Bali Is Open for Domestic Travellers

Bali Is Open for Domestic Travellers

As you may have noticed before, Bali has reopened the gate for domestic travellers from all across the country.

Done with strict procedures under the C-19 health protocols, this has been a bittersweet progress that we all have to embrace for the time being. Admittedly, these waves of local tourists coming to the island have given some of us a room to breathe, even if just a little. Cafés and restaurants have been reopening here and there, as well as the previously dead and darkened hotels. Small shops have seen some increase in their pockets, and so have those in the entertainment industry. Live music are back in the busiest places, just like the old time.

However, due to the mass of people coming from Indonesia’s red zones Jakarta and Surabaya, the number of C-19 victims have also sky-rocketed these past couple of months; delivering Bali to the top three regions of highest death tolls in the whole country, just after East Java and Jakarta. Now this sure raise some questions. Have we done enough to protect this island, or have we jeopardized its people for the sake of financial stability? It all depends on how we see things, really.

As of 14 September, the official tally has reported a total of 7,226 cases in Bali, where the population is around more than 4.2 million. With 3,388 cases of recovery, Bali’s recovery rate is at an encouraging 78.7 percent. If you are reading this as a preparation for your upcoming trip to Bali, here are the requirements that you need to provide before stepping into the welcome gate.

The Balinese government mandates anyone traveling to Bali via Ngurah Rai airport to fulfill several requirements. According to Indonesia Tourism official website, these include:

– Obtaining unique QR Code. They are required to fill in an application form to obtain a QR code, which will then become a proof that each upcoming visitor has submitted the application form.

– Presenting COVID-19 negative certificate (PCR). Upcoming visitors going to the island by air must present a COVID-19 negative certificate that has been subjected to the Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) from a government hospital laboratory or a COVID-19 Task Force designated laboratory. The COVID-19 negative certificate has a validity period of seven days from the time of arrival at one of the sea or airports of Bali.

From what we know, there are several domestic flight schedules operated by a few local airlines. The country’s national carrier, Garuda Indonesia, is among the airline resuming domestic operations. It has also implemented social distancing procedure in the cabin, including blocking out the middle seats.

Visas on arrival to Bali were halted on 20 March 2020 while The Ngurah Rai airport remains open. There is still a travel restriction in place for Indonesia where passengers are not allowed to transit or enter the country, with a few exceptions. Bali relies heavily on

tourism and welcomed 6.3 million foreign visitors last year, so the pandemic has a quite huge impact on local economy. Since 31 July, Bali has opened its borders only to domestic travelers and the statistics have shown encouraging figures in relation to Bali’s Covid-19 cases for the last two weeks.

International tourists remain banned from visiting Bali for the remainder of 2020. In line with the policy of the Government of Indonesia, Bali has postponed its September 11 international reopening until the year 2021. Other than that, the Balinese government has released a statement detailing who and what are allowed to enter the island. They include transports of basic security, logistical, and medical purposes, diplomatic personnel, personnel working for government projects, and personnel related to COVID-19 aid management.

The Vice Governor of Bali in a conference feed also added that entries are allowed for patients in need of emergency help, passengers attending to urgent matters like death or illness in the immediate family, and repatriated migrant workers and overseas Indonesian students.

The Governor of Bali stated that reopening Bali will come in stages and tourism may be the last sector to be fully opened. To local media, he said that the tentative plan is to open to domestic tourists in August and foreign visitors in September 2020. However, the local government said they’re in “no rush”, opting to focus on successfully flattening the curve and carefully considering their options.

To prepare for future reopening, Indonesia’s Tourism and Creative Economy Ministry has proposed a programme of Cleanliness, Health, and Safety (CHS), referring to their pledge to ensure the cleanliness of all tourist spots, provide health checks for all visitors, and guarantee the safety of tourists and locals alike across the archipelago. Bali as the top tourist destination in the country will be the first to implement the CHS procedures, particularly in Nusa Dua area.

