First thing first, know the weather. There are two seasons in this tropical paradise; rainy season (from October to February) and dry season (from March to September). One needs to make sure on that before booking their flights and hotels for the holidays.
Second, the culture is one of the island’s main attractions. However, unintentionally, tourists may offend local Balinese by violating simple etiquette or rules of this culture.
Hopefully, this guide can help avoid that.
On Visa and Passport
- Bali’s International Airport is called Ngurah Rai. Located in the South part of Bali.
- Visa on Arrival is valid for 30 days. Day of arrival and departure day are counted as full days each.Your passport must be valid for 6 months when entering any cities in Indonesia, including Bali.
- One page must be empty for the visa stamp.
- Keep your boarding pass when you arrive, you may have to show it to the Immigration officer when needed.
On Accommodation & Going Out and About
- For 2-5 US$ you can have a decent meal in most restaurants in Bali, you just need to know where to look!
- You may opt for an affordable 15 US$ per night in home stays. If you fancy to splurge, five-star accommodation is endless as well.
- New budget hotels offer clean rooms with Air Conditioning in larger hotel complexes are around 30 US$ per night.
- Most prices are subject to tax (10%) and service charge (6-11%).
- Vegetarian and healthy food are on the rise and you can find vegetarian options in most restaurants in Bali.
- Price for hotel room in 4 star hotels or resorts 80-120 US$.
- Private, serviced Villas are a great alternative during your stay in Bali.
On Traffic & Transport
- Traffic in Bali is on the left-hand side.
- You will encounter many traditional ceremonies (hence, road closures), be respectful and obedient of the rules.
- Scooter rent costs around 5 US$ per day. Always check brakes and lights when you rent one and keep the mobile number of the rental shop with you.
- Car with a driver for 8-10 hours costs 40-70 US$ per day. Make sure they have a driver’s license and the permission to be a driver (permit, insurance issues)
- Grab Taxi is available, and meter taxi is safe too, but sometimes you need to remind the driver to switch on the meter. In Ubud no meter taxis are available; transport is organized by licensed drivers from the village.
- Want to rent a scooter or car? Bring your international driving license with you.
On Communication and Stay connected
- Many hotels, restaurants, pool bar, and beach clubs have free WI-FI. You can always update your social media feed #viewfrommyroom.
- To surf the internet anytime anywhere, Get a SIM card, preferably from a legit mobile shop, and ask for internet package. It is really affordable!
- Prepaid top up credit is called “PULSA”
- Bali is a scuba diving paradise. There are more than 100 dive centers and great dive spots around the island.There are tons of spots for surfing for beginners at Kuta, Legian and Seminyak Beach
- Full body massage starts 7 US$ per hour. You can have them on the beach or at premium Spa parlours.
- Must visit Temples: Uluwatu, Tanah Lot, Besakih, and Lempuyang for the most Instagrammable posts!
- Shopping Paradise art work, handicrafts, oils and essence, clothes, shoes, furniture, accessories
- On Day of Silence or Nyepi, no check-in or check-out from hotel is allowed. Entire island including the airport, will be shut down.
- Water sport activities can be found at Benoa (jet ski, para gliding, water ski etc.)
On Safety & Manners
- Bear in mind that being topless in restaurants, beaches, and shops are considered disrespectful. Keep and ear to ear smile like the locals. Don’t smile at the monkeys in the monkeyforest or temples, showing teeth is a sign of aggression for them
- Driving a scooter. Never go too fast. Accidents happen daily. Loose chippings are everywhere. Cats, dogs, chickens, cows…anything can cross your way. And any vehicle can come towards you from any direction, anytime.
- Currents in the sea can be dangerous, and change depending on the weather and wind conditions. Always obey the rules from local authorization.
- Always be respectful, especially when entering a temple. Wearing sarong and sash is mandatory. Some temples provide these attires for us to wear.