diving on Bali


Werner Lau News

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Indonesia has a tropical climate with high humidity. The average yearly temperature in Indonesia is between 25-30C (77-86F) Nights are not much cooler. The seasons are defined by the monsoons and consist of dry season and rainy or wet season. The rain falls in short, heavy showers, after which the sun shines again. The climate throughout Indonesia varies considerable depending of the area.

The Indonesian currency is the Rupiah (Stand March 2003: 1 Euro = ca. 10.000 Rupiah), with the smallest denomination of 500 Rp being a coin and all other denominations from 1000 to 200,000 being notes. Travellers cheques in US$ and credit cards are widely accepted but it is advisable to always have enough cash with you. It is possible to change traveller cheques or your home currency into local currency. It is often worthwhile comparing the exchange rates of the banks and money changers. NOTE: When paying with credit cards a charge will sometimes be added. Prices are often written in US$

Tip on the arrival
On the arrival at the airport of Denpasar you looks mostly in vain for a baggage car, but as soon as you raise your suitcase of the conveyor belt, a uniformed helper stands with a car besides and accompany the comer by the custom. These are no porters but they bring you only to one of the numerous exchange offices. Attention, every 2nd exchange office is partly honest, then alone the pocket calculators are often manipulated !!! It is most favourable you withdraw money at the next bank cash dispenser, because even a tip in US Dollar is not accepted with pleasure!

By the departure from Indonesia, an airport tax of 100.000 Rupiah. will be charged. This can only be paid in local currency directly at the airport.

220 Volt, an international adapter is necessary!

Fauna and Flora
The fauna consists of a variety of tropical animals including monkeys, water buffalos, snakes, lizards and numerous birds and insects, but also oxen, pigs and dogs. Recently conservation has also become an official matter, for although the Balinese farmers use ecological and economical methods, conditions are changing due to influences such as tourism.
Bali lies in the tropics south of the equator and the climate is influenced by the monsoons. The main agricultural product is rice and large areas of land are rice fields. To the west is a rainforest national park, to the southwest large areas of palm trees combined with mangrove swamps, to the east there are mountains right up the coast and in the north it is mainly flat with numerous lakes. This region is dominated by the volcanoes, along whose slopes little grows. The Banyan- or Waringin tree is a conspicuous characteristic of each village. The flora is dominated by useful plants, either as food: fruit, vegetables, coffee, cacao or tobacco, bamboo and palm trees. Flowers such as the bougainvilla are used as offerings or decoration by certain festivals. Grapes are also grown in north Bali and used in the production of wine.

The strain a trip to the tropics put on your health should not be under estimated. Alone the flight from central Europe takes up to 20 hours and the change in climate is extreme. The average yearly temperature in Indonesia is between 25-30C (77-86F) and humidity is high. In general special vaccinations and precautions are not necessary but tetanus, polio and Hepatitis A are recommended. The decision to take Malaria prophylaxis should be made individually, but it is important to protect against the mosquitoes with sprays and appropriate clothing. The risk of HIV-Aids In Bali is the same as everywhere else in the world. Although medical care is easily available in Denpasar and other large tourist areas, further inland and in more remote areas western medicine is not so common. It is also possible to be treated by the traditional healer (Balian), the massages are especially beneficial by sprains or broken bones. The traditional medicine in Bali is passed on though generations and is, in many cases, officially supported. A personal first aid kit should be included in your luggage and you should check the terms and conditions of your health insurance before leaving home. If necessary take out an additional travel health insurance, including transport back home in medical emergencies.

We recommend that all travellers take out insurance to cover cancellation, lost or stolen luggage and medical or hospital costs! Divers are advised to join DAN or a similar organisation!

Bahasa Indonesia, a Malaysian language, is the language spoken in Indonesia and the official language in Bali is Indonesian. English is common enough in the main tourist areas, that communication is possible. However, the mother tongue of the inhabitants is Balinese, which is rooted in Sanskrit, with a separate written language. Tourists are most likely to encounter this language during ritual festivals.
As small tip: Bahasa Indonesia is the easiest language in the world to learn , and it is possible to learn a couple of words within a short time with the help of a travel dictionary.

Passport / Visa
European tourists require a passport which is valid for at least 6 months. As from 01.02.2004 all tourist require a visa, which is valid for 30days and costs 25,- US$ by arrival in Bali. This must be paid in new bank notes. Passports must be valid for at least 6 months after leaving Indonesia. All details given here are for information only and we take no liability for changes in the requirements. Please inform yourself by the consulate of the latest requirements.

Apart from the possibility of telephoning from the larger hotels, there is also a reliable telephone service from public telephones and fax machines: WARTEL. To use mobile telephones it is advisable to buy a local SIM card.

Time difference
There are three time zones in Indonesia. Depending on if we have winter or summer time, the time difference to west Indonesian time is +6 or +7 hours. Between Java and Bali there is a time difference of 1 hour (middle Indonesian time) meaning there is an additional hour difference to England. (+7 or +8 hours).

Gerhard Geyer - To use of my Sides, Scripts, Photos and Parts from this only with my written permission !

last Change: 23rd January 2008