Uluwatu is a must-visit destination for surf enthusiasts, with its famous waves attracting experienced surfers from around the world. From fast and powerful waves during the summer months to smaller and friendlier waves in the fall, Uluwatu offers a variety of surfing experiences for all skill levels. Whether you’re hitting the waves or simply watching the surfers in action, the surf culture in Uluwatu is truly unmatched.
The southern peninsula of Bali is known for white sand beaches framed by limestone cliffs, great surf spots, fancy beach clubs and the best sunsets in the world. Not only is the Uluwatu area surrounded by natural beauty but there are also stunning temples and cultural parks to explore too. Whether you are looking to visit Uluwatu for a day or you are lucky enough to be staying, we’ve put together a list of all the best things to do in Uluwatu.
Nyang Nyang Beach
Nyang Nyang Beach is a pristine stretch of white sand framed by cliffs located in the Uluwatu area. If you’re an early riser it’s an amazing spot to watch the sunrise and go for an early morning beach stroll. Nyang Nyang Beach is famous for the lone shipwreck that emerges from the sand and the steep steps down to the beach mean it is never too crowded. There are two ways to enter Nyang Nyang Beach, the West entrance is the easiest way to get down from the cliff with a newly constructed road leading down to the beach. The East entrance requires a 20-minute trek down a steep and rocky track so it is advisable to wear proper footwear and be prepared.
Uluwatu is a famous surf spot with some of the best and most famous waves you can find anywhere in the world. The waves in Uluwatu are often fast and powerful making them ideal for experienced surfers. During the summer months around June to August, the waves jack up with big swells so it’s a great time for big wave surfing- participator or spectator, the choice is yours! For less advanced surfers, September to November is when the waves are smaller and friendlier. Some of the many popular surf spots include Padang Padang, Balangan, Bingin, Dreamland and Thomas Beach. There are also plenty of surf schools in the Uluwatu area, especially at the more beginner-friendly breaks.
Karang Boma Cliff
Karang Boma Cliff is one of the best sunset points in Bali. To get there, Google Maps will lead you to the end of a paved road where you will find a trail that leads to the cliff top. There’s an entrance fee of 10k IDR but it is definitely worthwhile for the breathtaking views. Karang Boma Cliff towers high above a stunning reef below with turquoise waters as far as the eye can see. But be careful when you’re exploring the cliff as there are no safety barriers in place. We wouldn’t advise taking young children. The best time to visit this beautiful spot is definitely at sunset, however, if you’d like to avoid the crowds it’s a lot more quiet during the day.
Uluwatu temple is one of the most popular spots to visit in Uluwatu. This magnificent Hindu sea temple is a place of significant spiritual and cultural importance for the people of Bali. It is one of 9 directional temples believed to protect the island from evil spirits. First constructed back in the 11th century the temple is located right on the edge of the cliff so there are many mesmerizing views and picture-perfect spots. The temple is also a popular spot among monkeys and they even have their own swimming pool. Tourists pay a 50k IDR entry fee and it is important to be respectful inside. It is mandatory to wear a Balinese Sarong that they will give you at the entrance. The temple is open everyday from 7 am until 7 pm except for Balinese holidays so check beforehand as the Balinese celebrate a lot of different ceremonies. The temple is easy to reach with lots of parking available.
Fitness and wellness enthusiasts, you will love this place! Habitat Village is a fresh lifestyle complex set in Uluwatu’s bustling area. Boasting a green space with a welcoming atmosphere, it covers all you need for a refreshing family, friend or solo day retreat.
Habitat Village features a new health club offering various health and relaxation facilities. They even have large Japanese Onsen-inspired hot and cold pools and a spacious sauna surrounded by lush tropical gardens. A massage room is also available, perfect for post-workout recovery or a well-deserved break from a hectic day. Looking for a more intense activity? Choose from the undercover ninja warrior facility to martial arts – a full-scale gym, yoga shala, dojo, and meditation lab are also coming soon!
When it comes to health, you can’t miss the restaurant at this complex. It prioritises high-quality organic ingredients sourced from Bedugul and Kintamani, offering a delicious menu for all tastes and nutrition requirements. The restaurant presents a beautiful ambience away from the main street of Uluwatu. Moreover, with a minimum IDR 100,000 F&B spend, you can get access to professional coworking space too for the day.
Habitat Village’s kids’ activities are among our favourites. They have an awesome undercover and safe play area with qualified teachers. Kids will enjoy gardening, art and cooking classes, and cultural activities. Lastly, indulge your little ones with the special gluten and nut-free delicious kids menu!
Kecak Fire Dance
The Kecak Fire Dance show is set on the Uluwatu Stage inside Uluwatu Temple. This legendary show uncovers the epic tale of Ramayana in an amazing event filled with dance and blazing fire. A choir of a hundred singing men perform the soundtrack along with the captivating fire dancers all wearing impressive costumes to tell the traditional Balinese tale. The Kecak Fire Dance show lasts around an hour and at the end, you will be able to take pictures on stage with all the cast in their costumes. Tickets are available for around 150k IDR on various booking websites. Want to read more about the Kecak Dance? Then check out this article!
