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(updated listing Adi Yasa Hotel)
(Splurge: Moved Bali Beach Hotel to Sanur page as it is really in Sanur)
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<div>__TOC__</div>
 
[[Image:2918166611 529a0f7bef o.jpg|thumb|300px|Bajra Sandhi monument in Puputan Park, Denpasar]]
 
[[Image:2918166611 529a0f7bef o.jpg|thumb|300px|Bajra Sandhi monument in Puputan Park, Denpasar]]
  
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===By road===
 
===By road===
Denpasar is centrally located and easily reached by car or taxi from the main tourist regions of south Bali. A trip from [[Kuta]], [[Legian]] and [[Seminyak]] will take 20 to 30 minutes depending on traffic. [[Sanur]] is just 15 minutes to the east and [[Ubud]] about 30 minutes to the north. [[Tabanan]] is about 40 minutes to the northwest.  
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Denpasar is centrally located and easily reached by car or taxi from the main tourist regions of south Bali. A trip from [[Kuta]], [[Legian]] and [[Seminyak]] will take 20 to 30 minutes depending on traffic. [[Sanur]] is just 15 minutes to the east and [[Ubud]] about 30 minutes to the north. [2012:  Due to traffic, allow 1.5 to 2 hours to reach the airport from Ubud.] [[Tabanan]] is about 40 minutes to the northwest.  
  
 
A pre-paid taxi from the airport will cost between Rp 70,000 and 100,000, depending on exactly where in Denpasar you are heading to.
 
A pre-paid taxi from the airport will cost between Rp 70,000 and 100,000, depending on exactly where in Denpasar you are heading to.
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* <see name="Alun-Alun Puputan" alt="Puputan Square" address="Jl Gajah Mada/Jl Suprati" directions="" phone="" email="" fax="" url="" hours="" price="">The huge four-faced, eight-armed Catur Mukha statue is situated here at the centre point of the city. Representing the Lord Brahma and it serves as a guardian of each cardinal point. The square is a key point of orientation for the whole city.  If you get lost, find your way back here and all will be clear.</see>
 
* <see name="Alun-Alun Puputan" alt="Puputan Square" address="Jl Gajah Mada/Jl Suprati" directions="" phone="" email="" fax="" url="" hours="" price="">The huge four-faced, eight-armed Catur Mukha statue is situated here at the centre point of the city. Representing the Lord Brahma and it serves as a guardian of each cardinal point. The square is a key point of orientation for the whole city.  If you get lost, find your way back here and all will be clear.</see>
  
* <see name="Bali Museum" alt="Museum Negeri Propinsi Bali" address="Jl Mayor Wisnu" directions="eastern side of the Alun-Alun Puputan" phone="+62 361 222680" url="" hours="Sa-Th 8AM-3:30PM, F 8AM-11AM" price="Rp 3,000" lat="" long="" email="" fax="">A much under-patronised place by visitors which offers an informative introduction to all things Balinese, both historical and modern-day. Originally opened in 1910, the building was brought down in the 1917 earthquake and languished until 1932 when resident German artist Walter Spies sparked a major revival. The grounds and architecture are quite charming, and the museum is housed in four separate pavilions. The main pavilion has a great collection including anicent stone, bronze and wooden artifact. The southern pavilion houses many textiles, the northern pavilion concetrates on the history of Baliense performance art, and the central pavilion is devoted to Balinese Hinduism and ritual. If this place was in Kuta or Nusa Dua it would be swamped with tourists.</see>
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* <see name="Bali Museum" alt="Museum Negeri Propinsi Bali" address="Jl Mayor Wisnu" directions="eastern side of the Alun-Alun Puputan" phone="+62 361 222680" url="" hours="Sa-Th 8AM-3:30PM, F 8AM-11AM" price="Rp 11,000" lat="" long="" email="" fax="">A much under-patronised place by visitors which offers an informative introduction to all things Balinese, both historical and modern-day. Originally opened in 1910, the building was brought down in the 1917 earthquake and languished until 1932 when resident German artist Walter Spies sparked a major revival. The grounds and architecture are quite charming, and the museum is housed in four separate pavilions. The main pavilion has a great collection including anicent stone, bronze and wooden artifact. The southern pavilion houses many textiles, the northern pavilion concetrates on the history of Baliense performance art, and the central pavilion is devoted to Balinese Hinduism and ritual. If this place was in Kuta or Nusa Dua it would be swamped with tourists.</see>
  
 
[[Image:Pura Maospahit Denpasar Bali.jpg‎ |thumb|300px|Pura Maospahit]]
 
[[Image:Pura Maospahit Denpasar Bali.jpg‎ |thumb|300px|Pura Maospahit]]
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* <see name="Taman Wedhi Budaya Cultural Centre" alt="" address="Jl Nusa Indah," directions="" phone="" url="" hours="8AM-3:30PM daily" price="Rp 3,000" lat="" long="" email="" fax="">A museum that covers the history and essence of Balinese art. The classical schools are well represented by both paintings and sculpture and there is a large section featuring contemporary Balinese art. Gamelan orchestra performances are also held here.</see>
 
