Nusa Penida Island In Bali: Complete Travel Guide & How To Visit
The beautiful, exotic Nusa Penida island lies just 25 kilometers from Bali, the most famous tourist destination in Indonesia.
It’s a much smaller island than Bali, but it has some of the most incredible scenery in the entire Bali province (which it’s part of). We’ve visited Penida at least a dozen times over the years, but it never gets old.
The island can be visited on a day trip from Bali (same day return), but I think it’s better to spend at least a few days seeing things here.
This travel blog will explain how you can get to Penida, the best transport options, and some of the best sights to see on the island.
Nusa Penida Day Tour Packages
First of all, if you’re on a tight schedule or want to skip the extra steps involved in arranging your own trip to Nusa Penida, Klook has prearranged day trips to Penida for as low as 600k IDR, complete with hotel transfer, island tour, lunch, and same day return to Bali.
We’ve used Klook for lots of day tours and activities around the world, and they’ve been great! Highly recommended.
Book Now: Nusa Penida Day Trip
Where Is It?
Nusa Penida is a small island located 25 kilometers (15 miles) south east of Bali, Indonesia.
Penida has two small neighboring islands sitting next to it, Nusa Lembongan and Nusa Ceningan, but it’s become the most famous of the three because of its scenic cliff views and stunning beaches.
How To Get To Nusa Penida
From Bali, the only way to reach Nusa Penida is by speedboat or ferry, with the speedboat journey taking about 45 minutes or so.
There are a bunch of speedboat companies making this trip daily, and they all depart from Sanur Beach in Bali at various times. Here is my full writeup on how to get to Nusa Penida with one of these speedboat companies.
The other option is booking a day tour to Nusa Penida. If you’re on a tight schedule or want to skip the extra steps involved in arranging your own trip to Nusa Penida, Klook has prearranged day trips to Penida for as low as 600k IDR, complete with hotel transfer, island tour, lunch, and same day return to Bali.
We’ve used Klook for lots of day tours and activities around the world, and they’ve been great! Highly recommended.
More info: How To Get To Nusa Penida
Visiting Nusa Penida Island – Tourist Fee
Since 2019, there’s a new fee for tourists getting off the boat at Nusa Penida, and it’s intended to pay for better infrastructure on the island.
The fee is 25k IDR for adults and 15k for children. It gives you entry to all three of the Nusa islands: Penida, Lembongan, and Ceningan.
Transportation: How To Get Around On Nusa Penida
Just like in Bali, you have two main transport options for exploring Nusa Penida: motorbike rental, or car with driver.
I’ve always done the car with driver, and the prices are roughly equivalent to what you would pay in Bali – 550k IDR ($38 USD) or less – for a full day of driving.
Scooters are easy to rent from your accommodation (or other places) in Penida, and you can expect to pay about 75k IDR (~$5 USD) per day with a full tank of gas.
More info: Nusa Penida Transport & Drivers
Where To Stay
Best Things To Do In Nusa Penida
• Kelingking Beach
The Kelingking cliff is the most famous view in Nusa Penida, and probably one of the most famous views in all of Bali. This is an incredible “T-Rex jaw” shaped rock sticking out over the ocean, with perfect turquoise water splashing around it. The first time you look over the edge of the cliff and see this view, it really is breathtaking!
More info: Kelingking Beach & Cliff
• Broken Beach
For most visitors to Penida, one of the first stops will be Broken Beach. This is a cool circular cove formed in the rocks, complete with a leftover arch. This area is also one of the popular hangout spots for the manta rays, so you’ll most likely get to see some rays floating around in the sea nearby.
More info: Broken Beach
• Crystal Bay
One of the popular spots on the west side of Penida is Crystal Bay. This is a good hangout or suntanning spot, and it has plenty of food and drink shacks for refreshments. Snorkeling gear can be rented here, or you can just sit around and chill out while eating some chicken satay.
The great thing about Crystal Bay is that it’s one of the best spots to catch the sunset in Penida. Last July, I went back here with a buddy and we sipped Bintangs with our toes in the sand while the sunset came down over the rocks on the coast.
More info: Crystal Bay & Beach
• Banah Cliff Point
The great thing about Banah Cliff Point is that it actually has half a dozen different view points along the cliffs, and at each view point you can walk right up to the edge of the cliff and look down at the waves crashing on the rocks.
From these cliffs you can usually see a bunch of tiny manta rays and speedboats floating around on the ocean below. You can also see the Banah rock, a doughnut shaped rock sticking out of the ocean. Great stuff!
More info: Banah Cliff Point
• Tembeling Cave & Beach
This is an awesome sea cave that opens up to a view of the huge cliffs on the Penida coast. There’s also a small natural pool near the cave that you can take a dip in.
More info: Tembeling Beach
• Suwehan Beach
Looking for a hidden beach with perfect white sand and turquoise waves? Suwehan is one of the best hidden beaches in Penida. The hike down takes about 30 minutes and it’s exhausting, but totally worthwhile. This is one of my favorite places in Penida. There’s even a cool pointy rock that looks like a Christmas tree.
More info: Suwehan Beach
• Atuh Beach
This is one of the coolest beaches on the south end of Penida island. Unlike Suwehan Beach, Atuh is not a secret and there are sunbeds, beanbags, and a couple of nice food & drink shacks here.
The highlight of Atuh Beach is probably the big elephant shaped rock in the ocean (locals say it looks like a stiletto), and the huge variety of sea life that can be seen trapped in the rocks at low tide.
