Thursday, March 15, 2007


Health and safety are today top concerns for tourists when travelling abroad. Here are few tips on the way to have a perfect relaxing holiday in Indonesia.

Money and change
It is possible to exchange money at bank counters upon arrival at international airports or seaports. In town, most of the foreign currencies can easily be exchanged at banks and authorized money exchange counters. ATM.s are widely available everywhere for cash operations, even in smaller cities.

Indonesia is a safe country for foreign tourists and most of the Indonesians will take pride and happiness to help and gice their best to a traveler. However in big cities like Jakarta, Surabaya or very popular tourist areas like Bali or Yogyakarta, it is advised not to go out carrying to much cash or to expose to the public attention valuable like expensive jewellery. To travel within a city, use only taxis with the name of the company. They are all equipped with meters.

Indonesia is mostly safe for travel for health conscious tourists. Malaria today is eradicated in all urban areas and most of the large tourist areas. Malaria transmission can occur after dark in rural, forested areas not frequented by tourists, except in Papua (formely known as Irian Jaya), where risk is widespread. However, over the past few years, malaria cases have been observed in Central Java Province. Insect protection measures (anti-mosquitoes cream or lotions) are essential against diseases like malaria or dengue fever. They are available in any pharmacy or drugstores in Indonesia. The country has a large number of well-equipped hospitals to international standards, especially in the largest cities and tourist areas.

Which destinations to visit?
Indonesia and is open to foreign visitor. The regions receiving the most tourists are currently Bali, Java, Lombok, Sumatra, Sulawesi and the islands of Batam and Bintan across Singapore. As Indonesia is the world.s largest archipelago, events happening in one specific part of the country do not mean that the whole Indonesia is affected. For example, the tsunami disaster affected only the Northwestern tip of Sumatra island in Aceh. In Bali, Yogyakarta, Jakarta or even in the rest of Sumatra, life continued normally. In case of any event, the Indonesia embassy will be able to present detailed information on the affected zone. Media will also able to contact the Ministry of Culture and Tourism to get the most updated information as well as a map of the affected areas. A list of regions which might pose a threat to the safety of visitors is available from the Ministry of Culture and Tourism.

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