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Bali to Exceed 2 Million Foreign Visitors in 2009?
Bali by the Numbers: Despite Troubled World Economy, Bali Arrivals in Record Territory.
Bali's arrival numbers continue to ignore declining travel patterns in much of the world, setting new heights each month. Looking at foreign tourist arrivals to Bali through the end of July 2009, here are the main highlights:
June 2009 arrivals totaled 190,617 or 11.5% better than the record breaking performance of June 2008. July 2009 arrivals hit an astounding 224,636 that's a whole 22.7% ahead of the same month one year before. January July 2009 arrivals totaled 1,242,297 an improvement of 11.87% year on year with 2008. If Bali can maintain the current 11.87% rate of growth through the end of 2009, total arrivals for the current year will easily surpass 2 million visitors for the first time in history, ending with 2.2 million foreign visitors. Australia is now firmly in possession of the #1 post as the largest source of foreign visitors to Bali, displacing Japan from the top ranking it's held for decades. Australia arrivals through the end of July totaled 227,402 as compared to Japan's 186,029 for the same period. By extension, Australia arrivals through the end of July were up 38.07%, while Japanese arrivals are down 10.78%. The People's Republic of China is now the 3rd largest source of visitors to Bali, increasing 61.09% to 116,806 for the first seven months of the year ending in July. This strong growth has moved the PRC up two places from its former rank at #5, Malaysia arrivals increased year-on-year by 21.66% through the end of July at 83,809 visitors. It remains to be seen if the current cross-border spitting match will be reflected in August and September arrivals to Bali ex Malaysia. Malaysian arrivals now hold the 4th ranking, up from 6th last year. South Korean arrivals decreased year-on-year by 5.96% for January-July 2009 at 74,055 securing the 5th ranking in terms of main source markets for Bali tourism. Taiwan arrivals have taken a beating in 2009, decreasing 18.44% for January July to total 69,363. Taiwan, which once was the third largest contributor of visitors to Bali, has slipped to the number six ranking. While Europe in general struggles with its economies, the French market is proving very robust for Bali tourism, increasing 50.99% in the first seven months of 2009, totaling 59.488. Market shares for Bali tourism at the end of July 2009: Asia Pacific 57.89%; ASEAN 19.97%, Europe 25.44%; the Americas 5.02%; Africa 0.5% and the Middle East 0.18%. The Asia-Pacific including ASEAN constitutes 77.86% of all Bali's foreign tourism arrivals.
Playing Around in Ubud
Ubud Writers and Readers Festivals to Bring Range of Exciting Play Readings to Bali.
As reported on Balidiscovery.com, part of the many exciting offerings during this year's Ubud Writers and Readers Festival are a number of theatrical events. The works of world renowned visiting playwrights will be presented in dramatic readings by several actors, well-known to Australian audiences through their work in theatre, film and television. Two free performances on the evenings of October 8th and 9th at the Yoga Barn will showcase a new play by Italian actor/writer/director Marco Calvani and another work by Nobel Laureate Wole Soyinka. The Trials of Brother Jero Wole Soyinka's "The Trial of Brother Jero" is the first of a "Jero" trilogies featuring four characters appearing in four scenes. The play's namesake "Jero" is a beach prophet who survives by enlisting the collaboration of others who rely on him for insights into their future. Chume is a government messenger with aspirations to becoming a prophet. He suffers under the yoke of a shrewish wife, Amope, a woman to whom Brother Jero owes a financial debt. All actions takes place in a single eventful day that also sees a member of Parliament enter Jero's circle of influence and trickery. On one level Brother Jero examines the materialism of Nigerian society, while on another it examines the nature of change and our ability to affect life's outcomes. The City Beneath A dark and disturbing look at modern society and the much discussed "clash of civilizations" - this play looks at Western civilization's decline and loss of humanity. Set in a city under siege, a menacing soldier figure