[BALI] Nelayan Beach, Canggu - The Artsy Sunset

Welcome to Nelayan Beach

With the title of "Resort Village", of course it's expected for Canggu to possess lots of beach options. Batu Bolong Beach and Echo Beach are only among the more popular ones, but have you heard much of a not-so-secret Nelayan Beach?

The gem is just adjacent to Berawa Beach, obviously accessible to reach by walking along the shore, even from Batu Belig beach down below (well, honestly, you can reach all those beaches in southwestern Bali on foot in one walking session if you want).

I chose the mainland route though. Walked from my lodge in Berawa area, took the famous shortcut to reach Jl. Nelayan (Nelayan Street). It was a nice walk, to be honest, as I chose to do it just before the dusk so the sun wasn't that strong. As you might expect from Canggu, Jl. Nelayan is also full of establishments covering accommodations, restaurants, cafes, laundry houses and bike rentals. It should be a vibrant place if it weren't for Covid-19 in which was the time when I visited.

The shortcut from Jl. Berawa to Jl. Nelayan

A cafe in Jl. Nelayan, with its loyal customers :3

The walk all the way to Nelayan Beach in the southwest will lead you to a complex of villa and an opening to the beach entrance with a small parking lot and warung (food stall) just before the sand field starts. And that will be the time you see everyone, both locals and expats alike, huddle together watching the spectacle (at least that's what happened when I visited, because the sunset show was about to start).

The villa complex just before the beach entrance.

Typical to other Canggu beaches in southwestern part of Bali (as well as its mother attraction Tanah Lot Beach & Temple just to the south from this stretch of beaches), Nelayan has strong waves for surfers to tame and rather black sand. So don't expect to see pristine clear blue water with white soft sands which you can find in the southern part of Bali.

Some also said that Nelayan boasts a series of colorful murals and graffitis in fishermen's huts across the beach, perhaps for those Insta-worthy photo hunters, but since I'm not a part of that tribe, I kinda missed the "artsy" stuff. Plus, my motive there was to see the other "artsy" stuff. The kind of art that God creates.

Yes, since Nelayan Beach lies in the west coast of Bali, and since I told you guys that I started walking there just when the sun almost set, I was there for the none other but the sunset. It wasn't a day-off for me, actually, and the minute I told my colleagues I'd left for the beach, there were still some meetings left (and I even still had some calls by the beach!) so I only got a little time for Nelayan. But that was enough, actually.

Local kids flying kite by the beach.

The moments before dark in Nelayan was a total bliss, because the beach is not so much popular as the rest of other Canggu beaches. Nelayan Beach is actually nestled in between the famous Berawa and Canggu beaches, but somehow, the crowd there is not as big. You don't have to sit on a pretentious beach bars nearby (which I couldn't recall if there were any in Nelayan Beach), just pick a spot anywhere and you're all set. Everyone else does the same, sitting upon the sand, on a piece of cloth, or maybe on top of their flip flops, and fix their eyes to the horizon where the sun will sink behind the water.

The dramatic sunset was actually one of the best I had during my one-month stay (although factors of skies, clouds, rains, and anything weather-wise might play a super important role -- so manage your expectations!). As the calming sound of rolling waves fill your earlobes and the sun sinks with fluorescent pastel-colors, everyone seems to be hypnotized by the spectacle, humming in awe.

The "art" I was looking for :)

If you're staying in Canggu, be it in Berawa, Batu Mejan, or wherever, Nelayan is definitely a beach you must visit! A plus point if you're into random arts and Insta-worthy installations, but even if you're just there for its mere nature beauty, you'll win anyway.


Address: Jl. Nelayan, Canggu, North Kuta, Bali
Entrance Fee: Rp2.000 ($0.2) for parking