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Bali Investigates Illegal Construction Of Private Rental Villas For Tourists 

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Bali is undergoing a surge of rapid tourism development; there are new resorts, villas, beach clubs, and apartment complexes under construction across the island.

Key areas that are experiencing the bulk of the investment and development include both Canggu and Uluwatu and their surrounding villages, as well as the outlying island of Nusa Penida. 

Bali Construction Worker on Wall.jpg

While many see high investments coming into Bali as a positive sign for the economy, many share substantiated fears that this seemingly never-ending conversion of the natural landscape into tourism infrastructure is an irreversible threat to life on the island

A viral video that is currently doing the rounds shows satellite images of Bali’s previously rural landscapes over the last decade is shocking to see.

Rice paddies, farmland, and rural villages around Canggu have been replaced with hotels, restaurants, villas, and resorts. 

Bali lovers across demographics feel that the island is struggling to strike a balance between preserving culture and natural landscapes and tourism development, which supports the local economy.

Mounting waste management issues, near constant traffic congestion in tourism resorts, and a rise in bad behavior by a small significant number of foreigners all point to undeniably negative impacts of mass tourism on the small provincial island.

As local residents, expats, and tourists have joined together to voice their concerns, over the last year a significant number of development projects have been canceled or protested against due to the damage the construction could do to the landscape.

Many of the projects that have been canceled, paused, or protested against have failed to produce the correct building permits, meaning that the government has been in a position to step in and cancel construction.

This had been the case in Nusa Penida this week, where construction on what was set to be a luxurious new villa in Pejukutan Village has been brought to a halt. 

The Head of the Klungkung One-Stop Integrated Services Investment Service, I Made Sudiarkajaya, told reporters that the foreign investors behind the project had proceeded with construction before they had acquired permission to do so.

According to Sudiarkajaya, the investors had only applied for a Business Identification Number and no further permits, licenses, or building applications. 

@saradaviestravel the most insane villa in Nusa Penida, Bali 🌴🌊 #bali #balitravel #bali2022 #balivilla #traveltok ♬ slipping through my fingers – gabut woi

The villa in question was set to include a helicopter landing pad and an expansive swimming pool.

The construction teams had laid foundations and had even started building walls before the authorities were able to close the project down.

The case has been handed over to the Klungkung Regency Judicial Team to supervise and regulate any further work on the project.


The Regent of Klungkung, I Nyoman Suwirta, has been made aware of the case and has told the media that he has communicated directly with the people responsible for the project, though he did not reveal their identities publicly.

He has suggested that the necessary permits will be applied for in due course and that construction will likely continue once all paperwork is in order. 

The Regent told reporters that he ‘not want to give the impression that there was a ban on investing in the area.’ 

This construction project in Pejukutan Village is close to iconic tourist attractions like Diamond Beach and Thousand Islands Viewpoint.


The eastern edge of Nusa Penida receives a huge amount of visits from tourists every day, and the island is only growing in popularity.

The Regent and his teams are also grappling with the desire to develop tourism on the island and protect the natural landscape.

Regent Suwirta recently confirmed that he has submitted legislative changes and applications that, if granted, would see Nusa Penida become a protected geopark.


This would make it harder for construction projects that cause environmental harm to go ahead. 

While Bali is a destination loved by the vast majority of tourists, one of the most common complaints by visitors is noise disturbance from construction projects neighboring existing accommodations.

This is an issue that tourism businesses and the authorities are acutely aware of and has been cited by many Bali lovers as their reason for traveling to different destinations for their vacations. 

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Friday 13th of October 2023

This arrangement worked perfectly for the beach clubs. Corruption at its finest.


Thursday 12th of October 2023

Investigates, finds out that the corruption money has not been paid, stops the construction until "permits" are paid for. Then construction can continue, just like the article mentions. No concern about urban planning or environmental protection.


Sunday 15th of October 2023

@Jacques, Sorry. I was not clear. The steps I described is how housing developments are done in a western country.


Saturday 14th of October 2023


But surely this sounds like a western managed development. This is not what happens here in reality. But I'm starting to wonder how any civilized person can live in this 'Open Air Garbage Incinerator.' It's become quite unbearable.


Thursday 12th of October 2023

@Abdul, Yep. A follow up article in 6 months time will unfortunately prove you right.

In my neck of woods the steps are as follows: 1. Select land for development and do appropriate zoning far away from noisy and polluted areas, but close to schools and shops. 2. Build roads and connections for electricity, water, sewage and storm drains. 3. Then sell plots 5-7 area at development cost (150 Juta/are on the free market). One plot for each customer. 4. Only allow buildings covering 35% of land to ensure catchment and drainage. Limit height so everybody have a view. 5. Ugly architecture not allowed.

petter gleeson

Thursday 12th of October 2023

the penny has finaly dropped,


Thursday 12th of October 2023

@petter gleeson, Unfortunately not. Read Abdul post.