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Deputy Governor Says Tides Have Turned On Badly Behaved Bali Tourists

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Bali’s Deputy Governor, known mostly by his nickname Cok Ace, has spoken to reporters about how campaign efforts have helped curb bad behavior by tourists on the island.

Since the beginning of the year Bali has seen a sharp rise in the number of incudes of tourists breaking the law or disrespecting Balinese culture. 

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Bali’s Deputy Governor, Tjok Oka Artha Ardhana Sukawati, has spoken to reporters about how the authorities are dealing with badly behaved tourists on the island.

For a few weeks, reports of foreigners breaking the law, or disrespecting local culture had appeared to decrease. Earlier this week however a Russian tourist was taken into custody after a ‘violent rampage’ in a local supermarket.

The woman, known by her initials AR, was arrested after entering the shop in Uluwatu without wearing clothes and behaving in an aggressive and unpredictable manner towards shop workers and the public.

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Speaking to reporters Cok Ace said that the incident involving AR is an example of the swift action the authors are taking against foreigners who are disturbing public order.

He noted that the fact that there had not been any headline-hitting cases for a few weeks was not a sign that the Tourism Task Force and other authorities had slacked off but rather that the educational awareness campaigns were starting to have a positive influence. 

Cok Ace said, “There [will] always be those who haven’t heard of or read the do’s and don’ts that we issued. This could happen by we will still [communicate] them.”

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He added that the fact that AR’s case has caught public attention is a positive reminder to tourists to understand the rules and regulations in place.

While it has now been established that AR was likely experiencing a mental health crisis, the incident has prompted yet more dialogue about the importance of tourists knowing what is and isn’t appropriate behavior.

The Deputy Governor stressed that “the Tourism Task Force is not being less strict, but that is because for all this time the [situation] has started to be fine. Finally foreign tourists no longer [don’t] know what is permissible and is not permissible.”

Cok Ace concluded, “the important thing is that we act; we already have guidelines for the legal umbrella, and we must continue to remind [foreign tourists of the rules].”

Speaking separately earlier this week, the Head of the Bali Regional Office of the Ministry of Law and Human Rights, Anggiat Napitupulu, confirmed the number of foreign tourists who have been deported from the island in the year so far. 

Napitupulu revealed “the number of foreigners deported from Bali as of Tuesday 29th August, was 213 people since January 2023….They came from 45 countries, with details of 59 foreigners from Russia, 14 from the United States, 13 from the UK, 12 from Australia, and 9 from Nigeria.”


While 213 people is a steep increase from the 188 deportations conducted throughout 2022, the number is still a tiny fraction of the over 2 million international tourists who have already visited Bali this year.

For 99% of tourists, respecting Indonesian law and Balinese culture is not difficult at all. Part of the joy of visiting Bali for vacation is the opportunity to learn about Balinese culture and Indonesian heritage.

Whether through visiting iconic temples like Goa Gajah, Pura Tirta Empul, Ubud Palace, or Uluwatu Temple, there is so much history and spirituality to learn about in Bali. 


Leaders on the island want to see more tourists actively engaging in Balinese culture during their vacation.

This includes everything from trying local food to enjoying cultural dances and performances like the Barong or the firey Kecak dance.


One of the most memorable ways to experience Balinese culture during a vacation on the island is to visit a local village.

The most famous traditional village in Bali is Penglipuran Village, winner of multiple tourism awards and undeniably beautiful; an increasing number of tourists from all around the world are loving visiting Penglipuran Village right now. 

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Mr Bear Snr

Saturday 9th of September 2023

Now they need to Turn the Tide on the badly behaving locals. Start by clamping down on The MOTOGP wannabe boys crashing their way through the congested traffic and pedestrians leaving injured people in their wake


Thursday 7th of September 2023

Phuket, Thailand has a share of unwelcome Russian draft dodgers. Gentrification and rising real estate prices have made Thai locals impossible to rent or buy. Businesses run by Russians and sex workers replaced by Russian women serving the Russian male customers.

And here in Bali, the same bull sheet is happening all over. And meanwhile foreigners here may not even care if a nude Russian woman walked into a Supermarket and caused havoc. Blame it again on mental illness issue. That’s excuse gets old real quick. If you want to be nasty and rude do it in your own country. Those qualities not NOT conform with the cultural norm in Indonesia.

The importance of cultural awareness and sensitivity need to be followed. One must have an understanding how people acquire their cultures and culture’s important role in personal identities, life ways, and mental and physical health of individuals and communities; Being conscious of one’s own culturally shaped values, beliefs, perceptions, and biases. Recognition of the nuances of one’s own and other cultures.

The knowledge, awareness, and acceptance of other cultures and others’ cultural identities may win you more local friends and assimilation rather than traveling with your head high above the clouds.


Sunday 3rd of September 2023

"One of the most memorable ways to experience Balinese culture during a vacation on the island is to visit a local village."

What the? Uluwatu, Bingin, Padang, changoo are just some places only 5 years ago were worth visiting to get away from Kuta and his other sister suburbs (eg: Legian, Seminyak, etc), now you have Indonesia biggest nightclub in Berawa. The government is blaming tourist, ha! Take a close look at what cok ace has created, before blaming other for the chaos that ensures.


Wednesday 6th of September 2023


For sure. Terrible.


Tuesday 5th of September 2023

@Bob, Yes. A new generation of Balinese will be trained in all these beach clubs into the business of extracting money from tourists via minimum spend, watered out drinks, substandard food and be teached that service is no longer important, only creating revenue. Sad indeed.

petter gleeson

Monday 4th of September 2023

@Bob,well said bob

Jess Matchi

Sunday 3rd of September 2023

@Bob, exactly! It sucks that there are so many partiers… but I wonder who allowed all of the night clubs and trashy beach clubs?