More info: Atuh Beach
• Nusa Penida Treehouse (Rumah Pohon)
Visiting this tree house, and then coming back later and staying a night in it, was probably one of the coolest things I have ever done in my travels. The room and bed are basic yes, but the views and location are out of this world.
You’ll fall asleep to the sound of geckos chirping in the trees, and wake up to an incredible sunrise over the Raja Lima islands, with dolphins and manta rays swimming and jumping in the distance.
More info: Nusa Penida Treehouse
• Diamond Beach
Diamond Beach, named after the pointy diamond shaped rock on the beach, is another utterly incredible “cliff beach” on the southeastern coast of Nusa Penida island. It’s newly accessible for the first time since late 2018, when a path down to the beach was carved into the side of the cliffs.
More info: Diamond Beach
• Teletubbies Hill
The center of Penida island has these big round hills named after the background scenery from the Teletubbies kids show. If you come here during or just after the rainy season, the hills are a perfect green color.
More info: Teletubbies Hill
• Nyanyad Beach
This is a mostly unknown beach on the south end of Nusa Penida, with a small temple and giant hills on both sides of the beach.
The hike to Nyanyad only takes 15 minutes, with concrete steps all the way, and the beach has perfect white sand!
More info: Nyanyad Beach
More Things To Do In Nusa Penida
The examples above are just a few of the top things to do in Nusa Penida.
If you’re looking for more ideas, don’t forget to check out my complete list of 35+ awesome things to see and do on the island!
What To Bring
Most of the items below could probably be found in Penida in a pinch, but the quality of stuff you buy on the street won’t be guaranteed (personally, I’m not about to use a junky knockoff bag from a street vendor to protect my expensive camera gear).
It’s best to buy vetted products online!
- Waterproof Bag: Essential for keeping your electronics safe on the boats. I brought a 30 liter bag and was able to fit my drone, tablet, camera, phone, and a bunch of other stuff inside. Everything was kept dry, even when I took the bag swimming a few times!
- Waterproof Phone Pouch: Same as above, but these are for your phone only. Great if you don’t have other electronics and just need something small to protect your phone with.
- Snorkeling Gear: Many of the islands have nice corals and fish, and you won’t want to miss out on them. Snorkels and masks can be rented on the boat too, but if you plan to do multiple tours it’s more economical to bring your own gear.
- Water Shoes: Save your feet some grief and wear water shoes! We got some cuts while walking to shore from the boats.
The flurry of tourism is bringing new restaurants to Penida by the week, so now it has a bunch of great options!
- Penida Colada: This was one of the first ‘great’ restaurants on the island, with a big menu, beach vibes, good food and good presentation. Plus the name is cool!
- Warung Nengah Mesin: Mother’s cooking. Simply delicious. This is a local warung in the south part of the island, so it’s easy to reach from many of the major sights.
- Penida Espresso: Best smoothie bowls on the island, and they’re very reasonably priced at 59k IDR ($4 USD)!
- Sweet Spot: One of the first air-conditioned indoor cafes on the island! Great brek here.
- Amok Sunset: Fancy cliffside restaurant and bar with a pool, and sunset views over Nusa Ceningan.
- Credit Cards: Almost all restaurants and hotels in Penida are cash only. Best thing to do is bring lots of cash with you from Bali.
- ATM: Penida still has almost no ATM options. The most reliable seems to be the Bank BRI booth at Sampalan, but it only lets you pull 1 million IDR per try.
- WiFi: The WiFi situation here has improved dramatically, and most hotels in Penida already have great WiFi.
Is Nusa Penida Safe?
We live in Bali off and on. Violent crime is unheard of in Penida, and petty crime is just as rare. This is a tight knit community and the locals are very kind and hospitable.
Balinese are religious people, so please don’t disrespect the temples or local culture. And do be careful if you hike any of the steep cliffs like Kelingking Beach!
Best Time To Visit
The best time to visit Nusa Penida island depends on what you’re looking for.
Bali’s rainy season runs from November to April. It’s less crowded during this time, and the rain is mostly at night, but the weather during the day can be hot and humid at 90-95 F (32-35 C).
From May to August, the temps are a lot cooler, and it’s more breezy and sunny. This is the high season so it’s a little more crowded.
Penida is spectacular at any time of the year, but I think the best months for photography are March to May (right after the rainy season ends), when the island is covered with green foliage.
However, if you’re just looking for the nicest weather, May to August are the most comfortable months of the year.
How Long To Stay
Don’t be a day tripper. There’s so much to see and do here. I would try to spend at least 2 or 3 days in Nusa Penida island, but you could easily fill a week, especially if you’re a scuba diver.
Take a look at my Ultimate 4-day Nusa Penida Itinerary for some ideas!
Nusa Penida Hotels
Where We Stayed
We stayed at Saren Villa on the north coast of Nusa Penida, and paid 240k IDR ($15 USD) for a private double room with cold A/C, hot shower, and good WiFi.
This is one of the cheapest options in Penida, and it's in a great location near the best restaurants! We were happy.
Prices may fluctuate from time to time, so just keep an eye out for a good deal.
- How To Get To Nusa Penida
- 4-Day Nusa Penida Itinerary – Bali’s Blue Paradise Island
- Best Things To Do In Nusa Penida – Caves, Beaches, Cliffs, & More
- Klook Day Tours To Nusa Penida Island