Brief Backpacker’s Guide To Bali
Bali is extremely popular with backpackers because it is inexpensive, has beautiful beaches, stunning scenery and lots of things to do. The Islanders are welcoming while still retaining their own culture, which is important to them. Their religious beliefs reflect on every part of life on Bali, but in a positive way with traditional dancing, amazing music and lots of brightly colored petals.
Once backpackers get to Bali they tend to not want to leave this wonderful island and finding comfortable, cheap accommodation is vital for them. Renting one of the many beautiful villas in Legian is one option, or there are hostels in places like Kuta. There are also budget hotels all over the island, but if you stay in one of these you have to pay a tax, known locally as ‘plus plus’, which adds 21% to the price you are quoted.
You will not find many places that are as cheap to eat as Bali. There are roadside cafes everywhere and they tend to serve food buffet style. You pay a set amount, usually the equivalent of around $2, and then eat as much as you want. This is a brilliant way to get a good meal of very tasty food. If you prefer to stick with things like hamburgers and chips, they are available for a similar price.
At the night market in Kuta, you can delight in Chinese and seafood menus for even less.
If you are on a budget then Bali is the place to shop, because, like everything else on the island, nothing will cost you a fortune. You can buy the usual sorts of things such as sarongs and t-shirts, but there are also many traditional Bali clothes made on the island. Local cottage industries are plentiful and all helping to alleviate any poverty. As well as clothing, bags and beachwear are all made locally and it is good to have something that is unique to Bali.
It is said that the people of Bali are the friendliest in the world, and that is not without reason, as many seasoned travelers will attest. They will welcome you with open arms and make you feel very comfortable. Tourism is a large part of the island’s economy and the locals realize this. They encourage it and embrace the tourism industry so that many visitors want to return again and again.
When you have landed at Ngurah Rai International Airport you will be only 8 miles from the islands capital city Denpasar. There are taxis from the airport and they are very highly regulated, even to the amount they can charge you. The drivers all wear the same distinctive blue shirt and if you are approached by anyone one else offering you a taxi, they are probably operating illegally so steer clear.
There are motorbikes, known as Ojek, that carry paying passengers and sometimes you will see Dokar which are small carts pulled by ponies. Of course, there are the usual vehicle rentals, but when you are backpacking on a budget, they are probably too expensive.
For many, Bali is the backpacker’s paradise because of the expenses being so low, the food so good and the people so warm and welcoming.