A guide to Bali's cool corner
The grown-up neighbour to Bali's party centre of Kuta, Seminyak has attracted travellers in-the-know for years with its hip hotels, cool cafes, slick bars and boutique shopping.
There are loads of drinking spots on the road that lines Seminyak Beach, from high-end pool clubs to simple beach bars where you can enjoy an ice-cold Bintang on a plastic chair plonked on the sand. Take care in the waters here; the pounding surf and currents can be hazardous and there tend to be fewer beach patrols than typically found in Kuta.
Spas and wellness
Cafes and restaurants
Come lunch or dinnertime, it's all about Mama San with its menu of modern Southeast Asian fare meant for sharing, lengthy cocktail list and moody dark-wooden interior set over two floors; be sure to reserve ahead as it’s deservedly popular. Situated in a prime spot on Jl Oberoi with its striking wooden plank facade partially open to the elements, The Junction (the-junction-bali.com) is also not to be missed. Stop in for a glass of Indonesian rosé or a Margaret River sauvignon blanc during a boutique shopping trip, or linger over a casual dinner of salmon steak or truffle oil pasta.
Despite being situated close to a busy corner, Lacalaca (lacalacabali.com) has a lovely tree-shaded courtyard area with colourful Mexican bunting that just begs for a pit stop. Though more TexMex than authentic street food, the flour tacos hit the spot and micheladas come served in huge heavy Mexican glassware, salt-rimmed and spicy.
Where to stay
Seminyak is Bali's shopping headquarters, boasting streets packed with everything from designer boutiques (Paul Ropp, Lulu Yasmine) to homewares, art and antiques stores (Enfants Paradis, Theater Art Gallery) and independent beach and surfwear shops (Drifter, Blue Glue). See Lonely Planet's Bali shopping guide for more recommendations.
An all-day beach bar, Ku De Ta is the place to be seen in Seminyak whether you stop in for lunch, an afternoon drink or bust out your best threads for a sultry Seminyak night sipping cocktails to a fiery sunset. Another hot spot beach bar, Potato Head wins points for its unique u-shaped window-shuttered building overlooking an infinity pool facing the ocean. Drink and dine at its two bars and two restaurants or order cocktails to your poolside daybed and join the party crowd as the night sets in.
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