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Boats on Jimbaran Beach, Bali.  <img src='http://www.guidegecko.com/images/spyglass1.png' align='texttop' /> Click for full image
Travel Guide > Asia > Indonesia > Bali

Bali Getting in & out

  
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By plane

Most visitors will arrive at Ngurah Rai International Airport also known as Denpasar International Airport. Despite this misleading name, the airport is actually located in Tuban between Kuta and Jimbaran, roughly 30 mins away from Denpasar.

Ngurah Rai is Indonesia's third-busiest international airport (after Jakarta and Surabaya) and a major hub well-connected to Australia, South-East Asia, and the rest of Indonesia.

Domestic

A number of domestic airlines operate as LCC - low cost or budget carriers. It is a difficult distinction for some operators as they may be using a low cost model but not promoting or identifying themselves as doing this. Wings Air is a LCC of Lion Air, Citilink is a LCC of Garuda Airlines. Some are smaller regional operators REG or feeder airlines.

International

Bali Ngurah Rai International Airport (Denpasar International Airport)  <span style='white-space:nowrap;'><img src='http://www.guidegecko.com/images/spyglass1.png' align='texttop' /> Click to enlarge</span>

A number of International airlines serve this airport including several LCC - low cost or budget carriers.

International arrivals procedures

All passports must be valid for a minimum of six months from the date of entry into Indonesia and have at least two blank pages available for stamps.

There are three ways of entering Indonesia:

  • Visa on arrival: Pay on arrival, get a visa in your passport, get it stamped. Most visitors fall in this category.
  • Visa in advance: Obtain a visa at an Indonesian embassy before arrival
  • Visa waiver: Show your passport, get stamped, that's it. Applies only to a few select, mostly ASEAN countries.

For details on visa requirements please see the main article on Indonesia.

Visitors arriving in Bali by air from a point of origin outside Indonesia will be clearing customs and immigration at Bali's Ngurah Rai International Airport may require the purchase of a visa on arrival (VOA). As of January 2010, the only type of visa on arrival available is US$25.00 for 30 days. This may be extended later at the local Immigration office for a further once only period of up to 30 days. (The previous 7 day visa on arrival is no longer available). Exact change in dollars is recommended, although a selection of other major currencies including rupiah are accepted, and any change will usually be given in rupiah. Credit cards are accepted in Bali (but don't count on the service working). See the main Indonesia article for more details.

Horse riding along the beach is pretty popular on Bali.  <span style='white-space:nowrap;'><img src='http://www.guidegecko.com/images/spyglass1.png' align='texttop' /> Click to enlarge</span>

Arriving passengers are passed through VOA (visa on arrival) issuance if applicable, then subsequently processed through immigration clearance channels for VOA, Non VOA (if the visa has been obtained prior to the time of departure), Visa waiver (for eligible nationalities) and a separate channel for Indonesian passport holders. Baggage retrieval is followed by customs and quarantine examinations including baggage X-ray checkpoints.

Tourism visit visas can be issued in advance at some Indonesian embassies prior to departure. Check well in advance of your proposed departure date at the Indonesian embassy or consulate in your home country.

Citizens holding passports from Brunei, Chile, Ecuador, Hong Kong SAR (Special Administrative Region), Macau SAR (Special Administrative Region), Malaysia, Morocco, Peru, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam are eligible for the Visa waiver program and do not require visas to enter and remain for 30 days within Indonesia. These visas cannot be extended or converted to another type of visa.

By bus

There are direct bus services to Bali from all major cities on Java and Lombok that link with ferries for sea crossings. These are cheap and easy, but slow. The Perama bus company is a good option for budget travellers.

There are 2 other bus companies that make the trip from Java to Bali: Restu MulyaSafari Dharma and

By boat

Tanah Lot temple on Bali. Best visited just before sunset.  <span style='white-space:nowrap;'><img src='http://www.guidegecko.com/images/spyglass1.png' align='texttop' /> Click to enlarge</span>

Ferries cross from Ketapang on the island of Java to Gilimanuk in western Bali every 15 minutes, 24 hours a day. These are very cheap, and the crossing takes just 30 minutes (plus sometimes considerable waiting around for loading and unloading).

A number of speedboats and catamarans operate into Benoa Harbour near Kuta (~2 hours) and Padangbai (80 min) from the Gili Islands of Lombok. These are relatively expensive but convenient. See the Gili Islands article for full details.

There are also public ferries from Lembar, Lombok, to Padang Bai every few hours, with the trip taking around 3 to 4 hours. This service has a notably poor safety record.

Cruise ships occasionally stop so that passengers can tour or shop. Some ships still anchor off-shore toward the southeast side of the island and tender guests to shore. Modest-sized ships can choose to dock at the port of Benoa not far from Denpasar, Kuta and Sanur. The dock area is basically industrial, with few amenities and no ATMs, but masses of taxis are usually ready to whisk you to nearby destinations at a moderate cost.

Nusa Dua beach in South Bali  <span style='white-space:nowrap;'><img src='http://www.guidegecko.com/images/spyglass1.png' align='texttop' /> Click to enlarge</span>

Where to go after Bali

Boat services run regularly to Lombok, Flores and islands further east. Combined bus and ferry services will take you to destinations in Java such as Yogyakarta.

  • The Gili Islands are three tiny islands off Lombok. A backpacker favorite fast going upmarket and easily accessed by direct boat services.
  • Komodo is an island and national park in East Nusa Tenggara. The island is famous for the komodo dragon.
  • Lombok is an unspoiled island east of Bali with beaches, waterfalls and volcanoes. Direct boat services or 20 minutes by air.
  • Yogyakarta has convenient air service from Bali on Garuda with scheduled service early in the morning and late in the evening, making it possible to have a full day of sightseeing in Prambanan and Borobudur and still make it back to your hotel in Bali in time for bed.

Transport Hubs in Bali

Airport Denpasar International Airport
The airport will not win any awards for style, but it is functional enough and has the usual complement of overpriced restaurants, duty-free shops and other services. ATMs which accept Cirrus and Plus cards for withdrawals... more
Rp 150,000 International Departure Tax, in Bali
Bus Terminal Getting out of the airport in Bali
The airport The airport will not win any awards for style, but it is functional enough and has the usual complement of overpriced restaurants, duty-free shops and other services. ATMs which accept Cirrus and Plus cards for withdrawals are available in airport de... more
in Bali
 
Bus Terminal Banyuasri Terminal
is just west of the town centre on Jalan Jendral Achmed Yani, and operates buses and bemos to all points west. Buses to and from Gilimanuk (2 hours, about Rp 30,000) and bemos to Lovina (20 minutes, Rp 10,000) arrive and depart from here. There are also several ... more
in Singaraja
Bus Terminal Penarukan Terminal
is about 2.5km east of town and is served by buses and bemos from Batubulan terminal in Denpasar (2.5-3 hours). Local bemos arriving from and departing to East Bali also operate from here.
in Singaraja
 
Bus Terminal Sukasda Terminal
is 3 km south of the city and is served by buses from Ubung Terminal in Denpasar. This route goes via Bedugul and is the cheapest way for budget travellers to get to Singaraja (and on to Lovina) from there.
in Singaraja
 




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