proclaims a series of ad hoc decrees from an unseen despot preparing a wave of ethnic cleansing that are assured will return society to "normality." Diana Greentree The two plays have been cast and will be produced by Melbourne actress Diana Greentree, already in Ubud assisting the UWRF in a voluntary capacity. Diana is a veteran of music theatre (e.g. "Rocky Horror Show" and "Cantebury Tales") as well as pursuing a distinguished career with the Melbourne Theatre Co. and Ensemble Theatre Sydney. Recent roles have included "The Night Season" for the Melbourne International Festival. She also has an extensive list of television and screen credits. The Players The actors are looking forward to being directed by Italian actor/writer/director, Marco Calvani, author of "The City Beneath" and to meeting Nobel Laureate Wole Soyinka, author of "The Trials of Brother Jero." Both playwrights are expected in Ubud for the festival. The same casts will be performing in both plays. Richard Piper and Nicki Wendt are traveling from Melbourne to Bali after completing lead roles in the hit for the Melbourne Theatre Company's World premiere of "Rockabye" by Joanna Murray Smith. Richard will portray a mysteries "Man" in "The City Beneath" while Nicki will present a shrieking shrew in "Brother Jero. Kellie Jones and Liz Ralph from Australia also star. Kellie recently delighted audiences at the Melbourne Theatre Company's smash-hit "Osage: August County." Completing the casts will be Diana Greentree and ywo local actors: Jack Daniels who appears in both productions, and a Balinese schoolboy, Agus Darma, in his theatrical debut. A highlight of the Trials of Brother Jero, will be live African drumming accompaniment presented by African poet and musician Thando Sibanda. As well as the two English language plays, there will be one performance of a play in Indonesian by prominent Indonesian writer Cok Sawitri - "Bubat for Gusmianti Suid>" Admission to all plays will be free of charge. Thursday, October 8, 2009 at 6:00 p.m. "The Trials of Brother Jero" English language by Wole Soyinka. A satire that presents one day in the eventful life of con-man, and beach preacher, Brother Jeroboam. The larger-than-life characters will delight the audience and the African drumming accompaniment add excitement to this comedic piece. Friday, October 9, 2009 at 6:00 p.m. "Bubat for Gusmianti Suid" Indonesian language by Cok Sawitri and Teater Tulius Ngayah. A dramatic homage to the perseverance of the country's single women telling the story of the late Gusmiati Suid and how the fate of a single woman divided the nation. Saturday, October 10, 2009 at 6:00 p.m "The City Beneath" English by Marco Calvani. A modern drama that explores the culture clash between civilizations. It looks, without hypocrisy at the West, its loss of humanity and moral decline. Following a reading at La Mama, New York last year, a full production of the play is slated for Paris soon. Related Links [A Midsummer Night's Dream] [Play Readings at the Ubud Writers Readers Festival]
Bali Suffers a Blackout
Entire Island Plunged into Darkness on Wednesday, September 16, 2009, when Java-Bali Interconnection Fails. Consumer Bureau Threaten Class Action Suit for Damages against PLN.
A sub-sea interconnecting high-voltage cable carrying power from Java to Bali failed on Wednesday evening, September 15, 2009, plunging much of Bali into darkness starting from 7:05 p.m.. Frantic efforts to restore the peak demand capacity of 440 megawatt returned power in some areas within a half-hour, however, many consumers sat in the dark until late in the evening before power was fully restored. The failure was traced to an interconnection circuit beneath the Java-Bali straits that officials claim was stuck by lightning resulting in the sudden loss of 100 megawatts of transmission power. The head of the Bali Consumer's Bureau, Putu Armaya, criticized the State Power Board (PLN) for their second major power outage to affect Bali since May 31, 2009, claiming the failures could form the basis for formal claims by consumers affected by the outage. Armaya said that if PLN does not compensate consumers, his group could lead such a class action suite against the utility.
Jones Lang LaSalle: Time for Bali to be Optimistic
Major Property Investment Consultants Gives Their View of Bali's Tourism Fortunes.
