Nusa Penida is a small island to the south east of Bali and apart from great diving there are plenty of nice beaches to go to and enjoy so I rented myself a scooters and went off to explore the island. Sadly the roads are absolutely bad for the most part but the main circular road covering half the island is pretty good to drive on. Still, driving at 40km/h feels like speeding. I tried 60km/h but that was too wobbly for me and too much for the little scooter of mine. Here are some impressions of the roads you encounter on your way to some beaches.
On my first day on Nusa Penida I went to Crystal Bay because I was told it is the best place to see an epic sunset. Since April is end of rainy season, the clouds where just to dense and the sunset was rather boring to watch. Still I got some nice pictures of the beach.
The next day I went to Padan Beach. It is a secluded beach right next to Crystal Bay and acessable only via these stairs 😉
I stayed there for a while and enjoyed the quiet retreat from the more touristy areas. I had to share the beach with only 5-10 people, very nice!
Later in the afternoon I went on to Kelingking Beach
Funny fact: When your navi tells you, “never use this road, never ever!”, you know for sure you are in the middle of nowhere 😉
This is a famous landmark in Nusa Penida and very popular with tourists and locals alike. The rock formation looks like a T-Rex head and inofficially the place is also known as T-Rex Beach. There is a hike going down to the beach and since I do a lot of hiking back home I thought this would be a fairly easy hike down and back up… little did I know.
It was in the early afternoon and overly confident I would enjoy this little hike I went down and quickly realised… this is going to be hot. It was very steep, rather dry and not much wind coming from the ocean but the sun was burning down from the sky as if there was no tomorrow! I felt exhausted when I arrived at the bottom at the beach and relaxed there for a while. I didn’t go swimming as the waves where a little high and had a strong current towards the open ocean. About 2 hours later the sky was covered with clouds and I thought it would be the best time to head up to the top again without experiencing a heat stroke 😉
As soon as I started the hike, the sun broke through the clouds and I was climbing up the slope in full sun. To make things even worse, I had my camera backpack with me which added around 10kg to carry and the thought of throwing it down the cliff occured to me more than once… It was a horrible hike upwards! Hot like hell, no wind at all, very little to no shade and it felt as if the sun was burning away all the oxygen I wanted to breath. I had to make about 4-5 breaks on my way up in order to feel somewhat comfortable. I really struggled with the head and lack of oxygen. Once I reached the mountain back it got a little better as I felt a small breeze from the ocean and a lot more air to breath. I still had half the way to go and I was already exhausted… Taking a few breaks and walking slowly I managed to get back up and relax there. Note to myself “never hike in the tropics with a camera bag, never ever!”
Back in the hotel I had a little chat with the ladies at the reception and they told me it isn’t a bad road, it is still good… only medium damage 😀
I met a couple from Australia and the recommended me to go to Gamat Bay for snorkeling so I tackled the comfortable roads again and tried to find it. I must have taken a wrong turn and my navi couldn’t help me either because there is no raod leading to Gamat Bay, just a small footpath. I tried for about an hour to find the entrace to the bay but all I found where cows on some private property I walked on.
No Gamat Bay for me… I just could’t find the way to get there. I then settled for a noce fruit shake at the ocean close to my hotel.
The next day my cousin Markus arrived at Nusa Penida and I shoed him a few places around the island.
Next stop, Philippines!