When it comes to sunsets, Uluwatu really has you spoilt for choice. The entire Bukit of Southern Bali is covered with amazing places to spend your evenings. Many of them, however, come with a hefty drinks tab and minimum spend. The locals, though, know exactly where to go to see these amazing Bali sunsets for free. Here are the best sunset spots in Uluwatu that the locals absolutely love.
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Table of Contents
- #1 – Karang Boma
- #2 – Jaran Hill
- #3 – Bingin Cliffs
- #4 – Tanjung Balangan
- #5 – Bukit Garuda
- How to get around in Bali
- Where to stay
- What else is in the area?
#1 – Karang Boma
Karang Boma is one of the most famous places on this list, and it isn’t even for the sunsets. Instagrammers and photographers from all over the world have converged on this place for the unique cliff top view that it offers.
Karang Boma is actually a small section of the Uluwatu Cliffs that juts out over the ocean like a knife’s edge. When you walk to the end of the cliff, you really feel like you are standing alone in the middle of a void. What makes this even better, is that the adjacent section of cliff is perfectly placed for a photographer to position himself to snap a great shot of you at the end of the cliff. The results are very dramatic.
The best time of year to get these shots is dry season. the cliff looks a lot more dramatic without the greenery of the trees and low shrubs along the edge. Plus, without the underbrush, you really stand out, perched on top of the cliff against the blue sky background. During wet season, you will have the amazing lush greenery to contrast with the blues, so your photos will also look incredible, albeit for a different reason.
Although Karang Boma has become famous for it’s social media photos of recent times, it is the dramatic views that make it one of the best sunset spots in Uluwatu. Located only a stones throw from Uluwatu Temple, the locals converge on this place in the early evenings to set up picnic rugs at the cliff edge and really enjoy the unspoilt views.
Follow the signs into the small warung at Karang Boma, and you will find a great little grassed area that is perfect for a comfortable seat while you enjoy a cold beverage or two. The walk along the cliff to the photo spot only takes a few minutes, and along the way you will find several other spots to sit away from the crowd, as well as the grassy area near the “knife’s edge”.
Like all cliff tops around Uluwatu, beware of the sudden drop and stay away from the edge. Although not as dangerous as Jaran Hill, there are no safety regulations in Indonesia, and what might seem like a great photo opportunity, CAN be very dangerous.
To locate Karang Boma, follow THIS link for a Google Maps location.
#2 – Jaran Hill
Jaran Hill is not only one of the best sunset spots in Uluwatu, but it is also one of my personal favorites. Of all the places on this list, it is truly the one that I have returned to time and again. It is really THAT good.
Jaran Hill is a place that has remained hidden from the tourism crowd up until now, and I have no idea how. It is clearly signposted on the main road, and all I can possibly think of is that people just have no idea what it is. They also have no idea what they are missing out on!
The road into Jaran Hill is nicely paved almost all the way. It is an easy ride off Jalan Uluwatu that only takes a couple of minutes. Once you reach the end, the road will jink to the right 90°, and there is a dirt road that continues straight. Follow this road for about 100m to a tall white lighthouse. Here, you can park your scooter and continue on foot along the path to Jaran Hill.
Jaran Hill is basically on the other side of Uluwatu Temple to Karang Boma, albeit a little closer. It is a dramatic location, perched right on the edge of the cliff, with a dizzying drop down the huge cliff face to the rocks and surf far below. As with Karang Boma, there is very little in the way of safety here, and you can stand right on the very edge if you are brave, or silly, enough! I would not recommend getting too close though, and the photos from a few feet away are just as good.
There is a small pop up drinks stand at Jaran Hill that serves cold beverages, and a nice, if small, grassy area. The headland is perfectly shaped, sloping slightly down toward the ocean, creating a perfect spot to sit and watch the sunset. This is DEFINITELY one of the best sunset spots in Uluwatu!
For a google maps location, click HERE.
For more information and my guide to Jaran Hill, check out the article HERE.
#3 – Bingin Cliffs
Bingin Cliffs was a place that I found simply by perusing Google Maps one day. I was trying to find the best sunset spots in Uluwatu, and I was discovering some wonderful hidden gems this way. Bingin Cliffs is located tucked away, off the tourist track, and I don’t think that I would have ever found it otherwise!
This place is easy to access from the main road. The only issue is parking, as it is not really an official place. If you are on scooter, you can just park along the side of the road at the access point, and then walk into the cliff tops.
To find Bingin Cliffs, follow THIS link for a Google Maps location.
When you reach the end of the road, the best place to park is about 100m short of the turnaround spot. Here, you will find a small gap in the wall that leads into the large paddock that is home to a couple of dozen cows. Follow the track, and it will lead you all the way down to the cliff edge.
Basically, at Bingin Cliffs, you are sitting on top of the cliffs in a large paddock with extraordinary views. To the right is the beautiful Dreamland beach, and views all the way along the coast of Bali. To the left and below is Bingin Beach. If you walk to the right a short way to the edge of the paddock, you will even find a path down to the beach which is accessible, except on high tide when it gets a bit dodgy.
Grab yourself a nice spot on the grass and enjoy one of the best sunset spots in Uluwatu. You will most likely share it with a few locals, and the occasional tourist that might stumble upon it on their evening stroll. It doesn’t matter, though, because there is plenty of room in the paddock, and the cows even do their best to stay out of your way.
