The Bukit is the Peninsula at the southern tip of Bali and the home of the popular holiday destination of Jimbaran, Uluwatu and Nusa Dua. It also offers plenty of things to do for travellers, here you have our list of 10 things to do on the Bukit Peninsula.
1. Visit the breathtaking Pura Luhur Uluwatu temple
Along with Tanah Lot, Pura Luhur Uluwatu is one of Bali’s most iconic temples. The temple’s location, right on the edge of Uluwatu’s towering cliffs, makes it a favourite for photographers.
As you reach the temple you will be “welcomed” by a score of monkeys. They are notoriously known for steeling loose item, so hold on to your hats, sunglasses, etc. or even better leave as much as possible behind.
2. Experience a kecak and fire dance show.
You might want to combine a visit to Pura Luhur Uluwatu with a Kecak and fire dance show. Every night at 6 pm the story of Ramanyana is being told through dancing, chanting and fire with the setting sun as a backdrop.
Even though a dance show might not sound like the most children friendly activity, children are usually impressed by the fire and the cheeky monkey figure of Hanoman, making it a great activity for the entire family.
3. Surf or take a swim at legendary the Padang Padang beach
You have to climb down quite a lot of steps to enter the small white sanded Padang Padang beach tucked in between the cliffs. When the swell is right surfers flock to Padang Padang to take on what many consider Bali’s best wave and International surf contests are held at Padang Padang every year. Surfing at Padang is only for experienced surfers, but there is a break closer to the beach that is suited for beginners.
At the beach itself the water is usually calm and the sand is soft, making Padang Padang terrific for swimmers and sun lovers as well, it can get crowded in high seasons and over the weekends.
4. Paraglide from the southern cliffs of the Bukit
View the Bukit a little from above. From May to October southerly winds makes the cliffs on Bukit’s south coast perfect for paragliding. Unless you are an experienced paraglider you will be flying tandem with an instructor. Under perfect conditions you will be flying for around 20 minutes which will cost you approximately $80. If you are keen on more paragliding, you can do paragliding course which takes two to seven days.
Paragliding operators will pick you up at your villa on the Bukit for free and take you to one of the main paragliding sites at Timbis or Gunung Payung.
5. Enjoy a sunset cocktail at the Rock Bar
The Rock bar is one of, if not the most spectacular bars in Bali. Elegant design combined with a killer location makes the Rock Bar worth at least one visit. The open bar is nestled on a rock 14 meters above the ocean, providing you with superb views of the ocean and the coastline. Facing westwards, it’s needless to say that this perfect spot for a sundowner. Particularly on the weekends you’ll often find a DJ or live musicians playing under the stars. Check the website for upcoming events.
Even though it is casual, the Rock Bar has a dress code, so leave the board shorts and tank top at home.
6. Get inspired at the Museum Pasifika
The Museum Pasifika doesn’t get a lot and attention and not that many visitors either. That is a shame and if you are interested in Asian and Balinese art the museums are certainly worth a visit.
At the museum you find the works of many of the influential European artists, like Theo Meier, Adrien-Jean Le Mayeur, Walter Spies and Arie Smit, who found inspiration in Bali at the beginning of the 20th century.
As the name indicates, the museum also hold a good collection of art from the rest of Pacific Asia.
7. Candlelight and seafood dinner at Jimbaran Bay
The beach at Jimbaran Bay is famous for the many restaurants that serve fresh caught and grilled seafood at the water’s edge. Pick your favourite among lobsters, shrimps, squids, mahi mahi and many more from the iced displays, and enjoy the grilled result with a squeeze of lemon and a cold Bintang in the flickering light of a candle – simple but good.
8. Browse the Jimbaran fish market
This is where Bali’s top chefs buy their seafood. Fish, clams and shellfish are hauled directly from the boats into the market, so it doesn’t get much fresher than this. Get there early for the best selection and the most authentic experience. If you are not an early riser, the market is still worth a visit later in the day, where you can have your chosen fish barbequed at one of the nearby stalls if you don’t want to bring them back home to your villa for a seafood feast.
9. Hit the fairway on one of Bukit’s international golf courses
The Bukit Peninsula is the home of two golf courses of International standard.
On the west coast you find the links style New Kuta Golf course. Several holes will send you driving along the Bukit’s towering limestone cliffs, offering dramatic views as you walk down the fairway.
Completely redesigned in 2014, the Bali National Golf course at Nusa Dua can now measure up with some of the best courses in Asia. The 18 holes will take you through coconut groves and hilly lush forest and offer you views of the Indian Ocean and Bali’s highest volcano, Mount Agung.
Bali International Golf
10. The Garuda Wisnu Kencana Cultural Park
I thought the Garuda Wisnu Kencana Cultural Park should be on this list as you probably will come across it as you drive around the Bukit Peninsula, even though it doesn’t come with a recommendation, at least not for the moment.
The park is supposed to be centred around a massive 66 meter tall statue of Wisnu. So far only the upper body of Wisnu is finished and the park and the park itself aren’t completed either. Inside the park you find a couple of restaurants, souvenir shops, and an amphitheatre where the entrance fee grants you access to a dance show.
The entrance fee is $10 and chances are, unless you have a keen interest in large statues, that you’ll leave the park disappointed feeling that you could have spent your time and money better elsewhere.