Despite Lovina being a beach destination, the beaches themselves are frankly disappointing. The black volcanic sand is more of a dirty grey, and while they are mostly clean in the tourist villages, some areas are grubby, with piles of rubbish making them decidedly unappealing. However the sea is clean enough for a swim, and a protective reef means it’s flat, calm and kid-friendly. Colourful traditional outriggers line the shore, a reminder that you are in a fishing community, and it’s interesting to watch when the catch comes in. A wander along the beach and you will inevitably be accompanied by hawkers trying to sell trinkets and dolphin trips, although not as pressured as some of the southern beaches — take time for a chat, relax and enjoy the laidback pace of life. Aside from lying around and frolicking in the waters, the big draw of Lovina’s beaches are the truly magnificent sunsets, and we think they make up for any lack of beach beauty. Pop into a beachfront warung or go upmarket with the beach club at Spice Beach, order a fruit juice and enjoy the tropical reddening sky in all its glory.