Is Bali back? Thousands of holidaymakers flood a beach on the vacation island months after it was turned into a ghost town during Covid
- Crowded Bali beach scenes show the holiday destination’s revival continues
- Bali hopes to attract 1.4 million Aussies in 2022, which would be as many as 2019
- The downside of tourism returning is problems with rubbish on beaches
The revival of Australia’s favourite island holiday destination Bali continues to gather pace.
Images from the Indonesian island in recent days show beaches starting to pack out at Australia’s beloved south-east Asian getaway.
Jimbaran Bay, 15 minutes south of Kuta, was crowded with locals walking and dining on a seafood buffet at tables set out on the beach.
Images from Bali in recent days show beaches starting to pack out at Australia’s favourite island holiday location
Tourists are returning to Bali beaches including Canggu (pictured)
Bali’s Covid rules
To enter Indonesia, you must show evidence of full Covid-19 vaccination (2 or more doses).
Your last vaccination dose must have been completed at least 14 days before travel.
You must show evidence of a Covid-19 (PCR) test taken within 48 hours of departure to Indonesia.
On arrival, if you have any Covid-19 symptoms or a body temperature above 37 degrees celsius, you must take a Covid-19 (PCR) test and self-isolate until you receive a negative result.
If you test positive for Covid-19 and have moderate or severe symptoms, you may be taken to a hospital for treatment or an isolation hotel at your own expense.
Children under 6 are not required to be vaccinated to enter Indonesia.
Partially vaccinated 6-17 year-olds may be required to complete vaccinations by local authorities.
‘Great place to eat seafood and watch a beautiful sunset,’ said one Australian commenter.
While some speculated the crowds were assembled for post-Ramadan family feasts, elsewhere there are plenty of signs the holiday hotspot is recovering after tourism basically shut it down during the pandemic.
For the past two years Bali has slipped into a steep decline, with beaches and back streets emptying out.
Once buzzing restaurants closed down and were even grown over with weeds and vines.
The low point came with tourism figures stating that just 51 international tourists arrived in 2021, after 1.2 million visited in 2020.
Much of Bali’s revival is with Australia in mind: an estimated one quarter of all Bali’s tourist trade comes from Australia.
But this month Qantas reported demand for its Bali route was exceeding pre-pandemic levels.
While only 15,000 internationals had arrived in Bali by April, the island’s tourism authorities are targeting 1.4 million Australian visitors by the end of 2022.
That would match the numbers in 2019 and exceed 2020, the first year of the pandemic, when a million Australians escaped to Indonesia’s island jewel – most of them before the borders closed on March 19, 2020.
Now locals are starting to redecorate and re-open previously run-down shops, cafes and restaurants.
Images from social media groups about Bali travel show familiar scenes of buzzing retail outlets and scooters filling up the streets around Kuta and Seminyak.
The return of tourists brings problems too – notably the re-emergence of pollution.
Shocking photos of the unsightly state of one of Bali’s much-loved beaches have emerged just weeks after the holiday island welcomed back international tourists, including flocks arriving from Down Under.
Canggu’s once pristine shoreline is strewn with debris, rubbish and plastic waste following the annual monsoon season.
Tourists walk along Bali Canggu beach scattered with debris and discarded plastic waste
While only 15,000 internationals had arrived in Bali by April, the island’s tourism authorities are targeting 1.4 million Australian visitors by the end of 2022