Bingin Beach has long been known by surfers around the world to have one of the best waves in Bali, but recently Bingin has been discovered by non-surfers as the hippest beach village in Bali.
See why now is the time to visit Bingin Beach
Bingin is still a genuine village with a tight-knit community. It just happens to sit on top and inside a clifftop overlooking one of the world’s best barrelling left-hand waves.
It’s the clifftop views down onto some of the worlds’s best surf spots, right across the Bukit Peninsula, which first brought visitors to Bingin. It used to be surfers-only here, with basic, rough and ready accommodation and delicious local Indonesian food. There was little choice for dining out or doing other stuff, so it was strictly surf, eat, sleep, repeat.
Yet the beaches are so beautiful on the Bukit Peninsula, when we first saw them a few years back, we were really surprised at how ‘undiscovered’ the area still was. Breathtaking views right across the surf to Jimbaran Bay are still viewed from farmland, often standing alongside Bali’s ridiculously beautiful and chilled-out cows: At this time, the Bukit Peninsula is still mostly green and unspoiled.
The Peninsula was always very dry and historically has much less rainfall than Canggu and Seminyak. Lack of water prevented the same kind of development as has been seen in those very busy areas. It was the relatively recent arrival of a mains water supply to the Bukit Peninsula which has now begun to attract shops and restaurants to open. The choice of restaurants now for eating out is fantastic! Tasteful boutique shops will satisfy any shopping urges you may have.
Now, undoubtedly, Bingin Beach is the centre of Bali’s most happening area, yet as a no-though-road, it stays lovely and quiet.
Bingin sits strategically, right in the centre of the 5 best surf breaks on the Peninsula; from north to south, Balangan, Dreamland, (Bingin), Impossibles, Padang Padang and Ulluwatu. But if you don’t surf, it’s ok! You can enjoy the stunning white sandy beaches, swim and snorkel in turquoise waters, shop and just eat great food.
Bingin’s location is just 30 minutes south of Denpasar’s airport.
An airport taxi, Grab or Uber can bring you to Swell (or another hotel in the area).
Taxis are decent value; it should cost you around 250.000 rupiah (that’s the equivalent of $25 AUD, $15 USD or €14 Euros) to get from DPS airport to Bingin.
Bingin Beach is a really great base to explore the many beaches and attractions on the Bukit.
Generally, people get around here on foot or on scooters for longer journeys. The roads are fairly quiet and safe. Taxis are also readily available and getting out and about to see the sights is easy. Swell’s location is really convenient; we are just 200 meters walk from the top of the cliff and the steps down to the beach. You can also walk to shops and restaurants easily from our front door.
Bali is one of those must-visit countries for a beach holiday, yet it has so much more to offer.
With a mostly Hindu population, Bali’s ceremonies and offerings are famous the world over. Wherever you walk around, you will see the little hand made baskets of goodies and flower petals set down, topped by an incense stick wafting beautiful aromas down the street.
You will notice that every property (including Swell) has a temple outside. Several daily offerings are made to please the Hindu gods and bring prosperity.
From your base in Bingin, you can take a scooter or taxi to some of the other places which are well worth a visit.
Uluwatu temple, the most important temple on the Bukit, is only 20 minutes from us. Sitting high above the ocean on the cliff top, the temple is open to the public for a small entrance fee. Take an hour or two to wander round this peaceful place and if you are lucky enough to get a ticket to the sunset Firedance, it’s well worth it.
Wander down from Swell onto to Bingin Beach at sunset for a fresh fish BBQ (see below for lots of restaurant options).
Take a Yoga class at Temple Lodge (daily classes alternating in Hatha and Vinyasa Yoga take place at 0800am).
2 minutes walk from Swell is the Bali Training Centre; you will be put through your paces with classes in Muay Thai/Kickboxing, Kettlebell, Open Gym, Fitness HIIT, Booty and Core, etc. These classes are extremely popular!
Thomas Beach (just 10 minutes on a scooter from us and where there is also some surf) is a magnificent swimming beach with azure, crystal clear water for snorkelling. Warungs (simple local restaurants) on the beach will serve you food and drinks.
