Best Bali sunset watching spot? How can we nominate only one on an island famous for its breathtaking cliff-top views and gob-smacking sea temple silhouettes? We’re going to do it anyway: Seminyak for sundowners on the sand.
Suggesting the best Bali sunset watching spot is a challenge for an Australian who comes from a country that’s home to the world’s most drop-dead gorgeous beaches and jaw-dropping sunsets, I have to admit. And I have to confess that I wouldn’t go to Bali specifically for the beach. I’m much more interested in Balinese cuisine and culture.
Now Terence, on the other hand, would definitely do a trip solely for Bali’s mythical surf. But even he’ll admit that as brilliant as the waves are, Australia boasts better beaches. But Bali’s sunsets…
Wow, Bali’s sunsets are something else, especially when savoured from a bean bag on the beach, slap bang on the sand at Seminyak, with a chilled Bintang or icy cocktail in hand… gawking at a sinking sun is easily one of the best things to do in Bali for us.
Best Bali Sunset Watching Spot
I don’t know why, but Bali certainly delivers some of the most sublime sunsets we’ve seen in the world. And we have a thing about sunsets. We’ve relished them everywhere from Perth to the Peloponnese.
Even on the most overcast of days – and we had a few on our recent 10-day Bali trip – the Indonesia island served up some of the world’s most jaw-dropping sunsets.
No matter how grey the day was, come late afternoon, like a magnet the golden light pulled us down to the seaside and our closest stretch of sand, Seminyak, for sundowners.
While any west-facing beach on the west coast is going to give you a fantastic vantage point to watch that big ball of fire sink beneath the horizon, there’s something about Seminyak that makes it the best Bali sunset watching spot for us.
Maybe it’s Seminyak’s panoramic sea vistas, its wide stretches of sand, the unobstructed ocean views, the beach activity that makes for wonderful silhouette shots, and maybe those buzzy Seminyak sunset bars also have something to do with it…
While we’re usually drawn to spots that are more local – during all our years in Sydney, we’d take in a sinking sun witnessed from a suburban park any day over sunset vistas observed from the Opera House or Harbour Bridge – it’s hard to escape other travellers on Bali’s west coast.
But let’s face it: when it comes to watching day turn to night, few things scream holiday more than sundowners overlooking the ocean, bare feet in the sand, and a cocktail in hand, with other holidaymakers – which is what makes Seminyak the best Bali sunset watching spot.
Sure, the views of Uluwatu Temple atop a 70-metre cliff, set against a vast ocean and sky and the sound of the waves crashing on the rocks below, is an exceptional experience.
And following up sunset with the Kecak fire dance show is the icing on the cake. But you also have to contend with aggressive long-tailed macaques that have their sights set on your valuables while you have your eyes on the horizon.
And, yes, it’s pretty special to be able to capture that big ball of fire as it sinks behind the silhouette of a multi-tiered temple on a dramatic rocky outcrop, as it does at the sacred Hindu site of Tanah Lot – but you can’t do that with a heady drink in hand.
You could sip something as you take in the sunset from Canggu. Terence was able to capture some spectacular shots from Echo Beach on our last trip there while my mother and I shared a bottle of crisp Aussie white.
But there’s something about that rocky beach and the grey-black sand… sorry, I’m not a fan. And Kuta… well, Kuta is definitely not our cup of tea, or rather… style of beer.
While sipping a negroni on a comfy sofa at a swanky bar beside the beach, such as Woo Bar, Ku De Ta or Potato Head is definitely my kind of thing, there’s nothing quite like being slap bang on the sand at somewhere like La Plancha at Seminyak.
There’s just something about being with other barefoot sunburnt holidaymakers in their crushed white cottons, all sharing the same awe-inspiring moment from their bean bags as they juggle their iPhones and selfie sticks, the paper umbrellas falling out of their mason jars as they bargain for batik sarongs that they don’t really need… you just can’t help but feel you’re on holiday, can you? Love that feeling! How about you?
This post is part of a series from Indonesia, from Bali, Yogyakarta and Borobudur. Our trip was supported by Tourism Indonesia and Skyscanner, which provided flights, some accommodation and some transport. Reflections, opinions and recommendations are obviously our own.