I’ve always wanted to visit Bali imagining palm fringed beaches and ladies in grass skirts – I think I saw a film like that back in the 1950’s! So when we booked to go on a Star Clippers cruise (to be reviewed elsewhere) I was really looking forward to two nights on the island before and after the cruise.
What a disappointment! I should have done a lot more research and I know I’ve only myself to blame but our pre-cruise two nights were spent in Seminyak which was OK’ish but with traffic clogged streets and a very crowded beach with bars belting out music with a thundering bass.
But that was nothing compared with the hell that awaited us post-cruise in Kuta. This place is reminiscent of Magaluf, Lloret de Mar and Falaraki in the 1970’s all rolled into one. Every other shop is a tattoo parlour and the others flog the same unfunny T-shirts. The streets are full of bargain break Aussies in those horrible baggy vests swigging beer and usually with at least one limb wrapped in post-tattoo clingfilm. The beach is crowded and full of touts.
Luckily our hotel was actually very good (The Four Points by Sheraton) and we retreated to their rooftop pool for the weekend.
The moral of the story is check the Silver Traveller reviews before you go! We met various people on the ship whose operator had booked them into these resorts and they were extremely disappointed.