Stumble Into Indonesia's Unseen Places
Tags: Bali Beach
Cliché? Maybe. Clickbait? Most definitely. Because how arrogant can we be, being visitors and claiming to find Bali secret beaches. But in the name of SEO (yes, I’m being blunt) there are a few I consider Bali’s hidden beaches in south Bali, being less crowded compared to Kuta, Suluban, Padang-padang, Sanur and Nusa Dua Beach, possibly due to difficult access or the little information mentioned about it. But I promise, the content still lives up to Indohoy standards. In addition, secrets about Kuta Beach in Bali and what Bali beaches mean to the locals.
Located on the coast of Ungasan area, Melasti Beach was a nice surprise. Though much praise of its beautiful white karst cliff that were cut for access, I personally think Melasti Beach is one of those beaches checking all the boxes for a perfect beach in Bali. It has clean white sand, a good stretch, and during calm waters the slightly sloped beach is like a giant swimming pool, arguably one of the best beaches in Bali for swimming. Also, hardly anyone selling stuff to your face and surrounding you are just people enjoying a good time. Well, there are a few people doing photoshoots, but it wasn’t too bothering.
Colorful beach umbrellas and beach chairs are up for rent should you want to stay in the shade, but still be close to the water. Other than than, enjoy bathing in sea and sun, people!
I would have to say the only con to this beach is that you would need to drive there yourself. Despite you could take an online taxi or ojek there, it’s hard to get one for the way back. But then again, usually travelers rent a moped in Bali, or car, anyways.
This beach is a secret because of a crucial reason: stairs. It’s the obstacle that will separate you with the rest of people that just don’t want to bother. Like me; but eventually end up there twice. The stairs is about a five minute walk, but a bit steep, possibly challenging for people with weak knees. There’s a handful of people on each occasion and hardly any facilities on the sandy area, so it’s pretty secretive.
The sand is mildly coarse and waves crash more closely compared to Melasti Beach. It also has a narrower stretch of sand. There is another small stretch beyond the cove, which is accessible during low tide, mostly accessed by surfers. Other than that, this is a white sand beach in Bali where one needs to bring a whole picnic gear. There are people selling water and snacks around the parking lot, located about the cliff that surround the sandy area, but there are none on the beach itself.
Now hold your horses. Before you go flippin tables because I mention this uber famous beach, hear me out. There’s a secret on Kuta Beach. Although its global reputation, not a lot of people know that Kuta Beach is home to thousands of baby turtles every year, even to this existing day. This totally made sense because considering the 60s was the time Kuta Beach was ‘discovered’, it was a relatively undisturbed beach, perfect for turtles to come back and lay eggs.
Please be mindful when sharing this information carefully as the whereabouts of turtle eggs is still under the pressure of poachers!
South of the south Kuta Beach gate is the office of Bali Sea Turtle Society (BSTS), organised mostly by volunteers. Each night, during March to December, the Olive Ridley turtles (Lepidochelys olivacea) lay eggs and volunteers patrol Kuta Beach to save them just after being laid by mommy turtles. To cover the whole beach, reports come from locals, security guards of various hotels, and people that work on this beach. After spotting a turtle laying, volunteers dig up the eggs and retrieve it to the office where they provide a new hole and guard it till the day it hatches and can be released to nature. I swear, I witness myself a turtle laying just on the beach in front of Hard Rock Café and Hotel.
Visitors are welcomed to patrol and help. Also, there are dates for turtle releases which visitors can also participate. Visit their website for more information about turtle patrol and turtle release.
Not really a secret but a trivia related to Bali beaches. Did you know that each beach has a temple or at least a ‘sanggah’? According to my Balinese friend and local, Adit of @commaditya, the Balinese honors the god or goddess that protect their water, source of life. In the cases of beaches, Balinese pray to Baruna, the god that protects the sea. Normally each beach would have at least one of these spots because it will be the location where the locals pray before spreading the ash of the dead in the sea. So, as fun and beautiful a beach is, it’s still a sacred place for the locals.
Those are our Bali secrets. Would care to share yours?