* <see name="Taman Wedhi Budaya Cultural Centre" alt="" address="Jl Nusa Indah," directions="" phone="" url="" hours="8AM-3:30PM daily" price="Rp 3,000" lat="" long="" email="" fax="">A museum that covers the history and essence of Balinese art. The classical schools are well represented by both paintings and sculpture and there is a large section featuring contemporary Balinese art. Gamelan orchestra performances are also held here.</see>
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*<see name="Taman Budaya" alt="Bali Art Center" address="" directions="" phone="" url="" hours="" price="" lat="" long="">Taman Budaya or Bali Art Center is the culture building complex with the best style of Balinese traditional architecture. It is featuring the good lay-out building of amphitheater to be a place/hall of show performance purpose. It is symbolizing the twiddling of Mandara Giri mount in the milk ocean and spattering the Amerta holy water for the life of endless as according to nature of dynamic culture and stayed alive during the human being still dwell the earth planet. This amphitheater can accommodate up to 6.000 audiences for the show of colossal both for modern and also traditional. This Taman Budaya (Cultural Park) is opened in the year 1973 with the Bali Artistry Party (Pesta Kesenian Bali) within one month. On that month, there are full of entertainment amusement traditional dance, exhibition, and other cultural activities. At the opening ceremony enlivened by artistic parade started from Puputan Park and finish at the Art Center. Its distance is about 2 Km and this parade is followed by entire regencies and towns in Bali by delivering their artistry mission. This event is often followed by other provinces in Indonesia as well as from outside country like Japan, Korea, Europe, America etc. In this culture parade is presented in so many forms those are from the sacral until contemporary traditional. There are also type of marry and custom clothes from each area, instrument of music or gamelan, forms Sesajen (offering) and others</see>
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==Do==
 
==Do==
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Otherwise, apart from the numerous sights and excellent shopping, there are not really any specific activities to recommend in Denpasar.
 
Otherwise, apart from the numerous sights and excellent shopping, there are not really any specific activities to recommend in Denpasar.
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==Festivals==
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<listing>'''Pesta Kesenian Bali (Bali Art Festival)'''</listing> http://www.baliartsfestival.com/
 +
The Bali Arts Festival is a full month of daily performances, handicraft exhibitions and other related cultural and commercial activities during which literally the whole of Bali comes to the city to present its offerings of dance, music and beauty. On display are trances from remote mountain slopes, forgotten or recently revived village dances, food and offering contests, classical palace dances, stars of Balinese stage, odd musical performances, "kreasi baru" (new creations) from the dance schools of Denpasar, as well as contemporary choreography and dance companies from other islands and from abroad.
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It is a month long revelry that perhaps no other place in the world can put up on such a low budget as the Balinese. Not only is their traditional culture alive and well, but they have a tremendous pride in it.
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It begins in the villages, where the seka or cultural groups are selected and organized at the regency level, vie with each other to perform the Arts Festival and thus display in front of a large audience the uniqueness of their village of birth and resting place of their ancestors.
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The Bali Arts Festival is the Denpasar cultural event of the year, perhaps it would no be too far fetched to suggest that it is the cultural event of Indonesia. The festival is thus a unique opportunity to see local village culture both "live" and at first hand. Tourists are warmly welcomed.
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When tourism took off after 1965, the Balinese insisted that it followed cultural guidelines: if tourism was to be accepted, it was to be a cultural tourism, or "pariwisata budaya".
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As the Balinese put it: "Tourism should be for Bali instead of Bali for tourism." In time, this idea become national policy, as part of a larger revping of regional cultures for national purposes. The policy owes much to the former Director General of Culture (1968-1978) and Governor of Bali (1978-1988), Ida Bagus Mantra, an Indian-educed Balinese. It led, on the one side, to the creation of enclave resorts such as Nusa Dua to limit the direct impact of tourism, and on the other, to a long haul cultural policy aimed at nurturing and preserving the traditional agrarian culture while adapting it to the demands of modernity, and in particular of "cultural tourism".
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At the village level, local music groups, dances and other cultural events were inventoried, then supported by a series of contests at the district and regency level. The ensuing competition energized the cultural life of villages, whose "young blood" was already being drained to the city by the process of economic change and urbanization.
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Schools of dance and art were created, in particular the Kokar conservatory and the STSI School of Dance and Music. Beside research, these schools replaced the traditional master/disciple relationship by modern methods of teaching; standardized the dance movements, produced new types of Balinese dances for tourism and modern village entertainment. Most important, it enabled former students to return to the villages as teachers, where they diffused, beside the creed of cultural resilience and renewal, new dances and standardized versions of old ones.
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Many of the performances are held at the amphitheater which can hold up to 6,000 spectators, in a temple-like stage.
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Each year, the Bali Arts Festival, beside the fed classical dances of the island, such as the legong, gambuh, kecak, barong, baris, mask dances and the like, is based on the theme around which new "dance choreography" is produced and old village dances and activities revived. Over the years, the whole range of classical Balinese stories - Ramayana, Mahabharata, Sutasoma, Panji - have thus been turned into "colossal" Sendratari Ballets.
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The main challenge to the Arts Festival is obviously economic in nature. As village life is increasingly feeling the strains of monetary considerations, dancers, musicians and others cannot be expected to continue participating simply for the sake and the pleasure of it. As costs soar, new sources of financing have to be found. The obvious answer is the private sector and in particular the tourism industry. The greater task then is to convince the hotels, travel agencies and tourist guides to be more participatory in the Arts Festival rather than to their own sponsored events.
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Considering the pride the Balinese have in their culture, and the adaptability and dynism they have always demonstrated, this little hurdle can be overcome. Trust the Balinese. They will eventually succeed to transform their tradition into a modern, Balinese culture of their own.
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<listing>'''Sanur Vilage Festivals'''</listing>
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has become a major event in Bali Event Calendar. The main aim of the festival is to attract large number of tourist from various countries. After its huge success last year, the organizers of the event are planning to make this event even better and bigger. These year Sanur village festival promises a lot of water sports activities and adventure. The event is inspired by Marine life which plays a vital role in daily life of Balinese. Sanur Village Festival is highlighted as major tourist attractions of Bali event calendar.
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<listing>'''Denpasar Festival a.k.a DenFest'''</listing>
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The annual Denpasar Festival is an event that celebrates the creativity and cultural diversity of the city. It offers a variety of food stalls, art and handicrafts for sale, traditional Balinese dancing and local award ceremonies. The festival offers a great collection of traditional Balinese food from Ayam Betutu to Babi Guling to a traditional Balinese sweet drink. “We hope this event can be a memorable closing to the year. The festival near end of the year until Dec. 31.
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The festival also hosts awards even for some of the local cuisine and in search of finding the city’s best.
  
