Kelingking Beach, Bali: The hidden beach overrun by Instagram tourists

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Tourists are queuing for up to an hour to take a photo at Bali's so-called "Hidden Beach".

Kelinging Beach on the island of Nusa Penida has gained prominence in recent years after appearing in multiple "best beaches" lists, the Independent reported.

The coral cliff-backed beach, thought to resemble a T-rex, received a 2019 TripAdvisor Travellers' Choice Awards and came second in the travel site's list of Asia's best beaches. It also placed ninth in CNN Asia's list of the world's most beautiful beaches.

Most pictures of the beach on Instagram are taken from more or less the same spot on the steps above it.

Very few show the hordes of people waiting for their chance to snap their own version.

"This morning at around 10am I arrived at Kelingking Beach and it was already very crowded," Irma Maulida, a visitor from Jakarta, told Indonesian news site kompas.com.

Travel bloggers Many and Chris of Almost Landing Bali told Stuff that the views of Kelingking from the top "are amazing", adding that you can sometimes see manta rays in the water.

"But it can be really busy at points, which kind of takes away from the tranquility. You will be surrounded by lots of people taking photos and dangling over the edge for the shot, which can get a little unsafe."

While the beach has a four-and-a-half-star rating on TripAdvisor, some mention the issue of overcrowding.

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"This place is literally crawling with people," Matt S wrote in May. "The hike is steep and people are not prepared, wearing dresses and flip-flops for their Insta photo shoot... It is impossible to even see the beach without a million people in view."

"Good luck trying to get past the hordes of people trying to take their selfies," another user said. "We arrived around 9am and it was crazy. We planned to hike halfway down but couldn't get past the people determined to take thousands of photos of themselves, so only made it a quarter of the way."

A visitor from Dubai wrote: "The beach is not easily accessible (we drove a motorbike for 40 minutes from the main port) but the views are definitely worth the hustle! Unfortunately number of people pushing through the narrow path to get this "original" Instagram picture makes it very difficult to enjoy."

Reviewers also highlighted the island's difficult roads and the tricky return hike to the beach.

Mandy and Chris suggest following a dirt path to the right "to find more space to enjoy one of Bali's most iconic views".

The couple didn't attempt the hike down "as the track isn't in the best condition. It gets really steep and is crowded at the top, but that's a personal choice.

"While we would still recommend visiting Kelingking as the views alone are worth it, we could definitely recommend getting a local guide or driver who can take you to some fo the lesser-visited places in Nusa Penida."

Stuff.co.nz

See also: Twenty things that will surprise first-time visitors to Bali

See also: The best time to visit Bali

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