Bali General Information



















Geography

Bali is one of the 17,000 Islands of Indonesia, located between 8 and 9 degree south of the Equator. Bali anchors east of Java, separated by the small Strait of Bali, and surrounded by the Java Sea on the north, the Indian Ocean on the south, and the Strait of Lombok on the east. A string of volcanic mountains crown the northern part of Bali, with Gunung Agung (Mount Divine, literally) as the tallest at 3,142 meters. This volcano, as well as Mount Batukaru, Mount Batur, and Mount Merebuk is still active.

Climate

Bali has a tropical climate appropriate to its proximity to the equator. Year round temperatures averaging 31 degrees Celsius. High humidity can be expected during the Wet Season between the  months of October – April. The Dry Season between the months of May – September have also the lowest humidity.

The Wet Season brings daily rain and quiet overcast days with the most rain recorded between December – February. Occasionally rainfall can also be expected during the dry season but usually at night or very early morning. June – August there is usually a very refreshing cool breeze all day long. The central mountain area is typically cooler than the lower coastal areas mainly especially at  night.

Electricity

Electricity in Bali is normal 220 Volt with the normal frequency of 50 Hz. The plugs are following the normal central European two pin system.

People & Lifestlye

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.

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.

Languages

Official: Indonesian

Secondary: English

Telephone

country code 62

Postal & Parcel Services

Major hotels handle mail service, telegrams and telexes. The Central Post Office is located in Denpasar.

Central Post Office

Jl. Raya Puputan, Renon, Denpasar 80235. Tel: 23565. Open from

Monday to Thursday : 08.00 a.m. – 02.00 p.m.
Friday: 08.00 a.m. – 12.00 noon.
Saturday: 08.00 a.m. – 01.00 p.m.

Poste Restante

Poste Restante facilities are available at the Central Post Office and at the following post offices:

Sanur Post Office
Banjar Taman, Sanur, Denpasar 80277

Kuta Post Office
Jl. Raya Tuban, Kuta, Denpasar 80361

Utud Post Office
Banjar Taman, Ubud, Gianyar 80571.

Singaraja Post Office
Jl. Gajah Mada, Singaraja 81100.

Internet

Internet has become a must for many travellers, and tourist facilities in Bali try to cater for this need. You can find many Internet cafes, even normal cafes, hotel and restaurants now offer free Wifi.

The major mobile phone providers are Telkomsel, XL, Indosat. They provide prepaid and postpaid services.

3G/mobile connection to the Internet

You can also surf with a mobile connection via a normal SIM card by activating the 3G/GPRS service on it (you need an appropriate external 3G modem if it’s already not integrated in your computer). Your connection speed will depend on the signal strength where you want to connect.

Mobile Phone

Buy yourself on the first day of your stay in Bali a SIM card from a local provider (Telkomsel, XL, Indosat, etc). You can get them in nearly every street, and for even 2 USD you are mobile at a local rate – way cheaper than roaming on your national provider. SMS is very cheap (sometimes in the package) and even international calls will not come to more than 20 Euro cents or 30 US cents. For such price, calling a taxi, staying in contact with your friends can make your stay so much easier.

Entertainment

Bali offers a wide range of entertainment from traditional Balinese dances, which are staged nightly by many of the larger hotels, to discos and pubs. Kuta has the liveliest nightlife, with watering holes and discos all along Jalan Legian and Jalan Buni Sari, some of which stay open till dawn. The best way to see traditional dances, wayang kulit and gamelan orchestras, is to attend a village temple festival. These are going on somewhere on the island almost daily.

Dining Out

Hotel restaurants in Bali generally offer guests a wide variety of excellent dishes to satisfy every taste – Indonesian, European and even “nouvelle-Bali”. If you feel like venturing out for a meal, there are dozens of good, reasonably priced restaurants to be found in Sanur, Kuta and Ubud, many of them offering menus that mix Indonesian, Chinese and European dishes.

Local Transportations

Although many visitors to Bali like to rely on tour companies, there is really nothing like setting off to explore on your own.

Arm yourself with a map and trusty guide book and head off in a hotel taxi, a hire car with or without a driver, or motor bike. Gather a group of friends or family and hire a microbus. Bali is at your fingertips.

Those looking for adventure can try the local “bemos” You never know who will end up sharing the car with, but it could be ducks, chickens, women off to the market to sell their produce or a group of boys going to perform at a dance. Bemos are fun, frequent and above all, very cheap.

For a change of pace, negotiate a ‘dokar’ the local horse and carriage that can carry three or four passengers. In Denpasar and Singaraja the carts ply up and down the streets taking passengers to market and around town. Their harness bells jingle as they make their colourful way through the streets. The tiny horses seem to be amazingly strong for their size.

One of the most popular (and most dangerous) ways to get about in Bali is to take a motor bike. Cheap and practical, they can be great fun. But be warned. Many westerners are not prepared for the seeming chaos of Balinese roads and drivers have to watch for everything while zooming about. Bikes can be rented in Kuta, Denpasar and Sanur for very reasonable prices by the day or the week. Drivers need a valid International Diver’s Licence and helmets are compulsory.

Perhaps the best way to get about is by bicycle. The friendly Balinese love to stop for a chat, and a bicycle is just the right speed.

Useful Numbers

Taxis

make sure the metre is switched on and flag up is 5,000Rp to start.

  • Taksi Praja : 289191, 289090
  • Taksi Bali : 701111

Medical

  • AEA International (Medical Evac) Jl. Hayam Wuruk 40, Denpasar. Tel : 228996
  • Bali International Medical Center Jl Bypass Ngurah Rai 100X Denpasar. Tel : 761263
  • Rumah Sakit Dharma Husada (Hospital) Jl. Panglima Sudirman No.50, Denpasar. Tel : 227560
  • Kuta Clinic : Jl. Raya Kuta No.100X, Kuta. Tel : 753268
  • Nusa Dua Clinic : Jl. Pramata No. 81A, Nusa Dua. Tel : 771324
  • Rumah Sakit Umum Sanglah (Hospital) : Jl. Diponegoro, Denpasar. Tel : 227911

Emergency Numbers

Ambulance : 118
Fire : 113
Police : 110
Search & Rescue : 51111
Red Cross : 26465

Operator Assisted Calls

Within Indonesia : 100
International : 101

Directory Information

Bali : 108
Indonesia : 106

Credit Card Enquiries

American Express :

  • Grand Bali Beach Hotel, Sanur. Tel : 288511 ext. 111

Mastercard :

  • Bank Central Asia, Jl. Cokroaminoto, Denpasar. Tel : 222652

Visa Card :

  • Bank Duta, Jl. Hayam Wuruk 165, Denpasar. Tel : 226578