Nusa Dua in Bali: What You Should Know

Alexis
Modified on January 21, 2024

Nusa Dua is a popular destination in Bali for many reasons. Here is my review about Nusa Dua and to who I recommend it the most (or not).

Where is Nusa Dua in Bali?

Nusa Dua is a larger area than it might seem at first glance. In simple terms, the area covers almost the entire East Coast of the Bukit Peninsula, which is itself at the extreme South of Bali.

Nusa Dua is, therefore, far from being in the center of Bali. However, if you observe closely, you'll notice that it is at the end of the toll road, the highway above the water, offering numerous advantages to Nusa Dua (I'll come back to this later).

position nusa dua bali

What does Nusa Dua look like today?

If you're here, you're probably wondering if Nusa Dua is the right choice for you. Here's what the surroundings of Nusa Dua look like.

Luxury hotels, villas, and resorts overlooking the ocean

villa nusa dua

A significant portion of the Nusa Dua waterfront is occupied by luxury hotels and resorts. Some are right on the beach, while others, especially those in the South of Nusa Dua, are sometimes on cliffs, offering dramatic views.

Booking.com

Bali Collection, a mall in the midst of resorts resembling a luxury vacation village offer a lot of pedestrian options

One of the peculiarities of Nusa Dua is that a significant number of its hotels are close to each other, and there's a mall called Bali Collection that almost feels like a luxury vacation village in the center of them.

This is something you don't find much in Bali, at least not at this scale and so close to the hotels in an open space. It kind of make you forget that you are in a mall.

It's a convenient area for dining or shopping in the numerous boutiques.

The Bali Collection mall is, of course, 100% pedestrian-friendly and generally very convenient for tourists who want to have a good time in a hotel without bothering with transportation!

bali collection nusa dua

Why is Nusa Dua renowned?

Nusa Dua has many practical aspects and is popular for several reasons. Here are the main ones.

Many of Bali's most luxurious hotels and villas are in Nusa Dua

Hotels, resorts, and other villas in Bali are generally luxurious. But there are quite a few establishments that are clearly a notch above in the vicinity of Nusa Dua. And most importantly, they are quite numerous.

All types of luxury establishments can be found in Nusa Dua:

  • 4 and 5-star hotels from major hotel groups
  • Resorts
  • Boutique Hotels
  • Private Villas

If you venture away from the waterfront, you can also rent more modest rooms and houses (less expensive). That being said, most people come to Nusa Dua primarily to be pampered in luxury establishments and no one will blame them!

Nusa Dua has among the most beautiful beaches in Bali

The Bukit Peninsula concentrates a considerable number (if not the majority) of Bali's most beautiful beaches. This is where you'll find white sand, transparent water, waves breaking on reefs way offshore, and calm lagoons for swimming in between.

So, in many ways, Nusa Dua is quite similar to what you can find on the other side of the Bukit in Uluwatu. Except that the atmosphere is much more exclusive and less crowded than Uluwatu.

nusa dua beach

Nusa Dua has perfect waves for surfing during the rainy season

Surfers, if you're looking for a surf destination in Bali (with luxury) that works during the rainy season, Nusa Dua is probably where you should go.

Nusa Dua is highly exposed to swells and has numerous spots that can accommodate surfers of various skill levels. Moreover, the rest of the Bukit waves are never far away if you want to change side with the wind. It's also in Nusa Dua that Bali's biggest waves break (offshore on the reefs). On big days, you'll see many local and international "underground" chargers who don't like the crowds of Uluwatu or Padang Padang try to tackle the massive waves of Nusa Dua..

During the rainy season, Nusa Dua is, of course, offshore almost all day. In the dry season, you have to get up a bit earlier, but you also have infinitely fewer people in the water than elsewhere on the Bukit. Do what you want with this information...

surfing nusa dua

Nusa Dua is facing the toll road, making it very easy to access

Nusa Dua is quite remote compared to Bali, but this is easily offset by its ease of access. Something Uluwatu, for example, can't boast about.

Simply put, Nusa Dua is one of the few places in Bali that has been well-built to accommodate tourists in large numbers. So not only are the access roads wide, with proper parking, but there's also the toll road that can take you directly (meaning, without traffic jams) to the airport or directly to Denpasar.

Thus, you're not really far from anything: the roads to the North of Bali are at the other end of the toll road, the same for the center of the island (Ubud, etc.), and at the same time, you're literally next to the airport.

