Pasir Putih Beach in East Bali is one of the island's ‘hidden’ beaches. Despite its remote location, this beach gained popularity being referred to by various nicknames, such as Perasi Beach referring to its village where it is located, including ‘White Sand Beach’, ‘Virgin Beach’ and simply, ‘Hidden Beach’.
The secluded coast of Pasir Putih Beach stretches between two hills between the villages of Bugbug and Perasi, both located in the Karangasem regency and approximately 4.5km east of the main hub of Candidasa.
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Getting to Pasir Putih Beach is quite an adventurous ride. From the main area of Candidasa, continue onto the Jalan Raya Candidasa-Bugbug main road until you arrive at the neighbourhood of Perasi village.
The best landmark to look out for is the village’s large Pura Bale Agung temple on the northern side of the street (on the left if you come from Candidasa). You'll also come across various signs with pointers bearing the various nicknames. From here, a kilometre of rocky trails and dirt tracks lead you down to the shore.
Upon arrival, a large parking lot welcomes visitors to Pasir Putih Beach, with ample space for cars and motorbikes under the shade of coconut trees. The waves and sand are visible from here. The name ‘Virgin Beach’ perhaps was what came into the minds of the first foreign visitors who ‘discovered’ the beach and found a pristine stretch of sand with fantastic views of the small rocky islet of Gili Biaha on the horizon.
The allure of Pasir Putih lies in its serene setting and calmer waves compared to the popular shores to its west. A unique combination of boulders in the sand near the cliffs, and white sand streaked with black – despite one of its given names, ‘White Sand Beach’ - add to its appeal.
Following its growing popularity, several locally-run restaurants and cafes (better referred to as traditional 'warung') can be seen lining the eastern side of Pasir Putih Beach near the parking area.
Among the dozen are Warung Maria, Warung Sederhana, Warung Kokak, Virgin Cafe, Warung Sunrise, Warung Gusti & Leo, Warung Budi Ayu, and Relax Cafe. Several others also provide booking services for fishing, snorkelling and sailing tours.
In front of these warung and cafes are colourful parasols and cushioned day beds. At the far western end, traditional jukung outriggers of the fishermen from Perasi and Bugbug can be seen parked in rows, against a backdrop of the rock face known as Bukit Penggiang (the opposite is Bukit Apem).
Good to Know about Pasir Putih
Visitors to Pasir Putih Beach can enjoy various water activities, such as swimming, snorkelling, and sunbathing, or simply indulge in various dishes served with excellent views.
Seafood and grills are the common standard, while international yet simple selections such as sandwiches and omelettes are also available. Optionally, served with refreshing young coconuts cut open on order, cold bottled soft drinks and beers, and fresh blends and fruit juices.
Several warung also provide gear rentals, and some also offer guide services to accompany on various fishing, snorkelling and diving trips.
Along the way up back to Candidasa, a stopover featuring a high vantage point overlooking distant rice paddies reveals the hills of Bukit Apem and Penggiang, with the blue sea and horizon in between.
Pasir Putih Beach is well hidden from this view, cradled between the hills and behind the greenery. While the beach can be enjoyed at anytime of the day, most of the cafes, especially those that serve grilled seafood, only open near sunset time.