Bali in January-Rain Worries

Old Oct 30th, 2009, 06:45 PM
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Bali in January-Rain Worries

Please help us decide between Bali & CR for our 2 week vacation in Jan. I was so excited about Bali (for the snorkeling, hiking, temples, massages, new culture, and especially the reported friendliness of the locals) but then read that Jan. is the wettest month so am re-thinking our destination. I have always wanted to go to CR, as well, having read about the wildlife, rainforests, volcanos, river rafting, zip lines. How do the two compare in 'welcoming friendliness', transportation from one area of the country to another? We are late 50's/early 60's, active, independant (enjoy guided trips for snorkeling, some hiking, & history but not all-inclusive tours), We would like to spend at least 3-4 nights in any area we visit and prefer renting sm. houses to hotels when feasible. We're not adverse to rain (love Kauai!) but don't want to be stuck inside, too much, Any input would be welcomed!
Ceili
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Old Oct 30th, 2009, 07:01 PM
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I've been to Bali and nearby Lombok during the rainy season, and it has not interfered with my enjoyment of those places. Rain in Bali is typically intense but short. So you may have an afternoon thunderstorm, but have sun in the morning and a lovely early afternoon and evening. Bali is also an ideal place to rent a villa (though you'll likely need to stay more than 3-4 nights). If you aren't afraid of rain, you'll be just fine in Bali in January.

There is no need for a guide anywhere I can think of on Bali, but you'll want to hire a car and driver for some days.
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Old Oct 30th, 2009, 10:43 PM
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Ditto to Kathie's post above. I've also revisited in January and although there may be thundershowers from time to time, it did not prevent me from enjoying this beautiful island.
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Old Oct 30th, 2009, 10:57 PM
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Ceil, Bali carries on in the rain. People expect rain and most of the sites are set up to deal with it.

It's very difficult to predict the intensity of storm patterns -- sometimes you get a series of days with fast showers and fast clearing, sometimes you get two days of intermittant drizzle followed by two days of sun. But this is the tropics and it's possible to get rain even during the dry season. You simply have to work around it.

The only cultural/arts events that are difficult in the rainy season are the evening open air performances that can be cancelled or interrupted. The performaners are a fairly hearty lot, though, and the show will go on unless it's a real downpour.

For outdoorsy pursuits, it depends. Low key walks/hikes are fine during the but serious trekking (like mountain climbing)can be dangerous. Rafting, snorkling, surfing operate all year.

It's very easy to get around Bali independently. You may like a guide to give you perspective and especially to take you to religious events but it's not strictly necessary. I haven't been to Costa Rica but I can't imagine any culture that is any more hospitable than Indonesian.

Actually, if you're interested in renting a house (villa) being there during the rainy season is a positive as the prices will be more negotiable.
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Old Oct 31st, 2009, 08:29 AM
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I went to Bali at the end of 01/09. Had beautiful days.
Wanted to take my friend to see Barong Dance.
Most Barong show places were closed due to lack of tourists.
Had good durians in Bali for rp50000 each.
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Old Oct 31st, 2009, 12:03 PM
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Not a problem , as the others say . But when it pours it really comes down .
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Old Oct 31st, 2009, 12:31 PM
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Lol, John you are so right. My first visit to Bali a couple decades ago we arrived at our hotel as it was getting dark. Exhausted from the transpacific flight, we went to bed after a small snack and a glass of wine. I was awakened by the roar of what sounded like a chainsaw that night. I went to the balcony and opened the doors to find - not logging - but rain! It was raining so hard it roared!
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Old Oct 31st, 2009, 07:00 PM
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I was in Bali last 2 weeks of Jan. last year. We had a few heavy rain days and a bunch of days where it either rained in the morning or afternoon but the rest of the day in either case was nice. The majority of the time the weather was good, just hot & humid but sunny.
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Old Oct 31st, 2009, 09:00 PM
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Thank you all for your responces. We really prefer Bali for this particular trip but my husband has just let me know today that he could get away in March instead if the weather would be appreciably better. What do you think? We are planning to rent a joglo (sp?) in outer Ubid, then move on to the northern part of the island for an eco-lodge experience and some island snorkeling.
Ceili
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Old Oct 31st, 2009, 09:52 PM
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Take a look here for the historical weather data.
http://www.weatherbase.com/weather/w...?s=3279&refer=
There will be less rain in March, though I don't know how much of a difference that will make for you. I'd always rather be away from home when it's cold and rainy - I'm glad to go somewhere warm (hot) and rainy!

So you are planning on staying outside of Ubud, if I understand you correctly. It's a beautiful area of rice terraces and river gorges. A joglo is a traditional Javanese house. I found some villas named Joglo, but they are in Java. So perhaps your husband means you'll be staying a traditional teakwood house near Ubud.
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Old Nov 1st, 2009, 12:15 AM
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March is transitional -- you still get storms but not as frequent or aggressive. (I must stress that it rains all year long. It's just that during the rainy season it really rains.)

Joglos are not native to Bali but they are common imports as they can be deconstructed and reassembled. Sometimes they're used as one of the rooms in a contemporary villa or house.
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