How to Navigate the Sanur Beach Walk
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Travellers to Sanur, Bali, will be familiar with the 'Beach Walk' that runs along the coast for approximately 5 kms. It's popular, at all times of the day and evening, with runners, walkers and cyclists. Over the last year or so the path has been widened to accommodate an increasing number of cyclists and signs have appeared to differentiate between the bike path and the walking path.
The signs are placed at fairly regular intervals along the path with pictures to aid understanding. It's pleasing to see that few trees were harmed in the path-widening project as the path often meanders around them.
Often the path is used 'correctly' and safely although there are many exceptions and frequent challenges.
The design of the path has been criticised by some due to the fact that walkers are directed to the sea-side of the path which allows limited access to shops, cafes and rubbish bins. It's often less shady on that side also.
Crossing over the bike path is less hazardous now than it was initially due to the fact that motorbikes an e-scooters have been banned. Previous to this ruling walkers took their lives in their hands when ducking over to the shops in between bikes travelling at varying speeds.
Despite the clear signage, path users often get it wrong due to numerous factors, not least of all human interpretation. Travellers from countries whose road rules require them to drive on the right hand side instinctively seem to walk (or cycle) on the right hand side of their designated path. Some even walk on the right hand side of their non-designated path.
This is particularly problematic where the paths are conjoined which it is at several locations along the Beach Walk.
There is sometimes a semblance of order along stretches where the path is wide. Providing, of course, that people remember that we drive on the left hand side in Bali.
There is, in general, less order in high-density areas such as outside popular bars and restaurants. Beer drinking may have a further bearing on where people choose to position themselves on the path once they leave bars. A comedy of errors regularly ensues.
Things get especially tricky on the narrow sections of the conjoined path and everyone is everywhere. It seems that when space becomes scarce people lose their sense of order.
I hatched a plan to mastermind a logical method of navigating the path as a walker. It was to be in my best interest since I plan to walk along the path at least twice each day for an extended period of time. I theorized that perhaps the pavers with the fancy raised texture were strategically placed as a walking indicator, to be followed by walkers, on the left hand side of course. This made perfect sense to me.
Sadly this seems not to make sense to countless others and I experienced many 'stand offs' when I stuck to my guns and refused to budge for on-coming pedestrians (and cyclists) who were travelling on 'my side' (according to my logic). A further complication is that the 'walking indicators' seem to randomly meander along the path from right to left and sometimes in the middle.
The inevitable result is chaos and confusion as if the path itself has a mischievous sense of humour, defying any attempts at logical navigation.
I've since abandoned my logical plan and decided to embrace the pandemonium along the path. It remains an enchanting way to wander and enjoy the sights that Sanur has to offer. I'd love to hear from you should you have further insights into navigating this delightful Beach Walk.
92199 - 2023-06-11 08:57:51