Dili is on the northern side of East Timor, a small island country between Australia and Indonesia. Dili’s sheltered coast fronts the islands of Atauro and Palau Liran in the Banda Sea. Having a warm climate most time of the year makes Dili City an ideal tropical getaway for the beach loving Australians. Having been a colony of Portugal from the 16th century until 1975, East Timor’s culture reflects the colonizer’s influences as well as Indonesian practices, with strong evidence of Austronesian. The waters surrounding the island give the country a laid-back atmosphere as the natural resources are abundant all year long.
Being the capital city, it is where the international airport is located. The fair is quite high as there only a few airlines that operates in East Timor. Travellers can pre-book with car rental companies which might save one a lot of headache when dealing with airport cab drivers. Some tourists prefer to walk out to the main road and wait for a bus. There are some private yachts and cargo ships that cross the Timor Sea from Darwin City in Australia to Dili Seaport but the sea journey may take 6 days and these ships are not regular. East Timor require a visa which can be obtained upon arrival at Dili Airport or Seaport for a fee of $30.
Backpackers would immediately find a way to Indonesia which is very possible by bus. Bus terminals are designated whether one is going east or west of East Timor. Bus fees range from $3 to $10 , depending on the distance. Taxis should also cost around $3 in when getting around the small city of Dili. While hiring a private vehicle can cost $85 – $120 in a day. Renting a motorcycle that costs $25 – $35 per day is the cheapest alternative to get around Dili. When wanting to get to neighboring islands, there are numerous boats for hire.
The official languages in East Timor are Tetum and Portuguese, although Indonesian is widely spoken too. The locals’ English is quite limited so be prepared on the communication aspect. Portuguese cuisine is usually what’s serving in the eateries. The best time to be in Dili is from June to October. The wet season is in November to May with an average temperature of 30°. Dili bears the identity of being a colonial core and is therefore home to historic Catholic churches and monuments.