Padang Padang Beach is one of Bali’s most famous surf beaches, located in Unggasan Village on the equally as famous stretch of coast known as the Uluwatu peninsula. The stunning white sand beach is only 100 metres long from north to south and is situated at the bottom of a huge stone cliff. From the top of the cliff you can watch the waves roll in from the bright blue Indian Ocean – sunsets here are particularly spectacular which makes it a very popular spot for tourists.
You can learn to surf on Padang Padang but sometimes the waves can be quite challenging, so it is best to go with a local or you can organise a surf lesson. As it is a well known beach among travellers and locals, it does tend to become quite busy so at peak time it is best to only attempt to surf if you are super confident. The best time of year for surfing in the area is definitely the dry season, as this is when the finest waves occur.
The walk down to Padang Padang Beach is quite challenging as there are lots of steps between rocks and through caves – this is the only way to access the beach from the top. The view form the head lands will have you excited about making the trek to the bottom, the water is a crystal clear blue colour you have never seen before and against the white sand it is stunningly picturesque.
Once you are on the beach, you can relax with a fresh coconut as there are a few small warungs on the sand where you can very get basic meals and cold Bintangs. A day spent on Padang Padang Beach is one of the most relaxing you will have during your time in Bali and apart from a few beach hawkers you won’t be disturbed. If snorkelling, surfing and sun baking aren’t your kind of activities, then you can take a walk to the right of the beach and through the rocks. Exploring the caves along the water is highly recommended, but make sure you know when high tide is due as the water can rise very quickly and you may find yourself stranded on the wrong side of a three storey rock.
A great time to visit is during the Rip Curl Cup, an invitational surf competition that draws quite the international crowd to spectate and also compete. It kicks off in late July/early August depending on swell size and general weather and the opening and closing parties are plenty of fun.