My expectation for Bali were very low and I’m happy to say they have been met! Bali has never been high on my list of places to go. I only put it on my destination list because of the cheap flights leaving Townsville.
The sole purpose of Bali was to have a mini writing retreat before heading off to Singapore, so it that respect, it was a raging success. I think I would have loved the Bali of 20 or 30 years ago when the beaches were deserted. I stayed in Sanur, which was nice. It heavily catered to the older holiday maker, with vast majority of places to eat or drink very much westernized. I walked the entire length of the beach and only found a 200m strip which the locals frequented. The site of older gentlemen in their DT’s is still giving me nightmares.
I did like some aspects of Bali. The people are the friendliest. Street peddlers generally let you walk past after you say no thank you. This compares to places like Cambodia where they stalk you down the street for several blocks. Also, the beaches were beautiful and clean. Sanur has a small off shore break on a reef which protects the shoreline. The water was still and perfect for having a paddle in. I put the cleanliness down to the amount of high end hotels along the beach front keeping it clean.
Overall, Bali was acceptable. I highly recommend Cafe Locca Hostel. One of the nicer hostels I have ever stayed in. I strongly recommend Bali for the “finishing the thesis” writing retreat.