The Friday, September 11, 2009 edition of The Jakarta Post carried the following overview of Bali's tourism economy by Djodi Trisusanto, a consultant to Jones Lang LaSalle Indonesia: Time to Be More Optimistic than ever for Bali Tourism Market
By Djodi Trisusanto, Consultant, Jones Lang LaSalle Indonesia The JW Marriott and Ritz-Carlton Bombings in Jakarta last July may have caused a setback for the Bali tourism market that has performed relatively very well despite the global financial crisis and the threat of a global H1N1 pandemic. The growth of the Bali tourism market has been fueled by regional and international Meeting Incentive Conference and Exhibition (MICE) events and depends not only on the global economy but also on the safety and security aspects of the island. Recent data derived from the international direct arrivals to Ngurah Rai Bali, however, have shown a relatively stable growth during the period after the bombings in July. International tourist arrivals for the seven months up to July 2009 were recorded at over 1.2 million, a growth of around 12 percent over that of 2007. Security measures and government initiatives to minimize the effect of recent Jakarta bombings on the Bali tourism market as well as efforts to capture and to bring the perpetrators to justice have given confidence and positive perception to international tourists that Bali remains a safe tourist destination. The continued growth of Bali tourism market, albeit slower than in 2008, was not anticipated given the magnitude of the economic crisis felt during the end of 2008 and the beginning of 2009. Most analysts had predicted that global international tourist arrivals would decline following the global financial crisis with corporations expected to cut travel and meeting programs. Bali was no exception with many of the feeder countries such as UK, US and Japan expected to be greatly affected by the crisis with unemployment rising and consumer confidence declining. As a result earlier in the year UNWTO (World Tourism Organization) predicted that international arrivals would decline between 2 percent and 3 percent. Contrary to these forecasts, Bali has again, just as for the past three years in a row, proven to be resilient. Arrivals from its key feeder countries have mostly continued to increase as indicated on the following graph showing international arrivals to Ngruah Rai Bali for Year-to-Date June (YTD) 2009. As shown on the graph, aside from Japan, South Korea, Japan and Germany, almost all key markets exhibited growth during the period with tourists from China, France, and Australia recording the highest year-on-year increases of about 55 percent, 40 percent and 39 percent respectively. This is followed by the growth in visitors from Malaysia (28 percent), Singapore (16 percent), Russia (5 percent) and UK (2 percent). Other source markets grew marginally. With loyal repeat visitors from Japan, Europe and Australia and the ability to always find new markets such as China, India, and Russia, the Bali tourism market is expected to outperform other markets globally. Civil unrest and political instability in Thailand and the favorable tourism environment in Bali have helped its performance to date. The outlook of the Bali tourism market would continue to be positive. Jones Lang LaSalle has listed the following factors affecting Bali's continued tourism market growth: Improved aviation safety standards, in response to the newly enacted Aviation Law No. 1 2009, with the EU lifting the two-year ban on selected Indonesian carriers, including Garuda Indonesia, as from July 2009. The popularity of Bali, voted for the seventh year running as the "Best Island in the World" by Travel and Leisure Magazine in 2009, reinforcing its position as one of the world's top destinations In addition to the existing luxury brands in Bali that include Bvlgari, Four Seasons, Aman, and Orient Express, the newly opened and upcoming branded hotel developments such as St. Regis, Alila, Banyan Tree, and the Retreat and Spa will strengthen Bali's positioning as a favored travel destinations amongst affluent international leisure travelers The diversity of Bali's hotel supply that has been in the past few years expanded with different kinds of accommodation targeting a large spectrum of international travelers, from long staying travelers that demand more privacy and tailored services to week-end travelers that demand relatively simple but central locations. This includes private villas in cliff locations and mountain resorts in Ubud and condo hotels in Kuta, Seminyak, and Nusa Dua Recovery of the global economy with expected recovery of the Japanese, South Korean, and Taiwanese markets that in the past have been predominant. Large and strong domestic market that has been one of the main market sources for hotels particularly in popular destinations such as Nusa Dua, Seminyak and Kuta. Political stability and strong government for the next five years following the successful presidential election in July 2009. This will ensure continuation of infrastructure developments and promotion of sustainable development that is much needed for Bali's future.
Indonesia's Peak Holiday Travel Period Underway
Bali's Airport, Seaport, Bus Terminals and Hotels are Full to Overflowing Due to Idul Fitri Holidays.
Bali's traditional Idul Fitri Holidays will put the entire national transportation system under heavy strain for a period stretching approximately from September 14 27, 2009 while Indonesia's predominantly Islamic population travel home for the traditional holiday spent with family and friends. And while Bali is justifiably celebrated as a Hindu enclave in an otherwise Islamic nation, the island, too, also experiences peak travel activity as many Moslem residents travel back to their home islands while tens of thousands of other Indonesians take advantage of the extended holiday period by traveling to Bali for a beach holiday. Bali's already busy Ngurah Rai International Airport experiences a near-doubling of flight operations during the holiday as airlines add flights to keep up with demand. Extra flights and larger capacity aircraft are in operation between Bali and a number of major cities in Indonesia, such as Jakarta, Bandung (West Java) and Surabaya (East Java). To keep up with demand Garuda Indonesia has added 27 flights while AirAsia, Merpati and Mandala have also added flights. Regional carries have also increased seat capacity between Bali and Singapore, Kuala Lumpur, Bangkok and Hong Kong. Bali's westernmost seaport of Gilimanuk, connecting the island to East Java, recorded as many as 2,900 vehicles making the crossing each day on Monday, September 9, 2009. Port officials expect that figure to increase to 15,000 vehicles per day in the 3-4 day period just prior to September 20th. Reports of long lines of vehicles stretching 3-5 kilometers from the port's entrance, waiting to board the ferry at Gilimanuk and, to a lesser degree, waiting lines at the Port of Padang Bai, are being reported by domestic holidaymakers. To help reduce waiting time, ferry operators have added two additional ships to the standard complement of 24 ferries plying between Gilimanuk and Katapang. While September is traditionally a high season in Bali, the convergence of the Idul Fitri Holidays with high season in Bali have left many people looking for rooms in Bali in late September, unable to find accommodation in popular tourist areas of the island where many hotels are fully booked.