Padang Padang, Dreamland, Balangan and Uluwatu beaches are only 5 to 10 minutes scooter from us; some you can walk to at low-tide direct from Bingin Beach.
It’s worth considering basing yourself in Bingin even when you want to visit places like Ubud for a day (1.5 hours by taxi) or to go and visit the magnificent water palaces like Taman Soekasada Ujung (2 hours by taxi). Day trips from us are easily organised and a driver and a car will cost around 600.000 rupiah (that’s $60 AUD/$38 USD/€34).
One of the good things about Bingin is its close proximity to several different world-class surf spots. Bingin, Impossibles and Dreamland are all a short walk and/or paddle away. Even access to Padang Padang is possible without the need to get into a taxi.
These different surf spots all have different characteristics, so here’s the info:
The famous wave at Bingin has a split personality: a low to mid tide on 4’+ swell and bigger is for advanced and expert surfers only.
Bingin on a high tide with Swell less than 4′ in size is ideal for beginners and intermediates.
Bingin on lower and mid tides:
Regarded as one of the best waves in Bali: A short but perfect left-hand wave with a perfectly makeable barrel section.
A very short paddle from Bingin Beach brings you into the lineup at Bingin. The take-off area is small so Bingin can get pretty ‘crowded’ with more than 20 people out. Take your time, respect the locals and you’ll get a few waves.
What to watch out for:
-Shallow and sharp reef when falling off the wave on lower tides.
-End section (Greedies) that looks make-able but will shred the skin of your back when you don’t make it
-Walking in over the reef at low tide is not pleasant.
-Respect the locals, don’t snake / hassle and drop in.
Bingin on high tide:
A mellow right-hander that breaks into a deep channel offers ideal learn to surf conditions for people who want to learn to surf. For intermediate surfers, the left (main peak) on a high tide is a lot more mellow and ideal for practicing turns or the odd barrels.
What to watch out for:
-Occasional bigger sets can catch people by surprise and boards start flying.
-Make sure there is enough water over the reef so you don’t get scraped (1.5m+ tide height over the reef)
Impossibles is one of the longer left-hand waves in Bali. Suitable for surfers in the intermediate / advanced levels and up.
Impossibles wave characteristics
A long wave located between Padang Padang and Bingin Beach. There are several different sections that can all connect on the right day. The bigger the swell size the better the wave is. Access is from Bingin Beach and paddle (or walk) over the lagoon and reef towards Padang.
Another access is from Padang Padang beach and then paddling towards Bingin. The best take off spot is in front of the Anantara hotel lift and stairs.
What to watch out for:
-Shallow end section that closes out over sharp reef at the end section
-Bigger sets that break far out can easily snap your leash so make sure you have a good one on your board.
-Plenty of sealife can be seen on certain days: Turtles and Dugongs (seacows)
-Early mornings have less strong offshore winds.
Until a few years ago, surfers who stayed in the Bingin area had the choice of Nasi Goreng (fried rice) or Bami Goreng (fried noodles). Those days are gone and there is now a wide variety of superb food available in the Bingin area.
Restaurants on Bingin Beach
Having a meal on the beach at Bingin is a great way to watch the sunset whilst having a delicious meal.
Besides those restaurants there are also several smaller warungs serving simple but tasty home cooked Indonesian meals at low prices.
Restaurants in Bingin
If you don’t fancy the 80+ steps down (and up again) to the beach but are looking for a good place to eat, then in Bingin village there are several good restaurants to choose from these days.
Other restaurants in the Bingin area:
More restaurants are either a 5 minutes scooter ride, or a slightly longer walk from Swell, or they will deliver to you at Swell:
There are many more more restaurants in the Bingin / Padang Uluwatu region, all within a 10 minute scooter drive from Swell, so making a full list would take 10 pages. If you feel we missed something important, let us know.
It’s not just surfing that is on offer at Bingin beach. here are some recommendations in the Bingin area that we highly recommend:
Spa & Massage
The Bambu hut: 2-minute walk from Swell offers great massages in a clean and nice environment. (link)
Purnama Spa & Bodywork: Satoko offers great massages, combined with sounds and gentle stretching (link)
We are sure you are going to love Bingin Beach as much as we do