The Best Beaches on Bali

The best beaches in Bali are found in the south: around Kuta, Jimbaran, and the Bukit Peninsula. Some of these are also very busy, of course (particularly Kuta). Hop on a bus or rent a car and you can find some great stretches of sand with few other tourists around. Bali is a year round destination so concern about weather and seasons should be put to rest. That said, the best weather on Bali is usually found from April to September.

Kuta – 10 minutes north of the airport

Kuta – Bali's Best Beaches
Recommended Hotels: Sheraton Bali Kuta ResortHard Rock Hotel Bali (kid-friendly, amazing pool)

Tuban – 5 minutes south of Kuta

Tuban – Bali's Best Beaches
Recommended Hotels: Discovery Kartika Plaza Hotel (adjacent to a large mall and opposite Waterbom water park) • Bali Dynasty (great for kids) • Febri’s Hotel & Spa (great budget hotel)

Legian – 5 minutes north of Kuta

Legian – Bali's Best Beaches
Recommended Hotels: Padma Resort (the most luxurious resort in Kuta area) • The Stones Hotel by Marriott

Seminyak – 10 minutes north of Kuta

Seminyak – Best Bali Beaches
Recommended Hotels: W Retreat & SpaThe OberoiThe Legian Bali (best hotel in Seminyak)

Canggu – 30 minutes north of Kuta

Canggu – Bali's Best Beaches

Jimbaran – 15 minutes south of Kuta

Jimbaran Beach – The Best Beaches on Bali
Recommended Hotels: Four Seasons Resort at Jimbaran BayHotel Puri Bambu (great budget hotel)

Nusa Dua – 30 minutes southeast of kuta

Nusa Dua – Bali's Best Beaches
Recommended Hotels: St Regis (super deluxe, maybe the nicest beach resort on Bali) • The LagunaThe Westin (good kids’ club)

Balangan – 30 minutes south of Kuta

Balangan – Bali's Best Beaches

Bingin – 30 minutes south of Kuta

Bingin – Bali's Best Beaches

Dreamland Beach – 30 minutes south of Kuta

Dreamland – Bali's Best Beaches

Lovina – 3 hours north of Kuta

Lovina – Bali's Best Beaches
Recommended Hotels: Rambutan Hotel (wonderful, family-friendly hotel)

Sanur – 30 minutes east of Kuta

Sanur – Bali's Best Beaches
Recommended Hotels: Tandjung Sari Hotel (charming Balinese style hotel, boutique luxury at very reasonable rates)

Dream Beach, Nusa Lembongan – 30 minute boat ride from Sanur

Dream Beach Nusa Lembongan – Bali's Best Beaches

Padangbai – 1 hour east of Kuta

Padangbai – Bali's Best Beaches
Recommended Hotels: Padang Bai Beach Resort (great place, super friendly)

Amed – 3 hours east of Kuta

Amed – Bali's Best Beaches
Recommended Hotels: Villa Aquamarine (book far in advance)

Jemeluk Beach – 3 hours east of Kuta

Jemeluk – Bali's Best Beaches

photo credits

39 questions and comments

  1. wen

    So hard to pick one. We have 10 days and would like to stay in just one area. Maybe do some day trips but don’t want to switch hotels. What beach and could you recommend a hotel there? Thank you.

    Reply
    1. David Post author

      Go with Jimbaran. I love it. Quiet. Great beach. Some really awesome and cheap beach restaurants that serve fantastic seafood dishes. It’s a short taxi drive to Kuta if you want to shop or do some night life yet you don’t have to deal with the crowds of tourists like when you stay in Kuta.

      My favorite hotel in Jimbaran is the Four Seasons at Jimbaran. It’s great.

      Good luck.

      Reply
  2. Glenn

    How hard is it to get between Jimbaran and Kuta? I’m not big on shopping malls, but are they easily accessible from Jimbaran? Thanks.

    Reply
    1. David Post author

      Very easy. Taxis are easy to get and it takes about 10 minutes. There’s the Bali Mall Galeria and the Discovery Mall that are fairly easy to get to from Jimbaran in that there on the south and east side and you can avoid central Kuta to get to them.

      Reply
    1. David Post author

      The BIMC hospital (http://www.bimcbali.com) is very good quality. We’ve used their emergency-room care when our son was bit by a dog and had to get a series of rabies shots. They were very professional and I’d highly recommend them. It’s located on the eastern edge of Kuta and you can get there in less than an hour from anywhere south of Ubud. Hope that helps.

      Reply
  3. Ayia

    How would you book a hotel in Kuta for a week? We’re looking for a mid-range hotel with a pool in a central location, other than that we’re not fussy.

    Are there good websites that you can recommend for booking? or should I find a hotel in a guide book and phone them?