 
==Buy==
 
==Buy==
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* <eat name="Warung Wardani" alt="" address="Jl Yudistira 2" directions="" phone="+62 361 224398" email="" fax="" url="" hours="" price="">Excellent Indonesian cuisine. Look no further than the Nasi Campur (rice with various spicy side dishes) which is what everyone comes here to eat.</eat>
 
* <eat name="Warung Wardani" alt="" address="Jl Yudistira 2" directions="" phone="+62 361 224398" email="" fax="" url="" hours="" price="">Excellent Indonesian cuisine. Look no further than the Nasi Campur (rice with various spicy side dishes) which is what everyone comes here to eat.</eat>
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* <eat name="Plengkung" alt="" address="Jl Kaliasem 16" directions="" phone="+62 361 224485" email="" fax="" url="" hours="" price="Main dishes from Rp 10,000">Family run place with excellent and very cheap food and fruit juices. Local come here to eat.</eat>
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The foodcourts on the upper levels of Denpasar's department stores all serve surprisingly good food at excellent value prices. Try Ramayana, Matahari and Tiara Dewata department stores.
 
The foodcourts on the upper levels of Denpasar's department stores all serve surprisingly good food at excellent value prices. Try Ramayana, Matahari and Tiara Dewata department stores.
 
*<eat name="Ramayana" alt="" address="" directions="Jalan Diponegoro, Matahari Duta Plaza" phone="" url="" hours="" price="" lat="" long="">Ramayana on Jalan Diponegoro, Matahari Duta Plaza on Jalan Dewi Sartika and Robinsons opposite Matahari. These malls have a huge range of stores selling everything from clothing to arts and crafts as well as more everyday shops such as pharmacies.  
 
*<eat name="Ramayana" alt="" address="" directions="Jalan Diponegoro, Matahari Duta Plaza" phone="" url="" hours="" price="" lat="" long="">Ramayana on Jalan Diponegoro, Matahari Duta Plaza on Jalan Dewi Sartika and Robinsons opposite Matahari. These malls have a huge range of stores selling everything from clothing to arts and crafts as well as more everyday shops such as pharmacies.  
 
</eat>
 
</eat>
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*<eat name="Warung Bendega" alt="" address="Jl. Cok Agung Tresna no. 37A-Renon Denpasar" directions="" phone="" url="" hours="" price="" lat="" long="">Bendega means Fisherman in Balinese language. Excellent Balinese food including sambal matah and ikan bakar (grilled fish)</eat>
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*<eat name="Warung Subak" alt="" address="Jalan Astasura No. 05 Peguyangan, Denpasar, Bali, Indonesia" directions="" phone="" url="" hours="" price="" lat="" long=""></eat>
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*<eat name="Nasi Jinggo" alt="" address="" directions="" phone="" url="" hours="" price="" lat="" long="">General term for small package of rice and some side dish, sells cheaply on the sides of the streets in Denpasar at night. It is favorite supper for locals, students and budget traveler.</eat>
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*<eat name="Ayam Betutu Gilimanuk" alt="" address="" directions="" phone="" url="" hours="" price="" lat="" long=""></eat>
  
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*<eat name="Warung Bale Timbang" alt="" address="Jln. Trengguli, Penatih, Denpasar, Bali, Indonesia" directions="" phone="" url="" hours="" price="" lat="" long="">Traditional Balinese food in the laid back environment. Like having picnic in the middle of forest with serene feeling of ravine water flow.</eat>
  
 
==Drink==
 
==Drink==
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There are many small budget hotels in Denpasar which are primarily aimed at domestic business travellers as few foreign tourists stay in the city here.  These are reasonably priced and comfortable enough. Within a 500 metre walk of the Alul-Alun Puputan there are many options which will nearly always have availability. Shop around.
 
There are many small budget hotels in Denpasar which are primarily aimed at domestic business travellers as few foreign tourists stay in the city here.  These are reasonably priced and comfortable enough. Within a 500 metre walk of the Alul-Alun Puputan there are many options which will nearly always have availability. Shop around.
  
* <sleep name="Adi Yasa Hotel" alt="" address="Jl Nakula 23" directions="" phone="+62 361 222679" url="j" checkin="" checkout="" price="from Rp 80,000" lat="" long="" email="" fax="">Huge old and dirty rooms with private bathrooms, friendly management, off the tourist traps. Near cheap eats and internet.
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===Budget===
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* <sleep name="Adi Yasa Hotel" alt="" address="Jl Nakula 23" directions="" phone="+62 361 222679" url="j" checkin="" checkout="" price="From Rp 90,000" lat="" long="" email="" fax="">Charming, authentic, family-run, budget hotel. It's no frills, has cold water, but the proprietors are very friendly and accommodating. Excellent location close to many tourist sites and very inexpensive, authentic restaurants. Includes private bathrooms and good Internet connection in every room. Considered to be one of the oldest hotels in Denpasar and one of the best-kept secrets for the budget traveller. Room price 30% higher during high seasons.
 
