Pantai Pasir Putih (White Sand beach) is set about a 20-minute drive north of Candi Dasa on Bali’s eastern coast. It’s one of those tucked away beaches that gets a mention in most guidebooks but few people ever actually bother getting to because it involves a bit of travelling to reach.
Let’s get one thing straight off the bat: the sand here isn’t white. It is closer to white than yellow, and we assume it’s called “White sand beach” because “Closer to white than yellow sand beach” is a bit of a mouthful — but it ain’t white. The beaches to the north and south however are black volcanic sand, which makes this beach's whiteness rather remarkable.
Whatever the colour, it’s still a lovely beach with super fine squeaky sand. A bunch of warungs at the northern end of the beach will feed you, while the southern end is given over to the local fishermen’s boats. The warungs are cheap and cheerful, but be sure to check that the seafood you order here is fresh — especially in low season.
When calm, the water here is a glistening turquoise millpond that really is a delight to set eyes on and swim in. But the water can also get quite rough and there is a reasonable drop-off, so be careful and if you’ve got kids in tow be especially viligant.
The setting really is stunning and there are beach umbrellas and deckchairs should you want them. We heard about another beach one bay down that can only be reached by boat — some backpackers returned from such a trip while we were lazing around. Apparently any warung owner can arrange such a jaunt and the backpackers highly recommended it, saying the beach was totally deserted.
The beach is at the end of a great example of a crap dirt road so if you’re torn between getting a car with or without driver, we’d go with the “with driver” option. If you’re on a motorbike and you’re a bit of a novice, leave it near the top and walk down.
There’s no accommodation here — the best selection of cheap places to stay near here are in Candi Dasa, though you could also visit here from Amed (though that’s quite a bit more driving). You’d be looking at a little over two hours to reach here from Kuta — certainly doable for a long day trip.
Many first-time visitors to Bali find themselves a little underwhelmed by the beaches. It’s a response easy to imagine considering all the beautiful beaches featured on Bali brochures and the reality of crowded Kuta. Luckily, Bali is a big island with pretty beaches enough for everyone, and over the next seven days we’ll show you one a day to help you fill out a week’s beach holiday in Bali.
How to get there
It is best to visit White Sand Beach with your own transport although bemos travel past the turn off with regularity and an ojek from the turn off shouldn't be hard to arrange once there. Expect to pay 5,000 rupiah for the bemo from Candi Dasa and another 5,000 rupiah for the ojek from the turnoff on the main road.
By Stuart McDonald
Last updated on 24th July, 2015.