Bali travel: New photos show heartbreaking sight in Kuta – Michmutters

Bali travel: New photos show heartbreaking sight in Kuta

New photographs taken by an Australian traveler show a heartbreaking sight in Bali.

While more tourists are returning to the party island since international travel resumed, and businesses are reopening, things are still not quite the same at the famous tourist hub of Kuta as they were before the Covid-19 pandemic struck.

But despite this, there are still some parts of the resort area that remain a ghost town, with some of the pubs, shops and restaurants that were once major tourist drawcards still closed.

This can be seen in images of the once-popular Kuta Town Houses and its surrounds, which now appear to be an abandoned site, boarded up and overgrown with weeds.

Traveler Kat Willeme told that on a recent visit she had gone for a morning walk to check out the area and was surprised by what she found.

“What an absolute heartbreaking sight to see things in such disrepair and all the surrounding businesses shut down,” Kat said.

“The area used to be so lively and was the main thoroughfare between Poppies Lane 1 and 2. We are understanding now why they are both struggling to recover.”

However, she said it’s crucial for tourists to keep coming back to support Bali as “they need our help”.

She explained that most of her friends have businesses in the area which were still struggling to recover, unlike other parts of Bali which were thriving. She hopes to raise awareness of what’s really going on in Kuta, in the hopes of bringing life back to the area.

“It is not like this everywhere,” she said.

Kat also posted the images in a Facebook travel group and it was flooded with comments, many reminiscing about the past and devastated to see the state of the building now.

One commenter said: “So sad – this was such an awesome place.”

Another said: “This is a crying shame. We are so lucky in this country. Good buildings going to waste, only increased tourism can remedy this. Please help by visiting Bali.”

And a third wrote: “Yes it’s so sad! We were there recently and it was a sight to see. Just want it back to the way it used to be.”

Another commenter shared some fond memories: “It’s so sad. We stayed there since they opened and they were like family … It’s the worst to see it all so overgrown.”

Others pointed out that with the boards removed, and some weeding and general maintenance work done, the building would look much better.

Closed for business

Kat also shared other images from the streets of Kuta showing businesses that are shut. They include places such as the Matahari Shopping Center on Kuta Square, and other eleven-busy shops nearby.

She said there were many shops still shut along the formerly bustling Poppies Lane 1.

Meanwhile, most shops are open for business along Poppies Lane 2, but due to some local hotels being shut Kat said she noticed “there is a lack of foot traffic getting down there”.

She also said popular businesses such as Tubes and Bagus Pub are shut, along with the famous Bounty Hotel which Kat said “is still all boarded up and looking a little shabby”.

But there is hope that things will slowly improve.

A local advised her the Bounty is hoping to reopen in September after doing some renovations.

“You can see them doing work and repairs everywhere you go and more and more stores and hotels are reopening each day,” Kat said.

tourism revival

The Covid-19 pandemic caused international travelers to disappear from the island nation, leaving 400,000 Balinese people without jobs.

In April this year, Indonesia’s Tourism Minister Sandiaga Uno asked Australians to return, as the nation “misses” us.

“We want you guys to be back,” he told 9news.

“We are seeing demand, very healthy demand from Australia in particular. Bali is now open.”


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