</sleep>
 
</sleep>
  
* <sleep name="Aston Denpasar Hotel and Conference Centre" alt="" address="Jl Gatot Subroto Barat No 283" directions="" phone="+62 361 225681" email="" fax="" url="http://www.astondenpasar.com/" checkin="" checkout="" price="from about Rp 800,000">A 3/4 star hotel from the Aston chain. Probably the best standard hotel in Denpasar but very much aimed at the conference and business travel market.</sleep>
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* <sleep name="Nakula Familiar Inn" alt="" address="Jl Nakula 4" directions="" phone="+62 361 226446" url="http://www.nakulafamiliarinn.com/" checkin="" checkout="" price="From Rp 130,000 single, Rp 150,000 double" lat="8°39'4.61"S" long="115°12'50.24"E" fax="">Huge, modern rooms, Wi-Fi, each with a balcony and choice of fan or a/c. A welcoming homestay with beautiful family temple and shrines. Extremely good value. Close to the centre of Denpasar and Badung Market, Puputan Square, Bali Museum. Best place to go if arriving from Java by bus.</sleep>
  
* <sleep name="Genesis Hotel and Spa" address="Jl Bypass Ngurah Rai 888" phone="+62 361 722071" url=" http://www.genesishotelandspa.com" price="Rates start at US$ 85">A four star hotel & spa that offers 76 rooms which comprise of 5 suites and 71 superior rooms, including 9 sets of interconnecting rooms for families. Well located with easy access to the main Jl Ngurah Rai bypass and on to the airport, Sanur beaches and the major department stores of Denpasar.</sleep>
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* <sleep name="Tirta Lestari Hotel" alt="" address="Jl Nangka 62" directions="" phone="+62 361 229882" email="" fax="" url="" checkin="" checkout="" price="From Rp 120,000">Simple and clean hotel which may appeal to travelers on a budget. Mostly aimed at domestic travellers. Located 1 kilometre north of the city centre.</sleep>
  
* <sleep name="Inna Bali Inn" alt="Natour Bali Hotel" address="Jl Veteren" directions="" phone="+62 361 225681" url="" checkin="" checkout="" price="Rp 400,000" lat="" long="" email="" fax="">A mid-market hotel owned by the government and designed principally for hosting conferences. Good city location though. Has an interesting colonial past and a few nice historical touches remain.</sleep>
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===Mid-range===
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* <sleep name="Inna Bali Inn" alt="Natour Bali Hotel" address="Jl Veteran" directions="" phone="+62 361 225681" url="" checkin="" checkout="" price="Rp 500,000 to Rp 1,200,000" lat="" long="" email="" fax="">A mid-market hotel owned by the government and designed principally for hosting conferences. Good city location, but quality of service and friendliness can vary a lot. Has an interesting colonial past and a few nice historical touches remain. Good restaurant.</sleep>
  
 
* <sleep name="Merta Sari Hotel" alt="" address="Jl Hasanudin 24" directions="" phone="62 361 222428" url="" checkin="" checkout="" price="" lat="" long="" email="" fax="">Simple and clean hotel just 2 minutes walk south from the Alun-Alun Puputan.</sleep>
 
* <sleep name="Merta Sari Hotel" alt="" address="Jl Hasanudin 24" directions="" phone="62 361 222428" url="" checkin="" checkout="" price="" lat="" long="" email="" fax="">Simple and clean hotel just 2 minutes walk south from the Alun-Alun Puputan.</sleep>
 
* <sleep name="Nakula Familiar Inn" alt="" address="Jl Nakula 4" directions="" phone="+62 361 226446" url="http://www.nakulafamiliarinn.com/" checkin="" checkout="" price="From Rp 130,000 single, Rp 150,000 double" lat="" long="" email="" fax="">Huge, modern rooms, Wi-Fi, each with a balcony and choice of fan or a/c, and a welcoming family-style. Extremely good value. Close to the centre of Denpasar.</sleep>
 
  
 
* <sleep name="Taman Suci Hotel" alt="" address="Jl Imam Bonjol 45" directions="" phone="+62 361 485254" email="tamansuci@tamansuci.com " fax="" url="" checkin="" checkout="" price="From Rp 325,000">A 45 room hotel in a strategic city position. Popular with domestic travellers. </sleep>
 
* <sleep name="Taman Suci Hotel" alt="" address="Jl Imam Bonjol 45" directions="" phone="+62 361 485254" email="tamansuci@tamansuci.com " fax="" url="" checkin="" checkout="" price="From Rp 325,000">A 45 room hotel in a strategic city position. Popular with domestic travellers. </sleep>
  
* <sleep name="Tirta Lestari Hotel" alt="" address="Jl Nangka 62" directions="" phone="+62 361 229882" email="" fax="" url="" checkin="" checkout="" price="From Rp 120,000">Simple and clean hotel which will appeal to travelers on a budget. Located 1 kilometre north of the city centre.</sleep>
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===Splurge===
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* <sleep name="Aston Denpasar Hotel and Conference Centre" alt="" address="Jl Gatot Subroto Barat No 283" directions="" phone="+62 361 225681" email="" fax="" url="http://www.astondenpasar.com/" checkin="" checkout="" price="from about Rp 800,000">A 3/4 star hotel from the Aston chain. Probably the best standard hotel in Denpasar but very much aimed at the conference and business travel market.</sleep>
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 +
* <sleep name="Genesis Hotel and Spa" address="Jl Bypass Ngurah Rai 888" phone="+62 361 722071" url=" http://www.genesishotelandspa.com" price="Rates start at US$ 85">A four star hotel & spa that offers 76 rooms which comprise of 5 suites and 71 superior rooms, including 9 sets of interconnecting rooms for families. Well located with easy access to the main Jl Ngurah Rai bypass and on to the airport, Sanur beaches and the major department stores of Denpasar.</sleep>
  
 
==Get out==
 
==Get out==

Revision as of 22:14, 1 February 2013

Bajra Sandhi monument in Puputan Park, Denpasar

Denpasar [1] is the largest city and capital of the island of Bali, Indonesia. It is located in South Bali.

Understand

Denpasar is a bustling, multi-cultural city and although it can seem a little intimidating the first time you visit, just do not believe those travel guides which say it has nothing to offer.