Of course, since you're on the Bukit, you're close to all its beaches, temples, and surf spots, without having to get stuck in traffic to get back to the Bukit because you're already there...

toll nusa dua
On the other side of the scenic toll road, Nusa Dua

Nusa Dua appeals to many people but not everyone either. Here are those who are most interested in choosing Nusa Dua for their vacation.

Nusa Dua is the perfect destination for a luxury honeymoon in Bali

I live in Bali, so I wouldn't go on a honeymoon here. But if I had to choose a place for a honeymoon in Bali, Nusa Dua would clearly be on my shortlist and even on the podium.

There are very few places as luxurious to be pampered in Bali without leaving the hotel too much, without the traffic and noise, and not isolated from everything either... In short, if you're looking for a timeless bubble for your honeymoon that remains practical, luxurious, and intimate, Nusa Dua is hard to beat.

Nusa Dua

Families often appreciate Nusa Dua a lot

Nusa Dua is an ideal destination for families looking for a "vacation" experience above all.

Nusa Dua's hotel complexes are quite enclosed, away from traffic, with direct beach access, and close to Bali Collection and its numerous shops and restaurants where children or teenagers can wander alone without causing panic for parents.

The beach is relatively uncrowded, with calm waves at the shore (it's a lagoon), which is not the case for all Bali beaches, perfect for truly relaxing.

As a bonus, you can engage in numerous water activities in Nusa Dua: surfing, snorkeling, diving, or even SUP, to name a few. In short, there's no chance of getting bored.

Hotel enthusiasts are in paradise in Nusa Dua

If, for you, vacations primarily mean relaxation and beautiful hotels, you'll have a hard time finding a better place than Nusa Dua.

With numerous hotels, resorts, and other villas more luxurious and incredible than the others, the most challenging part for you will undoubtedly be choosing one.

sofitel pool nusa dua
The Sofitel's Pool in Nusa Dua

Surfers and surfing families should not overlook Nusa Dua

Surfers, surfing families, and mixed surfing families (i.e., with some members who surf and others who don't) are in paradise in Nusa Dua.

You can surf one side of the Bukit in the morning and then the other in the afternoon when the winds have changed.

If you're in the classic situation where the husband surfs but the wife doesn't, Nusa Dua is also perfect: one can catch waves at Geger Beach or Mushroom Point while the other enjoys a massage at the hotel, the pool, or a shopping session at Bali Collection. Yes, it's cliché, but it happens more often than you think.

Nusa Dua is a good destination if you want to be close to the airport

Nusa Dua is one of the best destinations for those who want to be close to the airport, whether it's for your first days in Bali, your last, or simply if you're just in transit in Bali. Once again, the toll works its magic.

What are the disadvantages of Nusa Dua?

Is Nusa Dua perfect? Yes and no. It's a perfect resort for some but not for everyone. Here are those who might want to avoid Nusa Dua or only stay for a few days only.

Nusa Dua's location at the extreme South of Bali naturally distances it from some places

Even with the toll providing quick access to the airport, Sanur, Ubud, and other destinations, you're still at an extreme point of Bali.

If you plan to spend a lot of time in Canggu, Seminyak, Amed, or North Bali, it's better to avoid staying in Nusa Dua; it's not just around the corner either.

The luxury resort ambiance doesn't appeal to everyone

We're addressing rich people's problems here, certainly, but not everyone likes the resort and luxury hotel ambiance. At least, it must exist, but I haven't seen many people leave Nusa Dua disappointed either.

If you want an authentic trip, discover how locals live, or have a more roots/backpacker experience, clearly, you're in the wrong place.

However, the surroundings of Nusa Dua (outside the hotel complexes) have remained quite local and much cheaper, so it's entirely possible to combine both to some extent or even look for affordable rooms in Nusa Dua.

The resorts and hotels around Nusa Dua are often expensive

One of the significant drawbacks of Nusa Dua is that nights there are often quite expensive. Of course, it's relative. But clearly, luxury comes at a price that is not within everyone's budget.

Pro tip: if you want to enjoy Nusa Dua and its luxury resorts and villas but don't have the means to stay for an extended period, try spending one or two nights before your return flight. Surely, going from a 5-star hotel to an economy class might be a bit of a shock! But at least, you'll leave Bali on a nice note.

Conclusion

Nusa Dua is a kind of village filled with hotels, luxury resorts, and villas facing one of the most beautiful beaches in Bali.

The place is perfect for pampering yourself, family trips, honeymoons, or for those who want to be close to the airport.

Certainly, it's neither the most authentic place in Bali nor the cheapest, but that's not really what's expected either!

If you love beautiful views, white sandy beaches, and luxury hotels, you can't really go wrong by choosing Nusa Dua for a few days, or even a bit longer.

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