Monday, July 23, 2007

Bali tourism still thrives but life has changed

Wani Abdul Gapar

AS FAR as Komang can remember, his hometown of Bali has always been dependent on international visitors who have steadily boosted the tourism sector. The scene is still the same, tourists come and go on a regular basis to surf and bask at the beach.
But life has definitely changed subtly for everyone there. Security guards at major shopping malls discreetly inspect all backpacks and hotel employees have long handled mirrors to check underneath cars before allowing them into the resorts.

Until the bombings in the Legian area in October 2002 and Kuta in 2005, Bali was an economically dynamic tourist destination. The economy recovered but more than a few shops and cafe{aac}s were notably quiet. The sturdily built Indonesian reassured The Brunei Times, "Bali is a very safe place".

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