Bali’s balmy tropical beaches and spectacular sunsets make it the perfect place to sip on a cocktail or two as the sun goes down. Boasting some of the world’s best beachside bars, it’s little wonder Bali attracts plenty of revellers eager to let their hair down.
1. Rock Bar
Part of the AYANA Resort and Spa, the stunning Rock Bar teeters over a rocky cliff face which tumbles dramatically towards the Indian Ocean underneath. Reached via an inclinator traversing down the rocky cliff face, this splendidly-appointed beachside bar boasts some of the best views in Bali. It’s also an amazing place to enjoy a drink – try starting with a signature martini on the rocks – and soak up the ambience of what is undoubtedly one of Bali’s most spectacular bars.
Address: Jalan Karang Mas Sejahtera, Jimbaran, 80364.
2. Crystal Palace
While many of Bali’s most famous beach bars cater to a well-to-do and genuinely wealthy crowd, Crystal Palace is a decidedly more casual affair. Comfortable deck seating gives way to beanbags spilling down towards the Seminyak shoreline, but wherever you sit, you’re sure to be swept up in the vibe. Cheap beers and a comprehensive cocktail list compliment the beachside setting, with Crystal Palace a genuine gem among countless beachside bars.
Address: North of Jalan Double Six.
3. Potato Head Beach Club
A bona fide Bali-style beach club with a superb restaurant and bar to boot, the Potato Head Beach Club curves around the counters of Seminyak beach. Its sunset views are spectacular and so are its cocktails, as evidenced by the long queues of revellers eager to enter. Booking ahead is well advised, as you won’t want to miss the view of waves crashing down on Seminyak beach while you sip on a sumptuous aperitif.
Address: Jalan Petitenget Seminyak, 80361.
4. Ku De Ta
An icon of the Bali bar scene for more than a decade, Ku De Ta remains one of the island’s most popular entertainment venues. With sweeping views of Seminyak Beach, a luxurious pool popular for lounging around on hot summer days and painstakingly manicured gardens, the sophisticated setting lends itself to a fabulous beachside ambiance, making Ku De Ta a firm favourite for late-afternoon drinks.
Address: Jalan Kayu Aya No. 9 Seminyak, 80361.
5. La Plancha
More laidback than some of its surrounding Seminyak neighbours, this quirky restaurant and bar is more beach-shack than boutique digs. You can thank the comfortable beanbags and colourful umbrellas sprawled out over the beach for that, but don’t be fooled by the casual vibe. La Plancha packs a punch when it comes to serving up bona fide beach beers and cosmopolitan cocktails, not to mention a steady stream of authentic Spanish dishes.
Address: Mesari Beach, Jalan Dhyana Pura, Seminyak, 80361.
6. Champlung Bar
Sunsets are spectacular under Champlung Bar’s colourful array of beach umbrellas, which come dusk are usually occupied by an eclectic assortment of Bali beach-hoppers. Exuding a laidback, welcoming feel and boasting cheap drinks and the bar's oft-championed pizza, you can spend anywhere between an hour and an entire day getting to know the cast of characters who happily make Champlung their home away from home.
Address: Jalan Pantai Camplung Tanduk, Seminyak, 80361.
Part restaurant, part entertainment complex, perhaps what Dejavu does best is its picture-perfect beachfront outlook. Overlooking the water in Seminyak, its rooftop bar is a great place to sit back and relax after a long day on the sand. Cocktails consumed, you can then head on in to its heaving nightclub to listen to some of Bali’s top DJs spin their tunes.
Address: Jalan Arjuna, Blue Ocean Beach, Legian Kaja, Kuta, 80361.
8. Tao Rooftop Bar
Doubling as both a beachside bar and a great place to enjoy a few refreshing rooftop drinks, the Tao Rooftop Bar is part of the Ramada Resort Camakila in Legian. It’s not strictly on the beach, but what it lacks in the sand-beneath-your-feet department it makes up for with the view. There are few better places to enjoy a lazy sunset than on the comfortable couches at the Tao.
Address: Jalan Padma Utara, Kuta, Badung, 80361.
9. WooBar at W Hotel
Not strictly situated on the beachfront, Woobar at the swanky W Hotel nevertheless impresses with its sweeping views over Seminyak. Attracting an upscale crowd of hip partygoers and young professionals, this swanky three-level affair combines signature cocktails with cosmopolitan cuisine and a pulsating mix of international DJ sets – all set against the backdrop of sublime ocean views.
Address: Jalan Petitenget, Seminyak, 80361.
10. Jimbaran Beach Club
A decidedly more laidback affair than some of the upmarket beach clubs further along the shore, Jimbaran Beach Club overlooks the picturesque Jimbaran Bay and offers stunning sunset views. It's also a great place to sit back with a drink from the charming beachfront shack-bar, with the list of drinks on offer a comprehensive one indeed. From beers to cocktails, mojitos to caipirinhas, there's not much you can't imbibe in this relaxed Jimbaran retreat.
Address: Jalan Bukit Permai, Banjar Pesalakan, Jimbaran, 80361.
Words by Mike Tuckerman