Popular with great sunsets
Published/Last edited or updated: 23rd March, 2017
While for better or worse Kuta is Bali’s best known beach, if you keep walking with the airport at your back you’ll pass through Legian and eventually reach Seminyak. There’s no clear demarcation between the beaches here — walk too far and you’ll stumble onto Batu Belig as after all they’re a single strip of sand — but for our purposes Seminyak’s beach stretches from where Jalan Double Six empties out beside Cocoon, through to the area in front of Potato Head.
As with its cousins closer to the airport, the beach is an off-grey, fine sand, covered for much of its length by a scattering of deckchairs, surfboard and boogie-board rentals, and plenty of roving vendors selling everything from ice creams and kites to sunglasses and crossbows. While it gets busier in the late afternoon, during the day it’s generally quieter than Legian and certainly than Kuta, while further out Batu Belig is quieter still.
The area where Double Six finishes is popular with surf schools thanks to its beginner-friendly surf break and the area can get quite crowded with students, teachers, swimmers and other surfers. Off the beach, on the other side of the small road, are plenty of affordable cafes and restaurants — whose guests often pop over for a swim between snacking. The surfboard renters will happily sell you cold Bintang and other drinks at very good rates and you’ll also easily get nasi bungkus for takeaway, giving you lunch and a cold beer for just a few dollars.
On the other side of Double Six is Cocoon Beach Club, a comfortable spot with a tempting pool ideal for a splurgy lazy brunch and equally good in the evening for cocktails. Continue along the way past a series of beach bars and restaurants including Crystal Palace, La Plancha and Juice Park, which fill this stretch of beach. They nearly all have affordable food, large beanbags and low tables out front, making comfortable fodder for late afternoon lay arounds for those not wanting a deckchair or the sand.
A bit of fairly empty beach then stretches on till you reach Bali’s famous Kudeta. The beach out front here has few deckchairs and can get a bit of a current so isn’t as popular with the surfing schools as back down Double Six way, but there are still plenty of people swimming. Watch yourself as the current can be quite strong around here. We prefer Kudeta for a morning brunch (Sunday is kids’ day, with craft activities, balloons and usually a slide or two) as by the afternoon its popularity gets the better of it when it can be a bit uncomfortably crowded and rowdy. Prices are high but fair considering the quality on offer and the martinis are excellent.
On the slightest of bends on the beach you’ll reach the beach access to Petitenget temple and outstanding Italian eatery La Lucciola and its attached Frangipani Bar. We highly recommend a meal here — ideally for sunset — and be sure to arrive 45 minutes early so you can enjoy a drink at Frangipani beforehand. La Lucciola’s food is excellent, and with a well-kept lawn setting out front, this is a comfortable and kid-friendly spot for a family dinner.
Last stop is the grandiose Potato Head, with its fabulous horizon pool and multiple bars and restaurants. Prices are on par with Kudeta, and it tends to be a little less congested here in the afternoon thanks to their extra space. Regardless of the crowds, this is an enjoyable spot to take in sunset in a memorable setting. If you want a spot by the pool get here early — very early.
Keep walking and you’ll reach the W Retreat and Spa, but we’ll save that for our Batu Belig description.
Stuart McDonald co-founded Travelfish.org with Samantha Brown in 2004. He has lived in Thailand, Cambodia and Indonesia, where he worked as an under-paid, under-skilled language teacher, an embassy staffer, a newspaper web-site developer, freelancing and various other stuff. His favourite read is The Art of Travel by Alain de Botton.
These tours are provided by Travelfish partner GetYourGuide.