Day 65 – 9th March 2020, Alongside Bali

Orchid garden Judi in sea of orchids

Today is the end of Segment # 2, which was scheduled as Sydney to Hong Kong, but now ends in Bali. With the end of one segment, starts another, which is now the Magical Mystery Cruise to Somewhere.

You may ask, “Where is Somewhere” and the answer is any port that is on our route and will accept us. We are also rather special, with only 361 passengers remaining on our private yacht, being tended to by a full compliment of 464 highly attendant crew members.

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Day 64 – 8th March 2020, Alongside Bali

Taman Ayun Judi at entrance

Yesterday we spent the day at anchor, while Viking negotiated with the local authorities to get us ashore for our tours, and flights for those departing the ship. We all had our temperatures taken again last evening, but didn’t hear the results, before heading to bed.

On waking this morning, the question on everyone’s mind was, “Are we going ashore today or not???” Read on for a busy start to the day and our activities.

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Day 66 – 10th March, Magical Mystery Cruise (Day 1)

Viking Daily Mar 9

The hysteria over the COVID-19 virus is causing world wide issues, especially in the cruise industry. Even this spotlessly clean and healthy ship experienced issues being accepted by the local Indonesian authorities. In Semarang, we anchored off the port, never getting ashore and in Bali, we lost 1 day.

However, the Viking management team worked wonders and while the lying Jakarta Post published we weren’t getting into Bali, we did enjoy 2 fabulous days ashore (still working on those photos, so couple more days for Bali posts). I did a cruise-by on SS Oriana back in the 1970’s, but this was my first time ashore. Thank you Viking, as their exceptional negotiating skills were greatly appreciated.

Unfortunately, some very tough last minute, perhaps even last second, decisions were made to keep this ship healthy. As mentioned on a previous post, Viking made the decision to depart Bali with only passengers who were already aboard. To those that were boarding in Bali, we hope you have a safe return and I have no doubt that the Viking team will look after you extremely well.

We’re back at sea and the World Cruise was renamed, so today is a new dawn and the start of the, “Magical Mystery Cruise to Somewhere”. Departing Bali last evening, we lost a day ashore, so this amazing private yacht crew, brought Bali to us. Read on for the Balinese Dinner & party.

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Day 63 – 7th March 2020, Anchored at Bali

Viking Sun at anchor Komodo Is

OMG! what a day, sitting off the port of Benoa in Bali (Indonesia). The information provided to the Captain yesterday that we would be cleared upon arrival has changed.

The political wrangling has continued throughout the night and we are now facing similar issues to those in Semarang.

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Day 61 – 5th March 2020, Semarang

Manny on stageLast night we received notification in our cabins regarding the timing for the temperature checks, which were planned to commence at 06:30. However, by 06:30 the local authorities were conspicuous by their absence. I believe they finally got started around 07:30.

While the entire ship received a clean bill of health, due to the local Mayor, we did go alongside, but nobody was permitted ashore.

Read on to learn about our most interesting day.

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Day 61 – 5th March 2020, At Anchor, Semarang Indonesia

Last evening the ship was notified the Indonesian Government required another temperature check of all passengers and crew, prior to the ship receiving clearance to dock alongside.

This was completed about 08:30 and the ship received a clean bill of health from the Indonesian Govt. However, the local Mayor is over-ruling the Federal Government and is blocking the ship from docking and letting passengers ashore.

At present, they are negotiating to at least let us dock to load the 6 containers of stores, currently sitting on the dock. As time progresses, the chances of us getting ashore in Java is slowly ebbing away.

Life continues aboard this amazing ship, regardless of the political wrangling.

Day 58 – 2nd March 2020, At Sea

Dragons at watering hole close-up 7

Today is a Noon arrival in Komodo Island, one of the highlights of the cruise for us – seeing the Komodo Dragons for the first time. Yes, this is one of the ports that neither of us have visited before.

The included tour is a guided walk of about 2.5 miles in the tropical heat and high humidity. It is noted as demanding, but even with limited mobility, Judi is signed up for the walk. Not all passengers survived the experience without assistance, but although exhausted, Judi was a real trooper and completed the walk under her own steam.

Read on for lots of photos of the island and it’s dragons.

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