Denpasar is bristling with temples, palaces and museums and its occupants are outstandingly friendly. You will be off the beaten tourist track here, so bring lots of time for a chat with the locals and a decent map of town. You can see many of the main sights comfortably on foot.

This is also a notable shopping city with options to please even the most jaded of world shoppers.

Where's the airport?
Bali's airport may be coded DPS for Denpasar, but it's actually located 13 km away near Kuta and covered in the main Bali article.


Denpasar is the seat of government in Bali and is therefore home to the provincial governor's office as well as the administration of the Regency of Badung.

Tourist Information Office

Jalan Surapati 6, Denpasar. +62 361 234569. 8AM-4PM. A source of information for current events in the city and for picking up a free map.

Get in

Map of Denpasar

By road

Denpasar is centrally located and easily reached by car or taxi from the main tourist regions of south Bali. A trip from Kuta, Legian and Seminyak will take 20 to 30 minutes depending on traffic. Sanur is just 15 minutes to the east and Ubud about 30 minutes to the north. [2012: Due to traffic, allow 1.5 to 2 hours to reach the airport from Ubud.] Tabanan is about 40 minutes to the northwest.

A pre-paid taxi from the airport will cost between Rp 70,000 and 100,000, depending on exactly where in Denpasar you are heading to.

By bus

The main bus terminal of Denpasar is Ubung, which is also a bemo terminal.

Most buses to and from Java depart from here.

By bemo

The bemo centre of Bali is here. Inconveniently, bemo terminals are scattered all around town, and transfers between them can be time and money consuming. The major ones are:

Always ask a local for the normal price before getting in or expect to be charged a price up to ten times what it should be.

Don't forget that a bemo departs when it wants (usually when it is "full enough"), which can last for several hours, except in the early morning, where they are rather frequent. In any case, you won't find any bemo after 4PM.

By train

There is no train station in Denpasar, since there are actually no trains in Bali. But a travel agency in the Ubung bus terminal has an agreement with Kerata Api [2], the Indonesian train company.

You can buy so-called "train tickets" to and from Surabaya, including a bus (air-conditioned) to Banyuwangi, and the ferry between Gilimanuk and Ketapang, and then a train from Banyuwangi to Surabaya. Price: Rp 154,000 (weekend), Rp 139,000 (weekday) in bisnis (no a/c in the train), or Rp 169,000 in eksekutif (a/c). Those prices include a small commission of the travel agency. There are two services in each direction, each day:

  • 10:30PM from Surabaya arrival 5:25AM in Banyuwangi, arrival approx noon in Denpasar.
  • 9:15AM from Surabaya arrival 4:04PM in Banyuwangi, arrival approx 10:30PM in Denpasar.
  • 4PM from Denpasar, train departing 10:25PM from Banyuwangi, arrival 5AM in Surabaya.
  • 5AM from Denpasar, train departing 9AM from Banyuwangi, arrival 4PM in Surabaya.

Get around

Denpasar can be a bit steamy and the traffic pollution a worry, but the centre of this city does lend itself to getting around on foot and walking is recommended.

By taxi

Taxis are widely available for hailing. If you have a group of people, you may want to negotiate a bemo (small van) for a set rate to your destination. Remember that pricing is negotiable. Indonesians are great people, however, they won't think twice about overcharging you if they can, as would happen anywhere else.

By bemo

Bemo routes in Denpasar are extremely complicated. In addition to the three terminals described in the section above which operate longer distance bemos, there are three more which handle the local routes (as do the long distance terminals!) - Gunung Agung, Sanglah and Kereneng. Unless you are very patient and somewhat adventurous, bemo transport within Denpasar is best left to the locals to figure out. As a rule of thumb though most routes in the city seem to come through Kereneng Terminal on Jalan Kamboja at some stage!

To go from one bemo terminal to another within the city, the fixed price is Rp 7,000 although non-Indonesians may be asked to pay much more. A taxi can work out cheaper, is certainly faster and is indescribably more comfortable.

By motorbike

As elsewhere in Bali, motorbikes can be rented, although it is more normal for a visitor to arrive with a bike rather than rent one here.

See

When visiting any of the temples in Denpasar, remember to bring a sarong and sash with you. These temples receive relatively few foreign visitors and are unlikely to have temple dress available for hire.

