As many of you may know, I recently visited Bali, Indonesia, and I wanted to put together a little series about my time there. I visited Ubud, the Gili Islands and Seminyak. This is the final post in the series and has a slightly different format and I don’t have a huge amount to say about Seminyak, other than that I couldn’t wait to leave as soon as I arrived.
Seminyak is a resort area in Southern Bali, and is reported to have lots of hotels, villas and spas, as well as high-end shopping and restaurants. There is a long stretch of beach connecting it to nearby Kuta, known as the party hot spot of Bali. Seminyak is considered to be Kuta’s quieter neighbour, but still lively enough to attract a constant stream of tourists. The beach is great for surfing and it is known for the beautiful sunsets that can be watched from the beachfront.
Why I Left Early:
I had read about Seminyak before I booked to stay there, and my impression of it was that there were lots of good bars and restaurants, a nice beach and some good shops. This sounded like a perfect way to wind down at the end of my travels.
I booked six nights in Seminyak in a big hotel called The Breezes which had a good sized pool, a great gym and was a five minute walk to the beach. The hotel was fine but certainly not as good as it reads from reviews.
It’s true that it’s a 5 minute walk from the beach. Unfortunately, as soon as you step foot onto the sand you’re getting harassed by people trying to charge extortionate amounts for sun beds. Once you’re on a sun bed, approximately every two minutes someone is approaching to sell you something; jewellery, hair braiding, hats. This is to be expected in this part of the world and I have never encountered problems elsewhere in Bali, or anywhere I’ve been in South East Asia. Unlike with Ubud and the Gili Islands, a simple ‘no thank you’ isn’t enough. They don’t leave. They are aggressive. We even had people swear at us when we said no.
The sea was too dangerous to swim in (perfect for surfing though) and there were a few points along the beach where sewage water ran into the sea.
I walked around A LOT, for around an hour and a half, to find somewhere selling any vegetarian food. It was unsuccessful. I also tried to spot some nice bars during the search but all I found was tacky clubs.
That night I decided I wanted to leave. I didn’t want to waste another day here. I tried desperately to arrange to get back to the Gili Islands but it wasn’t possible with the time I had left. So I decided to return to beautiful, luscious, friendly Ubud. I booked a hotel and arranged for them to collect me the next day.
I did find a cool burger place called Wacko Burger that night which was nice, and a couple of other places that looked halfway decent. But overall, I couldn’t wait to leave.
Whilst I realise I have very, very limited experience in this part of Bali to talk about, my first impressions and the small part of it I did see were not what I was hoping for at all. I certainly wouldn’t ever return there and I was grateful that I had the finances to allow me to leave early.
Have you had a different experience? I’d love to hear some other views about Seminyak.