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Officials Give Start Date For Bali’s New Tourism Train Network

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The long-awaited Bali Railway Network has been given a starting date.

While officials were hoping that the first construction teams could get to work in the first few months of the year, the start date still isn’t too far away at all. 

Metro Train in Jakarta.jpg

The Indonesian Transport Minister, Budi Karya Sumadi, has confirmed that the groundbreaking for the ambitious Bali Railway Network will start in September 2024.

The first of six rail lines to be built will be within the Light Rail Transit System. 

Speaking during a press conference in Jakarta, the Transport Minister confirmed that despite the start date being put back to September, all other plans remain the same at this point.

@chrisviandiwen Woah ini rahasia kita aja ya gimana sih perkembangan MRT Jakarta Fase 2. Semoga pembangunannya bisa lancar terus dan cepat beroperasi. Yang suka naik MRT jakarta senengnya ke Stasiun apa nih? #mrtj #mrtjakarta #metro #metrotrains #railways #foryou #serunyabelajar #infojakarta #infokereta #keretaapi #keretaapiindonesia ♬ Aesthetic – Tollan Kim

The first route to be constructed will connect I Gusti NgurahRai International Airport with Seminyak, finishing at Mengwi. The 30-kilometer line will also stop at Renon in Denpasar and Central Parking in Kuta.

The first phase of construction will be funded by investment from a South Korean company, which is also funding the feasibility studies that remain underway.

The Bali Railway Network will be operated as a joint venture between the Bali Province, which will hold a 51% share, and the Central government, which will have a 49% share.

@sipriyanus02 #Canggu traffic#In ♬ suara asli – Sipri

Minister Sumadi confirmed that the Offices of the Governor of Bali and the Regent of Badung have guaranteed funds for the rail link.

The Transport Minister added, “In the long term, we will build LRT trains in Bali from the airport to several points where traffic has been heaviest, such as Sunset Road, Legian, and Canggu.”

It is evident that progress is being made on the Bali Railway Network and that all officials are in agreement that the project would be a viable solution to Bali’s traffic congestion woes.

However, with the new president coming into power, all that could change. Things could speed right up, or the project could be scrapped again entirely.

@rikazaat 🥰 #balitraffic #canggu #canggutraffic #chakras #yogabali ♬ Twee motten – Dorus

The new president-elect, Prabowo Subianto, has spoken to voters in North Bali in the last few weeks. He brought up the discussion of transportation and his commitment to putting the North Bali Airport back on the list of Presidential Projects. 

The North Bali Airport has been on and off the cards for years, with Bali lovers and local residents at this point unsure whether the project will ever happen at all.

The North Bali Airport would be located in Buleleng Regency and would be established to help funnel more tourism to the north and the west of the island. 


Subianto told his Bali audience during his campaign that the North Bali Airport is an option not only for tourism development but also for provincial security.

He said, “We must not depend on one facility. If something happens, one airport cannot be used; there must be a backup airport.”

He spoke of concerns that a new airport in the north of the island would be another development or infrastructural project that is moving Bali ever further away from its traditional roots.

Subianto noted that the Balinese personality must be preserved; the buildings must all have Balinese characteristics. [We won’t] go around building large buildings. I really believe in this.”


What is clear is that leaders at all stages of the government, from the regency leaders through to the central government Ministers, want to see Bali’s transportation issues tackled once and for all.

The priority, many Bali lovers feel, is simply to keep traffic on the roads moving and create an environment where both local traffic and tourism traffic can flow easily throughout the day. 


Many first-time tourists in Bali noted that the level of traffic congestion was worse than they had imagined.

Although there are many off-the-beaten-path destinations on the island where it is easy to not see vehicles for hours at a time, the reality is that most tourists stay in the most popular resorts, and this is why traffic management needs to be focused most. 

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Monday 19th of February 2024

Unbelievable, it al depends on one person that there will be a railway system or an airport. If he says yes it will build and with no it’s scrapped that’s no democracy but a jojocracy. Better can buy a ticket in a sweepstake


Sunday 18th of February 2024

it will not work, since population is still growing. need to make bigger roads, take down houses near the road and rebuild them behind or nearby. the problem of the land in private hands creates all this mess.


Saturday 17th of February 2024

Sir, Bali need to improve the transportation mode and road is not user friendly and potholes for walking path. Bali will be great if like Singapore small island great infrastructure and services.

Thanks Bob


Saturday 17th of February 2024

"Minister Sumadi confirmed that the Offices of the Governor of Bali and the Regent of Badung have guaranteed funds for the rail link."

That is easy to say, but how much will it cost and what is the source of these funds? Have they secured land for the railway network. The Balinese typically ask 10 Juta/m2 rat infested rice field land these days so buying land will be tremendously costly.

When all is included how much will the tickets costs? Will the be any takers or will it be required with massive subsidies to operate as surely the locals will not pay more than 5k or 10k for a one way ticket depending on distance. (ref Jakarta MRT prices).

I ask as it seems to be no money to finish the Gilimanuk-Mengwi tollroad put on hold last year.


Tuesday 20th of February 2024

@Hns, Agree. That is an underestimated factor here, although I see they cut down trees in central Denpasar from time to time (probably due to risk for tree falling onto the car of some dignitaries).


Monday 19th of February 2024

@Exp, what to think about all the holy places and trees on the trajectory. That will give some battle


Saturday 17th of February 2024

The problem is here now with horrendous traffic congestion, and can only get worse. The LRT will be years away and maybe convenient for some but will not stop people preferring their motorbike and car point to point. Tourists arriving at a station with luggage will still need transport to get to their villa or hotel. The funds available need to be spent on traffic easing schemes now. The Metro Dewata buses which have been travelling around even during the pandemic are an example of a waste of resources, because hardly anyone uses them , it seems public transport is not popular with the Balinese.