The abandoned Boeing 737 on the Raya Nusa Dua Selatan Highway in Bali has become one of the island’s most famous landmarks. While many associate Bali with temples, beaches, and volcanoes, thanks to content creators and influencers, the abandoned Boeing 737 has become one of the island’s most recognizable features.
There have been rumors for years about how and why the aircraft ended up on a scrubby patch of land not far from Pandawa Beach. There is fresh speculation about how the aircraft settled the limestone quarry and what might happen to it now. The most popular and longstanding rumor is that the plane was set to be converted into a restaurant but that the entrepreneurs ran out of cash and shut up shop before they even opened.
Others suggest that the project was axed after the business was unsuccessful at acquiring the correct permits to operate the plane as a venue.
Despite the no-trespassing signs, visitors and content creators visit the site at their own risk. It is not possible to safely get down to the plane itself since it is sitting in a quarry. The abandoned Boeing 737 off the Raya Nusa Dua Selatan Highway is not the only cast-away plane on the island. Four other abandoned planes can be observed as full aircraft or dissembled parts across Bali.
Another abandoned aircraft sits on the top of the cliffs at Nyang-Nyang Beach. Except this is only half an aircraft. The plane was placed at the top of the cliffs after an investment from Felix Denim in 2021. After acquiring the correct permits from the local government, it took a week to transport the disassembled plane to the cliff top.
Speaking to reporters at the time, Denim explained that he hoped the unique feature would become a local landmark and play a role in revving tourism in the area. He purchased the plane after it was set to be sold as scrap metal to a company in China.
There is another Boeing 737 in South Kuta that is also rumored to have been a business idea gone wrong, while other locals speculate that it was due to be transformed into a Grand Designs style home. Some sources say it was set to become a cinema, and others suggest it would become an aviation museum. Either way, the plane is now a popular destination for visitors. An entry fee is charged for visitors who want to go into the grounds and up close to the plane.
The final two abandoned aircraft are lesser known. One is the McDonnell Douglas DC 10, which sits close to Gate 88 Mall and Kuta Beach. The other is a Boeing 737-200 that can be found in the far west of Bali.
It is interesting to many that the tourism sector in Bali promotes natural beauty and even intentionally created tourist attractions on the island, yet the trend for abandoned sites continues. Even the Old Festival Park in Padang Galak is gaining in popularity with influencers, content creators, and curious travelers.
As Badung Regency, the district where Kuta, Legian, Seminyak, and Canggu can be found, confirm that they will spend hundreds of thousands of dollars on partnerships with influencers and vloggers, questions are being raised over which destinations they will promote. Speaking in recent weeks, the Head of the Badung Tourism Office, I Nyoman Rudiarta, has confirmed that the district government and tourism office will ‘aggressively promote’ tourism in the area.
He confirmed that the Tourism Office would distribute funds for marketing campaigns targeted at domestic and international tourists. Initiatives include creating digital content, targeted travel promotions, and events for tourists. They will soon launch a photo competition where no doubt, some entries will include the now iconic abandoned planes in Badung.
Rudiarta said, ‘There is a photo competition for a tourism destination, and there is also a video competition. We hope that this will be a tourism promotion event with the potential we have’. The Badung Tourism Office will announce more details about the photo competition soon.
Plan Your Next Bali Vacation:
Book The Best English Speaking Drivers For Airport Transfers & Tours
Choose From Thousands of Bali Hotels, Resorts, and Hostels with Free Cancellation On Most Properties
For the latest Bali News & Debate Join our Facebook Community
SUBSCRIBE TO NEW POSTS
Enter your email address to subscribe to The Bali Sun’s latest breaking news, straight to your inbox.