If you’re going to Bali, why Kuta? People go to Kuta to
- Get drunk.
- Get laid.
Rinse, lather, repeat.
Partying is far from being a primary goal of my travel, but meeting twenty and thirty-somethings from around the world was awesome.
Kuta is Bali’s nightlife capital, and it might be the equivalent for Australians of Cancun for Americans. Ahh, Kuta nightlife. It’s easy to get to (for Aussies), cheap once you’re there, and great parties with other travelers. Spring break is 24/7/365. If GTL is the motto on the Jersey shore, then Surf-party-surf might be the equivalent here. Surf, nightlife, surf, meet travelers, surf, get faced, get laid in Bali. Welcome to Kuta. It’s not the experience I was looking for but it was fun and considering I didn’t know anybody upon arrival, it was a great transition to begin my trip.
Happy hour that included unlimited vodka red bull drinks. “Bounty” has 6 bars, a live music area with cover bands, and 2 clubs. Two doors down is 61 Legian / Sky Garden Lounge/ ESC and it might be bigger. Another place I went to had 2 hours of free drinks with unlimited tapas. You can see how this can be a crazy place. Kuta nightlife is crazy. Travelers come looking to surf and get laid in Bali – and they find plenty of both. The Kuta beach experience is mediocre (recommendations on where in Bali to actually go for beaches below), but if you’re looking for craziness, come to Bali, head to Kuta, and come ready to party.
While at times it seemed like most of the people visited Kuta for drinking, partying, and sex with other travelers, lots of people go there for surfing. Surfing is really huge there.
Here are some photos from one of the nights when my new friends from Russia met up with me. They’re from Siberia!
Note -this is the first place I’ve ever been to that’s known for their beach where nobody actually relaxes on the beach. Everybody’s surfing and nursing their hangover, and there’s locals hassling nearly everybody on the beach to buy something. It wasn’t the most beautiful of beaches, but that could just be my impression while it was overcast or raining each day of my trip through Bali. I made the best of it – learned to surf and got SCUBA-certified! More on that in future posts.
Nearby in Semenyak, Indonesia, there’s bars and clubs just like in Kuta, perhaps a tad classier (and more pricey but it’s relative), and nicer restaurants. If I went back I’d consider staying in Semenyak instead. I actually tried to move to a hotel in Semenyak but upon arrival they acknowledged that I had a reservation but told me that they’re full and can’t accomodate. Whaaaaaat? This happened twice so I eventually gave up and stayed in Kuta. Ahhhh!
Note 2 – if partying for you often includes pot or other drugs, you should know that Indonesia takes drugs VERY seriously. Nine twenty-something Aussies were caught smuggling illegal drugs and were sentenced to the death penalty. Their story is ongoing and is infamous at this point – they’re known at the “Bali Nine” smuggling gang. The Australian Prime Minister asked they give clemency and was denied, and in July’11 they lost their appeal. Full story here.
Also note – if you’re looking for the best beach in Bali, people said me that Dreamland is the class of Bali. And Ubud is Bali’s most chill area; I heard around two dozen reviews and every one of them was positive. One of my friends went to a yoga retreat there for the final week of her trip and loved it.