Transportation - Recommendation
- Tickets - Animals - Currency - Money Change - Malaria - Tour Guides
- Hotels - Weather - Rent Cars - Electricity
To be continued....
How do I reach
Bunaken from Manado?
Can you give me information where to get cheap
plane tickets ?
Are there poisonous or unpleasant animals e.g.
spiders, scorpions millepedes...on the island?
Which currency is accepted on Bunaken?
Where can one change or withdraw money?
How high is the danger to get malaria and shall
I have myself vaccinated against it?
About what should I be mindful in the case
of choosing a so-called "guide" or "tour guide"
Which hotels are cheap and recommendable in Manado?
Can one rent a car in Manado?
How is the weather like on Bunaken in the month
What does it look like with electricity on Bunaken?
do I reach Bunaken from Manado?
If you have booked accomodation in a
recommended Resort, you are usually transported from the airport
(taxi) or the port of Manado (boat) to Bunaken depending on agreement.
As a backpacker you have two possibilities: You either reach the
PUBLIC Boat to Bunaken before departure (depending on tides daily
at about 14.00 h, apart from Sunday) - have a look at the map "Taxi
Boote" at the river on my web site http://www.bunaken-klaus.com/manado_e.htm.
Or you charter a private boat at the port (see the same map). This
will be more expensive, though. As third possibility you can look
for a reasonably priced hotel and spend a day in Manado and then
take the PUBLIC BOAT next day.
you give me information where to get cheap plane tickets ?
No, to this I simply lack the experience.
Generally it is recommendable to book inland flights in Indonesia,
if possible. They are much cheaper than in the travel agency of
there poisonous or unpleasant animals e.g. spiders, scorpions millepedes...on
Primary note: My information is based
on my own experience inclusively what I know from conversations
with locals. I don't take over responsibility if you meet a dangerous
animal on Bunaken which I haven't mentioned. If e.g. you are consumed
by a boa.
There are poisonous animals, such as scorpions and millepedes, on
the island of Bunaken. They like to hide with pleasure in your clothes
or in the wetsuit overnight. Don't have hung any garments in the
bathroom. Examine always before you put on a garment, whether it
was selected by a perhaps poisonous animal as a hiding-place. Never
go barefootedly in the evening either. Neither the short routes
from your bungalow to the restaurant!
Besides of sea urgins you should pay attention to little luespotted
ribbontail rays which may have burrowed into the sand of the shallow
water. Therefore never go barefootedly into the water.
Hopefully you have learned in diving courses that one shall not
grasp anything sub-water. I would like to point particularly to
stonefish, all kinds of scorpion fish, coral catfishes, cone shells,
sea snakes, but also corals.
Uninvited guest on your balcony in the evening are often cockroaches
and flying ants.
currency is accepted on Bunaken?
You can pay with Indonesian Rupiah and
Euros in most Resorts on Bunaken. Some also take U.S. $. But the
banknotes shouldn't be dirty or damaged and the print date not older
than in 2001, though. One can pay also by Visa or MasterCard in
"better" Resorts. (see the corresponding internet page.)
can one change or withdraw money?
Not on Bunaken up till now anyway. We
use to draw our money in Manado at the cashpoint of the Bank of
Asia (BCA) by our VISA card in Indonesian currency before our transfer
to the island. This is free of charge. Have al look at the internet
page of your bank and ask about the conditions or partner banks
You can usually exchange cash (U.S. $ or euro) very favourably at
money changers into IR. Examples:
- Stenly (see here
or photo here
), 1°29'36.34"N; 124°50'28.95"E ; near harbour
- A Chinese rice merchant and money changer, 1°29'40.20"N;
124°50'31.17"E; near harbour
- BT Manado Inter Moneey Changer, 1°27'44.39"N;
124°49'34.18"E; Manado South
high is the danger to get malaria and shall I have myself vaccinated
The danger of infection is generally
evaluated as low in North Sulawesi . Mosquitos more frequently appear
during the rainy seasons. I myself have no more taken prophylaxis
within the last 8 years. Instead I had stand-by medicine with me
for the case my travel destinations is remote of Manado, where medical
care may not be available. However, I had never to use these.
In any case I advise you, to consult your GP. He knows your medical
history and has access to the current information about the risks
at your vacation spot. Don't forget to mention that you are a diver
during the diskussion about the medicine.
Which hotels are cheap and recommendable
one rent a car in Manado?
In Manado city it is hard to rent a
car for driving yourself. Mostly all the car owners will include
a driver. But everywhere you can easily get motorbikes to rent.
Only at the airport Sam Ratulangi you can find some rental car companies.
If travelers ask me about rent a car in Indonesia, I always advise
them to take a car with driver because of the risk. In case of an
accident your driver is responsible. If you have been driving ,
you have to pay, no matter if you are at fault or not.
is the weather like on Bunaken in the month xxx?
"What is the weather like in Paris
in June?" - A similar ...question.
One can say generally that you can dive on Bunaken all over the
year, though. The water always has a temperature of 28-30 °.
In the rainy season (November - end of March ), as the word already
says, it rains more frequently than in the dry season. The NW monsoon
winds can then blow quite intensely and occasionally bring rain
for days . There nevertheless are periods of sunshine now and then,
too. Usually you never feel cold. I myself have often felt the cooling
winds and the rain as a release from the tropical heat. If you come
back on the boat after 80 minutes diving time, though, you often
cannot be warmed up by the sun. Then you must get dressed warmly
(don't forget to protect your ears!).
You need not be afraid either that the rains soil the water around
the island how this is often the case nearby rivers at the mainland.
Often the island is spared from dark rain clouds, while a look to
Manado shows that it rains intensely there.
it look like with electricity on Bunaken?
what should I be mindful in the case of choosing a so-called "guide"
or "tour guide" ?
Besides some travel agencies in Manado
there are many Indonesians who offer guided tours not only to the
North Sulawesi area, but also to the Togian Islands, Tana Toraja
and even to Flores, Komodo and Bali. Since everybody can call himself
a "tour guide", with or without a special qualification
one should already take care to whom one entrusts himself. Before all: Have a look at his licence to avoid unpleasant surprises!
It is primarily an important prerequisite that he masters the English
language well. Detailed knowledge should be included over the regions,
the people of Minahasa and their culture, as well as the fauna and
flora. Anyhow you
should make conversation with your guide before and test his qualification.
Not least also liking and confidence are an important issue.
An important topic is also the price. Make clear before what's included
and how much you must pay extra (e.g. ask about transportation,
full board, entrance, guide, overnight stay).On stopovers one also
expects that you buy for your guide as well as the driver a simple
drink and meal.
Due to my experiences and reports of travellers I must advise you:
Don't pay the complete price before the tour. If you already plan the
tour from your country, of course a cash in advance is required
for large tours for booking hotels and flights in time. The remaining
payments then can be carried out step by step. To not let become
your tour an incalculable
financial adventure, you shouldn't transfer your cash in advance
to a dubious Indonesian private account.
To prevent misunderstandings, it is also advisable to fix the course
of the planned tour including all services in note form and have
confirmed the price by signature.