Bali and Beyond Experiences
The island of Bali, also known as island of the Gods and is a most visually appealing holiday destination. The landscape of the island is combination of mountain ranges, verdant rice terraces, sandy beaches and rugged terrain. Bali is a land of artists where everyone seems to have a talent for dance, painting, carving or music. Strong Hindu religious beliefs and community ties have ensured that the Balinese culture remains intact. Colorful ceremonies and unique rites and rituals are a way of daily life.
An island which has drawn travelers ever since word of its legendary beauty began to spread in the early 1900s. The cultural diversity and rich history of this unique small island, a place of temples, palaces, rice paddies and ruins, of villages where crafts lost to the rest of the island are still practiced, and where religion is an intrinsic part of everyday life, seen both in colorful festivals and in simple daily. As one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world, Bali for few years awarded as the world best island by The International Travel Magazine.
As a lifestyle specialist travel agent, Magellan Bali offers you a visit to this uniquely magnificent island. Our style and philosophy revolve around making conscientious decisions to assist lifestyle and luxury travelers in their exploration of Bali and Indonesian islands.
In addition to sightseeing and natural adventure, we wish you to cultivate an in-depth understanding of Bali and experience endless options of sophisticated culture activities including Balinese Hindu Ceremony, Arts, cultures, cooking, dancing etc. Magellan can invite discremenating travelers to immerse themselves in our real culture through a variety of interactive events.
We will make your vacations as problem-free as possible in the maximum comfort and convenience by arranging exclusive Airport Services, Transfers, Intepreter guides and other services that can enrich your travel experiences.
- How to get Bali
- Bali Map
- Local Transporation
- Local Climate
- Flora & Fauna
- Travel Tips
With the increasing number of direct flight to Bali from some
other parts of the world, it makes it easier to go to Bali.
From Bali, flight to Jakarta is about 1.5 hours, to Singapore and Perth (Australia) 2.5 and 3 hours, to Hong Kong about 4.5 hours, and to Sydney/Melbourne about 5.5 to 6 hours, with various airlines offering their services.
Please check at "airline info" for more information about flight schedules. Just make sure you look for "Denpasar (DPS)" instead of "Bali" in airline time tables. It is the capital of Bali. Or you can check your "Travel Agents" for more travel arrangements and accommodatiron.
Neighbooring area Lombak is only 30 minutes flight away from Bali. While reaching east Java can be using car around 4 hours away with scenic view and crosing Bali Sea straight.
Among 17,500 islands across the Indonesian archipelago, Bali is one of the 33 provinces of the Republic of Indonesia, the largest archipelagic country in the world, made up of 2,000,000 km2 of land with a chain of islands stretching over 500,000 km from Sumatra to Papua, and covers territorial waters of more than 5,000,000 km2.
Situated between Java and Lombok, the island of Bali is located 8 to 9 degrees south of the equator with the Java Sea to the north, the Indian Ocean to the south. Bali's covers an area of 5,636 km2 or 0.29% of Indonesia, measuring just 90km long the north-south axis and less than about 140km from west to east.
Divided into three areas of water, the North Bali Sea is about 3,168km2, the East about 3.350km2, and the West about 2,982km2. Bali Sea covers an area of 9,500km2.
The North Bali sea runs along the coastline of Buleleng, the East Bali Sea runs along the coastline of Karangasem, Klungkung and Gianyar, and the West Bali Sea include the coastline of Badung Tabanan and Jembrana.
The Bali province is divided into 8 regencies (kabupaten) and 1 city (kota). Unless otherwise stated, the regency's capital:
- Badung, capital Mangupura
- Bangli, capital Bangli
- Buleleng, capital Singaraja
- Denpasar (city)
- Gianyar, capital Gianyar
- Jembrana, capital Negara
- Karangasem, capital Amlapura
- Klungkung, capital Semarapura
- Tabanan, capital Tabanan
Bali's population of over 3,000,000 souls spread over the whole island, including those in the smaller islands of Nusa Penida, Nusa Ceningan, Nusa Lembongan, Serangan and Menjangan Island.
