The beauty of this island is surpassed only by the beauty of the people and their Hindu/animistic culture. A mecca for hippies! Ubud is a great place to base. Give Kuta Beach a wide berth unless you like surfing, shopping and getting hounded.
There are now travel warnings to Indonesia, however Bali is NOT included. Bali is predominantly Hindu, so there are no Islamic extremists (that we know of) on the island, unlike the rest of Indonesia. That means fewer tourists will be around making the island more enjoyable. But don't visit Jakarta or Surabaya as there have been reports of Islamics hunting Americans and forcing them to leave...
UPDATE 2007: Bali has had its share of problems since the original review. Two bombings, high profile drug busts and attitudes on the part of the gov't and tourists have changed. It's not the paradise it once was, esp. in the built up areas. But it's still a great place to visit and one of the highlights of Asia. Just follow some of the advice in the comments below.
Address: City: Postcode: Phone: Fax: Added: December 8th 2001
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Posted by james in Oz on 2006-07-16 00:21:09 My Score: don't even THINK abt smoking pot there!
Posted by Candy on 2005-07-01 05:18:58 My Score: Indonesia in general is a cheap place to live, but now Americans must pay for tourist visas (under an attitude of suspicion towards the intentions of foreigners) and there is a growing impatience for hipster frequent visitors.
The Balinese appreciate eccentricity, laughter for the sake of laughter, and creativity. They have colorful religious festivals (Hindu, though infused with Buddhism), and most of these are open to respectful close observers.
So one would think that Bali would be fairly open to hippies. And they are. But the Balinese don't like deadbeats, overt sexual behaviour, and nudists. Pay your bills, keep a mellow attitude, and be respectful of police officers, and you will do fine despite your beards, beads, and bare feet. The sizeable expatriate community in Bali, though, shows us an example of: the weirder you are, the more money you'd better have. I won't explain, but it's words to live by.
Don't expect to get by as a scam artist in Bali: word travels fast. Cheats, ripoff artists, and other such losers will meet with pretty uncomfortable justice. In this lifetime.
Posted by andrew on 2005-06-13 00:26:19 My Score: in indonesia the goverment sentences people to death for pot and destroy the enviorment(blast fishing on corral reafs, leaded gasoline, very few emmissions standards and much much more). Indonesia persacutes hippies and kills their people, WHY DO YOU SUPPORT THIS BOYCOTT BALI!!!!!!!
Posted by hesstafari on 2005-04-06 02:29:11 My Score: Balinese are mostly Hindu not Buddist!
Posted by Josh on 2004-07-26 05:10:50 My Score: Kuta Rulz, so does Ulus and the rest of bali,
From Josh the Surfer.
Posted by spungy (joEY) on 2003-06-01 18:54:53 My Score: bali is beautiful i only went for 4 days n i didnt want to leave so tranquil breathtaking!! especially the beaches at nite...xxxbutterflyzzzzzxxx