A Ghoulish Good Idea
Ubud's Rotary Club Organizes Halloween Fund Raiser on Saturday, October 31, 2009.
The Ubud chapter of Rotary International will host "The U-BOOO-D Halloween Ball and Masquerade Party" on Saturday, October 31, 2009 at Ubud's Arma Resort's Water Garden at 7:00 p.m.. The event is being held to bring fun to the local community and to benefit the The Future for Children Foundation's Muntigunung Water Project - a non-profit organization seeking to secure a clean water supply for the 34 hamlets and over 5,500 residents at Muntigunung, an area high on the rugged North Eastern slopes of Mount Batur on the northern side of the island of Bali. A particularly impoverished corner of the island, resident struggle to survive in this dry and desolate landscape. Poor water supply and little vegetation have resulted in poor nutrition and the prevalence of a number of health ailments, including tuberculosis. Mortality rates are high and incomes low, on the order of 10 cents per day - far below the UN standard of US$1 per day needed to sustain even the most basic existence. A Night to Remember Rotarians promise to make the evening memorable with live music; a guest performance by Tom Rigney, the popular American blues electric fiddler; DJ Arne & Guests; fire and belly dance performances; best costume contests; raffles for top-end prizes; scary food and haunted drinks as well as some special "tricks and treats." To help enliven the atmosphere, costume rentals or purchase will be available on-site. There will be a special children's section with supervised a play area, games, and a piρata. Tickets are on sale now. Adult ticket price of Rp. 200,000 (US$20) include admission, a spooky welcome drink, and a chance to win a fantastic door prizes. Special early bird price of Rp. 150,000 (US$15) or tickets purchased before October 1, 2009. For more information or tickets, telephone Ibu Coki at ++62-(0) 81 3370 14678.
Let's Sleep on It
Westin Resorts in Bali Auctioning a 'Heavenly Bed' to Raise Funds for a Most Worthy Cause.
Westin Resorts Heavenly Bed are justifiably famous for the unequalled quality of sleep they provide guests staying at their resorts worldwide. Credited with creating the best reason yet to "sleep in," the scientifically formulated and expertly engineered beds and accompanying linen leave guest refreshed and recharged to face the world's challenges. Today there are now more than 97,000 Heavenly Beds in over 65,000 Westin guestrooms worldwide. In response to popular demand from guests who "hate to get up in the morning," Westin have sold more than 30,000 Heavenly Beds, 100,000 pillows, 32,000 sheets, and 13,000 shower heads to consumers hoping to bring home the Heavenly experience. Here's Your Chance As part of the Starwood Hotels & Resorts' commitment to its Bintang Bali program to supply protective helmets to children riding as passengers on motorcycles in Bali, a Heavenly Bed is now on auction to people residing in Bali and Jakarta. The auction which runs through September 25, 2009 will award the following to the highest bidder: A 2 meter x 2 meter specially designed King Koil mattress and box spring. 2 Bed Sheets 5 pillows 5 pillow covers 1 Dacron Duvet Insert 1 Duvet Cover 1 Bed Skirt. The retail value of the complete set is put at US2,000. Bids are rolling in and have already met the US$1,000 mark. To place your bid before September 25th, email to email@example.com or telephone ++62-(0)361-771906. Related Article [Protecting Bali's Brain Trust]
Twin Sons of Different Mothers
An Exhibition of Paintings by Ida Bagus Indra and John O'Sullivan at Gaya Fusion in Ubud, Bali October 6 30, 2009.