Sunday 3rd of September 2023

Here we go again with the same old broken record, where all the entitled self-loathing people have to shift all the blame to the Balinese people on here. Bali has attracted middle to low income tourists and retiree residents whose meager pension would not last in their own country of origin. If Bali keeps living costs higher and with better services, this will attract higher income bracket tourists, so why sold yourself cheap Bali, use a better strategy to attract the A list?? Tourists regardless of income brackets flock to France, UK, Italy and Spain where costs of living is higher and services rendered are not always cheap. One thing these European countries would not sell themselves cheap either to the tourists.

If foreigners break the law and do not respect the local Balinese culture, why settle here and to be with your own kinds...If tourists can respect the local Indonesian culture on other islands, then why not respect the local Balinese complex culture ?? No horror stories from disrespectful foreign tourists have been documented so far from visiting other parts of Indonesia. Bali is overrun by tourists period.


Thursday 7th of September 2023

@Walt Wilson, The Balinese are very different than the Javanese as a starter.

YOU wrote: Our family has been visiting Bali for 30 years, and trust me this is not the place we visited back then. I have followed the articles, and it seems that the comments here are made by people who really care about Bali and are sad to see it decline from its once incredible glory.

YOU got to be joking...comments here are made by people who really care?? What a weird way of showing it. It’s more like comparing oranges and apples. It’s more like a complaint drop box rather than finding a solution to the issue. Complaints and complaints...Sigh.

And what extortion?? You seemed to repeat what other biased people wrote without any substantial proof. By the way what kind of foreigners in Bali who deal with shoddy business people to save a buck and at the end get screwed. Then cry because they lost a deal or money in the process. Then air their dirty laundry by shifting the blame on all Balinese.

Here is an example of a dear American friend and his French Business partner who both got screwed with building his dream home in the Southern of France. Who should be blamed but themselves for dealing with Non French shoddy construction workers who told him it would be cheaper to buy materials in Belgium.. Seriously, what the hell...

Well shoddy people exist in every race, color, culture, creed, and nationality.


Thursday 7th of September 2023

@Jess Matchi, These are all complaints because your trip did not go well as planned. Mind you this is NOT a drop off complaint box. LOL

Would it be better if you air it on the international could become a hero to warn other tourists. The irony is that people are still coming. LOL

Respect them the way you want to be respected. It is not a one way street.

And stop comparing oranges and apples. None of my people who have visited Bali in June made any complaints and they would be glad to return next year even if it takes 20 hour to fly to Bali.


Wednesday 6th of September 2023

@Walt Wilson,

Correction. 'Not Assimilating'


Tuesday 5th of September 2023

@Walt Wilson, Astute observation. Concur.

Walt Wilson

Monday 4th of September 2023


Our family has been visiting Bali for 30 years, and trust me this is not the place we visited back then. I have followed the articles, and it seems that the comments here are made by people who really care about Bali and are sad to see it decline from its once incredible glory.

And that they also very much like the Balinese, that being said, not the new arrogant adults and rude smart alec children we have now, racing all day and night long on the noisy scooters and terrorizing the neighborhoods. It is shocking now to have children be impolite, and this comes from their parents who must sit all day while counting their money they made from tourism and bashing the hand that fed them.

Add in the incredible amount of plastic trash that is burnt everyday with absolutely no regard for anyone's health. The thugs that wait at every opportunity ot extort cash from you? And some large groups of newcomers who have intent on assimilating to their new culture.

It would seem the commentors have no other outlet, as any trip to the police (we know) is normally fruitless.

Not sure why you are angry at everyone here and trying to sugar coat the situation?

Jess Matchi

Saturday 2nd of September 2023

I’ve been visiting Bali as a tourist for 3 weeks and I am glad to be going home and would not recommend people to travel to Bali. We’ve been nothing but respectful to locals and only met with a shake down for money at every corner: every beach, parking area (many maybe scams - not clear). When paying for entry to beaches on the sides of cliffs often the infrastructure (handrails/stairs) is unsafe and nearly completely broken down so it is unclear where the money is going.

We’ve been followed quite a bit by taxi drivers. We’ve had scammers put their hands on my husband. A local surf instructor threatened to kill my partner who caught a wave that he wanted his student to have. After 3 days of stay and on our way to buy a boat ticket to leave Nusa Penida we were followed and threatened in an alley with a man demanding a tourist tax.

Funny that all I see in the local news is about how Bali finds a few disrespectful tourists, but no mention of all the local thugs and mafia threatening and scamming tourists. No wonder we are treated so poorly with all of these articles. Bali needs to better manage tourism and crack down on the thugs and local scams.


Monday 9th of October 2023

@Randy, i am a local I experienced shake down too, drunken neighbour asking money for our car parking at our own villa, saying the car passed through private road leading to villa. The case is taken care by the villa owner, nevertheless, it's not a pleasant experience. Saw similar problem in tiktok and ig too, and also heard this from the online drivers. This is a rising trend and is destructive. Hope something can be done to solve this


Thursday 7th of September 2023

@Jess Matchi, got news for you. Indonesia is not only Bali. Traveling to other places in Indonesia would certainly bring out a better perspective. Telling others to avoid Bali is simply out of ignorance.


Thursday 7th of September 2023

@Jess Matchi, an isolated case maybe? Why don’t you air it in the international news and be a hero to tell the world what you experienced from an isolated incident. Whatever happened to you does not reflect with other tourists that did not end up in a situation like you. It is NOT up to you NOT to recommend BALI, they can see if for themselves. Not everyone experienced what you have been through.


Sunday 3rd of September 2023

@Jess Matchi, Bali is Phuket for poor people!


Sunday 3rd of September 2023

@Jess Matchi,

Bali has become "Pattaya without Police"