There is a term we use in the travel industry which you may have heard, it’s “product”. This is basically the things that tourists do or experience. These range from the natural (beaches, rice fields, rivers, mountains, etc.) to the cultural (temples, museums, galleries, dances, processions etc.) to the man-made (theme parks, cruises, restaurants, clubs, shops, etc.). Thirty years ago Bali’s product was 100% natural and cultural, now this is being replaced by the man –made at an amazing, and irreversible, rate. Bali’s natural and cultural product is obviously, pure “Bali”.

Text by Alistair Speirs Photo by Eric Tiwa

There is a term we use in the travel industry which you may have heard, it’s “product”. This is basically the things that tourists do or experience. These range from the natural (beaches, rice fields, rivers, mountains, etc.) to the cultural (temples, museums, galleries, dances, processions etc.) to the man-made (theme parks, cruises, restaurants, clubs, shops, etc.).

Thirty years ago Bali’s product was 100% natural and cultural, now this is being replaced by the man –made at an amazing, and irreversible, rate. Bali’s natural and cultural product is obviously, pure “Bali”. The man-made product is not, but now comprises the majority of things that people experience when they come to Bali. 

On Trip Advisor’s home page for Bali, they list the 100 top things to do in Bali (as suggested by Bali “expert,” Batt) you have to get to number 52 before he mentions anything natural or cultural, in this case Tanah Lot temple. 

 

So now the “best things to do in Bali,” according to a tourism expert, are no longer Balinese in any way, but things you can do anywhere in the world. And because of the frantic and unrelenting pace of what the authorities describe as “development,” I have no doubt that by 2015 finding Bali’s real treasures will be virtually impossible, hidden behind and obscured by a myriad of imported  and man-made delights. Please prove me and Trip Advisor wrong, and make your choice as a tourist to find and enjoy “real Bali”. 

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