The concept of creating a joint exhibition entitled "Twin Sons of Different Mothers" evolved over time between two very different artists hailing from opposite sides of the globe, but now happily residing on a single island Bali.
Two souls connected for over six years this time around; attracted in a desire to express and create a mixed medium offering their past, present and future. In Balinese terms: A sincere and divine offering of Sekala (the tangible) and Niskala (intangible). One soul from Bali of the Brahman caste and the other a Celtic spirit traveling the world in search of hiding undiscovered relatives; the ultimate reconnection of souls in unison. The spirit of the exhibition at Gaya Fusion October 6-30, 2009, is about opposites and virtual sameness. The circle of co-existence and potential. The combination and blending of all the senses is heavily implied to provoke; not in the negative or positive sense, but in a desire for upward expression of possibilities; both in the soul of the artists and the heart of the viewer. From the arrival at the exhibition, greeted by more than 35 statues depicting different earth forms, then on to the "soul sound bite" of poetry banners in the main gallery. A choice of runways is offered to the viewers for access. The individual works of the artists hang precariously at different angles from the ceiling defining a world of separated and alternative potential; an upside down world . . . literally. The exhibition continues to unfold with the paneled wall; each piece sensitively collaborative in nature allowing space for Taksu to blossom generously and selflessly. A reunion of soul source regardless of the medium used. Installation pieces dispersed throughout the space infer chaos in an interactive and almost humorous manner. The use of poetry and voice combined with the art insightfully complements and distracts with quizzical prodding. You are welcomed into the joyful and shared worlds of Ida Bagus Indra and John OSullivam . . . . . .Two sons of different mothers.
Twin Sons of Different Mothers An Exhibition by Ida Bagus Indra and John OSullivan Gaya Fusion at Jalan Raya Sayan, Ubud - October 6-30, 2009 For more information telephone ++62-(0)361-979252 or ++62-(0)361-975895
Saturday Morning Earthquakes Wakes Bali Up
Minor Injuries and Littles Damage in Bali Resulting from Series of off-shore Earthquakes
As strong an earthquake as anyone can remember in recent memory shook Bali at 7:07 a.m. on Saturday, September 18, 2009. Measured at 5.8 by the U.S. Geological Survey and 6.4 by Indonesian government sources, the epicenter was located 101 kilometers SSS of Bali's capital of Denpasar at a depth of between 36 and 100 kilometers. No tsunami warning was issued in connection with this event and the early warning sirens located on Bali's main beaches remained silent. The quake which aster for perhaps 10-20 seconds was accompanied by a loud rumbling as buildings rattled across Bali's south. Such was the severity of the shake that many people ran outside of buildings. Some structural damage in the form of cracked and crumbled walls were reported, including the partial destruction of a temple gate in Lebih, north of Sanur Beach. Minor injuries affecting 7 people, including 3 broken bones treated at Bali's main hospital were also reported. At 10:40 a.m. a second aftershock emanating from approximately the same area and measuring 4.3 made itself felt on Bali.
Image Makers of the Future
Exhibition at Alila Gallery Presents a New Generation of Indonesian Photographers October 10 November 30, 2009.
On Saturday, October, 10, 2009, BLIPfest in conjunction with Alila Ubud, will present "Image Makers of the Future" - an exhibition showcasing the works of emerging young Indonesian photographers. Hailing from different areas of the photographic spectrum, the exhibiting photographers represent the future of the already rich field of Indonesian photography. BLIPfest (Bali Photography Festival) is a major international photography event hosting an array of exhibitions, workshops and seminars in Bali, Indonesia. A first for Bali, BLIPfest will take place during the last week of September into the first week of October 2010. The events of BLIPFEST 2010 will be spread over venues around Denpasar, Kuta, Nusa Dua and Ubud, Bali. BLIPfest was conceived of by Indonesian photographer Rio Helmi as a platform for Indonesian photography, as a creative impetus for artistic and aesthetic energies, and as a venue for intercultural interaction fostering the advancement of Indonesian photography within a global milieu. BLIPfest has set its sights on bringing together domestic and foreign photographers, editors, art critics, cultural observers, industry stakeholders and the general public to help put Indonesia in its rightful place as a domain of diverse and outstanding creativities. BLIPfest aims to be a stimulus for cultural interaction and collaboration among Indonesian and foreign photographers of the world. BLIPfest curators include senior Indonesian photographers Darwis Triadi, Firman Ichsan, Oscar Motuloh, Rio Helmi and Tara Sosrowardoyo. Early sincere interest in participation has come from several foreign photographers including San Francisco of Fine Arts lecturer Linda Connors, VII agency photographers John Stanmeyer and James Nachtwey, as well as Magnum's Raghu Rai.
