Crystal Bay is one of those mystical places, extremely beautiful and brimming with a special aura. Crystal Bay is famous for its impressive and colorful sunsets, for its crystal clear turquoise waters and for its incredible marine life. This is where scuba divers go for an encounter with the gigantic and gentle Mola Mola, or Sunfish, a weird-looking pelagic fish that spends an important part of its life below 200 m/650 ft and occasionally swim up to lesser depths to bask in warmer waters and get a good skin scrub by smaller fishes. The best time to meet mola molas is between July and November but sightings are possible all year round. Snorkelers and swimmers might see this incredible fish (it can weigh up to 1 metric ton), as it is not unusual for it to break up to the surface, although most encounters occur at a depth of 20-30 m/60-90 ft.
Crystal Bay is a perfect day trip, set against steep green cliffs and with a nice rocky outcrop towards the north of the bay with a temple atop of it, an exceptional place to celebrate Bali’s nature.
Things to know before going to Crystal Bay, Nusa Penida.
- There are no ATMs at Crystal Bay. Remember to bring cash with you!
- Don’t go beyond the islet that marks the limit of the bay with the Penida-Ceningan channel where currents can be very strong.
Where is Crystal Bay, Nusa Penida, Located?
Crystal Bay is located in the northwestern coast of Nusa Penida, an island between Bali’s southeast coast and Lombok. Nusa Penida is 13 km/8 mi away from the Island of the Gods, and belongs to Bali’s Klungkung Regency.
How to get to Crystal Bay, Nusa Penida, from Bali?
By speed boat, with a crossing time of about 30 minutes.
Tickets can be booked online, from the many ticket booths in south Bali and Ubud -hotel pick-up is included – or directly at the beach in Sanur. One way trips sell from 9 US$.
Then From Nusa Penida’s Toya Pakeh Harbour:
You can rent a scooter directly in the harbour, for around IDR 100K/7 US$ per day, and go to Crystal Bay managing your own time, by a brand new hard-topped road in 20 min. Fill up your gas tank before heading out.
Of course, if you don’t want to drive, you can always rent a private car with a driver for around IDR 600k/ 40 US$.
Booking a Day Trip.
These one-day excursions from Bali include lunch, snorkeling gear and hotel pick-up.
Instagrammer’s paradise on the Epic Palm Tree Road.
This road is simply fantastic, totally lined-up by beautiful tall palm trees. It goes from the bay to the village, coming from Toya Pakeh, make a left instead of going down to the beach and put that drone to work!
Things to do around Crystal Bay, Nusa Penida.
In this mystical and spiritual beach, you can simply enjoy observing its breathtaking landscape, either lying on the sand or renting a hammock & watch the sunset. But if you want to discover its depths, we recommend Snorkeling or Scuba Diving.
Scuba Diving with Mola Molas in Crystal Bay.
The best months are between July and November. The water is quite cool during this season, ranging 18 ~ 23℃/65 ~ 73℉.
Snorkeling in Crystal Bay.
To spend a nice day snorkeling, you can rent the equipment at any restaurant or warung on the beach, there are hard corals not far from the shore, at about 5 m/15 ft deep, so the marine life they attract is perfectly visible from the surface. Remember to stay away from the channel and to mind the boat traffic inside the bay.
Manta Bay: Snorkeling – Scuba Diving.
A short boat trip around Nusa Penida’s west corner from Crystal Bay, chances to see mantas are 90%, making the site usually very busy. Don’t swim towards them or make abrupt movements, that’ll scare them away. All day trip boat go there, we’ve heard it’s possible to book your own boat from Crystal Bay, consider going very early to escape the crowds.
Manta Point: Snorkeling – Scuba Diving.
A site in Nusa Penida’s south coast that has 2 manta rays cleaning stations, 1 at around 5 m/15 ft deep, the other at around 20 m/60 ft. The mantas queue at the stations waiting for smaller fishes to clear their skin of parasites. Usually crowded, but the winged giants appearance will make you forget that you’re not alone in the water.
Where to stay on Nusa Penida?
The first thing, we strongly recommend that you stay on this fantastic island for at least two nights, since it has too many beautiful sites to enjoy them in less than 24 hours.
Most accommodations are around Toya Pakeh harbor and the north coast. There’s quite a lot of choice for all budgets and new hotels and guests houses are being constructed at a fast pace. For an up to date overview of the offer, better check Airbnb Bali or your favorite booking platform. Prices start at around 10 US$/night.
Is it worth to visit Crystal Bay?
Crystal Bay is definitely worth a visit, this island is incredible, where in addition to marveling at its best-known beaches, you can enjoy some of the best scuba diving or snorkeling in Bali, as well as stunning and unforgettable landscapes.