Bali still open to domestic tourists despite surge in COVID-19 cases

A scene featuring women in traditional clothing in Bali. Photo: Ministry of Tourism and  Creative Economy
A scene featuring women in traditional clothing in Bali. Photo: Ministry of Tourism and Creative Economy

It appears that Bali’s recent surge in coronavirus cases has yet to compel officials to close domestic tourism to the popular holiday destination, who so far has only announced limiting visitors on tourist attractions across the island.

“We will place limitations on tourist attractions, including crowded spots. Turns out those have become new clusters. Like Lapangan Renon and Puputan, I have also asked those places to be temporarily closed,” Bali Governor Wayan Koster said yesterday.

The same limitations will reportedly apply on beaches, as part of an effort to control coronavirus transmissions. However, the island is still open to domestic tourists from other parts of Indonesia. 

As of yesterday, Bali has confirmed 7,312 COVID-19 cases, including 1,351 patients in treatment and 179 deaths. 

The province recorded a significant caseload surge for about two weeks, with officials recording more than 100 cases daily up until Sunday. Deputy Governor Tjokorda Oka Artha Ardhana Sukawati, or Cok Ace, previously said that local transmissions in Bali escalated from household clusters and traditional ceremonies. 

As tourist attractions returned to normal operations amid the pandemic, following the loosening of restrictions in July, Cok Ace said young people have been going on excursions and neglecting to follow proper health protocols, resulting in asymptomatic cases and later infecting the elders in their homes.

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