Imagemakers of the Future An Exhibition Showcasing the Works of Young Indonesian Photographers Alila Gallery at the Alila Resort in Ubud Open Daily October 10 November 30, 2009
Keeping Ahead of the Wave
Benoa Hotels and Local Citizens Cooperate to Save Lives and Become 'Tsunami Ready.'
On Thursday, September 10, 2009, a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed at the Ramada Benoa Hotel between the local community and Tanjung Benoa tourism industries to make the small peninsula just north of the Nusa Dua Complex "tsunami ready." An initiative of GTZ (German Technical Cooperation)-GITEWS (German-Indonesian Cooperation for Tsunami Early Warning System) and Bali Hotels Association [BHA] and assisted by the Indonesian Red Cross - the project has created a potentially life-saving framework for Tanjung Benoa in the event of a tsunami. A flat and very low-lying peninsula exposed directly to the Indian Ocean, the community of Tanjung Benoa could offer no "high ground" for local resident seeking safety if the tsunami siren sounded, warning of an imminent inbound wave. The obvious solution close at hand was to devise a system that would provide immediate quick access to the multi-storied hotels built at Tanjung Benoa where, conceivably, people on the upper floors during a tsunami would be spared the fatal consequences of a tsunami attack. The MoU just concluded provides for a joint evacuation plan, a evacuation trigger, evacuation procedures and codes of conduct. Commencing immediately, nine Tanjung Benoa hotels will open their doors to the community at risk in case of an official tsunami alarm being sounded. The initiative is viewed as a good example on community cooperation in disaster risk reduction, serving as a template for future 'tsunami ready' plans in Indonesia. The Tanjung Benoa Tsunami Preparedness team partners are the Bali Hotels Association [BHA] and The Segara Hotel, Benoa Rose Residence, Benoa Palm, Ramada Benoa Hotel, Rasa Sayang Hotel, The Bali Khama Hotel, Puri Panca Setia Hotel, Club Bali Mirage, Grand Bali Mirage Hotel , Kelurahan
Tanjung Benoa, the Indonesian Red Cross, GTZ-GITEWS, and the Indonesian Department of Culture and Tourism.
Spirit of Bali
A Solo Painting Exhibition by Dewa Sugi at the Maya Ubud Resort & Spa, through October 30, 2009.
The Maya Ubud Resort & Spa is featuring a solo painting exhibition by Dewa Sugi - "Spirit of Bali" at the resort through October 30, 2009.
Born in Pengosekan Ubud in 1970, Dewa Sugi combines a high degree of Balinese traditional technical painting skill with his imaginative sensitivity resulting in modern-traditional artwork that is representative of his views and the spirit of Bali. Dewa Sugi is displaying sixteen of his unique works of art at Maya Ubud Resort & Spa. In the creation of these works, Dewa Sugi is influenced by traditional Kamasan inspiration with Japanese motifs resulting in works that are both unique and pleasing to the eye. Each piece concentrates on events and figures that influence the Balinese way of life, such as the Barong, epic stories and mystical deities. Dewa Sugi has held past exhibitions in Ubud and Osaka, Japan.
Spirit of Bali An Exhibition of Paintings by Dewa Sugi Maya Ubud Resort & Spa Open Daily Through October 30, 2009. For more information call Ayu Martiasih at ++62-(0)361-977888
Bike From Kintamani to Ubud on Sunday, October 18, 2009 to Raise Funds to Help Rotary Put an End to Polio.
