All on my own for 4 weeks going to go to Bali, Lombok, and gilli islands. Don't know where to stay a bit worried about it. Has anyone been? Do they have hostels in Bali? if so please let me know - also is the cost of living similar to thailand or is it more expensive? any help would be really good. I have been told to stay away from kuta is that right?
There are many guest houses / hostels. Check out a Lonely Planet guide for recommended ones.
I've been to Kuta. There are lots of hostels (look up Poppies/Poppies II on the net and you get an idea of what is there). Kuta is a good place to base yourself for exploring bali. The nightlife in Kuta was disappointing as it's quite limited, but it has some great restaurants (even has a decent Lebanese restaurant, and a good Mexican). Legian Beach in Kuta is quite nice, but spoilt by the packs of dogs that wander about, and the beach vendors (particular the tattooists) don't leave you alone if you make eye contact with them. From what i remember it's a little cheaper than Thailand generally.