The Secret Beach – Pasir Putih
If you have been a regular on the Baliblog forum then you will have noticed of late there have been some inquiries and great answers regarding the best beaches on the island. The general consensus is that pasir putih, or secret beach, near to Candi Dasa is the favourite amongst readers. The pristine beach at Pasir Putih is an idyllic place to relax, soak up a bit of sun and swim in the clean and clear waters. I went to this ‘secret spot’ the same year Lonely Planet listed it in their Bali guidebook as the best beach in Bali. That was in 2004 and, although I haven’t returned there since, I can imagine it is now looking more like Kuta Beach on a bad day. Back in 2004 there was only a ramshackle warung and a couple of Javanese tourists from a nearby hotel. Like most beautiful stretches of yet-to-be-discovered beaches, once the word gets out, then it is a fee-for-all as far as the locals marking out their territory to build a warung and not long after that, no doubt, you would find a Mcdonalds or some other foreign enterprise despoiling the beauty of the area.
As I mentioned previously, at the time of my visit it was a pristine stretch of sand, almost erringly surreal. Once you find the narrow gang (look for the sign that says ‘Virgin Beach’) that leads to the beach, it is a pot-holed road and so bring a cushion for your bum!. When I was there in 2004 the locals had become aware of this pristine spot’s potential and were charging all vehicles Rp2,000. Just drive past them through the spacious areas nearby and then continue to the parking area. One thing I do recommend you do is to take a long walk along the beach to where the prahu’s are located and have a chat to the local fishermen. They are really friendly people and will probably try and sell you a basketful of fish. It is a beautiful stretch of coastline, pristine.