Bali is a well-loved island paradise, drawing visitors from around the world to its balmy, tropical beaches. There’s something to satisfy all traveller’s desires, whether you want to hit the surf, explore ancient sites, enjoy the luxuries of spa treatment or get better acquainted with the island’s animal inhabitants.
Home to over 3,000,000 people, Bali has a number of popular tourist destinations such as Seminyak, Nusa Dua, Kuta and Ubud. Kuta has completely transformed from its humble beginnings as a fishing town and is now internationally recognised as a party and surfing destination. Tourists love the town’s energy and vibrancy, driven in large part by the countless nightclubs, cafes, street vendors and fun-loving crowds all along the busy streets. Nearby Lembongan island is also commonly visited by passengers on day cruises from the mainland.
While flights continue to be the primary way of travelling to Bali, cruise ships regularly stop off and allow their passengers to enjoy the natural beauty and culture of this island paradise.
Benoa Harbour is located in the island’s southeast, approximately 8.8 kilometres from Kuta.
Cruise ships anchor offshore and their guests are transferred to the port via tenders. The port is in a fairly industrial, isolated area.
The Port of Benoa consists of a pier, at which smaller yachts and boats can dock, and a small waiting area for embarking and disembarking passengers. There are very limited facilities, as most passengers are then transferred to further destinations via taxi or shuttle.
How to Get Around
Travel to and from Benoa Harbour is limited to taxis and shuttles. If you’re staying in a local resort, shuttle bus services have often been arranged for transfers from the port to the resort for you.
Taxi services are popular in all major tourist areas, such as Kuta and Ubud, largely due to their low cost. It is an 11-minute drive from the port to Kuta and a 13-minute drive to Ngurah Rai International Airport.
There are public buses throughout the region, called bemos by the locals. Bus services are often carried out by minivans and commuter vans, and while they do follow set routes, the driver will often deviate to alternative destinations on request.
Scooters and motorbikes are popular options for tourists and can be hired in Kuta for as little as $8 per day.
- Currency - The local currency in Benoa is the Indonesian Rupiah. Coins are available in Rp.100 and Rp.50 denominations, while notes are available in Rp.100, Rp.500, Rp.1,000, Rp.5,000, Rp.10,000, Rp.20,000, Rp.50,000 and Rp.100,000 denominations.
- Time Zone - Benoa uses Central Indonesian Time, which is eight hours ahead of Coordinated Universal Time (UTC).
- Weather - Benoa has a tropical monsoon climate, with heavy showers and high humidity during the wet season and low humidity and cool evenings in the dry season. The temperature is fairly consistent throughout the year. Temperatures range from 25 degrees Celsius to 30 degrees Celsius from November through to April. The coolest month is July, when temperatures range from 23 degrees Celsius to 28 degrees Celsius.
- Serangan Island - Also known as Turtle Island, Serangan Island is a turtle conservation area off the east coast of Bali. Locals diligently collect turtle eggs and incubate them in traditional conservation houses just off the beach. The baby turtles are released in the surf once they have hatched. Glass-bottom boat tours are popular as they afford magnificent views of the island’s namesake.
- Ubud - Located 40 minutes from Kuta in central Bali, Ubud is well regarded as the region’s cultural capital for its historic sites, temples, artists’ workshops and galleries. The town is a good base from which to explore numerous ancient temples including Gunung Kawi, an ancient king’s impressive stone burial complex situated at the bottom of a lush tropical valley.
- Waterbom Park - The self-described leisure capital of Bali, Waterbom Bali is a popular water park on the beach in Kuta. Adults and children alike love the waterslides and rides including the Constrictor, which is the longest waterslide in the world. For those who prefer to keep their heart rate down, the park is also host to a number of relaxing pools with swim-up bars.
- Sacred Monkey Forest Ubud Sanctuary - Home to around 340 monkeys of all sizes, the Monkey Forest at Ubud is a must-see destination for animal lovers. Here you can feed bananas to the resident monkeys and relax as you wander along the paths, marvelling at the towering trees around you. Be aware that the monkeys are unpredictable creatures and make sure you keep your belongings secure at all times.