The overwhelming majority of Balinese are Hindus, with the increasing number on non-Hindu migrating from the closest neighboring islands of Java and Lombok.
Indonesia Languange is the most common langunge using to connecting people in Bali, Lombok and Java. However local languange such as Balinese languange is still using very often in everyday life. "Selamat Pagi", "Selamat Siang, "Selamat Malam" are Indonesian languange that means "good morning, "good afternoon" and "good evening". Is very easy to learn local languange if you are actively interact with local people
The coastal areas in the south are the most populous area with over 370,000 people living in various professions in the capital of Denpasar. Farming has been the primary way of living in Balinese life. Where else fishing, trading and craftsmanship are also in fashion from generation to generation. Yet with the fast growing of tourism since past few decades, young people start to build up a new touch in their living culture.
Life in Bali is very communal under the organization of villages. Temple ceremonies, marriage, cremation, farming and even the creative art festivals are decided by the local community institution called "Banjar". The responsibilities in the day-to-day life are normally administered by both the Banjar and the government. The local government mostly responsible for schools, health clinics, hospitals and roads, and Banjar is responsible for all other aspects of life. There is another association exists in the banjar named "Subak" that concerns to the production of rice and organizes the complex irrigation system. Every family who owns a rice field must be a member of their local Subak, which then ensures that every member gets his fair distribution of water. A banjar consists of an average of 50 to 150 family members, owning a meeting venue called the Bale Banjar, which is used for regular gatherings and a center for local gamelan orchestras and drama groups.
Because of the size of the island, it is not difficult to get around Bali by various modes of transportation. The traditional types of transportation to the high class limousine are available for tourist to choose. Not to forget the sea transportation that connect Bali to some of its sister islands. However, train does not exist in Bali.
This is the most used transportation in Bali especially in the city of Denpasar. It is a miniature van with a routine route set by local government periodically. This type of transportation is good for short distance around town and cities, because of its size and passenger can get in and out at any point. Most importantly, it is cheaper compared to some other type of transportations, even though fairly slow. Price ranges usually around Rp 3,200 to Rp 4,000 per one stop over.
There are buses for transportation between towns that relatively bigger compared to bemo. These buses connect all towns and most places of the island through local bus stations. Likewise bemo, buses also can be stopped at any point of the routes. They mostly operate day time inter island, but some are available at night for long distances within cities. Fares are between Rp. 1.500 to Rp. 10.000 per one stop point.
Taxi is the most efficient and convenience transportation in the island. Either chartered or metered one, they are everywhere and quite inexpensive compared to some other countries. In Bali there are some different companies providing taxi services.
Rental Cars, Motorbikes and Bicycles
If you plan to explore Bali in half day or full day trip, the best way is hiring a car with the driver. The average rate is from Rp 120,000 to Rp 300,000 a day depending on the type of the vehicle. There are many independent car rentals around the island. If you wish to have better services, you can go to a Travel Agent. You even can hire a tour guide of your own language. The other possibility is to rent a self drive car. An international driving license from your own country is required. This rule also applicable for motorbike rental, but in some cases you can get a temporary permit at local police office. Price ranges are around Rp. 35,000 to Rp. 50,000 per day for motorbike and Rp. 15,000 for bicycle. Likewise, a safety helmet is a compulsory when you ride a motorbike. Meanwhile, bicycles are normally available for rent at hotels. Some bigger resorts even provides bicycle tour for free including a professional tour guide.
In many areas of Indonesia, a traditional horse and cart transportation still can be found in many different versions. In Bali, this kind of transportation is known as "dokar". Nowadays, the use of dokar is simply limited due to efficiency. In some areas dokars are even prohibited by the government because it becomes a dwindling sight around the street. A dokar ride can be a fairly bumpy and unique experience. That is why some hotels and event organizers sometime offer a dokar ride for their guests, wedding couples or special groups.