#4 – Tanjung Balangan
Tanjung Balangan is probably closer to Jimbaran than it is to Ulu, but it still makes my list of best sunset spots in Uluwatu. The views from this headland are incredible, and also iconic. You will most likely recognize the spot for the photos that are taken of Balangan Beach. What most visitors don’t realize is that the sunsets here are incredible, and that is when you will find hundreds of locals converging on Balangan.
Tanjung Balangan is easily found by taking the turnoff at the roundabout (statue) at Ungasan. Follow THIS link for a Google Maps location.
It is easily accessed by car or scooter, and there is plenty of room for parking. I have actually been there when there were over a hundred scooters and 30 or 40 cars, and it was only half full.
My recommendation for Tanjung Balangan is to get there early. Not because you need to reserve a good spot, but because it is worth seeing Balangan before the crowd begins to arrive. Take a stroll around the headland, and get some photos of the great views and coastline. The panorama down along Balangan Beach is famous, and the best time to see it is when no one else is around. Although, if you can sneak a good photo at sunset, it would be incredible!
There are several spots to view the sunsets from around the headland, and if you walk right to the end you will even find some stairs that go down toward the water’s edge. There is a small temple down here, and the fishermen also use it during the day. It is also a wonderful spot for some really different photos.
Once you are done, find yourself a nice spot on the grass to watch the sunset. You will most likely be sharing it with a couple hundred locals, but as the sun drops toward the horizon, you will hardly know it. Tanjung Balangan is so peaceful, and the locals so respectful, that you will actually feel alone. That is, other than the wafting smell of sate from the portable stoves that many are likely to bring with them.
For more information on Tanjung Balangan, check out THIS link.
#5 – Bukit Garuda
Bukit Garuda is a secret spot that I can honestly say very few tourists would ever find. In fact, the times that I have been there, I have never seen another person who is not a local.
Located not too far from the great GWK (Garuda Wisnu Kencana) statue, Bukit Garuda is essentially a small hill with a dog park tucked in among the local villages. I found this place, once again, by perusing Google Maps for new places to explore around the Bukit area. What we found was a nice, quiet place with wonderful views of the statue, and the setting sun right alongside it.
This is not typical of the sunset spots in Uluwatu. For starters, there is no view of the ocean. Instead, what makes this place incredible is how close it is to GWK. I don’t think you can possibly get any closer without being actually INSIDE the perimeter of the park.
To find Bukit Garuda, follow THIS LINK for a Google Maps location. Don’t forget to bring a rug to sit on and bring a picnic for a memorable evening.
How to get around in Bali
Getting around in Bali is quite easy. My preferred mode of transport will always be by scooter, and I recommend this to anyone that is visiting the island. Bali is literally MADE for scooters, and there are many places that you can only get to ON a scooter. Some laneways and even rice paddies and fields are accessible by scooter, but not by car.
If you are heading out to find the best sunset spots in Uluwatu, then I really recommend you hiring a scooter. Most of the places on this list are able to be reached by car, but scooter is MUCH easier.
Karang Boma has a road running all the way in, but the last half kilometer is dirt, and the parking area small enough for 50 scooters, but only a few cars.
Jaran hill has hardly any parking for cars, if any. You will need to park out on the access road and walk a bit further to the cliff.
Bingin Cliffs is accessible, but the road is narrow and you will have to find a place to park. Possibly the best spot is at the very end of the road and there is only room for a couple of cars.
Tanjung Balangan is wide and easy no matter what your transportation, as is Bukit Garuda.
To hire a scooter, all you need is your local license from home, plus an international drivers permit. Make sure you bring one with you when you visit Bali. For more information check out THIS article. To hire a scooter from a reputable company, click THIS link.
If you are not confident to ride a scooter, then you can hire a car and driver to get around. Make a day trip of it, and your guide can take you to some of the other wonderful places in and around Uluwatu. Click on THIS LINK to find a really good and recommended guide and car.
Where to stay
The Bukit area has some amazing places to stay. When searching for sunset spots in Uluwatu, you really can stay anywhere, as this list in particular is very spread out. You can stay at Jimbaran, and be close to Balangan. Stay at Nusa Dua, and Bukit Garuda is just up the road. For Karang Boma, Jaran Hill and Bingin Cliffs, Uluwatu itself or Pecatu is probably better. So here are a few options for you to check out.
What else is in the area?
The Uluwatu area has plenty of things to see and do, as does the entire Bukit. This is one of the best areas of Bali, in particular for water sports. If you are visiting the sunset spots in Uluwatu, then why not make a day of it? Here are just a few options:
- Try the water sports at Tanjung Benoa.
- Visit the amazing Uluwatu Temple.
- Check out the shipwreck on Nunggalan Beach.
- Do the walk around the incredible Nusa Dua Beaches.
- Visit GWK.
- Discover Tegal Wangi Beach.
- Climb down to Bali’s smallest and most secluded beach at Green Bowl Beach.
- Surf the famous break of Suluban, and check out its iconic cave!
- Learn to surf at Dreamland Beach.
- Have dinner at the Rock Bar Ayana.
- Visit the “locals only” beach at Geger Beach, Nusa Dua.
The Bukit area around Uluwatu has some of the most amazing sunset spots in Bali. Most of them are easy to find, and all you have to do is follow the crowd. If you are looking for a more secluded place, then this list of sunset spots in Uluwatu should have you headed in the right direction!
As an added bonus, you can download a copy of this article in PDF form by clicking the link below!
For more Sunset spots in Bali, check out THIS article.