Bali isn’t for everyone. But is it? If you take the time to discover this beautiful and interesting part of Indonesia, you will be surprised. We decided to start off in Kuta, which is only a short drive from the airport. When you arrive at the airport, go to the desk marked “Taxis”, your haggling begins here! Agree on a price to take you to your accommodation – they will then write it down and give you the piece of paper which you take round to where the taxis are. If you allow anyone to carry your luggage – they will expect a tip!
We stayed at Febri’s Hotel and Spa – very reasonably priced, nice rooms, lovely food and clean pools. The Spa was exceptionally good and I would definately recommend it.
Kuta is very touristy and you are constantly hassled by shop keepers, massage ladies and taxi drivers! You end up saying “no thanks” a hundred times a day, or just ignore them! If you do decide to buy something, they expect you to haggle and it can be quite an amusing exercise. The shops and stalls sell all the usual cheap and tacky items of clothing, souvenirs etc, but we did come across some very interesting shops that housed beautiful paintings, so it is worth looking around.
Poppie’s Lane is in the heart of Kuta and has many shops and cafes and also accommodation. It is very busy and in some places extremely narrow, with mopeds being driven along haphazardly. However, we found some great places to eat and spied some simple, authentic accommodation hidden down the alley ways. The is also a book shop about half way down, where you can also swap books.
We only stayed in Kuta for four nights and feel it is not a place for a two week holiday – too busy, too many people, too much hassle, no peace and quiet, however it is very interesting and we would consider going back mainly to spend a few days at Febri’s again.