The first phase has commenced on July 9 and has seen limited reopenings of the following sectors: a) health; b) government office; c) customs and religion; d) finance, industry, trade, logistics, transportation, cooperatives, Micro Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME), traditional markets, modern markets, restaurants and stalls; e) agriculture, plantations, marine/fisheries, and animal husbandry; and f) services and construction.

The second phase has commenced on July 31 with Indonesian tourists allowed to visit the island. The third and final phase will commence on September 11, 2020, by which time the provincial government of Bali is expected to open its borders to international and domestic tourists alike. As aforementioned, international tourists will not be able to visit Bali until at least 2021.

There, we hope you get the information you need in regard of Bali’s travel reopening. Stay safe, and see you next time!

Surfing Spots in Gili Trawangan and How to Get There

Surfing Spots in Gili Trawangan and How to Get There

If there’s one thing you can thank Corona for, it’s definitely the chance to spend months in this small paradise call Gilli where everything is beautiful, fragrant, and, most importantly, cheap.

Surfers, admit it, this is a perfect spot to be stranded at. Even if you get a bit bored of surfing on the same spots (eventhough there are plenty amazing waters venture about,) you can always go to the nearby isles like the Nusa Isles and, of course, the Gilis.

While it is not advised to cross-over in the Australian Winter since it brings high tides and grey clouds on to the horizon, you can always put your smiley face on and patiently wait for a better weather. When it finally does get better, you can pack your things and go for a little surf vacation in the Gilis. Here are some of the popular surf spots in the island.

The three small islands that make up Surfing in the Gili Islands — Gili Trawangan, Gili Meno and Gili Air — offer an authentic remote Southeast Asian island experience along with some nice surfing for those willing to make the trek. Surfing Gili Islands has not yet taken off like in some other Indonesian locations such as Bali and Lombok, so crowds are smaller.

The locals are also very laid back, friendly and welcoming towards visiting surfers. As more and more surfers and travellers discover these three beautiful desert islands, expect word to spread and numbers to grow. Although there are efforts in place to keep the islands rustic — there are no motorbikes present — now is the time to take advantage of the Gili Islands’ status before it becomes “the next big thing”.

Though we often refer to the Gili islands collectively, each has its own unique character. While Trawangan or “Gili T” is the most developed, Gili Air offers the most local character and is closest to the large island of Lombok. For those wishing to simply get away from it all, there is Gili Meno, which is where to head for the most authentic desert island experience. The main advantages to surfing the Gilis are the quality of their breaks, the absence of crowds and an desert island experience in a tropical paradise.

Surfing Gili Islands: when and where

– Gili is unusual in that it is the place for those rare right-handers!

– While there are spots that break all year round, the dry season of May to October is best

– Beware of tides because they can make the difference between good surf and none at all

– In general, the Lombok Strait is somewhat fickle, but can provide some excellent surf

– Bring a wetsuit and booties! Coral reefs are nothing to mess around with

Gili Trawangan

Gili T can be a secret blessing when the surf is good. Surfers that can drop fast waves will be rewarded with long rides and big swells with steep barrels in some parts. The spot is a fast right-hand reef-break about 300 meters off the southern end of the island. Surfing can be tricky here and large south-southwest swells are necessary in order to clear the coral, which is also a popular site with snorkelers. The wet season (January – June) can provide 1-2 meter (3-6 foot) swells.

Some key points on surfing Gili Trawangan:

-Good for experienced surfers

-Small to no crowds

-Strong, hollow and fast

-Best during high tides

-Look out for sea urchins and rocks

-Friendly locals

-Lots to do when surf isn’t up.

Gili Air

Another reef break, which like Gili T, is also off the southern tip of the island. A great although somewhat infrequent right-hander, the break here is fast, short hollow and fun. Gili Air is the closest of the islands to Lombok and the break is accessible via a long paddle or you can head there on a boat. Be careful of strong currents and a somewhat treacherous reef.

