Sunday, June 08, 2008

Traditional vs Kitsch

Shopping in Bali can offer excellent bargains. Shops that cater mostly to tourists sell modern artwork, leather goods, casual summer clothing and of course beach wear, shoes, CDs, T-Shirts, furniture as well as knick-knacks. For those who do not want to wander too far from the beach, Sanur, Kuta and Legian have more than enough to appease any shopper's withdrawal symptoms. From sarongs to sandals, wooden statues to Javanese puppets, silver to surf boards. Browsing at the Sukawati Art Market and Galeria Nusa Dua offers a tempting range of Balinese goods in one place.

Ubud is the center of Balinese painting and its popular as an artists village. Originally the home of paintings in Bali but a walk along the main street of Ubud will find stores selling clothing, antiques, jewellery, homewares and handicrafts. Meanwhile, located between Ubud and Mas, Peliatan is known as the center of traditional music and dances. The fine art of local woodcarvers started a new style of wood carving producing fruits, flowers and tress resembling their real shapes and colorings.

At the northeast from Denpasar, stone figures on the roadside mark the village of Batubulan, famous for its stone carvings and antiques. Workshops can be visited to watch artists at work. Looking for gold and silverworks? Celuk is noted for its gold and silverworks of jewelry made using age old techniques. Earrings, bracelets rings and brooches are just some of the pieces on offer. Those in search of batik, clothing or material, should not miss Gianyar which has at least 40 textiles factories.


Looking for more items?

  1. Bamboo: Bona
  2. Ceramics: Campuhan, Kapal, Tabanan
  3. Masks: Singapadu
  4. Puppets: Klungkung, Sukawati, Gianyar
  5. Toys: Mas, Tampaksiring, Peliatan
  6. Wood carvings: Mas, Kemenuh, Buruan, Tegallalang, Pujung, Nyuh-kuning
  7. Textiles: Sidemen, Kampunggelgel, Klungkung Market, Batuan, Negara.


Souvenir Tips

  • Handwoven fabrics are a great buy; a simple sarong is an inexpensive, portable and practical travel accessory
  • Ubud is the best place for you to buy paintings and other artworks
  • It is quite common to bargain in markets, shops and art shops for buyers, so having a good price is partly dependent upon one's smartness in bargaining


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