An Unforgettable Experience alone in Kelingking Beach in Nusa Penida
Just a few kilometres from Bali lies the tropical Nusa Penida. This island is nothing short than a nature enthusiasts version of paradise. If you like to step away from the Balinese temples and nightlife, and like to try somewhere more in touch with the wild, this is the place to go. From my five days spent here, I put together an off-peak guide on the spectacular Kelingking Beach on the island of Nusa Penida. Read how to have the most unspoilt experience at Kelingking Beach, with little tourists. I’ve included ways you can volunteer in Nusa Penida – mainly wildlife volunteering opportunities. Furthermore, find ways of organising a tour to Kelingking or around the island.
The journey to Kelingking Beach
My outing to Kelingking beach started around 6:30 am – the best time to to make your way to avoid the rush. I finished my instant coffee and set off on my journey. The market dwellers are already setting up their stalls, getting prepared for today’s day’s customers. Women on scooters were somehow managing to balance baskets of fruit on heads while riding.
Reaching Kelingking from Toyapakeh took me around 50-60 minutes on a bike. On the journey, I drove through many small villages and communities, some formed or no more than a few dozen homes. Chickens were roaming in the road; small children were watching me as they gather together, ready to go to school. Farmers were already working away in their fields. I did have to stop a few times to soak in the surroundings the day-to-day lives of the Indonesians.
Getting to Kelingking Beach should take an experienced moped rider 45 minutes or so and a car slightly longer. It’s important to point out that the roads can be dangerous if you’re driving fast – a lot of potholes and dirt paths. Renting a car is possible – but many local guides can organise you a private tour. Two advantages of a private tour, are that they can be flexible around your needs and that your money spent goes directly into the locals’ pockets.
As you arrive at the location there is a parking lot for you to use on your left, and a cafe just behind it. Walk further down past the cafe, and you find with this breathtaking view. Turquoise water surrounds the cliffs that are entirely covered in green.
There is a small fee for parking at Kelingking – 10,000 IDR.
Kelingking gets its ‘T-Rex’ nickname from the shape of the cliff that you can see, which resembles a drawing of a dinosaur. Out of all the amazing attractions on Nusa Penida, this has to be the most impressive.
While climbing your way down the first part of the path, check the cliffs to the left. The view of the stumps coming out of the water really take your breath away. Once you start heading down further, you lose this view. Make sure you take your time and soak everything in – the journey back up won’t be the same.
To visit the beach itself, you need to head down a narrow steep path which is carved into the side of the cliff. A makeshift staircase made out of wooden handrails – broken sticks tied together with a thin rope – is stopping you from falling over the edge. At some points, you can just about squeeze two people past one another.
I plan my trips so that I am affected by tourism as little as possible. My experience down to Kelingking was with no soul in sight – my partner and I honestly had the beach to ourselves. This is why I will always emphasize – consider when you chose to travel. With this in mind…
For the Best Experience of Kelingking Beach and Nusa Penida
Indonesia’s busiest time for tourism is between the end of May and End of August. This is counted as the dry season. But to skip the crowds, the best time would be April and September. You still may experience a few cloudy days, but you still have a lot of sunshine. The guesthouses will be slightly cheaper and the attractions far less crowded too.
the best time would be April and September
Getting a Private tour of Nusa Penida
Organise a tour of Kelingking Beach with ToursByLocals – who set you up with local tour guides. They provide you with an authentic experience tailored around you. What I love about using these guys is that the money from our pockets goes directly to the people. This way, you know you’re supporting the local community and not big transnational corporations. Check out if they have a current tour to anyplace you’re going here. Notably, they organise tours worldwide.
Check out my other posts from Indonesia.
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Volunteering in Nusa Penida
Located off the coast of Bali, The Blue Corner Marine Research team have been monitoring the ocean floor for years. Unfortunately, the coral reefs surrounding the Nusa islands have been affected by tourism.
Changing shorelines with building developments, increased boat traffic, careless tourism practises along with fishing nets have all had their impact on coral. Take part in a team who use their research to help create new coral reefs through building structures and constant monitoring.
Amazing chance to volunteer and help protect endangered sea turtles around Nusa Penida. Using different conservation means you’ll be helping to increase local turtle population – having a hands-on role in caring for the turtles housed at the local conservation centre. You’ll help with feeding and cleaning the turtles as well as the cleaning equipment around the centre. Beach clean-ups will also be regular on your schedule!