To travel to some sister islands of Bali famous for their marine activities, local cruises is the most convenient. They normally offer a tour package including meal, activities and even a resort to stay over night. Some traditional boats are also in service for shorter distances such as to Serangan or Menjangan island.
With sunshine shining throughout the year, Bali has a tropical monsoon climate, with pleasant day temperatures between 20 to 33 degrees Celsius or 68 to 93 degrees Fahrenheit. Rainy season starts from October to March, when the West monsoon brings heavy showers and high humidity. June to September is considered the driest season, with low humidity and it can be fairly cold in the evenings, the best time for any outdoor activities.
Something unique can be found about climate in Bali. Even when it rains most times in the most parts of Bali you can often enjoy sunny days on the "Bukit", the hill south of Jimbaran. On the other hand, you may expect cloudy skies and drips throughout the year in Ubud and the mountainous areas. Most interestingly perhaps, the international weather reports for "Denpasar" or "Bali" mention showers and rain storms all times of the year. In higher regions such as in Bedugul or Kintamani you'll expect to wear either a sweater or jacket when evening falls.
Just like common tropical islands, in Bali you will find a wide variety of plants by surprise. Huge banyan trees are everywhere in the villages by the Bale banjar or pavilion, or temples ground. Tamarind is also a typical Balinese tree mostly found in the north coast, as well as clove at the highlands. Meanwhile acacia, flame tree and mangrove can be found along the south coastlines. Craft and house use basketries, a dozen species of coconut palms and varieties of bamboos are also everywhere across the island.
Flowers families are just as surprisingly as the variety of big plants. The most common are hibiscus, frangipani, bougainvillea, jasmine, and water lilies. Magnolia, frangipani, and a variety of orchids are found in many front yards and gardens, along roads, and in temple grounds. In the day to day life flowers are routinely used as decorations in temples, on statues, as offerings for the gods, and during prayers. Dancers wear blossoms in their crowns, and flowers are worn behind the ear during ceremony sessions.
Like some other parts of Indonesia, Bali was home for big mammals such as elephant and tiger, although they no longer exist since early of last century. However, Bali still is rich of wildlife with the existence of various species of monkeys, civets, barking deer and mouse deer.
There are 300 species of birds occupy the island including wild fowl, dollar birds, blue kingfishers, sea eagles, sandpipers, white herons and egrets, cuckoos, wood swallows, sparrows, and the endangered Bali starlings. The underwater world or marine life of Bali has been noted as one of the best in the world with various species such as dolphin, shark and sun fish, and some smaller inhabitants like colorful coral fish, small reef fish, and moray eels, as well as crustaceans and sponges.
The existence of these flora and fauna become necessary for the day to day life of Balinese, where ceremonies and rituals always flourish.
Currency and Exchange
The rupiah is the basic unit of money, normally abbreviated to Rp followed by the value. Denominations of Rp 50 and 100 are in the form of coins, Rp 100, 500 and 1,000 are in either coins or bills, and Rp 5,000, 10,000, 20,000 and 50,000 are only available in bills. Values below Rp 50 are rarely seen except as change and are often substituted by sellers with sweets in lieu of change.
In Bali, carry a handful of coins or Rp 100 notes and do not exchange large sums of money even if you plan to be there for a long time. Take note though, due to the volatility of the rupiah, most mid-range hotels, all top-end hotels and restaurants, and some tourist attractions, car rental agencies and tour companies list their prices in US dollar. The rupiah is still acceptable but the exchange rate is usually more advantageous to the vendor than the tourist.The postal service in Bali has a type of postal traveller's check called cek pos. You can exchange your cash for these checks at a main post office and use them throughout Indonesia as traveller's checks or cash them at any post office. However, these traveller's checks cannot be accepted by individuals.
