The next town north of Legian, Seminyak is more upmarket with mostly luxury accommodation and fashionable high-end restaurants and bars. The atmosphere is much more sophisticated and laid-back than Kuta, and the beach in particular is quieter during the day. Seminyak is also the high end spa and boutique shopping capital of Bali. Nowhere is the upscaling of Bali in recent years more obvious than here.
It is hard to imagine that only ten years ago this was a distinctly separate village, and something of a backwater. Development has occurred at an astonishing pace, and as well as absorbing all green space which formerly separated Seminyak from Legian, it is now almost impossible to determine where Seminyak ends and the nearby villages of Petitenget, Umalas and Kerobokan begin. This certainly has its downside, and the whole district has become very congested.
Update for 2013 New roadworks have been completed and traffic has been reduced by as much as 50% from south to north. 3pm to 6pm is still a time you need to avoid traveling.