late evenings. You will need sun protection, insect repellent, and a lot of cash.
Remember to pack light and avoid overpacking to ensure ease of travel. If you are visiting Bali for a longer time, I highly recommend leaving your big suitcase on the main island and packing a backpack or carry-on.
Other useful things that you should know before visiting Nusa Penida
2023 update! There is an entrance fee for tourists arriving in Nusa Penida. You’ll pay this in cash when you pass the parking area of the harbor, and it is meant to improve the infrastructure on the island. The fee is 25k IDR for adults and 15k IDR for children. Make sure you keep the ticket until your departure.
Mobile network coverage on Nusa Penida can be limited in certain areas, especially in more remote locations. It is essential you do all the planning before your departure. However, considering that you are reading this, you have done your homework.
Nusa Penida has a tropical climate, characterized by warm and humid conditions throughout the year. The dry season generally runs from April to October, with less rainfall and more sunshine. The wet season occurs from November to March, with increased chances of rain.
It’s recommended to carry enough cash with you, as ATMs in Nusa Penida can be limited, and some may not accept international cards. Before heading to Nusa Penida, make sure to withdraw sufficient cash in Bali.
Further reading for Nusa Penida travel guide
Other useful tips for visiting Indonesia
🏠 Need a place to stay? Browse Booking or Agoda
💃 How about fun experiences? GetYourGuide, Viator, and Klook have it all
🚗 Considering renting a car in Indonesia? Use Rentalcars
🚂 If you need transfers, bus or train tickets, check 12Go
🔒 Don’t forget about travel insurance from HeyMondo
This is the end of Nusa Penida travel guide and I am sure that by now you are fully prepared for your trip and know how to visit Nusa Penida from Bali. Make sure you follow these tips and make the most of your trip to Nusa Penida.
I would love to hear your thoughts, so if you have any feedback or additional tips, leave a comment below. Also, check out my Instagram for regular travel videos and travel inspiration. Or explore other destinations on this travel blog.