Poppies Lanes never Die

Poppies Lane I and II in Kuta Bali are dedicated for those seeking fun and sun in all affordable ways. These two lanes are busy networks lined with bars and restaurants, basic accommodations and stalls selling fake sunglasses, surfwear and pirated DVDs. Yep, Poppies Lanes are all about rampant commerce and gang-side drunken nights. When walking on the lanes, you might need to prepare yourself for plenty of attentions from the shopkeepers.

Yet, aside from the somewhat chaotic state, Poppies Lanes still retain a slice of Balinese charms; the smell of incense wafts down the gangs and offerings of flower petals are laid out each morning to appease the gods. Poppies Lanes also stand out due to the strategic location, from which people could effortlessly access the legendary Kuta Beach from one end and the party street of Legian/Kuta on the other.

The thick ambiance of beach life adds more to the area’s popularity, especially with a number of surfers-dedicated bars. The laid-back Rastafarian lifestyle also gives another flavor to the night as some bars play the tunes of Mr. Marley in small gangs connecting Poppies Lane I and II. Some tourists testify that sipping the ice-cold Bintang beer would taste ten times better in Poppies Lanes.

Despite its highly celebrated name as a must-visit spot during a holiday in Bali, Poppies Lanes (and Kuta in general) actually represent the ‘absolute ugliness’ of the island. The fact that Poppies are developed as specific mass tourism enclaves (thus, generating income for the island) is still seen as something disappointing by many. The mix-bag tourism projects in the area in combination with the ridiculous commercialism are a big turn-off, especially for those who knew Bali in the good old days.

Ugly or not, the faces in Poppies Lanes are still friendly, the smiles are still warm and the atmosphere is still inviting. One thing worth noting down is probably the development in the rest of the area (which is not that very much left) needs to be more restrained. Indonesia Today

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