The area of Nusa Dua was originally developed as a secure and peaceful resort location away from the bustling tourist precincts to the north. Home to the Bali Golf; Country Club as well as the Bali Convention Centre, the manicured enclave of Nusa Dua is all about premiere hotels and fine dining.
Some of the most luxurious hotels in the world find their Bali home in Nusa Dua. Unknown to even some of its most loyal visitors, Nusa Dua offers more than just ranks of five-star hotels and up-market restaurants and boutique shops. For instance, many of the visitors staying at these fine hotels are largely unaware of the pristine white-sand beach located just five minutes away on the southern edge of the peninsula known to locals as Geger Beach.
The public beach at Geger is recommended for tourists. Beautiful, safe and tranquil the beach area is also home to some of the best museums in Bali. Geger beach is safe for swimming and experiences a cooling ocean breeze as it is one of the few beaches facing east. Public transport is far from regular in the area but most hotels will assist with arranging taxis for tourists.
There are three manned gates that lead into the Nusa Dua enclave and everyone entering the area is subject to a security search that has the unfortunate effect of detracting from the relaxed ambience.
Immediately north of the Nusa Dua enclave is the peninsula of Tanjung Benoa that accommodates less exclusive hotels and Benoa village. Indicating this to be a multi-cultural area, visitors will see a mosque alongside both Hindu and Chinese temples.
Boat rides are available form Tanjung Benoa and Nusa Dua enclave for trips to Serangan Island (Turtle Island). These are typically glass bottomed allowing excellent views of the marine life in the area. Serangan is a turtle sanctuary and conservation area. Local Balinese assist by keeping turtle eggs in purpose-built houses until they hatch at which time they are released into the waters around the local beaches.
Numerous water-sport activities are available in the Nusa Dua area including banana boat rides, parasailing diving, fly-fishing and jet-ski rides. Most of the tourism operators in the area work in a cooperative type format ensuring price control is maintained and bartering unnecessary.
Nusa Dua is home to some of Bali’s most exclusive spa facilities. Most of the hotels offer in-house spa treatments or will arrange for private operators to visit your villa or room.
A morning walk along the extensive beachfront path is highly recommended. The path runs from the south end of the enclave for approximately 7 kilometres ending at the Grand Mirage hotel on the Tanjung Benoa spit.
There isn’t a massive choice of restaurants in the area outside of the luxury hotels. Not far from the enclave entrance on the road from Kuta and the airport a number of Japanese and other Asian restaurants can be found. As these eating-houses are primarily aimed at group markets they have little ambience and do not come recommended.
Where To Stay In Nusa Dua:
Goodway Hotel: The best of a limited choice of budget accommodation the Goodway offer a spa, large swimming pool, Jacuzzi, beauty parlour and fitness centre. Rooms start at around US$75/night. If your going to stay in Nusa Dua I would highly recommend being prepared to spend a little more.
Aman Nusa: A member of the Aman group of hotels, this is a truly first class property with all the bells and whistles. The restaurant is world-renowned and affords some of the areas most spectacular views. There is very little (if anything) that this property doesn’t offer its guests. Prices start at around US$750/night.
Conrad Bali: Regularly regarded as the best hotel on the Tanjung Benoa peninsula, the Conrad is a massive property with Bali’s largest freeform swimming pool. Over 300 rooms are available to guests and all the facilities you would expect from a five-star property can be found here. Rooms start at US$250/night.
Heavenly Residence: If budget is not an issue then this property is highly recommended. These are waterfront private, extreme luxury 3 and 4 bedroom villas with facilities such as 24-hour butler service. The property is set on a spectacular cliff top and offers everything the discerning traveller would expect. Villas are available from US$850/night.
Nusa Dua is an artificial and sterile location with the advantages of high-end accommodation and a relaxing quiet ambience. It’s certainly not my choice for locations in Bali but if you are looking for peace and quiet, quality accommodation and very little else, perhaps it’s exactly what you seek.