Balangan was once almost impossible to access, and the only visitors were surfers, who would make their way down back roads and trek overland, or come by boat. Today, it is no longer a secret, with roads connecting the beach to busier areas that are kilometers away. However, visitors still have to find their way down winding back roads that run mostly through forests and scrub brush, and development here is very basic.
The beach itself is one of Bali’s most picturesque and peaceful, presenting a true paradise for visitors. The clean white sand of Balangan’s horseshoe-shaped bay is only interrupted by a few beachside huts, built mostly of wood and palm fronds, which act as basic restaurants and places to stay.
Cars and motorcycles can only access the areas behind the beach, so the only traffic here is on foot. Balangan is popular with a combination of families, surfers, and trendy young people, who can be seen passing the day on beach loungers, playing in the sand, swimming in the clear ocean waters in front of the beach, or surfing the popular left-hand wave a bit farther out to sea.
The ocean bottom here is living reef, but closer to the shore, it flattens out into rock that sticks out of the water at low tide and is covered with beautiful emerald-colored seaweed. The ocean near the beach is not at all dangerous, but the bottom can be both sharp and slippery, so swimmers should watch where they put their feet.
Snorkeling is not usually done here, but it could be, as the reef is always covered with tropical fish. Farther out to the ocean, there can be a strong current running parallel to the beach, and there are no lifeguards, so it is best to stay close to shore. The beach huts here serve decent and affordable food and plenty of cold drinks, making this a popular place to spend the whole day. Balangan is especially unforgettable at sunset.