Surf is best when winds are blowing from the west and northwest, coupled with a large south-southwest swell to create some nice short barrels. The left break also provides some swift close outs or straight-handers. While the surf can be good during all tides, low tide can be treacherous.

Some key points on surfing Gili Air:

– Short and hollow break

– Be careful of reef

– Avoid surfing at low tide

– Friendly locals

– Beautiful views

– Un-crowded

Gili Meno

The break here is known as Secrets and is located 100m off the beach at the island’s southeast corner. When conditions are good, Secrets can provide an impressive swell resulting in a fast, long, hollow right, which can provide some nice walls and barrels at parts. Beware the shallow reef, however, and do not be shy to ask locals for help. The somewhat inconsistent nature of Gili Meno’s surf helps keep the crowds down at Secrets, which can really pay off for those with a bit of patience.

Some key points on surfing Gili Meno:

-Recommended for experienced surfers

–Long hollow walls and tubes

-Helpful locals

-Careful with shallow reef

-Inconsistent, but rewarding

-Rustic desert island atmosphere

There you are, some helpful insights on surfing the three Gilis. If we get your attention now, you can try walking around and find some travel booths that you can see on the sideways. If you see one that’s open, feel free to ask about a round trip to Gili Trawangan.

Last time we went there, it covers pick-up and delivery from and to your door, a round trip, and some snacks on both leaving and coming trips. Do check around on the Covid fares and make sure the travel biro you choose operates on the standard health protocols.

Stay safe and happy surfing!

3 hangout places to go with your family around Sanur & Ubud

3 hangout places to go with your family around Sanur & Ubud

Big Garden Corner

The rise of artificial tourism with unique and interesting photo spots has made various places start making them. No exception to Denpasar, Bali, with the Big Garden Corner. A contemporary tourist spot in the middle of the city with interesting photo spots. This tourist attraction is very suitable for visitors who like to take pictures. Because, there are lots of cool spots and interesting objects to capture. Moreover, its location is near the airport, making it easy to reach. Visiting this tourist attraction can be done from morning to night. So, visitors can determine the time and match the spot, either in the morning or at night.

Various Beautiful Stone Sculptures by Local Artists

Initially, Big Garden Corner was a sculpture gallery. But later, it was beautified and made a tourist attraction with a photography theme. Not surprisingly, here there are many stone statues of various shapes. There are statues in standing, sitting, and even sleeping poses. The Ganesha statue is one of the forms carved here. There is also a large Buddha statue in a sleeping pose and supporting his head with his hands. Most of the statues here are colorless, meaning they only rely on the natural color of the stone. However, some of the statues were painted in colorful colors. Like a statue of people lining up reading a newspaper, in pink, blue, orange, yellow and green colors.

Borobudur Temple replica

Not only unit stone statues, here is also a large replica of Borobudur Temple. The height of this replica of Borobudur Temple reaches 5 meters. There is not only one temple, but there are several temple stupas with the main one being the biggest. In addition, this replica is also equipped with temple reliefs on the walls. Similar to the reliefs in Borobudur Temple. Which is so neat and detailed.

Standing Stone like the Wiltshire Standing Stone

If usually a tourist attraction presents a replica of Stonehenge, the Big Garden Corner does not exist. Instead, here are Standing Rocks inspired by the Standing Stone in Wiltshire, England. Here there are clumps of rock that stand firmly. These stones are made as if natural formations. With a distinctive stone color with brown color. These stones are located near a small lake equipped with a fountain. While at the bottom, growing fresh green grass. The atmosphere looked similar to the Standing Stone in Wiltshire. Visitors can take pictures with poses while hiding between the rocks. While at the bottom, growing fresh green grass. The atmosphere looked similar to the Standing Stone in Wiltshire. Visitors can take pictures with poses while hiding between the rocks.