  • Alun-Alun Puputan (Puputan Square), Jl Gajah Mada/Jl Suprati. The huge four-faced, eight-armed Catur Mukha statue is situated here at the centre point of the city. Representing the Lord Brahma and it serves as a guardian of each cardinal point. The square is a key point of orientation for the whole city. If you get lost, find your way back here and all will be clear.
  • Bali Museum (Museum Negeri Propinsi Bali), Jl Mayor Wisnu (eastern side of the Alun-Alun Puputan), +62 361 222680. Sa-Th 8AM-3:30PM, F 8AM-11AM. A much under-patronised place by visitors which offers an informative introduction to all things Balinese, both historical and modern-day. Originally opened in 1910, the building was brought down in the 1917 earthquake and languished until 1932 when resident German artist Walter Spies sparked a major revival. The grounds and architecture are quite charming, and the museum is housed in four separate pavilions. The main pavilion has a great collection including anicent stone, bronze and wooden artifact. The southern pavilion houses many textiles, the northern pavilion concetrates on the history of Baliense performance art, and the central pavilion is devoted to Balinese Hinduism and ritual. If this place was in Kuta or Nusa Dua it would be swamped with tourists. Rp 11,000.
Pura Maospahit
  • Lapangan Puputan Margarana (Puputan Park), Jl Raya Puputan. This rather grandiose park is home to the huge Bajra Sandhi monument (literally Balinese Peoples Struggle). The design of the grey stone monument symbolises the date of Indonesian independence, August 17th 1945. There are eight entrances, 17 corners and the height is precisely 45 metres. The monument is most significant though for its commemoration of the various puputans (suicidal fight to the death) of the Balinese in the struggle against the Dutch in the early 20th century. At the nortern edge of the park you will find the governor's office and other government buildings.
  • Palace of Satria and the Royal Temples, Jl Veteren (about 300 metres north of Alun-Alun Puputan). 8AM-4PM daily. The palace and temple of the royal family of Denpasar which is beautifully kept and admirably, open to all residents of Denpasar for worship. Some wonderfully ornate carvings here, even by Balinese standards. Donation.
  • Pura Agung Jagatnata (Jagatnata Temple), (Adjacent to the northern boudnary of the Bali Museum). A state temple which was built in 1953. Dedicated to the supreme being Sanghyang Widi Wasa, this temple is open to all worshipers without any restriction as it is a government building and not a village temple. There are large ceremonies here twice a month at full moon and dark moon. Ask at the tourist office for a detailed schedule.
Taman Budaya Cultural Centre
  • Pura Maospahit (Maospahit Temple), Jl Sutomo. An ancient temple with a long and glorious history thought to originate in the 14th century. This is a temple typical of the peak of the Majapahit period being constructed largely from red brick. Sadly, much of it was destroyed in the early 20th century earthquake but there are some original remnants including the guardian statues in the inner courtyard. This is a charming temple and one which is seldom patronised by tourists. Every chance you will have it to yourself.
  • Sidik Jari Museum, Jl Hayam Wuruk 175, +62 361 23511. 9AM-5PM daily. A small, private fine art museum established and owned by I Gusti Ngurah Gede Pemecutan and which exhibits his own work as well as that of other artists. Also has facilities for public dance and other peformances.
  • Taman Wedhi Budaya Cultural Centre, Jl Nusa Indah,. 8AM-3:30PM daily. A museum that covers the history and essence of Balinese art. The classical schools are well represented by both paintings and sculpture and there is a large section featuring contemporary Balinese art. Gamelan orchestra performances are also held here. Rp 3,000.
  • Taman Budaya (Bali Art Center). Taman Budaya or Bali Art Center is the culture building complex with the best style of Balinese traditional architecture. It is featuring the good lay-out building of amphitheater to be a place/hall of show performance purpose. It is symbolizing the twiddling of Mandara Giri mount in the milk ocean and spattering the Amerta holy water for the life of endless as according to nature of dynamic culture and stayed alive during the human being still dwell the earth planet. This amphitheater can accommodate up to 6.000 audiences for the show of colossal both for modern and also traditional. This Taman Budaya (Cultural Park) is opened in the year 1973 with the Bali Artistry Party (Pesta Kesenian Bali) within one month. On that month, there are full of entertainment amusement traditional dance, exhibition, and other cultural activities. At the opening ceremony enlivened by artistic parade started from Puputan Park and finish at the Art Center. Its distance is about 2 Km and this parade is followed by entire regencies and towns in Bali by delivering their artistry mission. This event is often followed by other provinces in Indonesia as well as from outside country like Japan, Korea, Europe, America etc. In this culture parade is presented in so many forms those are from the sacral until contemporary traditional. There are also type of marry and custom clothes from each area, instrument of music or gamelan, forms Sesajen (offering) and others


Do

It is very much worth finding information from the official Tourism Office about scheduled cultural events in Denpasar. These are many and varied and include, dance, puppet theatre and art exhibitions.

Otherwise, apart from the numerous sights and excellent shopping, there are not really any specific activities to recommend in Denpasar.

Festivals

Pesta Kesenian Bali (Bali Art Festival) http://www.baliartsfestival.com/ The Bali Arts Festival is a full month of daily performances, handicraft exhibitions and other related cultural and commercial activities during which literally the whole of Bali comes to the city to present its offerings of dance, music and beauty. On display are trances from remote mountain slopes, forgotten or recently revived village dances, food and offering contests, classical palace dances, stars of Balinese stage, odd musical performances, "kreasi baru" (new creations) from the dance schools of Denpasar, as well as contemporary choreography and dance companies from other islands and from abroad.

It is a month long revelry that perhaps no other place in the world can put up on such a low budget as the Balinese. Not only is their traditional culture alive and well, but they have a tremendous pride in it.

It begins in the villages, where the seka or cultural groups are selected and organized at the regency level, vie with each other to perform the Arts Festival and thus display in front of a large audience the uniqueness of their village of birth and resting place of their ancestors.

The Bali Arts Festival is the Denpasar cultural event of the year, perhaps it would no be too far fetched to suggest that it is the cultural event of Indonesia. The festival is thus a unique opportunity to see local village culture both "live" and at first hand. Tourists are warmly welcomed.

When tourism took off after 1965, the Balinese insisted that it followed cultural guidelines: if tourism was to be accepted, it was to be a cultural tourism, or "pariwisata budaya".

As the Balinese put it: "Tourism should be for Bali instead of Bali for tourism." In time, this idea become national policy, as part of a larger revping of regional cultures for national purposes. The policy owes much to the former Director General of Culture (1968-1978) and Governor of Bali (1978-1988), Ida Bagus Mantra, an Indian-educed Balinese. It led, on the one side, to the creation of enclave resorts such as Nusa Dua to limit the direct impact of tourism, and on the other, to a long haul cultural policy aimed at nurturing and preserving the traditional agrarian culture while adapting it to the demands of modernity, and in particular of "cultural tourism".

At the village level, local music groups, dances and other cultural events were inventoried, then supported by a series of contests at the district and regency level. The ensuing competition energized the cultural life of villages, whose "young blood" was already being drained to the city by the process of economic change and urbanization.

