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Old 06-30-2008, 07:41 AM
 
Location: Russia's Georgia-Invasion-Planning Press Center
133 posts, read 316,744 times
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I was there on Bali in March and still not sure whether it is a good or a bad place?... If anyone's got the same sensation after being there, would you tell please?
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Old 06-30-2008, 02:24 PM
 
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It's a great place. Actually all depends where in Bali you are going. Parts of it are well develped, almost overdeveloped - think of iit as Australia's version of Cancun - a cheap place to party. Replace drunken American college students getting sunburned on a beach and going to night clubs at night with drunken Australian's getting sunburned on the beach and night clubbing at night. Thats Bali, nothing exotic to it.

BUT - there are beautiful parts of Bali away from the tourist areas and that's what I like.
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Old 06-30-2008, 02:49 PM
 
Location: Russia's Georgia-Invasion-Planning Press Center
133 posts, read 316,744 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dd714 View Post

BUT - there are beautiful parts of Bali away from the tourist areas and that's what I like.

eh, mate, Aussie Aussie Aussie : )

so what special in particular? I was about 20 min or sow from the airport to the North on the left side, ah! I stayed in Hard Rock by the way. The hotel is quite cool but the surroundings are awful - dirtiness and dullness. Whenever we go (not much though) - all the same...
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Old 06-30-2008, 04:22 PM
 
12,266 posts, read 18,397,848 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lumumba View Post
eh, mate, Aussie Aussie Aussie : )

so what special in particular? I was about 20 min or sow from the airport to the North on the left side, ah! I stayed in Hard Rock by the way. The hotel is quite cool but the surroundings are awful - dirtiness and dullness. Whenever we go (not much though) - all the same...
Opps, let me guess, you are Aussie. LOL...it's been about 4 years since we went, so I don't remember all the details.

Well to really enjoy Bali get out of the resorts of Kuta! Hire a driver. Bali is a huge island and you can really enjoy some exotic Hindu sites and the culture of the island. Start at Ubud, which is starting to get alot of tourists but it's still heaven compared to Kuta. Watch out for the monkey's there, they can be agressive.
We spent a few days in Ubud and then hired a driver to take us to the sites and then to the northeast side of the Isand which has a ton of really isolated beaches good for snorkling and scuba diving. We found this site by doing ALOT of research on the hidden Bali spots. Basically it was a deserted beautiful beach with a few lodges and a local village. Between the two points you have great scenery - rice fields, jungle, mountains. And some impressive Hindu sites.
From the northeast coast we hooked up with a local fisherman to take us to the Gili Isles. This was great but I don't recommend it for the weak of heart. I'm talking crossing a 50 mile channel of ocean on one of those little catamarans. But it was an adventure. Gili's are great, no cars are allowed, you get around by bike or foot or mule. You can get to the Gilli's by taking a ferry as well, which is of course much safer, from Kuta and a few other ports. When you get to Gili try to avoid the "magic mushrooms". This island is Muslim like the rest of Indonesia (except Bali). It's an amazing contrast - topless bathers and physchodelic mushrooms for sale, but you walk just off the beach you see a mosque and women in robes.

There was a great Bali site somewhere on the internet. A forum like this but all about travel to Bali. Do a search you might be able to find it. And remember get the heck out of Kuta. Yuck, how can you stand all the touts?
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Old 07-01-2008, 02:07 AM
 
Location: Russia's Georgia-Invasion-Planning Press Center
133 posts, read 316,744 times
Reputation: 40
Uh-huh, it sounds inviting, I wish I had met you those days : )

well, I am not an aussie actually, so you can imagine, I can't clearly get who all the touts, you've mantioned about, are. Let me know, would you?
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Old 07-01-2008, 07:09 AM
 
Location: Alexandria, VA
148 posts, read 579,697 times
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Default Tin Roofs and tons of people standing around

I went to Bali for a week and took a tour almost every day. What stands out is the number of buildings with tin roofs and the number of people in front of their homes just standing or sitting there. When we drove by their homes on the way back they were still there, just waiting. Not at all like many places in America where people always have to have an activity or project.

The urban areas of Bali took up more of the island than we suspected and were really ugly. The rural ares were nice but no more scenic than islands south of Florida.

Culture was interesting. People very aggressive, lots of touts and beggars.

Rating 5 on a one to 10 scale
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Old 07-01-2008, 09:16 AM
 
12,266 posts, read 18,397,848 times
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Touts - those are the locals who try to sell you tours, taxi rides, trinkets, etc. It's not that they are trying to rip you off, but they are just very agressive in trying to get business. If you've gone to Bali, you've been harrased by the touts as soon as you walk outside the airport.

They really are extremely annoying and spoil the experience. I've tried everything - avoid eye contact, ignore them, get mad at them, repeating no in the native language....they go away once you leave the developed tourist areas.

Yeah Bali takes some work to really appreciate the culture. Otherwise, like I stated, it's turned into a beach resort for Australians to vacation for cheap and get drunk at.
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Old 07-01-2008, 12:43 PM
 
Location: Russia's Georgia-Invasion-Planning Press Center
133 posts, read 316,744 times
Reputation: 40
the best way how to get rid of these people - touts - is to treat them like they treat you. you can try to sell to them some rubbish or an empty beer bottle. it really works. I called each of them 'boss' like they did and showed my empty pockets. One taxi driver used to hide himself as soon as he saw me because he had had some unlucky experience driving us around during the whole night just for 10$. Two huge really fab paintings of the Ocean, which cost unbelievable 300$ and which now are hung on the wall of my Bali's friend from Manchester, were bought just for 100$. Eventually, nobody paid any attention on me...
They know - people from UK are extremely friendly and generous (unlike russian) and use it...
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Old 07-01-2008, 02:41 PM
 
12,266 posts, read 18,397,848 times
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On the subject of touts:

I remember trying the "get mad at them" strategy. Cussed a few out. I expected them to cuss me out, give me an obsene gesture or something, and then leave me alone. But strange things happened. They became generally concerned for me and my state of mind and stopped their selling and started saying "oh are you OK, is everything OK?". I was actually touched by that. Not that I bought anything.
Something about their culture and/or Hindu upbringing makes them react to anger that way. My wife also tripped once on the curb and fell on the ground and all these natives came running up to help. She was OK, just tripped. The people of Bali really are kind and gentle and one of the best things about the Island.
But still, the touts are a pain. But you can get bargains. Bali is just so amazingly cheap, even if they try to rip you off you are still getting a bargain.
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Old 07-02-2008, 12:02 AM
 
Location: Russia's Georgia-Invasion-Planning Press Center
133 posts, read 316,744 times
Reputation: 40
yep, you are right, anger isn't our best feature...

and I was astounded by their ability to distinguish nationalities. if two people of different nationalities with the same grin wearing the same clothes are passing by them, I do not know how but without any doubts they can say you came from here and you came from there...
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