Rotary Club Seminyak is organizing a relaxing 25 kilometer downhill cycling tour from the Mount Batur volcano in Bali and ending in Ubud on Sunday, October 18, 2009. Operated in cooperation with Sobek Bali Utama - one of Balis most experience adventure sports operations, the trip will cover the "Batur Trail" - the downhill trail from Mount Batur that leads through sleepy villages along little-used roads and tracks. Frequent stops along the way are included to give participants the opportunity to visit temples, plantations and villages along the way. Experience trained guides, employed from surrounding communities, will lead the group. The tour is suitable for all levels, including those who think they have forgotten how to ride a bike! With the exception of four 300-meter sections, the "Batur Trail" is all down hill. Support vehicles follow the group to provide support and motorized transpiration for anyone feeling overly fatigued. The Rotary Bike-a-Fund is being held on October 24, 2009, which is World Polio Day with funds raised going to the "End Polio Now" project. Open to the general pubic, Rotarians and their families participants should gather at the Sobek Bali Utama Office at Jalan Bypass Ngurah Rai, near Simpang Siur (the Dewa Ruci monument) at 8:30 a.m.. Transportation to and from the bike course and the Sobek office is included in the program. Bike rental for this event is Rp. 225,000 (US$22.50) as compared to the regular price of US$79 for this program. Participants are asked to donate an additional Rp. 275,000 (US$27.50) to this fundraising activity.In other words, cost of a fun day out to help fight polio is only US$50. The price includes: Transportation: Kuta - Kedewatan - Kintamani & Ubud Kuta. Morning Tea in Kintamani. Complimentary Riding Gloves. Drinking Water & Cold Towels. Customized Mountain Bikes with Shimano Equipment & fittings. A late lunch (2:00 p.m.) in Nyuh Kuning. Participants can expect to be back at the Sobek office in Kuta at 4:00 p.m. NOTE: Registration and feels must be paid by October 7, 2009. For more information or to book contact Rtn. T. Patrick van Kampen firstname.lastname@example.org or Rtn. Anita Lococo email@example.com .
The Elimination of Noordin M. Top The View from Bali
Tourism Officials Applaud Police Shooting of Top Terrorist. Bali Police Step Up Security Measures.
The Head of the Bali Promotion Board (BTB), Ngurah Wijaya, has heralded the shooting of the internationally wanted terrorist Noordin M. Top by police in Central Java on Thursday, September 17, 2009, as a "significant influence in favor of Indonesian tourism." Quoted by the national news agency ANTARA, Wijaya said" "Not only Bali, but on a regional and nation level this represents an excellent opportunity for us all without relaxing our preparedness. Just imagine, a single bomb attack has the potential of halting the very heart beat of the tourism industry for an extended period. In Indonesia there are hundreds of tourism destination areas that can (now) be developed in a safe and orderly fashion." Wijaya related how the island of Bali is very dependent on tourism, an industry which surpasses agriculture which once served as the economic backbone of the Balinese people. The Bali bombing attacks of 2002 and 2005 resulted in thousands of people losing their employment. Noordin M. Top, a Malaysian national, is blamed for organizing local cells of Indonesian nationals to carry out bombing attacks which have caused hundreds of deaths to both domestic and international tourist visitors to Bali. According to Wijaya, dating from the start of 2009, there has been strong improvements in Bali's tourism industry, both on the domestic and international fronts. Wijaya added: "During the Lebaran period the hotel, airline and other forms of transportation report occupancy levels have increased. If all is safe and orderly, all aspects of Bali's tourism industry will benefit including business owners, their employees and handicraft makers." Wijaya said only few factors can cause a decrease in the coming high season for tourism. Those factors are security disturbances including a terrorist attack, large scale infectious disease outbreaks and natural disasters. The Chief of the BTB discounted the potential impact of the global financial crisis, saying this was insufficient to eliminate people desire to visit exotic and famous places around the world. At the very worst, he explained, people will reduce the level of shopping, choose hotels that are less expensive and eat at simpler dining venues. He said that while Bali has felt some of the effects of the global recession, the situation is gradually improving. Wijaya expressed the appreciation of his organization to the Indonesian police who managed to kills the leader of the Al Qaeda Movement in Southeast Asia, Noordin M. Top in Solo, Central Java. "This has to be appreciated (by the people) and serve to increase (the police's) performance. We are also committed to help the police by giving them any information they require," said Wijaya. Bali Police On Guard BeritaBali.com reports that the Bali police have intensified their vigilance in the wake of the slaying of Noordin M. Top. This assurance was issued by Bali's Chief of Police, General Sutisna on Thursday, September 19, 2009, at his headquarters in Denpasar. General Sutisna said his officers were keeping a careful watch on side roads across Bali which are preferred by terrorists when they move personnel or equipment. Sutisna added: "We are on guard in connection with the raid on the terrorists in Solo, there are still other terrorists." The Chief of Police told the press how his department is working with local fishermen to report any movement of passengers or goods which raises suspicions. Police have also increased surveillance of local gold stores which have become a favored target of terrorists seeking to raise money for their operations.
The links below provide access to the graphical version of the Bali Update.