Schools of dance and art were created, in particular the Kokar conservatory and the STSI School of Dance and Music. Beside research, these schools replaced the traditional master/disciple relationship by modern methods of teaching; standardized the dance movements, produced new types of Balinese dances for tourism and modern village entertainment. Most important, it enabled former students to return to the villages as teachers, where they diffused, beside the creed of cultural resilience and renewal, new dances and standardized versions of old ones.

Many of the performances are held at the amphitheater which can hold up to 6,000 spectators, in a temple-like stage.

Each year, the Bali Arts Festival, beside the fed classical dances of the island, such as the legong, gambuh, kecak, barong, baris, mask dances and the like, is based on the theme around which new "dance choreography" is produced and old village dances and activities revived. Over the years, the whole range of classical Balinese stories - Ramayana, Mahabharata, Sutasoma, Panji - have thus been turned into "colossal" Sendratari Ballets.

The main challenge to the Arts Festival is obviously economic in nature. As village life is increasingly feeling the strains of monetary considerations, dancers, musicians and others cannot be expected to continue participating simply for the sake and the pleasure of it. As costs soar, new sources of financing have to be found. The obvious answer is the private sector and in particular the tourism industry. The greater task then is to convince the hotels, travel agencies and tourist guides to be more participatory in the Arts Festival rather than to their own sponsored events.

Considering the pride the Balinese have in their culture, and the adaptability and dynism they have always demonstrated, this little hurdle can be overcome. Trust the Balinese. They will eventually succeed to transform their tradition into a modern, Balinese culture of their own.

Sanur Vilage Festivals

has become a major event in Bali Event Calendar. The main aim of the festival is to attract large number of tourist from various countries. After its huge success last year, the organizers of the event are planning to make this event even better and bigger. These year Sanur village festival promises a lot of water sports activities and adventure. The event is inspired by Marine life which plays a vital role in daily life of Balinese. Sanur Village Festival is highlighted as major tourist attractions of Bali event calendar.

Denpasar Festival a.k.a DenFest The annual Denpasar Festival is an event that celebrates the creativity and cultural diversity of the city. It offers a variety of food stalls, art and handicrafts for sale, traditional Balinese dancing and local award ceremonies. The festival offers a great collection of traditional Balinese food from Ayam Betutu to Babi Guling to a traditional Balinese sweet drink. “We hope this event can be a memorable closing to the year. The festival near end of the year until Dec. 31. The festival also hosts awards even for some of the local cuisine and in search of finding the city’s best.

Buy

Contrary to what you might read in many guide books, the best shopping in Bali is in Denpasar.

Jalan Gajah Mada, Denpasar
  • Badung Central Market on Jalan Gajah Mada is best visited in the early morning. The ground level is devoted to fresh foodstuffs, dried food and spices are on the second level and handicrafts can be found on the top level.
  • Duta Silk is a fabulous silk emporium located at Block 1, Komplex Duta Permai (next to Matahari Department store) on Jalan Dewi Sartika.
  • Gold stores with globally competitive jewellry prices abound in Jalan Hasanuddin and Jalan Sulawesi.
  • The myriad of small stores selling fabrics and local works in Jalan Gajah Mada and Jalan Thamrin will keep happy even the most jaded of world shoppers.
  • There are several shopping malls in Denpasar, the most notable being Ramayana on Jalan Diponegoro, Matahari Duta Plaza on Jalan Dewi Sartika and Robinsons opposite Matahari. These malls have a huge range of stores selling everything from clothing to arts and crafts as well as more everyday shops such as pharmacies.

Eat

Denpasar is a melting pot of different cultures from all over Indonesia. There are few places where the results of the government trans-migration policy are more evident than here. For that reason it is a wonderful place to eat with restaurants specialising in different regional and ethnic Indonesian cuisines. Sometimes this can all seem a bit inaccessible and hard to find for visitors, so do not be shy to ask your driver or at your hotel.

  • Atoom Bara, Jl Gajah Mada 106-108, +62 361 222788. Chinese restaurant specialising in seafood. It appears unimpressive but the food is fantastic.
  • Ayam Goreng Nyonya Suharti, Jl Gatot Subroto 109, Ubung, +62 361 234815. Extremely famous fried chicken cooked with an old family recipe from Java. A bit out of the way but definitely worth the effort in getting there.
  • Ayam Taliwang, Jl Teuku Umar, +62 0361 228789. A restaurant noted for the Lombok speciality of Ayam Taliwang (grilled or fried young chicken). Spicy and delicious.
  • Bali Bakery, Jl Hayam Wuruk 181, Tanjung Bungkak, +62 361 243147 (), [3]. 8AM to 9.30PM. Long established bakery and bistro/cafe. Very good quality bread, pastries and cakes produced fresh every day. Large lunch and dinner menu which includes local favourites and some well chosen international dishes.
  • Cianjur, Jl Cok Agung Tresna, Renon, +62 361 230015. Named after a town in West Java, its dishes are influenced by Sundanese cuisine. A little out of the city centre in the suburb of Renon. The grilled and sour-sweet Ikan Gurame is especially recommended.
  • Kak Man, Jl Teuku Umar 135. This place is an absolute institution. Truly excellent Balinese food including bebek betutu (smoked duck).
  • Kereneng Night Market (Pasar Malam Kereneng), Jl Hayam Wuruk/Jl Kamboja. This market starts up at sunset eveyday and is open until dawn. All manner of Indonesian food served from dozens of stalls. It is rough and ready, but the food is excellent and 100% authentic.
  • Warung Nasi Bali, Jl Hayam Wuruk 69A, +62 361 223889. Excellent local food at very good prices. Highly recommended for a real tate of Indonesia in a very authentic environment.
  • Warung Wardani, Jl Yudistira 2, +62 361 224398. Excellent Indonesian cuisine. Look no further than the Nasi Campur (rice with various spicy side dishes) which is what everyone comes here to eat.
  • Plengkung, Jl Kaliasem 16, +62 361 224485. Family run place with excellent and very cheap food and fruit juices. Local come here to eat. Main dishes from Rp 10,000.