Chill at a Beach Club
Beach clubs can be found all around Bali but it’s no surprise that with the breathtaking views, the Uluwatu area is home to some of our favourites. Cocktails and great food by the pool or on the beach, with a live DJ playing chilled background beats while you enjoy a cocktail or two, and some yummy bites- you can’t go wrong when you spend a day at one of Uluwatu’s beach clubs. There are often parties and special DJ appearances from sunset until well after dark so make sure you stick around. Our recommendations for the best beach clubs in Uluwatu are Sunday’s Beach Club, Karma Beach Club and Tropical Temptation. Click here to read about all the best beach clubs in Bali!
Indulge in a Lobster Brunch at Alila Villas Uluwatu
This Sunday lobster brunch is a full-day experience with live music, delicious food, unique drinks and access to the pool and cabanas after your meal. The brunch experience starts with 3 different types of bloody mary followed by an a la carte selection of delicious all-lobster brunch dishes. The brunch takes place every Sunday from 12 until 4 pm and you are invited to stay and enjoy access to their famous swimming pool after the lobster feast. It is a relatively exclusive brunch offering with limited seating so it’s advised you make a reservation before going. You can make your reservation here. Want to know more about Bali’s best brunches? Read more about our favourite brunch spots in Bali.
Pantai Cemongkak is a hidden gem located between the popular Dreamland and Bingin Beaches. Located behind a cliff but still pretty easy to access, this beach offers beautiful clear water, a white sand shoreline and stunning views from the high cliffs. This beach is a great choice if you want a quiet and relaxed beach day as it’s much less touristy than Dreamland and Bingin. It can feel like a private beach with its low-key atmosphere. Here’s how to get there!
Garuda Vishnu Kencana Park
Garuda Vishnu Kencana is one of Bali’s most beautiful cultural destinations. The park features flowering parkland, an amphitheatre, a street theatre, shops, restaurants and an impressive statue that is the fourth tallest statue in the world! The park offers a glimpse into Bali’s fascinating cultural heritage. There are daily events like the Kecak Dance show and special events so be sure to see what’s scheduled on their website. However, the centrepiece of the park is definitely the massive statue of the Hindu God Vishnu riding the mythical bird Garuda at 120 meters tall. There’s a lot to explore at this park so plan to spend some time here. The park is located about 20 minutes from Uluwatu temple and here’s how to get there.
Tegal Wangi Beach Sea Caves
Tegal Wangi is a small and relatively unknown beach so you can beat the hordes of tourists. There is a small path down to the beach which makes it a little harder to access but with an adventurous spirit it won’t be too much of a challenge for most. What makes this beach special are the two picturesque sea caves. The first one is smaller but if you keep walking further down you’ll find the second, bigger cave. Both the caves offer a great setting for photos and the uncrowded beach is nice for basking in the sun and the beauty of this lesser-known spot. At low tide you’ll be able to cool down in natural tide pools.
Batu Jaran Hill
Batu Jaran Hill is another tall cliff in the Uluwatu area and it is another great spot for watching the sunset. What makes this particular look out worth checking out is the beautiful view while the waves crash against the rocks. This hidden gem offers one of the best views in South Bali which makes it a great spot to catch the famous Uluwatu sunset. Batu Jaran Hill is located near the Uluwatu Temple and here’s how to get there. Be careful near the edge because there are no fences!
Suka Espresso is a popular coffee place and restaurant known for its delicious brews. Their coffee is made with beans originating from all over Indonesia and Suka has multiple outlets throughout Bali. With wholesome, fresh food, delicious brews and good vibes this place is the perfect place to stop and refuel whilst exploring Uluwatu.
Uluwatu Sunset at Single Fin
Set atop the Uluwatu cliffs and overlooking the legendary surf break, this famous bar and restaurant is a hangout that you need to visit at least once. Single Fin offers the best of both worlds- it’s a little more accessible than some of the clifftop and beach lookouts but has a much more down-to-earth vibe than the pumping luxury beach clubs in the area. Single Fin stays true to its surfer roots and is a super casual hangout that still has all the good things like fabulous cocktails that you can enjoy in the pool. With live DJ music and surfer vibes, you can hang here all day and watch the surfers catch perfect waves and enjoy some great food and drinks. Find Single Fin on Instagram here!
With so many beautiful beaches all over the Uluwatu peninsula, spending time on the beach should definitely be on your to-do list. And what better way to relax on the beach than with a traditional Balinese massage? On most of the popular beaches, you will find friendly local ladies offering their expert hands to help you relax with a real-life soundtrack of ocean and beach sounds in the background. They’re guaranteed to be much cheaper than the massages you can get at home or even in some of the lush spas around Bali, but these ladies are still very skilled masseuses. If massages are your jam check out our article on our favourite spa experiences!
Sundays Beach Club gets a special mention from us every time for its awesome vibes but we want to make sure you know to stay for the nightly sunset bonfire. As the sun sets on yet another glorious day at Sundays Beach Club, they set up bonfires right on the beach so you can sit on a beanbag and roast marshmallows and s’mores. You’ll love sipping cocktails with the sand in your toes while you watch the sunset around a bonfire. Here’s how to get to Sundays Beach Club.
We hope this blog has given you some exciting ideas for your visit to Uluwatu. If you’re looking to stay in Uluwatu, be sure to check out our full guide to Uluwatu & The Bukit Peninsula here.
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