Seminyak

Seminyak is a beach town in South Bali.

Seminyak Beach

Understand

The next town north of Legian, Seminyak is more upmarket with mostly luxury accommodation and fashionable high-end restaurants and bars. The atmosphere is much more sophisticated and laid-back than Kuta, and the beach in particular is quieter during the day. Seminyak is also the high end spa and boutique shopping capital of Bali. Nowhere is the upscaling of Bali in recent years more obvious than here.

It is hard to imagine that only ten years ago this was a distinctly separate village, and something of a backwater. Development has occurred at an astonishing pace, and as well as absorbing all green space which formerly separated Seminyak from Legian, it is now almost impossible to determine where Seminyak ends and the nearby villages of Petitenget, Umalas and Kerobokan begin. This certainly has its downside, and the whole district has become very congested.

Get in

By car

Seminyak is part of the main west coast connurbation in South Bali and it can get very congested with traffic. There are two main routes in. From Kuta and Legian, Jalan Legian runs parallel with the beach and at its western limit, becomes Jalan Seminyak. If at all possible try to avoid this road though, and take instead the eastern bypass called Jalan Sunset. This is almost invariably the quicker route from Kuta and Legian into Seminyak, although it is actually further in distance.

A prepaid taxi from the airport to Seminyak costs a fixed Rp 60,000. Trips to or from Kuta cost around Rp 30,000 and from Legian about Rp 15,000.


Get around

The streets of Seminyak are increasingly jammed, with Jalan Laksmana being a particular black-spot. Your best options here are to walk or rent a motorcycle/bicycle.

A number of roads in Seminyak have alternative names. Whilst this issue is not exclusive to Seminyak, it does seem to happen here more than anywhere else in Bali. There follows a list of road names with the most popular given first and the alternatives afterwards in brackets.

Tourist Information Office

Jalan Raya Seminyak Gang Baik-Baik. ☎ +62 85253 000066. baliagustour@gmail.com 08:00-18:00. A source of information for current events in the city and for picking up a free map.

See

Pura Petitenget

Seminyak Beach and Petitenget Beach is a continuous expanse of grey sand stretching in both directions as far as the eye can see. To the south it becomes Legian Beach and then Kuta Beach, but is noticeably quieter than both. The sunsets here are famous, and opportunites abound to mix with the glitterati who frequent the high end beach front establishments such as Ku De Ta. Easy access points to the beach are at the end of Jalan Dhyana Pura, and from the large public car park (Rp 2,000) between Petitenget Temple and La Luciola restaurant.

Do

Diving

Spas, massage and other treatments

Seminyak is the high-end spa capital of Bali. Your spa experience here will be one of great luxury in a sophisticated setting. You pay up for all of that of course, but the prices are still 50% or more cheaper than you would pay in a western country.

If you are staying in one of Seminyak's high end hotels there will undoubtedly be an in-house spa service. If you are staying in a villa, then in-villa treatments will almost certainly be offered - check with the staff.

Other

A little bit of surfing goes on here, but it is not as good as off Legian and Kuta beaches to the south, or at Canggu to the north.

Buy

Seminyak is the centre in Bali for hip and inventive fashion boutiques, other designer stores and art studios. A good starting point for any shopper would be the legion of small boutiques and designer stores on Jalan Laksmana.

Clothing and accessories

Art

Others

If you are looking for Indonesian antiques (genuine or reproductions), or just enjoy browsing for eclectic homewares, try Jalan Kerobokan between the junction with Jalan Seminyak and the next set of traffic lights to the north. This is a very busy road and moving around is not easy, but both sides of the street are lined with numerous furniture, antique and homeware stores. A quieter, but just as rewarding option for similar products, is Jalan Mertanadi which runs parallel to Jalan Kerobokan just to the east.

Two traditional fresh produce markets remain in Seminyak. The most convenient is on the west side of the last bend at the very northern end of Jalan Raya Seminyak, and is widely known as Seminyak Market. A little more out of the way is a similar market in Kerobokan, called Taman Sari. Take Jalan Raya Kerobokan north from Jalan Raya Seminyak until you reach the first set of lights. Turn right and Taman Sari market is almost immediately on your righthand side. Both are best in the mornings from 07:00-11:00, and provide visitors with the opportunity to examine and purchase traditional, fresh local fruit and vegetables.

Eat

Over the past 10 years, Seminyak has developed a world-class dining scene. If you want to splurge on one very special dinner while you are in Bali, look no further than the higher end options in Seminyak. Prices are high by Bali standards but on an international scale still good value for the highest quality of food and eating environment. The clientele is demanding here and the turnover of restaurants quite high, so those that make it and stick around are invariably very good.

Budget

Although they have become harder to find in recent years, there are still some excellent budget options available in the area.

Mid-range

Splurge

Drink

Many of Bali's hippest nightspots are in Seminyak.

Gay bars

There are numerous gay bars on Jalan Dhyana Pura, the most popular of which is Mixwell.

Sleep

There is virtually no backpacker accommodation in Seminyak. Budget travellers will generally do better to stay in nearby Kuta or Legian. However, there are some (fairly uninspiring) losmen type places in Gang Bima which runs south off the northern end of Jalan Dhyana Pura, right in the heart of Seminyak.

The main choices are villas and higher end hotels. There are some good bargains to be had in the mid-range though in low season, so shop around.

Beware of false advertising. Only the most expensive "villas" are completely private and self-contained, while many share at least some facilities, and the cheaper ones are just clusters of bungalows.

Hotels

This guide uses the following price ranges for a standard double room:
Budget Under US$ 40
Mid-range US$ 40 to 130
Splurge Over US$ 130

Any villas listed in this section do not have private courtyards and share facilities like a swimming pool.

Budget

Mid-range

Splurge

Private villas

Villas listed here are either private individual properties with their own pool, or are within a all-villa hotel which offers only completely private units.

Stay safe

Seminyak is the centre of Bali's party drug scene with offers of ecstasy and cocaine especially common. Pay heed to the advice here, and avoid at all costs.

Cope

Indicative of its place in the elite group of high end Asian travel destinations, Seminyak has its very own lifestyle magazine. The Yak is an impressive, glossy magazine produced four times each year, and has the full run-down on the Seminyak scene: happening restaurants and bars, fashion boutiques, and reviews of the latest hip hotels and villas. Pick up a copy at any local news-stand for Rp 70,000.

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