If you’re backpacking to Bali and looking to party, then Kuta is where it’s at. No matter what you think of Kuta, there’s no doubt that it has the liveliest bar/club scene on the island. Kuta is loud and proud, in-your-face and full of backpackers looking to have a good time- Bintang T-shirts and all. So here’s a list of the 10 best places to party in Kuta, Bali’s chaotic tourist town.
1. Sky Garden– Sky Garden is a favourite amongst backpackers for its cheap cocktails. Sky garden has several floors with lounge areas and bars, plus a bar on the roof. Have a few cocktails or beers with friends, gaze over the balcony at the streets of Kuta below, or party the night away on the dance floor. Sky Garden has great drinks deals early on and plenty of floor shows and fire dancing for added entertainment.
2. Green Box– If you’re backpacking on a shoestring budget, then you should definitely head to this little jem. Painted lime green and serving cheap cocktails, there is no sitting in Green Box, only standing. Get together a group of friends, order an insanely cheap tray of 20 shots and the rest of your night is sorted.
3. Alley cats– Alleycats is down an alley off Poppies II and is an English-owned restaurant, serving English-style food. If you’re on a budget then here you get big, hearty meals at Bali prices. There’s a spacious courtyard with tables and chairs, plus a bar area and pool table. Why is it on this list if it’s a restaurant? Young backpackers come here for a bit of pre-drinking before heading out to the big clubs.
4. The Bounty Ship– Bounty is Kuta’s big club- not your ‘sophisticated’ type of place, more of a ‘party like there’s no tomorrow’ kind of place. Designed like a big pirate ship, Bounty starts to kick off after 10pm and the dance floor gets really packed and rowdy late on. Make sure you have one of their signature jam jars filled with local spirits.
5. M-Bar-Go– MBarGo is big hip hop club with a dance floor, large bar area and lounge. It gets really busy after midnight and plays a mix of music over two floors. On Thursday’s they host ‘beach couture’ fashion shows.
6. Eikon– Quite a sophisticated venue for Legian street decked out in plush reds and shiny chrome, Eikon has a stylish bar area downstairs, whilst the upper floor has plenty of seating if you want to chill out a bit.
7. Paddy’s Reloaded– After the Bali bombings in 2002, Paddy’s relocated to a spot in front of Bounty. Paddys pub has reasonably priced drinks and, like most places in Kuta, its packed with tourists and Aussies.
8. Hard Rock Cafe– Hard Rock Cafe on Kuta beach is great for live music, with live musicians every night of the week. They serve the usual Hard Rock menu with burgers, fries and other American-inspired food. It pulls in quite a young crowd and every two months they invite a well-known Indonesian musician or band to play.
9. Nero Bali– Nero Bali is a modern restaurant/bar with a relaxing, open-air vibe. Located on Jalan Legian, Nero Bali serves Mediterranean food and great frozen cocktails. They have live jazz music on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays so if you want somewhere a little more laid-back and sophisticated, then this might be the place for you.
10. Espresso-Espresso has cover bands playing live music and if you can sing or play and instrument, they’ll encourage you to stand up and join in. It’s usually really busy but is smaller and has a more intimate, relaxed vibe than some of the bars and clubs on Jalan Legian.