The 13,677 islands of the Indonesian archipelago stretching over an area of 5,200 km into the Pacific ocean present a plethora of choices for “boaties” to explore. Bali has three main ports – Benoa in the south, Padang Bai in the east, and Gilimanuk in the west. Several major shipping line make Padang Bai and Benoa their ports of call on around-the-world cruises.
If you would like to explore the islands near Bali you have a wide range of choices from boating expeditions with anything from a few hours in a traditional jukung to day cruises or longer overnights trips on yachts or luxury cruisers.
Ombak Putih, a traditional Bugis schooner, is one of the most exotic way to explore Indonesia ‘s islands. Measuring 36 meters in length, 10 meters in beam, and 4.5 meters in draft, it consists of one main deck and one sun deck. This stunning-looking schooner is powered by a capacity 10, 40HP engine and has a maximum speed of 10-12 knots under sail. I can accommodate 24 passengers in its 12 cabins. Safety is given the utmost priority with provision of life rafts, life buoys, and live jackets. High tech navigation equipments such as radar, GPS, and depth sounder assures that your sea journey is smooth, safe, and fast, and hi-tech communication equipment permits constant contacts with the outside world. All passenger cabins are fitted with their own shower, toilet, and air-conditioner.
Until October Ombak Putih operates the Volcanoes & Dragons Schedule with 2-das, 3-days, and 10-days cruises from and to Bali with visits to the Lesser Sunda Islands . After October until March the Bugis & Spice Schedule is operated with cruises of from 7-10 days. Destinations covered include Sulawesi , Sumbawa , Komodo, and Flores . All fares are inclusive of buffet meals during the trip, soft drinks, tea, and coffee, excursions, laundry service, use of snorkeling and water-skiing equipment, and services of a tour guide.
Sea Safari Cruises also offers a wide choice of cruises aboard its Sea Safari III (SS3) and Sea Safari V (SS5). Built in the traditional style of the type of schooners used by Bugis pirates at the turn of the century, both vessels combine the best of Indonesian boat-making skills with all the comforts you would expect from a modern ship.
On both vessels all cabins have a bathroom and basin, toilet and shower, individually controlled air-conditioning, and tea/coffee making facilities. Other facilities on the schooners include toiletries in each cabin, swim/boarding platform, fresh water on-deck shower, laundry, bar, TV, karaoke, and VCD entertainment units, scuba diving and snorkeling equipment, warm towel for after night diving, fishing equipment, and water skiing equipment. For meal delicious Asian and European cuisines are served, and vegetarian food is available on request.
Cruises offered by Sea Safari are of the following durations: 3 nights / 4 days, 4 nights / 5 days, 5 nights / 6 days, and 7 nights / 8 days. Among others, some of the destinations covered are Sangeang, Sabolan, Komodo, Lombok , Satona Island , Sumba , and West Flores . When you combine the intimate knowledge of the Sea Safari Tour Director on the local culture and customs with the superb condition of the ships’ crew, you are guaranteed an exciting time in both your shore excursions and underwater adventure.
Bali Hai Cruises offers four cruises. The Aristocrat is a twenty-meters twin hulled sailing catamaran used to carry small group from Benoa Harbor to Bali Hai’s private Beach Club on Lembongan Island . The Aristocrat is also available for private charter.
The Bali Hai Reef Cruise, aboard a motorized catamaran, moors alongside a pontoon in Lembongan Bay . Visitors can see the coral reefs and marine life on glass-bottom boats, or by snorkeling and diving. There are unlimited banana boat rides and a cultural tour of the island. A luncheon buffet is served on board.
The Bali Hai Beach Club Cruise takes visitors to Beach Club on Lembongan Island . The club features a landscaped garden and lagoon pool. You can just relax or dive, snorkel, play volley ball, go on island excursions, or unlimited banana boat rides. BBQ lunch lunch is served at the pool side cabana.
The Bai Hai Sunset Dinner Cruise leaves Benoa Harbor every evening with buffet dinner, live Batak singers, and a disco.
Beluga Marina in Tanjung Benoa have cruises to the island of Nusa Penida aboard the Quicksilver catamaran, which will moor alongside a pontoon. Guests can visit the village of Bodong or scuba dive and snorkel. They can also view the coral from the semi submersible vessel or from the underwater observatory on the pontoon. Unlimited banana boat rides are available and a buffet lunch is served on the pontoon. Beluga also has sunset cruise, dolphin spotting cruise, and submarine safaris.
Island Explorer Cruises has day cruises to Lembongan by yacht or power boat and can arrange an overnight stay on the island. They also have sunset cruises, dolphin cruise to Uluwatu by catamaran.
Rasa Yacht also sails Lembongan for day cruises and have two daily cruises to the waters of West Bali with a maximum of 12 people. You can go fishing, dolphin spotting, or sunset cruising.
Wakalouka Cruises luxury 23 meters catamaran takes limited number of guests to their Wakalouka resort on Lembongan Island . The resort has ten luxury bungalows for overnight stay. On offer, too, are special package called “Wakalouka Experience”, which consist of three to six days duration combining sailing and diving trips to Wakaloukas’s island and visits to mountain resorts.
Climb aboard the Simone III run by PT Indonusa if you would like to try game fishing. A state of the art Blackwatch game fishing vessel, Simone III is also available for private charters for surf diving tours or extended fishing trips. Tuna, wahoo, mackerel, marlin, mai-mai, snapper, cod and coral trout are some of the fish that can be caught within a range of 30 minutes to an hour from Bali . Buffet lunch and refreshments are provided on board.
If you want to go to Lombok by sea, enjoy the splendour and beauty of the Gili islands is to go on a cruise on the five stars luxury catamaran, The Bounty Cruises.
Equipped with international standard safety equipment and computerized stabilizer, it makes the sea journey from Benoa Harbor to Gili Meno in just two and a half hours. During the journey, guests can enjoy deck games and in-house video or simply sun-bathe. At the island, The Bounty Cruises will moor alongside a pontoon, allowing opportunities for snorkeling or scuba diving. The blue tinted staghorn corals are one of the attractions here. One can also take a glass-bottom boat ride to the private beach to enjoy volleyball, parasailing, seafood BBQ, or banana boat rides, a jet powered sea shuttle. The trip takes two and a half hours and refreshments are served on board.
One of the easiest ways to travel to Lombok from Bali is by the high speed catamaran of Kencana Lines. Having a maximum seating capacity of 117 persons it is divided into smoking/non-smoking areas. Snack and mineral water are served during the journey, and on-board facilities include AC, VCD, and karaoke. Daily the catamaran leaves Bali ‘s Benoa Harbor at 8am and reaches Lembar in Lombok at 12noon. The return trip back is at 4.30pm reaching Benoa Harbour at 8.30pm .
Aloha Sailing Tours offer a totally different sailing experience on their fleet of hobie cats and lasers. Operating on the beach near Intercontinental Resort in Jimbaran, they have guided tours of Jimbaran Bay and a four-day safari which begins in the north of Bali at Lovina and finishes at Amed. There is also a children’s sailing school.
Sea Trek offers extended sea voyages from 8-18 days aboard Buginese schooners (phinisi) to such destinations as the Lesser Sunda Islands , Moluccas , Irian Jaya, and Sulawesi . Giving high priority to the environment, Sea Trek’s way of traveling does not disrupt the local infrastructure or local traditions. All non biological garbage is bought back to shore and the engines of their ships have been developed to modern standards.
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