Nusa Penida’s rapid development in the last few years has seen a smattering of decent eateries opening around the island, and while it is no gourmet paradise, a selection of restaurants and cafes offer a little variety from the traditional warungs and food stalls.
If you are after Western food, it’s hard to go past Ba’Bar Kitchen at Toya Pakeh. In a casual setting with long booths and an open kitchen this deceivingly simple looking place dishes up very good French and Italian fare—it was decent enough for us to give it a second try. The menu includes pizza and pasta along with a few meaty mains and snacks—some, but not a great deal of vegetarian options. We tried the mushroom pizza (55,000 rupiah) which was thin, crispy and close to perfect in our book, and thoroughly enjoyed the seared white fish with roasted gnocchi (79,000 rupiah) on our second visit with a taste to rival any of Bali’s good restaurants. A range of cocktails, beer and wine by the glass are available too.
Just up the road from here side by side are Organica and the very popular The Krusty Krab. Green and fresh looking Organica offers an extensive selection including fish, seafood (85,000–180,000 rupiah), pasta (60,000–85,000 rupiah) and Indonesian favourites (25,000–70,000 rupiah) as well as popular breakfast choices such as smoothie bowls (65,000 rupiah). The menu provides pictures of the various fish species, so you can have some idea what you are ordering and boasts that only fresh produce and spices are used as well as no MSG. Cartoon themed The Krusty Krab draws the crowds with its cheap and cheerful Indonesian and Western favourites grab a nasi goreng for 20,000 rupiah or sink your teeth into a burger for 30,000 rupiah.
If you would prefer to eat where the locals go, the fast food style BFC (Best Fried Chicken) is better than you may expect—skip the fake KFC crispy chicken (unless you’d really like some, it’s not bad) and try the fresh and delicious ayam bakar (barbecue chicken) with spicy sauce (18,000 rupiah), they surprisingly even serve beer here too.
For more “authentic” local fare, Dapur Kue Hamzah does an excellent nasi campur, perfect for a quick feed before you jump in one of the nearby fast boats.
Moving east towards Ped, Sanctum Dive is graced with a beachfront cafe that is not only popular with divers, but is a pleasant spot for a seaside bevy. You can enjoy live music here some nights too. The town of Ped itself boasts several restaurants and busy bars, and our pick for a lazy lunch or relaxing dinner is beachside Penida Colada with daily specials and a popular happy (three) hour(s) (16:00–19:00) with two-for-one cocktails. We enjoyed a tasty quinoa and prawn salad for 70,000 rupiah and the vegan chocolate mousse is one of the best we’ve tried anywhere. We love that they offer a free coffee in exchange for picking up a bag of rubbish on the beach—ask them for a bag if you don’t have one.
Penida Espresso is not just about coffee (“the most important meal of the day”—says the sign), it draws the punters for their selection of fresh and health smoothie bowls (59,000 rupiah). Next door The Gallery offers a large range of vegan and gluten-free choices too.
Full Moon Bar and Restaurant is pumping with a full moon party every night with live bands and a fun friendly vibe, or if you’d just prefer a quiet seaside beer with the sounds of lapping waves, SD Point serves some of the coldest beer in town (at some of the cheapest prices too) and we’re told the coffee is pretty decent as well.
Opposite the temple, Pura Penataran Ped, a row of cheap and cheerful warungs will fill you up with tasty fare and you’ll hardly notice the dint in your wallet.
As you venture east towards Sampalan and are in need of a good coffee, the best coffee we tried on the island (cafe latte 35,000 rupiah) is at the upmarket looking air-con cafe Papila’s Coffee House.
Moving towards Batununggul a row of popular eateries include the unusually named Art Rolling Bistro whose funky decor with retro bikes and blackboard art would not be out of place in a modern CBD. The menu is mostly Western fare and is popular for their pizzas (45,000–85,000 rupiah).
Across the road, Warung Cocoleaf offers dining in a pleasant garden setting with fresh food and friendly but very slow service, serving Western and Indonesian fare. We visited on a busy night, but it took over an hour for our food to arrive, so don’t come hungry—luckily the grilled fish (70,000 rupiah) was worth the wait, but we were too full to try the coco loco (45,000 rupiah) that we saw several other diners enjoying—a coconut filled with fruit and rum ice cream—next time.
Warung Jukung set beachside in a stylish open joglo is a another delightful spot to while away a few hours. The menu is the usual mix of Indonesian and international choices and the views are a delight. They also rent out snorkel equipment if the lure of the sea is too much.
Continuing east around the island, when planning your day tripping adventures make sure to arrive at Atuh Beach in time for lunch, and pull up a beanbag at Tropical Cliff, one of several beach front warungs where the fresh barbecue fish is cooked to perfection, further enhanced by the fabulous view.
