When to visit Bali & Indonesia
When to visit Bali & Indonesia
Best time to visit Bali & Indonesia
When planning any trip your first one of the most important considerations for getting the most out of the experience is knowing the very best time to visit – based on both climate, and taking into account any festivals or local celebrations.
For Bali – and also Indonesia’s other established tourist destinations Java, Lombok, and Flores – the ‘best time’ is less of a concern, with these regions straddling the equator and therefore enjoying a largely consistent (if tropical) climate year-round. The recognised best time to visit is March through to October: this is when the weather is most likely to be consistently pleasant with minimal rain, calm seas and blue skies, making it easy to travel between the islands while enjoying gorgeous backdrops for photos and all sorts of adventures.
The more far-flung regions of the archipelago have an inverted seasonality, with the best time to visit Papua, Raja Ampat, and northern Sulawesi generally falling from November through to March. These areas typically attract a dedicated, intrepid traveller who is looking for a specific kind of trip – diving, cultural immersion, trekking, jungle exploration – in which case please ask your consultant for a detailed analysis of when to plan your trip. There are other factors to consider for specialist trips: current or wind patterns for divers, fruiting seasons for wildlife enthusiasts, or festival calendars for those look to study one of Indonesia’s many unique cultural groups.
Whenever you do plan to visit you’ll find an equatorial climate countrywide, with short, sharp downpours or dramatic thunderstorms occurring at least once or twice during your trip, and temperatures that are consistently warm but never scorching hot. A wider guide on Indonesia’s seasonality is found below.
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Indonesia is a truly compelling destination, and with a varied climate that has something to offer all around the year. We’ve put together an overview of climate season-by-season and region-by-region below.
High Season for Bali, Java, Lombok, Flores
April to October
April through October is the peak travel season, enjoying the driest weather of the year. The average temperature ranges from 79 to 90 degrees Fahrenheit, while rainfall averages from about 1.2 to less than 4 inches. It’s the best time to visit Lombok and Bali, with the beautiful beaches ideal for swimming, snorkelling and all sorts of other water sports, or just relaxing on the sand. This is also when the waves off the western beaches will be at their best for surfing. There are several festivals that can be enjoyed during this time as well, including Ramadan in July, and Muharram from September through October.
The downside of visiting during the high season is that it is the peak time for tourists with schools out in Europe and the U.S, as well as throughout Indonesia. Depending on where you plan to go, from July through August in particular, you’ll find higher hotel rates and busier tourist sites, but you can almost always find a more remote place to venture to for tranquillity, like north Bali or one of the neighbouring islands.
High Season for Kalimantan, Sumatra, Raja Ampat
November to March
Although the ‘low’ season for Bali, you won’t find much difference in temperature, ranging from 79 to 91 degrees Fahrenheit. Indonesia as a whole is slightly wetter at this time, with rainfall averages from 5.9 to nearly 12 inches, bringing rain throughout the country with the exception of Papua and Maluku. Despite some saying this is not the time to come, Indonesia is really a year-round destination and this period is ideal for relaxing by the sea and avoiding the biggest crowds, provided you don’t visit around Christmas and New Year’s Eve. There are some unique festivals to enjoy too, including Nyepi on Bali, the Day of Silence, which is celebrated in March. The day before there will be a huge parade, with the following day spent in total silence.
While Indonesia is generally budget-friendly any time of the year, again, depending on where you go, the low season is the time you’ll find some of the best deals on accommodation and airfare, as well as being the quietest months for avoiding thick tourist crowds.
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