Tunnel of the Heart

From the name, this place might sound less romantic. But actually, this place is so romantic, especially as a couple photo spot. This spot is the main destination for couples visiting the Big Garden Corner. The Heart Tunnel is an artificial tunnel made of wire that forms a heart, the top of which is curved downward. The wires are decorated with flowers and leaves to make them look alive. There are flowers in blue, red, purple, pink, and yellow.

Color Umbrella Photo Spot – Colorful

Another spot that is no less exciting is the colorful umbrella spot. These umbrellas are arranged in such a way in the air. The bottom part is a path made of stone. Plus, around the area overgrown with various ornamental plants and quite lush coconut trees. It looks beautiful and is a combination of these colorful umbrellas and the surrounding plants.

Relax by Sitting on a Bean Bag

For visitors who want to relax, bean bags are provided to sit on. Complete with a small table and traditional colorful umbrellas for shade.

Big Garden Corner Facility

Here there are public facilities in the form of toilets. There is also a canteen which is so comfortable. As well as a large vehicle parking area.

Bali Zoo

The main attraction of the Zoo Park Zoo lies in the layout and design of the park with organized and directed visitor trails. With a very well arranged visitor path, making it the first-time visitor to the Bali Zoo Park Singapadu, will not be confused. Gianyar Zoo Park is very observant about this, so the zoo facilities are also equipped with water rides, which all children will love. A combination of a zoo and water rides, one of the main attractions for a vacation to the Bali Zoo Gianyar with your family.

Animal Feeding / Petting Zoo

Many Indonesian tourists have a vacation to the zoo, because most of them have seen a zoo before. If you vacation with children, in this zoo park, your child will get a unique experience.Because Bali Zoo Gianyar allows children to feed the animals. Such as feeding deer, feeding elephants, playing with rabbits and watching bird shows.

Petting Zoo opening hours, 10:00 – 17:00.

There is no fee for Petting Zoo activities, because it is included in the entrance fee for Zoo Park Bali.

               Photo with Orangutans

If you and your children want to be able to take pictures with orangutans, Bali Zoo Park Singapadu also provides. Photo locations with orangutans take place in the village of Sumatra from 14:30 – 15:30. Apart from orangutans, the Bali zoo is also home to several protected rare animals. Like the Sumatran tiger and the Bawean deer. Apart from rare animals, Zoo Park Gianyar Bali also has a collection of other animals such as white tigers, African lions and various types of birds and reptiles.

               Pony Riding Activity

Riding a pony horse game for children in Bali. Apart from playing in the Jungle Splash Waterplay, the Bali Zoo Gianyar also provides pony rides, especially for children with a maximum weight of 30 kilograms.

Opening hours for pony riding activities, 10:00 – 16:00.

To be able to enjoy pony riding activities, you will be charged IDR 35,000 / 1 child

Titi Batu

Titi Batu is the first Family, Sports and Wellness Community in Ubud, Bali. It is blessed to share a sacred holy land with a historical Balinese Stone Bridge. Titi Batu (stone bridge in English), was discovered over 200 years ago by two brothers who began using the natural structure as a means to connect their two villages. These villages are known as Mas and Lodtunduh. The mission of Titi Batu Ubud Club is to connect people from all corners of the world through shared values such as Community, Family, and Sports.

The facilities include:

