Situated on the south tip of the Bukit Peninsula in Bali, Uluwatu is a surf mecca. Any surfers' dream indeed, but not only. It's also a heaven for photographers, ocean lovers and artists. It's all about getting back to nature and losing track of time here...
Suffice it to say that I've fallen in love with Indonesia -its volcanoes, its beach villages, its whole atmosphere. In Bali, there's the best and the worst, so you'd better keep moving to find the place that will really charm you. Then you'll eventually understand why the hell people love Bali so much. For us, this place is called Uluwatu.
With its easygoing surf spirit, it's the place that kind of... make sense, shall we say?
Quick Guide to Uluwatu
Just arrived from Nusa Lembongan, we check in in one of the hotels on Jalan Mamo, Mamo Hotel (air-con and a swimming pool is all we need). The view from the balcony is spectacular, we can see all the way to Java [photo below]. We cross the road, rent a couple of motorbikes, and there we go: our weekend in Uluwatu can begin!
What to do in uluwatu?
Uluwatu's got a completely different vibe to anywhere else on the island. It's more about the outdoors -the waves, mainly-, the fresh air, beautiful beaches, hipster bars on the cliff and stunning sunrises/sunsets. If you're not a surfer, this is rather a 2-3 days trip destination. What to do in Uluwatu? Well, you've got plenty of options...
- SURF... if you dare! Uluwatu is a surf mecca, it's actually the surf spot that made Bali internationally famous among surfers to begin with. But be careful: this is not a beginner spot. Be sure to talk with the locals and take the time to observe before you jump in the water.
- Visit Pura Luhur Uluwatu. Renowned for its magnificent location, perched on top of a steep cliff approximately 70m above sea level, this temple shares the most splendid sunsets with direct views overlooking the Indian Ocean and daily Kecak dance performances. Balinese architecture and ancient sculptures add to Uluwatu Temple's appeal.
- Enjoy Uluwatu street art. Get lost in Uluwatu cliff's tiny alleys to discover a beautiful collection of street art. The walls are splashed with creativity. I told you, Indonesia never stops surprising you...
- Go beach hopping. Uluwatu is not only a big cliff with massive waves below. The coast hides many paradise beaches. Rent a scoot, and go for a day of beach hopping.
- Shoot the surfers in action! With epic angles, excellent surfing condition and stunning lighting, you've got the opportunity to take your best shots in Uluwatu. Take out your camera, and be creative.
- Take it easy... This is the best place to just grab one of these amazing smoothie bowls in Single Fin, sit back and simply chill. Even if you're not a surfer yourself, you'll see there's something soothing about watching the set roll in over and over.
From Nyang Nyang to the cliff, there are lots of beaches in Uluwatu. The best way to explore the surroundings is -as usual- by bike. Don't hesitate to go off the beaten track, that's how you discover the secret spots!
- Nyang Nyang Beach : Hidden beach, white sand, utterly magnificent, perfect for a Robinson Crusoe day out
- Suluban Beach : World-class thrilling waves, jaw-dropping scenery, stunning canyon during high tide
- Impossible Beach : Cliff and boulders, pretty little gem, perfect desert beach, stunning lodgings on the sand
- Padang Padang : Beautiful at dawn, before the crowds arrive... Watch out for the monkeys on the way down
- Bingin Beach : Easy to access to , challenging waves, fabulous views, good for swimming at high tide
- Dreamland Beach : Sand break, popular for swimmers, luxurious residences, very touristic, overpriced
- Balangan Beach : Spectacular views, perfect left han breaks, beautiful sand beach
HAPPY HOURS + HAPPY BREAKFAST
Despite its secluded location, eating facilities around Suluban Beach are easy to find. Restaurants and cafes with the most astounding views on the ocean serve international, Indonesian and typical Balinese food on the path leading down to the shoreline of the beach. If there's one place you can't miss, it's the legendary Single Fin. This is were you'll have your incredibly tasty morning smoothie bowl and your sunset icy cold Bintangs. This is where I fall in love with Uluwatu three years ago...