    First time to Bali and a little confused. T.

    Reply
  4. Lari

    We loved Kuta and thought the beach was fantastic. I’d heard so many negative things about Kuta that I wasn’t going to spend anytime there but found a great hotel (the Hard Rock with an amazing amazing pool and slides) and couldn’t drag ourselves away.

    We found the other towns sort of boring in comparison. Different strokes suppose.

    Reply
  5. Question about Seminyak

    Could you recommend a splurge hotel for Seminyak or that general area? Great pool is the most important.

    Reply
    1. David Post author

      Kuta is great for beginners. Many places to rent gear and take courses, and lifeguards on duty if you get into trouble. Uluwatu probably the best for advanced surfers, though lots of choices on the Bukit for great breaks.

      Good overview here on the different surfing spots in Bali: http://www.baliblog.com/surfing

      Reply
  6. Rita

    really great articles you have here, also love the pic!
    me and my sister are going to bali mid august for 2 weeks and im trying to find best hotels and things to do. I read so many articles on lonely planet that my head is just spinning now. since you’ve visited bali several times could you give some tips where to stay and what tours to take without being ripped off. We are looking for amazing beaches and to get the best experience as its our first big/far away trip. we want to try snorkeling and surfing too and can spend up to 80$ a night for hotel and can change a few since we want to go to gillis etc. your advice would be highly appreciated

    Reply
    1. David Post author

      Hi Rita. In many ways Kuta is the best place to organize tours from as there are so many companies there and such a wide range of activities. On the other hand, getting out and seeing the island on your own (or at least hopping between 3 or 4 different towns) is a great way to see “beyond the tours” and the other big tourist towns (Ubud, Lovina, Sanur, Nusa Dua) will have plenty of different options for arranging tours.

      In general the surfing and beaches are best in the south; the rice fields and beautiful balinese countryside is in the central part of the island; the mountains in the north,east, and far west; the dolphins in the north (by Lovina); the scuba diving in the west and north of the island.

      Jimbaran makes a good place to explore the south. Ubud is good for exploring central, north, and west Bali.

      As for hotels, if you’re just looking for the best deals for the money then use this website.

      If you need a recommendation then I love this hotel in Jimbaran and this one in Ubud.

      Hope that helps. Good luck.

      Reply
  7. Rachel

    Hi David! My husband and I are thinking about heading to Bali in early October and friends already have reservations just north of Nusa Dua in Tanjungbenoa. How are the beaches in Nusa Dua and Tanjungbenoa? I’ve read mixed reviews, and I really want to stay at a decent hotel where I can lay on a beautiful beach and swim in the water. Any good beaches for this and hotel recommendations ($150 or under a night) would be so welcome and appreciated.

    Great advice on this website, thank you!

    Reply
    1. David Post author

      Hi Rachel. Tanjung Benoa has more character than the rest of Nusa Dua. Nice beach too. The Grand Mirage Resort Bali is very family friendly. It might be a bit over your budget but in October there should be some great deals. Good luck.

      Reply
  8. Emma

    thank you for your brilliant site. Very useful and interesting.
    We are going to a wedding in Seminyak next April and would like to make a 10 day holiday out of it. We would like to find a family friendly yet moderately luxurious resort/hotel/villa in Seminyak that has a warm pool for the kids and is close to a beach. I have looked at Semara resort but am slightly concerned by lots of negative reviews. We welcome any suggestions…Thanks.

    Reply
  9. Ole just

    Great inspiration – just wanted to get your take on Candidasa in later March…? Is there any beach, can you swim there or is it hard with currents? Are there anywhere else you would suggest to take my wife and four year old son? We will spend some time in Ubud, but also have days to spend at the sea beach…
    Kuta is most likely too touristic, are we are looking for an quiet place.
    Looking forward hearing from you and once again thanks
    Ole Just

    Reply
    1. David Post author

      It’s not so much the currents around Candidasa, it’s that the beach has been eroded and the sand is very narrow. Padangbai is a good choice in eastern Bali. Several good beaches nearby (some just a short walk). Sanur has a very kid-friendly beach but it’s pretty touristy.

      Reply
  10. kelly

    hi david!

    just wondering if you have any recommendations for me? im planning to take a trip to bali late november but am not looking for the hotel resort type. more the eat, pray love coastal bungalow type? its supposed to be a relaxing escape but we also dont want to be too far from the touristy places either. what accommodations can you recommend and what location? your expertise would be greatly appreciated!

    Reply
    1. David Post author

      I’d try in and around Amed (on the coast) or Ubud (in central Bali – and where Eat, Pray, Love is set). Both have some great hotels. Ubud in particular is loaded with fantastic little hotels set out in the hills and surrounded by rice paddies and thick forest. The town is still close but you don’t feel like you’re near a major tourist center. If you have the time the best way to find them is to spend a day driving between a few places, looking at the rooms and checking the rates. Hire a car for the day – it’s a great way to see the country side too.

