It’s an undisputable reality that Bali’s culture and magnificent people are the main reasons why tourists and travelers alike flock here every year. If you add the fact that it is probably the place in the world where you get the best value for your money, food is excelent, it has some of the best surfing spots in the world and exotic beaches are easy to find you have all the ingredients to make this your personal heaven on Earth.
Unfortuntely many people have known this for years, and Bali’s Southern coasts have little left of that mysitical place it was a couple of decades ago. However, all is not lost. If you leave crazy Kuta behind, drive past Sanur and explore the North of the island you will find villages like Lovina and Amed which still hold on to their unique heritage. These sleepy little towns are excellent to get away from it all and have time for yourself. Accommodation is superb and slightly cheaper than in Kuta (similar to that in Ubud), there is good snorkelling to do, and best of all, you will see what real Bali is like.
When I was there I had the opportunity to help some fishermen extending the net on the ocean, untangling it from the reef, and getting the trapped fish in their boat. I was invited to go with them and enjoy the catch of the day, but I politely declined because I already had plans for the night. It was one of my best travel experiences to date.