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Indonesia is the largest archipelago in the world and comprises some 17,000 islands. Probably the most famous one is Bali, recognised for its spiritual Hindu inhabitants, stretches of emerald rice paddies, rugged coastlines, wide beaches and notorious nightlife.
Bali is served by a wide variety of airlines, most of which fly into Bali Ngurah Rai International Airport. This tropical island has a plethora of hotels and resorts catering to every budget, so whether it’s coastal bliss or jungle oasis you’re seeking, you’re bound to find a suitable place to stay in Bali.
There are no direct flights to Bali from the UK. Flights from London to Bali connect through a number of destinations, including Singapore, Kuala Lumpur, Hong Kong, Bangkok, Dubai, Doha, Manila, Jakarta and Guangzhou.
A selection of UK airports operate connecting flights to Bali’s Ngurah Rai International Airport, including London, Manchester, Birmingham, Newcastle and Edinburgh. Airlines with a one-stop flight include British Airways, Singapore Airlines, Emirates, Qatar Airways, Malaysia Airlines, Garuda Indonesia, China Southern and Thai Airways.
Flight time from London to Bali ranges upwards of 16 hours for connecting flights, so you might stop off for a city break on your way, or pick a flight with a short stopover before carrying on to the Island of the Gods.
EU passport holders do not need visas for leisure stays of up to 30 days. Departure and airport tax is ordinarily included in the cost of your ticket, though it is wise to check this with your airline before travel.
Ngurah Rai International Airport is Indonesia’s second-largest airport and serves as one of the main gateways to the country, welcoming millions of visitors every year. The airport was refurbished in 2014 and has both an international and domestic terminal for onward travel to Indonesia’s most remote islands. The international terminal is large, modern and well-equipped with an assortment of fashion shops and restaurants.
Onward travel from Ngurah Rai International Airport is either by pre-arranged hotel transfer, taxi or car hire. You can book holiday car rental ahead and collect your car upon arrival at the airport, giving you the freedom to explore Bali at your own pace.
The popular tourist hub of Kuta, in the south of Bali, is a 15-minute drive from Ngurah Rai International Airport, and is filled with hotels of all kinds, while the mystical town of Ubud is about an hour away.
If it’s culture you’re after, be sure to see celebrated sights such as Tanah Lot and Uluwatu Temple. Shoppers will find traditional art at Sukawati Market and in the independent boutiques of Seminyak, while high street stores line the lively streets of Kuta.
From soaking up the epic surf at Canggu Beach, relaxing at a beach bar on the Nusa Dua coast, sampling traditional Indonesian delicacies among the rice paddies or climbing Mount Agung, Bali’s highest volcano, time on this island revolves mainly around its treasure trove of natural delights.