The foodcourts on the upper levels of Denpasar's department stores all serve surprisingly good food at excellent value prices. Try Ramayana, Matahari and Tiara Dewata department stores.

  • Ramayana, (Jalan Diponegoro, Matahari Duta Plaza). Ramayana on Jalan Diponegoro, Matahari Duta Plaza on Jalan Dewi Sartika and Robinsons opposite Matahari. These malls have a huge range of stores selling everything from clothing to arts and crafts as well as more everyday shops such as pharmacies.
  • Warung Bendega, Jl. Cok Agung Tresna no. 37A-Renon Denpasar. Bendega means Fisherman in Balinese language. Excellent Balinese food including sambal matah and ikan bakar (grilled fish)
  • Warung Subak, Jalan Astasura No. 05 Peguyangan, Denpasar, Bali, Indonesia.
  • Nasi Jinggo. General term for small package of rice and some side dish, sells cheaply on the sides of the streets in Denpasar at night. It is favorite supper for locals, students and budget traveler.
  • Ayam Betutu Gilimanuk.
  • Warung Bale Timbang, Jln. Trengguli, Penatih, Denpasar, Bali, Indonesia. Traditional Balinese food in the laid back environment. Like having picnic in the middle of forest with serene feeling of ravine water flow.

Drink

There are bars and nightlife in Denpasar but these are best left alone by visitors who will feel much more at home in Seminyak, Legian and Kuta.

  • Bali Bakery, Jl Hayam Wuruk 181, Tanjung Bungkak. Long established bakery and bistro/cafe. Very good quality bread, pastries and cakes produced fresh every day. Large lunch and dinner menu which includes local favourites and some well chosen international dishes.
  • Kereneng Night Market (Pasar Malam Kereneng), Jl Hayam Wuruk/Jl Kamboja. This market starts up at sunset eveyday and is open until dawn. All manner of Indonesian food served from dozens of stalls. It is rough and ready, but the food is excellent and 100% authentic.
  • Warung Nasi Bali, Jl Hayam Wuruk 69A. Excellent local food at very good prices. Highly recommended for a real tate of Indonesia in a very authentic environment.
  • Bhineka Jaya Kopi Bali, Jalan Gajah Madah 80, +62 361 720589, [4]. An absolute must for coffee lovers. Indonesia produces some of the best coffee in the world and here you can order your favourite brew as well as buy the beans. Products include coffee from Central Java, Toraja from Sulawesi, Mandailing from Sumatra and of course the very best of Bali coffee. The outlet of the famous Butterfly Globe brand.

Sleep

There are many small budget hotels in Denpasar which are primarily aimed at domestic business travellers as few foreign tourists stay in the city here. These are reasonably priced and comfortable enough. Within a 500 metre walk of the Alul-Alun Puputan there are many options which will nearly always have availability. Shop around.

Budget

  • Adi Yasa Hotel, Jl Nakula 23, +62 361 222679, [5]. Charming, authentic, family-run, budget hotel. It's no frills, has cold water, but the proprietors are very friendly and accommodating. Excellent location close to many tourist sites and very inexpensive, authentic restaurants. Includes private bathrooms and good Internet connection in every room. Considered to be one of the oldest hotels in Denpasar and one of the best-kept secrets for the budget traveller. Room price 30% higher during high seasons. From Rp 90,000.
  • Nakula Familiar Inn, Jl Nakula 4, +62 361 226446, [6]. Huge, modern rooms, Wi-Fi, each with a balcony and choice of fan or a/c. A welcoming homestay with beautiful family temple and shrines. Extremely good value. Close to the centre of Denpasar and Badung Market, Puputan Square, Bali Museum. Best place to go if arriving from Java by bus. From Rp 130,000 single, Rp 150,000 double.
  • Tirta Lestari Hotel, Jl Nangka 62, +62 361 229882. Simple and clean hotel which may appeal to travelers on a budget. Mostly aimed at domestic travellers. Located 1 kilometre north of the city centre. From Rp 120,000.

Mid-range

  • Inna Bali Inn (Natour Bali Hotel), Jl Veteran, +62 361 225681. A mid-market hotel owned by the government and designed principally for hosting conferences. Good city location, but quality of service and friendliness can vary a lot. Has an interesting colonial past and a few nice historical touches remain. Good restaurant. Rp 500,000 to Rp 1,200,000.
  • Merta Sari Hotel, Jl Hasanudin 24, 62 361 222428. Simple and clean hotel just 2 minutes walk south from the Alun-Alun Puputan.
  • Taman Suci Hotel, Jl Imam Bonjol 45, +62 361 485254 (). A 45 room hotel in a strategic city position. Popular with domestic travellers. From Rp 325,000.

Splurge

  • Aston Denpasar Hotel and Conference Centre, Jl Gatot Subroto Barat No 283, +62 361 225681, [7]. A 3/4 star hotel from the Aston chain. Probably the best standard hotel in Denpasar but very much aimed at the conference and business travel market. from about Rp 800,000.
  • Genesis Hotel and Spa, Jl Bypass Ngurah Rai 888, +62 361 722071, [8]. A four star hotel & spa that offers 76 rooms which comprise of 5 suites and 71 superior rooms, including 9 sets of interconnecting rooms for families. Well located with easy access to the main Jl Ngurah Rai bypass and on to the airport, Sanur beaches and the major department stores of Denpasar. Rates start at US$ 85.

Get out

Virtually all of Bali can be accessed easily from Denpasar.

  • After spending time in the crowded city, head 45 minutes north to Ubud for clean air and spiritual refreshment.
  • The golden beaches of Sanur are just 15 minutes drive east.


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