As you travel around, there’s always local fare to be found, and tourist friendly eateries are popping up in the most unlikely locations. On the way to Crystal Bay from Toya Pakeh, Warung Tu Pande and Jungle Warung are both popular spots with good Indonesian fare and friendly service. We didn’t try it, but were recommended the grilled seafood at Jungle Warung and it gets rave reviews too.
Vegan Soul Kitchen at Echo Alam Nusa Lodge tucked away in the hills is worth the detour with Western and Indonesian vegan mains around 40,000 rupiah and thick smoothies for 30,000 rupiah.
Art Rolling Bistro Jalan Ped-Buyuk, Batununggul, Nusa Penida; T: (0813) 3757 4608; Open Mo–Su: 08:00–24:00.
Ba’Bar Kitchen Jalan Raya Toya Pakeh-Ped, Toya Pakeh, Nusa Penida; T: (0831) 1454 5870; Open Mo–Su: 16:00–22:00.
BFC Jalan Raya Toya Pakeh-Ped, Toya Pakeh, Nusa Penida; T: (0812) 3711 2868; Open Mo–Su: 10:00–21:00.
Dapur Kue Hamzah Jalan Raya Toya Pakeh-Ped, Toya Pakeh, Nusa Penida; .
Full Moon Bar and Restaurant Jalan Raya Bodong, Ped, Nusa Penida; T: (0813) 3874 5817, (0852) 0587 1291, (0853) 3854 45; https://fullmoon-bungalows.com Mo–Su 07:00–23:00.
Jungle Warung Jalan Raya Toya Pakeh, Subunibus, Nusa Penida; T: (0822) 3633 3209, (0813) 5331 2120; https://www.facebook.com/Jungle-Warung-Nusa-Penida-824600227560663/ Mo–Su: 09:00–22:00.
Organica Jalan Raya Toya Pakeh-Ped, Toya Pakeh, Nusa Penida; T: (0853) 3329 7202; https://www.facebook.com/Organica-Fresh-and-Tasty-Food-1225366124264343/ .
Papila’s Coffee House 53 Jalan Nusa Indah, Kutampi, Nusa Penida; T: (0366) 558 1418; http://papilascoffee.com Open Mo–Su 08:00–22:00.
Penida Colada Beachfront, Ped, Nusa Penida; T: (0821) 4532 9004, (0821) 4676 3627; https://www.facebook.com/penidacolada/ Mo–Su: 08:00–23:30.
Penida Espresso Jalan Raya Bodong, Ped, Nusa Penida; T: (0812) 3602 9617; https://www.facebook.com/penidaespresso/ Mo–Su: 07:00–17:00.
Sanctum Jalan Ped-Buyuk, Ped, Nusa Penida; T: (0812) 3822 2521; http://www.sanctumdiveindonesia.com Mo–Su: 07:00–22:00.
SD Point Jalan Ped-Buyuk, Ped, Nusa Penida; T: (0821) 4415 0115, (0856) 9206 7849; https://www.facebook.com/SD-Point-Beach-Bar-Restaurant-630695830621912/ Mo–Su: 09:00–22:00.
The Gallery Jalan Raya Bodong, Ped, Nusa Penida; T: (0812) 3922 6982, (0878) 6033 0551; https://www.facebook.com/gallerynusapenida/ Mo–Su: 07:00–22:00.
The Krusty Krab Jalan Raya Toya Pakeh-Ped, Toya Pakeh, Nusa Penida; T: (0852) 3008 6858; Mo–Su: 08:00–22:00.
Tropical Cliff Atuh Beach; T: (0853) 3873 6099, (0853) 3355 5389; .
Vegan Soul Kitchen Echo Alam Nusa Lodge; Sakti, Nusa Penida; T: (0853) 3358 5915; https://web.facebook.com/vegansoulkitchen/ Mo–Su: 08:00–21:00.
Warung Cocoleaf Jalan Ped-Buyuk, Batununggul, Nusa Penida; Mo–Su: 08:00–24:00.
Warung Jukung Jalan Ped-Buyuk, Batununggul, Nusa Penida; T: (0812) 461 0133; https://www.facebook.com/pg/warungjukung/photos/ Mo–Su: 09:00–22:00.
Warung Tu Pande Jalan Raya Sebunibus-Crystal Bay, Nusa Penida; T: (0852) 3750 1381; https://www.facebook.com/warungtupande/ Mo–Su: 07:00–21:00.
Sally spent twelve years leading tourists around Indonesia and Malaysia where she collected a lot of stuff. She once carried a 40kg rug overland across Java. Her house has been described as a cross between a museum and a library. Fuelled by coffee, she can often be found riding her bike or petting stray cats. Sally believes travel is the key to world peace.