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Island Life Photography in Bali Part 4: Nusa Penida

Nusa Penida is the largest of three islands off the south-east coast of Bali, the other two being Nusa Lembongan and Nusa Ceningan. Tourist infrastructure is very limited, but it will not discourage you from visiting its many wonders.

nusa penida bali with canon eos 5d mark iv

Canon EOS 5D Mark IV; EF70-200mm f/4L IS USM; f/5.6; 1/2000 sec; 70mm; ISO-200

The freedom of an early morning ride
I remember jumping out of bed about 4.30am one day, and riding my motorbike along the coast to Atuh Beach, to shoot the sunrise with my EOS 5D Mark IV. The motor ride was exciting, as most of the roads were in good condition. But do look out, as some portions of the roads can be quite bumpy, as they are not properly paved.

seascape photography

EOS 5D Mark IV; EF70-200mm f/4L IS USM; f/4.5; 1/3200 sec; 85mm; ISO-200

It’s like visiting Bali in the 70s
Nusa Penida is impressively “untouristy” but it might just be one of my favourite travel destinations in Bali. For a clearer picture, think back to Bali in the 70s. 

So much to do
There are many things to do on Nusa Penida, such as diving and snorkelling, seeking out hidden waterfalls, and hiking to temples. The top of the cliffs of Kelingking Beach is surely one of the most spectacular places I have ever been. The views were stunning and as I glanced down to the beach, I spotted manta rays close to the shore!

underwater photography

EOS 7D; EF8-15mm f/4L Fisheye USM; f/5; 1/640 sec; 12mm; ISO-200

underwater photography

EOS 7D; EF8-15mm f/4L Fisheye USM; f/4; 1/800 sec; 13mm; ISO-200

sunset photography with canon eos 5d Mark IV

EOS 5D Mark IV; EF70-200mm f/4L IS USM; f/4.5; 1/400 sec; 169mm; ISO-200

Besides Bali, there are many other diving destinations in Indonesia, where you can explore and start your journey in underwater photography.

Endless photo opportunities
I wanted to photograph and swim with the manta rays, so I grabbed my gear and hiked down to the beach as fast as I could. This difficult and dangerous hike took nearly 30 minutes. Sadly, the mantas were gone by then. But I was not too disappointed as the high waves that day were perfect to shoot some shore break action from the water.

landscape seascape photography

EOS 5D Mark IV; EF11-24mm f/4L USM; f/4.5; 1/4000 sec; 24mm; ISO-200

The right equipment is essential

Nusa Penida is perfect for landscape and underwater photography. To capitalise on its many natural wonders, I used the Canon EF11-24mm f/4L USM, EF50mm f/1.4 USM and EF70-200mm f/4L IS USM. The Canon EF8-15mm f/4L Fisheye USM was my choice for shots in the water. Find out more about which EF lenses are good for landscape photography.

water wave underwater photography

EOS 5D Mark IV; EF8-15mm f/4L Fisheye USM; f/5; 1/2500 sec; 13mm; ISO-200

The EOS 5D Mark IV makes my job a lot easier as it meets all my needs, such as GPS coordinates, a touchscreen to change settings easily, high ISO, more ability to crop, better auto focus system and an improved dynamic range. 

bali photography - nusa penida with canon eos 5D mark IV

Canon EOS 5D Mark IV; EF11-24mm f/4L USM; f/5.6; 1/2000 sec; 18mm; ISO-200

Follow Rafael’s island adventure photography in Bali: Bukit Peninsula, Mount Batur and Ubud. Look forward to his last adventure in Bali where he visited North Bali.

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Rafael Moura

Rafael Moura

A photographer and surfer from Rio De Janeiro, Brazil. His motto is: I live the life I love. He is currently based in California, USA.