Known for its animated vibe, Legian is an area that houses eclectic attractions. From excellent eateries, merry music rooms, to sophisticated shops, the neighbourhood has it all, and we’re picking the best ten!
A trip to Bali isn’t complete without a splashing session, and what better way to amp it up a notch than to combine it with a little bit of adrenaline rush? Fortunately for you, adrenaline junkies, Waterbom Bali is in the block! Located in the thick of the quintessential Bali destination – a.k.a. Kuta – Waterbom Bali comprises a massive tropical oasis that holds all the fun and exciting rides. Yes rides! Waterbom is a world-famous waterpark that takes pride in its thrilling slides, like The Pipeline that throws and twists rider from 20 metres high! Meanwhile The Python takes you to a circular ride, and Fast’N Fierce allows you and a friend to race it out. If you’re more on the laidback side, Waterbom has the self-explanatory Lazy River, and the Funtastic area for children. waterbom-bali.com
Founded in 1994 by the Bali-based, Italian-born creative mind Susanna Perini, BIASA has grown from a small fashion brand to a celebrated, much-loved one. The brand’s signature silhouette boasts sophistication in the simple cut that is enhanced with a quirky touch and incorporated with local artisan crafts like weave and natural dying methods. After expanding to Jakarta, BIASA turned into something more than just a fashion brand, but also an art hub. The flagship store – which is just a short walk away from Padma Resort Legian – is now also an art gallery named BIASA+, making the space an elaborate spot for art, fashion, and lifestyle.
If you’re looking for a one-stop shop, however, do roam the Pantai Kuta Street and check out Beachwalk shopping mall. The place has international clothing brands, make up stores, toy shops, plenty of food and beverage joints, a movie theatre, and basically everything. Don’t expect Jakarta-style malls with stuffy tall buildings, and boring design. Beachwalk incorporates the relaxed attitude and tropical haven vibe that the island takes pride in into the mall. This one is definitely something else! Instagram @beachwalk_bali
One thing that you shouldn’t miss from a visit to Bali is the island’s pumping nightlife. Yes, we know the Legian’s party strip including the infamous Sky Garden is not too far ahead, but this time we want to take you to the other direction to something more refined. At Jenja, the patrons are sharp and stylish, the music is unrivalled (seriously, this place has one of the best sound system on the island!), and the drinks are packed with a punch. The DJs start playing at 9pm from Wednesday to Saturday with different genres to cater to different clubbers. Instagram @jenjabali
5. The Orchard
If DJs spinning remixed tracks isn’t really your thing, then you might just be looking for The Orchard Bar & Restaurant. While the food selection is simply scrumptious and the drink list is intoxicating, the real stars of The Orchard are the talented musicians that grace the joint’s stage every Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday. The regular hosts like Sandrayati Fey, Dee Dice, and Aray Daulay are ones any music enthusiast should keep an eye on. Even better, on special occasions, the bar usually presents big name bands like Matajiwa and the likes! Instagram @the_orchard_bali
6. Whale and Co
Before we even plan the after-hours activities, though, we should make a necessary stop to fill up the caffeine tank! Our favourite pick for a dose of coffee in the vicinity would be Whale and Co. Other than sourcing its magic beans from the famed Tanamera Coffee in Jakarta, the petite place carries a quaint charm that makes it feel like you’re in a secluded sanctuary somewhere, when really, you’re in the middle of the busiest area in Bali. Just like most coffee shops in Bali, the shop closes early (7pm from Monday till Saturday, and 3pm on Sunday), so you might want to get here sooner. Instagram @whaleandcobali
7. Sate Babi Bawah Pohon
The way to test if you’re strong enough to stomach the politically incorrectly named Bali Belly is to try one of the street delicacies, and the famous choice for this is none other than Sate Babi Bawah Pohon (literally translates to Pork Skewers Under the Tree). The place is always packed with hungry diners waiting to be seated, but the line is always reasonable and not overwhelming. The most important part is that the satay is really flavourful – even the smell is mouth-wateringly fragrant. A portion of this dish (10 skewers) costs about Rp.25,000, which is probably cheaper than a bottle of mineral water at your favourite beach club, so you have nothing to lose.
If you do have Bali Belly (ahem, weaklings, ahem!), but still craving for the meaty goods, check out every carnivore’s favourite spot: Eatwell. Serving high-quality meats with affordable price, Eatwell offers a range of juicy steak dishes to choose from. Beef, pork, lamb, chicken – sometimes it’s hard to choose just one. The regulars’ favourite is the crispy pork belly, which comes in 100-gram or 200-gram option. The side dishes and sauces are to die for too! Instagram @eatwellbali
9. The cool things
To beat Bali’s scorching heat, sometimes you have to cool yourself down with some sweet (or sour) frozen bites. Lucky for you, we have two suggestions (we just can’t make up our mind, both are too good! The first one is the ever-popular Gusto that carries an extensive selection of Italian gelato and sherbet (we love the Stracciatella, Nougatine, and Mascarpone!). While the second is the Mexican-style popsicles shop that offers whimsical flavours like banana and Nutella, or Nescafe and condensed milk, and more! gusto-gelateria.com | Instagram @paletaswey
10. La Plancha
Ask anyone – visitors or residents alike – and they will tell you that the sunset hours in Bali are bewitching. The concoction of pink, purple, and orange hues sometimes feels too mesmerising to be true. While there are many cool spots to enjoy the sunset from, one laidback beach club stands out from the rest – thanks to its iconic colourful bean bags and pretty umbrellas. Yes, when you visit Bali, make sure you catch at least one sunset at La Plancha in the always-popular Double Six Beach. Instagram @laplanchabali
ABOUT THE WRITER
Runi gave up her urban rush in 2012 when she left Jakarta for Bali. Goodbye hours spent in traffic, hello working from the beach with a glass of cocktail in one hand. One thing for sure though, no city can stop her from writing; starting from writing for HighEnd magazine in Jakarta, to hellobali magazine, and now Exquisite Media in Bali — she loves words, she just hates saying them out loud.