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Benoa Cruise Port (Bali)

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Benoa is just a tiny cruise port - tender port for most cruise lines.

Yo'll need transportation to get to a beach. My recommendation is to book a driver to get most out of your two days including snorkelling - link to reliable driver - contact the driver by email or WhatsApp and plan your days in advance. 

Edited by hallasm
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I'll be there in a few weeks, but from what I've read, there isn't really anything much in Benoa and around.  We have arranged for a driver (in advance) to take us places we want to go.  I think it's better to arrange in advance, using someone who has been recommended, since those drivers are more likely to speak good English and have a good idea of what cruisers/visitors would like.  They'll meet you at the port or airport.  You do not have to hire them for a day (although their day rates are reasonable!)  I don't think there's much around Benoa you can do without transportation, so I think most people do a ship's excursion or hire a driver, even if they just want to go one place for the day.  


If you're going to be in Bali SOON, you may find the beaches a little disappointing, as in general in Bali there may be grayer days than usual, with some rain each day, but not torrential downpours!  Some of the beaches are apparently a little dirtier than usual, too, due to debris coming up onto the beaches.  I have 3 days pre-cruise in Bali before boarding a cruise ship Dec. 21.  I'm spending the night in Sanur, a beach area about 30-45 minutes from the airport, and then going north to the town of Ubud for sightseeing  the rest of the time.  While Ubud is probably not doable on a cruise day, there are plenty of other things to do and see from the port of Benoa.  


If nothing else, I saw pictures from someone's cruise ship visit to Bali.  Apparently there's a big cultural center not terribly far from the port, and a bird or animal park.  Sorry, I didn't save the link, but if you plan a day trip with a driver, he should be able to give you some ideas of what you can reasonably see in a day from the port of Benoa.  The boards on Trip Advisor may be helpful too - not too many people post here on Cruise Critic, I'm afraid!


As for the port itself, I hear there is a small terminal (we are scheduled to dock, but not sure how many ships dock and how many tender; ours is fairly small).  There are supposed to be some vendors in/outside the terminal, and some things to see inside the terminal.


Enjoy!  I'm really excited about Bali.......lots of temples, cultural things, etc.   I didn't know a thing about it 9 months ago.....so much interests me now!


Edited by roothy123
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  • 4 weeks later...

I'm nearing the end of my cruise, which started in Bali.  We used the driver mentioned above  by Hallasm, and he was wonderful.  Hiring a driver was definitely a great idea.  This one does definitely take cruise passengers around the island, and told me that the Ubud area is about the farthest he can take cruise ship passengers, and if tendering takes a long time, even that may be out of the question.  But I would, nevertheless, hire a driver, and now can highly recommend Dewe Gede .  His vehicle was very roomy, air conditioned, and comfortable.  He was fabulous  - spoke great English,  showed me good photography angles or places to stand,  offered to carry my camera bag, helped me plan wonderful days, and was just an extremely nice man.   He's from Ubud but has been all over the island, so can help you decide what you want to do, whether it's just a day on the beach or a day elsewhere. 


As for Bali port, our ship was docked, but many ships tender.  There were two vendors in the small port terminal  when we were there, selling typical touristy items.  There are no prices, and you should bargain.  There wasn't anything else in the terminal, so if you really want something to carry on like sodas, wine, whatever, get it before you go to the port.  There may have been wifi, but I didn't check for it. 


Cruising out was kind of interesting - went through a fairly narrow channel where people were doing watersports, etc  Airplanes were going right overhead.  Then after a while there was nothing.......and a lot of nothing until we reached Australia and our next port!


I didn't see any evidence of cabs being available right there, but there may have been some; not really sure.  However, since Bali drivers pay a fee, for every person in the car, not just the driver, to enter the port, I'm thinking that not every driver in Bali flocks to the port on cruise ship days - not exactly an inexpensive thing to do!


I loved Bali, but the heat and humidity were a little daunting.  But the other things we feared before arriving, for example, getting sick from food we weren't accustomed to, or getting sick from drinking non-bottled water, turned out to be non-issues.  But we WERE careful, and the driver helped us out by taking us places that he thought were good for visitors, and everything was fine.  

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