Foreign currency, whether in banknotes or traveller's checks, should be exchanged at major banks or authorised moneychangers. Exchange rates offered by the moneychangers are generally better than the banks, they stay open longer and transactions are quicker. Look around for variable exchange rates advertised on boards along the footpaths or windows outside shops. Always ask about any commission imposed before the exchange as many moneychangers with better rates often charge a small commission.
Most major banks have branches in the main tourist centers and provincial capitals. But it would be difficult to find banks in smaller towns, and even if there were banks, the exchange rates may be woeful. Banking hours are generally from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Monday to Friday and until 11 a.m. on Saturdays.
Many shops, large and small, accept plastic cards with a 3-5 percent added to the bill. Cash advances can be obtained in all major tourist resorts - Denpasar, Kuta, Sanur and Ubud. Automatic Teller Machines are mushrooming all over the place, especially at shopping centers and bank branches. Most of them are connected to international banking networks, thus making it possible to look for machines that are affiliated with your own ATM network. Visa, Mastercard, and American Express are accepted by most of the bigger businesses. The amount signed for is in rupiah and the bill is then converted to your domestic currency.
To ensure security and convenience, bring most of your money in traveller's checks, despite getting better exchange rates for cash. Backing this up with a credit card for major purchases is a good idea. US dollars are the most negotiable currency, particularly in remote areas. It would be a practical way to change as much as you can and feel safe carrying before heading into more remote regions.
Weapons, narcotics, pornography, and radio-cassette players are prohibited in Bali. Yes, it is strange that cassette players are not allowed into the island but this law is rarely enforced. Anything with Chinese characters written on it is forbidden.
The same rule applies to fresh fruits, plants, animals, exposed films, and videos. Pets are strictly banned to prevent the spread of rabies. But if you insist on taking your furry friends along, an official letter is needed from your veterinarian stating that your pet is disease-free but this would not guarantee a quarantine. Feel free to contact your local Indonesian consulate/embassy for details.
You are only able to bring a maximum of one liter of alcohol, 200 cigarettes, 50 cigars or 100 grams of tobacco, and a reasonable amount of perfume into Bali. Photographic equipment, typewriters and radios are admitted, provided that they are taken out on departure. All these must be declared via a customs declaration form that must be completed before arrival. Another subject is the import and export of currencies, one is not able to import or export the Indonesian currency exceeding Rp 5 million. In addition, export of national treasures are frowned upon - tortoise shell, crocodile skins, and ivory are not to be taken out of Indonesia.
Visas and Passports
Two-month tourist visas will automatically be issued to
visitors from 46 countries, which include Australia, Japan, New Zealand, the UK,
the USA, Canada, and most of western Europe. Ensure that your passport is valid
for at least six months upon entry into Indonesia or you will find yourself on
the next plane out. You will be given a 60-day tourist card as long as (i) your
passport is valid for at least six months, and (ii) you have a ticket out of
Indonesia or have enough money to fund your trip and departure. This card has to
be returned when you leave Indonesia, so please do not misplace it.
Extension of tourist visas is easy; you would only have to leave the country and come back in again. This is as simple as going to Singapore and returning the same day. Paperwork is involved for extending business and social cultural visas, and this can be done only once per visa. Contact your local Indonesian embassy/consulate for more details or the immigration department once in Bali.
Visa on arrival value at USD 25 per person and valid for 30 days is now available for nationals of the following countries: Algeria, Argentina, Australia, Austria, Bahrain, Belgium, Brazil, Bulgaria, Cambodia, Canada, Czech Republic, Denmark, Egypt, Estonia, Fiji, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Holland, Hungary, Iceland, India, Iran, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Kuwait, Laos, Latvia, Libya, Lichtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Maldives, Malta, Mexico, Monaco, New Zealand, Norway, Oman, Panama, People's Republic of China, Poland, Portugal, Qatar, Romania, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Suriname, Switzerland, Sweden, Taiwan, Tunisia, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom and the United States of America.
