The duration of the flight to Timor-Leste from US cities will depend on the city of origin as well as any stopovers. Flights from San Francisco (SFO) typically average 55h 30m flight time, while flights out of New York (JFK) have an average duration of 60h. Flights are limited to a few major airlines with established routes so there shouldn’t be significant route changes or last-minute delays on most flights.
There are no airlines offering direct flights from the US to Timor-Leste. New York, Dallas, Los Angeles, and San Francisco all offer indirect service with a destination of Timor-Leste’s Dili Airport. Airlines that fly to Dili include Qantas, SilkAir, and AIRNORTH. Most flights require at least two stops, although some will have three. Look for Timor-Leste flight deals to get the most reasonable fares on the shortest flights to East Timor from the US.
Timor-Leste offers a lot to see and do, and the best option for tourists is to hire a driver to have the best experience. A driver can ensure that you stay on the right routes and you can learn a lot from a knowledgeable local, too. Some roads aren’t in as good of condition, and some access requires 4WD. All car rental services can arrange a driver for you, so don’t be afraid to ask. Motorcycles and 4WD vehicles are also available to rent. Buses are available on the main routes between Dili and Maliana, Lospalos, Suai, and via Baucau, and most will leave very early, once they’re filled. Schedules and routes are erratic. Atauro Island requires rickshaws and 4WD vehicles. Taxis are available in Dili during daytime hours, but yellow taxes need to have fares negotiated before traveling. Because of the terrain, Timor-Leste is also easier to navigate via internal domestic flights, although these can be more expensive than public transport.
Dili, the largest city in East Timor, offers plenty of beaches, fresh seafood, textile shops, local markets, and water activities. Whale watching and scuba diving are popular, with the area being home to corals, reef sharks, blue moray eels, and other sea life. Cristo Rei, the 27-meter statue of Jesus Christ that overlooks Dili, is a reference point for locals and worth a closer look. Bacau, Jaco Island, and Suai offer a lot of culture and different attractions. Mount Ramelau, the Marobo Hot Springs, and Nino Konis National Park are all must-see outdoor adventures of their own. If you want the best beach, check out the Jesus Backside Beach in Dili.
Timor-Leste requires all US travelers to carry a passport that is valid for at least six months past their arrival date. Those who fly to Timor-Leste will also be required to purchase a 30-day tourist visa for a charge of USD $30. Those who apply for a visa in advance may be able to have stays granted for up to 90 days. Additionally, passengers traveling to Timor-Leste will need to arrive via Singapore, Australia, Bali, Indonesia, or Darwin, so those who may be deplaning should check passthrough customs requirements for all legs of their journey.