Shopping in Bali, is an overload on your senses on your first trip. There are shops absolutely everywhere. Anything from high end boutiques to roadside markets full of absolute bargains.
The best tip is if you are prepared to barter then you will almost certainly always grab a bargain, if you don’t like bartering either take someone with you who does or equally so you are most likely to still get a good price if you pay what they are asking for from the get go. However always check first if the store you are in is fixed price or not, which means you can’t barter.
If you are wanting anything made then Bali is the right place. We have had plenty of things made in the past such as curtains, a doona cover and pillow cases, clothes including shorts, pants, shirts and suits and leather goods including bags, wallets, belts, jackets, shoes and boots. If you have anything you would like made or copied take it with you and you just show it to them and they will have just about anything done in 3 days.
We have a leather man that we go to all the time. It is so easy now I e-mail him before we go to give him an idea of what we want and he will let me know how much time he needs. His name is Amim and he is based in Seminyak just in the gangway on the way into Dyana Villas. You can’t miss his little store. You can contact him on firstname.lastname@example.org just let him know Jo from Australia gave you his details.
If you want clothes or curtains etc made or even if you are a sewer and just want material then you need to head into Denpasar to the fabric markets. They are amazing and have every type of material you could possibly imagine. You can definitely barter in here, a great place to get cheap silk. There of course are plenty of tailors where you can get clothes made in a few days even a fully tailored suit. They can make anything for you or you can take a picture or a smaple of something you want replicated and then will also do this. I found a store in here that has made curtains for me on a few occasions. Just make sure you have your measurements and they will whip them up for you and even deliver them back to where you are staying.
If you are in Bali for a little while you can also arrange to have furniture made. As you head North out of Seminyak heading towards Ubud you will see roadside stores full of timber and furniture that is all hand-made. You can arrange for anything to be made and have it shipped back to Australia in a shipping container. A lot of the places where the furniture is made can arrange a container for you but make sure they are reputable. The best way is to do your research before you leave, here are a couple you can have a look at Indo Style or Harry Kellerman for details.
Alternatively if you have a few people interested in furniture you can split the cost of a container.
If it is not furniture you are after but sculptures you are also in the right place, you will see them everywhere. You can also arrange to have these shipped back home.
There are a few places that we always go back to when we visit Bali when we are shopping. We love the markets in Seminyak square which is very easy to find they are not huge but you will always find a bargain and they have lots of fabulous kids clothes. There are plenty of markets everywhere and you will find lots in Kuta and Legian if you are up for it. They are cheaper than Seminyak but be prepared it is much busier.
Up on the bypass there are several outlet sports stores where you can pick up Billabong, Converse, Quicksilver, Roxy, Speedo, Nike, Addidas and Puma just to name a few. We always head to these to pick up great deals on clothing and shoes for the kids. If you have the room you can also pick up some very cheap golf clubs.
If it is homewares you are after then you can also find these everywhere. There is a huge market in Kuta if you are looking for souveniers or something for your home, that have absolutely everything. We have taken wooden produccts home before which were fine as most of the things made out of wood that will fit in your bag are made from coconut which is fine for customs.
I have also bought home the best vanilla beans I have ever seen and were so cheap. As long as they are packaged up they are fine to bring home. I will talk about where to get these from in my day trips blog.
If it is Jewellery that you are interested in then you won’t be dissappointed. There is shop after shop of beads, necklaces, rings and bangles etc for you to choose from. If you are looking for silver then there are plenty of stores selling very good quality silver. For those of you who have heard of Joy Jewellery that started in Bali and their store is up on Eat Street and they have some beautiful things in there. It is worth a look and of course who wouldn’t love something with Joy on it.
If you are looking for silver you can head to Celuk which is the silver centre of Bali. The bigger show rooms are on the main road, there are hundreds of silversmiths that work fom their homes in the backstreets. Their prices are cheaper than the big show rooms but they may not have a huge range. If you have something in particular you want made you can take a picture or a sample of it and they can arrange this for you.
I have really only scratched the surface when it comes to shopping but once you get there just go for it and have fun.
The Joy Girls xx