Cruise ships too big for Bali because of Benoa’s shallow shipping lanes are apparently forced to anchor at sea, about five kilometers out from the pier.
No, tourists aren’t expected to swim this distance—lifeboats are used to ferry them back and forth from their gigantic vessels to our island, according to Tribun Bali.
Compared with the number of foreign tourists entering Bali via the airport, the number coming through the Port of Benoa every year is quite small. However, the number is steadily growing, with 507,642 foreign tourists coming through the Port of Benoa in 2014, which was apparently 121 percent the targeted amount.
A report by Tribun Bali suggests businesses see an opportunity and are looking to turn the Port of Benoa into a cruise port, which could be done by deepening the navigation channel, allowing more giant ships to pull in closer.
PT Pelabuhan Indonesia (Pelindo) III has reportedly already filed a development plan for Benoa Port, to make it Marina Benoa so that more and more tourists (as if there weren’t already enough) can flock to Bali by sea.
Marina Benoa would apparently be some sort of “central park” for luxury cruise ships and yachts.
This can’t be a coincidence that the area they want to develop is the controversial Benoa Bay, where investors and developers have long been seeking to reclaim the land and build artificial islands complete with luxury resorts and even an F1 racing track.
However, thanks to licensing constraints from the municipal government of Denpasar, Marina Benoa cannot yet be realized, according to Tribun.