The everyday blog of Richard Bartle.
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2:01pm on Saturday, 21st August, 2010:
Continuing the occasional series...
Yes, it's a preserved gem of Hindu culture secreted in an Islamic country, it's full of spectacular temples and fetching dancers, it has exotic wildlife and coral reefs; I don't feel any burning desire to go there, though.
Sure, if I happened to be in the vicinity I'd take a look. I'd probably like it, too — I'm just not so eager to see it that I'd fly for 16½ hours to get there. It seems to be defined by what it isn't (ie. the rest of Indonesia), rather than by what it is; this isn't generally a good sign. It's not the commercialisation that would bother me; rather, it's the lack of self-confidence and authenticity that arises from this kind of situation.
So yes, if I found myself attending a conference there or something I'd head off and have a look at the place and in all likelihood find what I saw there special and interesting. It's just not so special and interesting that I can be fussed to go out specifically to see it.
That said, 2,000,000 tourists a year disagree with me.
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