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Tourists flood favorite spots in Bali
June 24th, 2009

Hundreds of local visitors were spending their holidays in Kertalangu art village near Sanur resort as school holidays started last weekend.

The island of Bali has been a popular holiday site for school students and their families living in the Java and Lombok islands.

It would be a lucrative month for owners of small-scale to starred hotels on the island, which is now also hosting foreign visitors during their summer holidays.

A group of school students from Surabaya were seen playing with canoes and small boats in Sanur beach.

“We have been here since dawn to witness the beautiful sunrise in Sanur beach,” exclaimed Devianti, a student from Surabaya.

Sanur is famous for its quieter holiday spots with pristine beaches like Sindu beach, Semawang beach, Sunrise beach and Padang Galak beach. Unlike Kuta resort area, which is filled with glamorous star hotels, night clubs, cafes and other entertainment centers, Sanur offers more cultured-based activities. It is home to many art museums and galleries.

Wayan Dayung, beach guard coordinator at Sanur beach, said during school holidays, he had to work hard to monitor water activities.

“We have limited numbers of guards to monitor students and visitors spending holidays here.”

He said many children and adults could not swim well, while sometimes there were currents under the water that might endanger visitors.

In addition to Sanur, local visitors would go to other interesting places like Garuda Wisnu Kencana cultural park in Jimbaran, Bedugul resort in Tabanan regency and Kintamani resort in Bangli.

Nyoman Punia said school holidays have always brought fortune to local shop owners, travel businesses, souvenir sellers and even parking attendants.

“I just collect Rp 200,000 per day. But during holidays, I can get as much as Rp 1 million a day. What a blessing.”

At Kertalangu art village, dozens of children, mostly city children, looked happy and enthusiastic when they were asked to plant seeds on a plot of rice field located within the village’s complex, some 5 kilometers from Denpasar.

The village was designed to maintain “rural flavor” amid the busy city of Denpasar. The complex comprises hectares of paddy fields, jogging tracks, horse riding and other sports and leisure facilities.

It is also equipped with handicraft workshops, restaurants and fishing ponds.

Wayan Toha Putra, a staff member at the village’s management, said Kertalangu provides outdoor activities for children and teenagers.

“They can learn to plant paddy seeds or go fishing.”

They can also fly kites and ride horses. For art lovers, local artisans were ready to assist them.

“There are ceramic classes or painting workshops,” he said.

Anita, from Bandung, West Java, said she had never thought of visiting such a place in Denpasar.

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