Aussie tourist shares terrifying experience during holiday: 'It was very scary'

As the Australian winter comes in, many Aussies dream of a warm, tropical getaway.

Bali's sun-soaked beaches and vibrant culture are favourites among travellers.

However, a recent spike in dengue cases in Indonesia cast a shadow over the upcoming tourist season and prompted a health warning for those planning to visit the region.

Marley, a 24-year-old Sydney native, came home with a harrowing tale reminding everyone of the risks of travelling overseas.

Her ordeal began with an adventure to Gili Trawangan, which quickly turned into a 'scary' health experience that saw her hospitalised for eight days.

'I had a lot of body aches; my joints were really sore, which was weird. And then I was sweating but cold, which was crazy,' Marley recounted.

The WA Health Department issued warnings for tourists after recording 138 cases of Dengue. Image Credit: Pexels/Szabolcs Toth

The diagnosis was dengue fever, a virus transmitted by mosquitoes she contracted from a single bite.

As she faced severe symptoms, Marley was transferred from Gili Trawangan to a Bali hospital—which she initially refused due to her insurance company's lack of response.

'The doctors organised an ambulance boat to get me there, and then I got in an ambulance to get to the hospital...the sickness came a lot in waves, the fever and chills,' she shared.

'It was very scary. I have never been in an ambulance or anything before. I haven't had any health problems when I've been overseas.'

Marley faced 'feral' symptoms like dehydration and a low white blood cell count, which led to bleeding gums and bloodshot eyes.

Dengue fever, for which there is no specific treatment, often requires hospitalisation to manage dehydration through IV drips and to allow the body to rest until the fever subsides.

Despite having received a vaccine before her travels, Marley's experience underscores the importance of prevention.

'Be vigilant with your mozzie repellent; wear a lot of bug spray. I didn't use it, which was so s*****,' she admitted.

'Wearing long, flowy clothes and avoiding stagnant bodies of water helps too. There's always heaps of mosquitos out.'

She concluded her story by saying, 'I wouldn't wish dengue on any person ever.'

In a previous story, Indonesia reported over 60,000 cases of dengue fever in 2024.

The WA Health Department has warned travellers after 138 cases recorded in the state this year were acquired in Indonesia.

While most people experience mild or no symptoms, one in 20 patients develop severe dengue, which can lead to shock, internal bleeding, and even death.

Marley's story is a stark reminder of the risks of travelling.

It's a call to action for all of us to take the necessary precautions to protect ourselves from diseases.

As we pack our bags for our next adventure, let's include a strong insect repellent, appropriate clothing, and a heightened awareness of our health and surroundings.
Key Takeaways

  • Aussies were warned about a surge in dengue fever cases in Indonesia.
  • A Sydney woman shared her experience after she contracted the disease in Gili Trawangan, which required hospitalisation and a medical transfer.
  • There is no specific treatment for dengue fever, but those affected often need hospital monitoring and support for severe dehydration.
  • Travellers were advised to take preventative measures such as insect repellent and protective clothing to guard against mosquito bites.
Have you faced any health-related issues during your travels? Share your experiences with us in the comments below.
People should always be aware of, and take precautions against, mosquitos when travelling to tropical or subtropical climates.
I have been going to Bali over the last 40 years, never had a problem with anything health wise.
Common sense I would have thought.
There are four different strains of dengue fever and you can only get the vaccine if you have had dengue, so if you caught one strain it’s still possible to get one of the other variants. So I can’t see how she states she was vaccinated. It’s advised by doctors to get vaccinated for typhoid when traveling to Bali.

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