It is essential to have a travel insurance policy to cover theft, loss and medical problems. Some companies offer a range of medical expense options, but the small print must be scrutinised. It is preferable to have a policy that pays doctors or hospitals directly rather than you having to pay on the spot and claim later. Check that the policy covers ambulances and emergency flights home. Numerous policies also specify exclusion of dangerous activities such as scuba diving, renting a local motorbike on Bali and even trekking. Take note that locally acquired motorbikes are not valid under certain policies.
If you are entering Bali from an area infected with smallpox, cholera and yellow fever, an international health certificate will be required. The further off the beaten track you go, the more necessary it is to take precautions. Plan ahead when getting your vaccinations as some may require more than one injection. It is recommended that you seek medical advice at least six weeks before travel. Typhoid and paratyphoid vaccinations are advisable and if your stay in Bali is long, go for gamma-globulin injections as the risk of hepatitis could be reduced. Many people might get the notorious "Bali Belly"but the symptoms can stopped by taking Lomotil and Imodium. At the first sign of discomfort (diarrhoea and cramps), drink strong, hot tea and avoid all fruits and spicy food. Charcoal tablets, a brand named Norit, will help alleviate the cramping. If a fever occurs with the above symptoms, go to a doctor for a course of antibiotics. Be sure to rehydrate yourself by taking mineral replacements salts such as Oralite and drinking as much liquids as possible.
Malaria may not be a major threat in Bali, but dengue fever is. Protect yourself with long sleeves and trousers or use insect repellent to keep the Aedes mosquitoes at bay. Remember to bring along sunscreen and sun block to protect yourself from the harsh Bali sun. A wide-brimmed straw hat is also useful around noon, when the tropical sun is intense.
You should also ensure that you have adequate health insurance and that your teeth are in perfect order before you travel, as dentists are hard to find in Bali. It is an important rule to be careful of the water, especially iced. If you do not know whether the water is safe, assume the worst. If unsure about tap water, drink bottled water or soft drinks. Just be certain that you use water from containers with a serrated seal, not tops or corks. Be cautious with fruit juice, particularly if it has been added with water. Boiling water is the simplest way of purifying but at higher altitudes, boil longer to kill germs. All fruits should be peeled before consumption and raw vegetables should not be eaten. Watch what you eat and where you eat, and always wash your hands with soap.
AMANKILA RESORTS MANGGIS
Amankila lobby has a spectacular ocean views, as well as views of the resort's signature three-tiered pool. Down below the resort, set back from the private beach in a coconut grove, is the Beach Club which offers another pool, as well as casual dining. The 34 stilted free-standing suites are tucked into the lush vegetation around the resort, and all boast outstanding sea views.
AMANDARI RESORTS UBUD
Amandari (peaceful spirits) is located about 60 minutes from Denpasar's international airport, and 10 minutes from the arts community of Ubud in Central Bali. Designed as a Balinese village, the property features andesite walkways and high paras-stone walls to mimic traditional local design. The pathway that runs through Amandari and down the valley to the river below is said to be sacred land.
AMANUSA RESORTS NUSA DUA
Amanusa only 15 minutes drive from Bali's international airport in Denpasar, Amanusa sets the relaxation process in motion swiftly, with the welcoming Amanusa staff taking care of every detail and need. A smooth manicured golf course, one of the best in Asia, separates the resort from the deep blue of the Indian Ocean.
Special Interest Programs
Experience sunset on the most spectacular cliff on the south of Bali, enjoy the amazing Fire & Kecak Dance and romantic dinner by the beach with BBQ sea food overlooking to Ngurah Rai airport & Jimbaran Beach view
JOURNEY THROUGHT TIME
Journey back to seventeenth century by visiting ancient temple, enjoy magnificent sunset in Tanah Lot and very romantic dinner in the most historical restaurant venue.
Discover hidden beautiful places to be captured by your camera on the right moment of sunrise and sunset. Our professional guide will lead you to uncover stunning panorama around Bali and Lombok Island