– Stunning STUDIOS offering a large variety of classes for both adults and children and designed to enjoy gentle breezes and stunning rice paddy views during the workout.
– PREMIER UBUD GYM, with all of the equipment made in Italy by Panatta Sport (the world leader in fitness equipment and gym accessories) and certified personal training available upon request.
– Air-conditioned SQUASH COURT offering an environment designed specifically to increase your skills and a community welcoming both beginners and professionals for weekly squash social nights.
– PING PONG area of the squash court, with high-quality tables and equipment.
– MULTI SPORTS COURT, with outdoor Basketball, Volleyball, Badminton, Pickle Ball, and various other activities.
– STEAM, SAUNA & COLD BATH to relax or soothe the muscles, provide detox and relaxation and offer the rare option of dry heat when desired.
– SKATE PARK designed and constructed by Motion Skatepark Co. It’s the greenest skate park in Bali. Skateboards, In-Line Skates, and Scooters are all welcome and top instructors and equipment available for hourly hire.
– 25 METER LAP POOL open for Adults only (16yrs and up), designed for lap swimmers as well as a casual dip to cool off.
FAMILY POOL open to all ages, and catering to children and adults alike. The jumping bridge offers a thrill and a great photo opportunity.
– JACUZZI POOL for up to 13 people, designed to enjoy the stunning landscape while immersing your weary muscles.
– PLAYGROUND catering to children between 4 and 10 years old, with a two-level tree house, swings, white sand area, climbing ropes and many more.
– KIDS ROOM – an enclosed, air-conditioned safe zone for children to enjoy creative play and artwork. Toys, books, and art supplies are available as well as childcare, while parents enjoy a child-free swim, class or workout.
– SPA offering a wide range of treatments.
– INDIGO COFFEE SHOP featuring an all-day breakfast menu and palatial seating area overlooking the club.
– RESTAURANTS featuring an international menu with a large variety of mouth-watering options from all around the world, striving to prepare healthy, local, sustainable food options for both adults and children.
– GIFT SHOP aiming to carry carefully sourced products from small businesses that support their local communities. It also offers a large range of items for your daily needs.​

 

 

Tips on How to Choose the Best Clinic for Travelers While travelling

Tips on How to Choose the Best Clinic for Travelers While travelling

Many people tend to travel abroad without much thought as to how they will protect their health during their trip.

However, consulting a travel health specialist is key to having a successful and safe trip. Even if the specialist just imparts advice to the traveler, the specialist will still be providing him or her with the tools needed to stay healthy overseas. When in need of the expertise provided by a travel health clinic, how do you choose the right one?

That intimate knowledge can make a big difference to your health. Studies show that when people’s access to the right and best clinic for them improves, their risk of dying of cancer, heart disease and strokes declines. And Medicare Advantage members with a primary care physician are more likely to benefit from coordinated care and to have a positive health care experience.

Just like when choosing a doctor or a hospital, you want the assurance that the choice you are making when choosing a travel clinic will be suitable for your needs. The last thing you want is to trust quacks with your travel health and due to this, it is imperative to be cautious when considering a travel health clinic. Here are some of the factors to consider:

  1. Ask around.

The first step to finding a great doctor: Talk to your family and friends about their great doctors while they travel in to the same destination you are about to visit. A recommendation from someone you trust is a great way to identify a highly skilled, helpful physician. But remember: Every person is different. Just because a doctor was perfect for your neighbor or your best friend doesn’t mean that he or she is right for you.

  1. Map it out.

Since you’ll be visiting your primary care doctor for everyday health needs, it’s important that he or she be located somewhere convenient to you find the clinic as close as possible within your place or region that you are in. You won’t want to travel very far when you’re not feeling good. And if your doctor’s office is conveniently located, you’ll be more inclined to keep appointments for physicals and other preventive care when you’re healthy. If you’re enrolled in a Medicare Advantage plan, check if it offers transportation benefits, which can come in handy if you need help getting to and from your doctor appointments. You should visit a travel clinic at least four weeks before your date of departure, and this is where the location of the clinic comes in.

Other than the initial vaccination, booster shots may be necessary to enhance your levels of immunity against the potential risks you may face, and the last thing you want is to spend a lot of time traveling to get the shots. It will be more convenient if you choose a clinic closer to you and one that you can access without any hassles.

  1. Make sure you’ve got coverage.

Once you’ve identified some possible candidates, check whether they work with your health plan. If you have traditional Medicare, call the clinic’s office and ask they accepts Medicare patients. If you have a Medicare Advantage plan, call your insurance provider or check your plan’s website to see if the clinic is in your plan’s network. Most plans charge more if you see a clinic outside the network, and some won’t cover out-of-network care at all, so it’s important to take this step before scheduling an appointment.