      If you’re short on time or want something booked in advance then these links might help:
      Hotels in Amed
      Hotels in Ubud

      Good luck.

      Reply
  11. sid

    love your website, found amazing advises.
    please advise me, we are a family of four, six nights in bali, wanting to split our stay between resorts on good beaches, luxury resorts but reasonably priced too. and not very far from touristy places too. and traveling in dec-jan
    i was thinking of jimbaran beach or kuta or nusa dua, any resort ON BEACH not near beach but beach front, suggest any villas too as we re a family

    thankyou

    Reply
  12. A place to hang with small kids for a day at Jimbaran Beach

    We are staying on Bukit in the south and wondered about a place that you can hang out on Jimbaran Beach for the day, hire loungers, eat and let the kids play in the surf and sand.

    Reply
    1. David Post author

      Shouldn’t be a problem. There are lots of restaurants and several hotels where you can sit as long as you purchase food. Just walk along the beach until you find a place you like.

      Reply
  13. Villas in Jimbaran

    I am planning to celebrate my 40th in Bali and would like to rent a four bed villa close to Jimbaran beach. There are so many villas to choose from and getting rather confusing as all of them have wonderful photos and descriptions. Do you have any villas or information sources that you would recommend. Many thanks.

    Reply
  14. Bali for Surfing and Family

    Hi,
    We are planning to go to Bali in early October for 10 days. We’ll spend some days in Ubud and then we want to spend some time at a nice, not too crowded beach, where my partner can surf and I can hang around with my 4 year old son.
    We’ve been looking at Balangan but I’ve read you need to get on a car to get anywhere and might be a bit too isolated? Otherwise I was looking at Jimbaran.
    Can you recommend one over the other one? and also, any good suggestions for accommodation? we are happy with a simple nice villa, rather than resorts :)
    Thank you,
    Ines

    Reply
    1. David Post author

      Balangan has better surf but not a lot of places to stay. Jimbaran has many hotels and resorts, tons of places to eat, but the surf is for beginners at best as the bay is protected and the waves very calm compared to Kuta and other beaches. Canggu (north of Kuta and much quieter) is great for advanced surfers and lots of villas though they are very spread out. Padang Padang to the south might also be a good choice but then you’re back to being somewhat isolated like Balangan.

      Reply
  15. Bali in November

    Hi, you seem to have a gret knowledge and hoping you can help. We’re travelling to Bali for the first two weeks of November – splitting our time between Sanur, Gillis and Ubud.

    Conscious that it’s the raining season and hoping to find a beach which is clean for sunbathing/swimming and quite calm – we’re considering the Jimbaran/ Ulu Watu area for our final three days and hoping to pay around £100 a night – do you have any suggestions, and is this the best place for relaxation/ luxury to finish off the holiday? Not planning on hiring a car, so preferably nowhere too isolated.

    Thank you!!

    Reply
    1. David Post author

      Rain shouldn’t be too bad in November. Perhaps a big downpour once a day but sunny before and after. It’s sort of fun actually. Puri Bambu in Jimbaran is great. Friendly, inexpensive, and a nice pool. Short walk to the beach.

      Reply
  16. Ville

    Hello!

    Just wanted to say thank you for the great advice!

    My wife and I are taking a sabbatical and spending one month on of it on Bali.

    Thank you for the information you provide. I find it useful because of my not being so general but specific and opinionated.

    Thanks,

    Ville

    Reply
  17. Where To Stay?

    Hi we are a family with 2 small kids, age 3 and 4.. Want to go Bali for 2 weeks.. Where should we stay.? I am confused, really don’t want to stay at kuta.. We from the Gold Coast and live near beach however the beach is definately very important to us. We want to experience Bali and see it all.. I thought Seminyak but people said, no.. Want things to do but also chill out. Should we split out trip and stay in 2 different areas , or maybe somewhere that is close to everything!

    Reply
    1. David Post author

      Sanur is a great choice. It has a good beach (not great) and is close to many things to see and do (the “real Bali”) in the interior of the island. When you’re in the Kuta and region and try to get north you have to deal with Kuta traffic and then Denpasar traffic. When you’re Sanur you’ve bypassed most of the congestion. But there are many places. Jimbaran, Ubud (no beach), Padangbai, and Amed are all great.

      Reply
  18. Hotel with Great Beach

    Hi there and thanks for great info. we are heading back to bali next year. We stayed at The Padma in may/june this year however were very disappointed with the beach there (hotel was fantastic ). Can you suggest a place that has a great child friendly and clean beach and a great hotel for young children.
    Thnks

    Reply

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