There are several beaches in Padangbay, with the best requiring a bit of a climb, but in the end proving worth the effort, because pantai kecil (Little Beach) has a true bounty island setting. To get there, hike all the way back to the harbour, and turn left after the police post at the road that leads up into the hills. After 500 meters or so, a trail leads left into the forests where after 2 kilometers; the sounds of the waves will further guide you to your destination. Carefully descend the rocky trail and voila, you will find yourself at a white sand beach, with rolling waves that make for a nice view but unfortunately make swimming quite a laundromatic experience.
There are several warungs in the small bay and they provide fresh coconuts, to complete your arrival in paradise. If you want to have the same feeling, but want to spare your legs the trip, it is also possible to charter a small boat at the main beach, but it depends on the strength of the tide if they can drop you off.
The closest swimmable beach however, can be reached by climbing the hill on the other side of the village, following signs that say blue lagoon. Blue lagoon has a restaurant with the same name that again, offers great sea views and seafood. It is also an unexpectedly good place for snorkeling. Masks and fins can be rented at Blue lagoon for Rp. 20,000. It is advisable to ask the owner how to thread the sea, because the corals and rocks are very treacherous at low tide. Best way is to enter on the far left side, where there is a coral-less canal that leads to the snorkling site.
Also here, if you want to reap the benefits but without exhausting yourself, you can also rent a boat at the main beach that will take you there. 2 hours costs around Rp. 100,000, depending on mood and money shortage of the fisherman in question. Diving is also possible and the best operator is Gecko Dive Centre (0361-41784) at the main beach. Prices start at Rp. 500,000 for two dives, and check on water conditions before booking because tidal changes can influence visibility.
On the same side of the beach, there is also a temple, pura Silayukti, where Empu Kuturan, who introduced the caste system to Bali in the 11th century, is believed to have lived. The temple is often the center of huge festivals during which all villagers dress up in their finest sarongs and kebayas and parades of people carrying elaborate offerings can be seen all day long.
So you see, for a sleepy beach resort, Padangbay has more to offer than just sand and water, although that remains its main attraction.