  1. Do a quality check.

When you are choosing a travel health clinic, you will want to find a clinic that makes proper healthcare its main priority. The specialists should listen to your concerns, talk to you about your medical history and should assess the current state of your health. You should never feel rushed or belittled for not knowing about any aspect of travel medicine; the clinic’s main goal should be to help you stay healthy through proper education and preparation.

Chances are you wouldn’t hire someone to make repairs in your home without doing a little research into the quality of their work. So why would you choose a clinic without doing the same? If you have a Medicare Advantage plan, check with your insurance company to see if they have any information about the quality ratings of specific primary care clinic in your network.

You can also use the clinic compare tool on Medicare.gov to see if the clinic has participated in any activities that indicate he or she provides high-quality care.

Finally, check to see whether the clinic is board-certified through the Certification Matters site, which the International Board of Medical Specialties maintains. Usually the great clinic will have a great and board-certified doctor which will always be available in their clinic. Board-certified primary care doctors have not only met the licensing requirements of their states, but also passed comprehensive exams in internal medicine. Doctors also have to keep up with the latest developments in their fields to maintain their certification, so you can be sure they’re giving you up-to-date advice.

  1. Check about how many Industry Expertise does the Clinic Have

You will want to find a travel health specialist who works in a clinic with significant experience and comprehensive knowledge in the travel medicine industry and preventative care. Ideally, the clinic would focus solely on travel medicine and travel health, and be knowledgeable on conditions pertaining to your destinations, including any layovers. You will have a great experience if you work with a travel health clinic that has demonstrated experience and comprehensive knowledge on matters dealing with travel medicine. The clinic should ideally be focused on travel health and travel medicine, and they should have a lot of information about the requirements in various destinations around the globe. This is how you will know if you will be adequately covered before you head on your trip.

  1. Asking about the Yellow Fever Vaccine

If you have plans to travel to Africa, Southeast Asia or Latin America, you will need to consider a vaccination for yellow fever. These immunizations are only provided by authorized providers who are recognized by the U.S. Yellow Fever Vaccination Registry. This registry is monitored by the Center for Disease Control and individual state health departments, ensuring the quality and safety of the vaccine that is administered to high-risk groups.

  1. Check if You Can Get All the Vaccines that You Needed

A good travel health clinic will provide far more than routine vaccinations such as hepatitis A and B, tetanus/diphtheria, HPV, measles, mumps, rubella, shingles and polio. The travel health specialists there should be qualified to give you specialty vaccinations against Japanese encephalitis, yellow fever, rabies, typhoid and anthrax. They should also be able to assess your needs and provide you with the appropriate prophylactic medication for malaria, antibiotics for traveler’s diarrhea, and other travel supplies, as appropriate.

  1. Keep your needs in mind.

Every person has unique health needs, and those needs change as people age. We suggest asking the clinic about their specialties or areas of interest. Example: Some clinics are really good at sports medicine, but if you’re not a serious athlete in your senior years, that may not be helpful to you, or some clinics, on the other hand, may have a special interest in diabetes care or have a large population of diabetics in their practice. Those are things to ask when you call or make an appointment with the clinic for the first time. And if you have multiple complex medical issues, you may benefit from seeing a clinic with more than 5 years of experience in handling patient, since your needs will be so complex or need another further assistance.

 

Once you have found a clinic that seems to be a good fit for you, call the local office to schedule your appointment. To measure the quality of your visit after the appointment, ask yourself these questions:

  1. Did the travel health specialist give you a chance to ask questions?
  2. Did you feel the specialist was listening to you?
  3. Did the specialist seem comfortable answering your questions?
  4. Did the travel health specialist talk to you in a way that you could understand?
  5. Did you feel the specialist spent enough time with you?

If the answer to the above questions is yes, the clinic is a certified yellow fever provider, they offer all of your vaccines in one stop and the clinic is close to your home or office, then it sounds like you have found the clinic that is right for you. Happy and safe travels!