Living in Bali | The current situation, empty streets and corona rules

Hi, I'm Lesley and I live in Bali. In this article I am going to tell you about the current corona situation in Bali. Bali is one for Dutch people a very well-known tourist island, an island that really needs the tourists. No tourists simply means no income for most people. In recent months, many restaurants, hotels and bars have been closed. Everything is dead quiet in Bali, which is quite bizarre to see. What is normally so lively, there is now nothing to experience.

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Current corona situation in Bali

No tourists = no income

The local population has a hard time with it, if there are no tourists, there is also little income. Of course people come up with something to do, and they keep themselves busy, but the local population certainly earns a lot less now than when there are tourists. (And the wages are already very low here).

Also read: How long is the flight to Bali?

Because of Corona it is very quiet in Bali
Because of Corona it is very quiet in Bali

Kuta and Seminyak

Kuta and Seminyak are the famous places in Bali. This is where most tourists come. But in recent months there has been no one to be seen. Everything was closed in the beginning. The beaches and some parks were also closed. Where are all these people who have a shop and/or work at a tattoo shop, for example? No idea how they survive this pandemic.

Empty streets in Bali
Empty streets in Bali
Some shops are open again during corona
Some shops are open again during corona

At the moment there are a number of shops open in Kuta and Seminyak. Such as Havaianas, sports shops, jewelry and a few souvenir shops. But some hotels and restaurants have also been open again since the beginning of October. 

Ulluwatu, Ubud and Canggu

In the other popular places of Bali (Ulluwatu, Ubud, Canggu) it is also starting to come alive more and more. And I mean the hotels, restaurants, cafes, bars are reopening, shops are open, and you can do activities such as dance lessons, surfing, yoga events, going out, and you can book different tours etc. Canggu in particular is lively again because here many expats live. 

Empty beaches in Bali during Corona
Empty beaches in Bali during Corona

The tourists that Bali currently has are the people who themselves Indonesia live. Especially from Jakarta many people come to Bali. Most sights are now open again, but often only for half a day or until a certain time.

Now at the moment, the restaurants and all other public areas can remain open until 9 pm† They have just introduced this rule since a week. 

Corona rules in Bali

The restaurants are not full, the hotels are not full as they always have been, but there are people who take advantage of this. It is actually super affordable to book now via, for example, an Airbnb, a villa or a hotel. Most activities currently have a "corona" price. 

Plus everything is "corona proof" and it is wonderfully quiet. Below are the rules that all shops, hotel, restaurants use: 

  • Mask required
  • Wash hands before entering 
  • Your body temperature is measured 
  • 1 meter distance 
A bucket with soap and water to wash your hands | Bali
A bucket with soap and water to wash your hands | Bali

And by the way, a mask is mandatory in every area in Bali, so you must also wear a mask when you walk on the street and when you drive a scooter. This is checked. Often there are checkpoints and if you are stopped without a mask, you pay 100k rupiah (that's about 6 euros). Also, there have been some funny situations where the police violators order push-ups to do as punishment.

There are posters along the side of the road with information about COVID-19, that it is mandatory to wear a mask and which rules you must follow.

Covid-19 / Corona information board along the road | Bali
Covid-19 / Corona information board along the road | Bali

The streets here in Bali are also disinfected. With a kind of nozzle on the car, the streets are sprayed with a chemical (what it is exactly, I don't know). This is done once in a while. 

How do the people deal with the rules?

What I see is that most people do wear a mouth cap on the scooter and on the street. There are a number of people who don't have it, but they are being checked by the police. By the way, face masks were always worn by the local population on this Bali, so it is usually quite normal for them and not drastic.

Security guards check for mouth caps
Security guards check for mouth caps

Without a mouth cap you will not enter anything in Bali during the corona period. Many public areas often have masks at the entrance that you get if you don't wear a mask. 

Everyone has a different opinion about it of course and I can't say what exactly people here think. But I don't think people are too panicked about it here in Bali. I mean, people are still going out to the beach, shopping malls and restaurants, and once you're in, the mask comes off. (how else can you eat and drink? Or communicate normally?) In general, everyone follows the rules and often I see people even wearing a clear face mask. That is a screen that covers your entire face, but through which you can still see.

Compared to the Netherlands (and many other countries) there is quite a lot possible here in Bali. So as long as you wash your hands neatly (which you hopefully did before corona), and have a mask on. 

domestic flights from Bali

Domestic flights are still possible from Bali during corona, depending on your destination within Indonesia and the regulations of the local governors. You must also meet certain conditions, such as having tested negative for COVID-19 through a PCR test and a swab test. 

The borders with foreign countries are closed in Bali, so no entry for foreigners unless you have a work permit or a Kitas family.

Also read: Celebrating Christmas in Bali or the Gili Islands | Why not?

Can you travel to another country from Bali? That depends on which destination you want to fly to and which rules that country has drawn up. For example, I would be allowed to fly back to the Netherlands, if I meet the conditions. And yes, I can also fly back to Bali because I have a family of kitas.

Unfortunately, it is not yet possible to travel to Bali until now, until January 28† Here too, the rules are different every time, and we have to wait and see when foreign tourists are allowed to come to this beautiful island again.

This article was written by guest blogger Lesley van les-adventures.com† Take a look at her website full of stories about living and working in Bali!

Submit your own guest blog? Which can! We are always looking for nice blogs from real world travelers. More info here.


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  • I was now in Bali for 1 month. 2 weeks only in ubud and 2 weeks in candi dasa.
    Among other things, I didn't know where else to go.
    A month is a long time.
    You run out of ideas, especially for a vacation. And I also read that most seas are so rocky instead of sand.

  • I would like to know what the situation is now in Bali. The number of corona cases is decreasing, going there on holiday is possible again provided…. Is tourism on the rise again? Is it safe (I read somewhere that crime has increased). What about traveling within Indonesia (domestic flights, boat trips etc). Are all hotels, restaurants, tourist attractions open again?

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