October 29, 2017

Batam, Indonesia

Indonesia was not in my plan when I booked Singapore and Kuala Lumpur flight in the Travel Fair. My kumareng Juliet, Vanj and Honey though recommended we visit the place since it's just an hour away (via ferry)  in Singapore.

Thru the help of Pareng Rey, we were able to book online for the ferry ride.  Our departure time from Singapore was 12:30pm and 7pm return from Indonesia to Singapore.

We were hoping to see some beaches and mosques in Batam, Indonesia unfortunately the taxi driver said it's far and the traffic is terrible that we might miss our ride back to Singapore. The only attraction we saw was Barelang Bridge.  The Philippines has more and better bridges but this Bridge is important to Indonesians because it is a chain of 6 bridges of various types that connect the islands of Batam, Rempang, and Galang, Riau Islands built in 1997. Barelang also refers to the islands themselves, which are all administratively part of the municipality of Batam. The smaller islands of Tonton, Nipah, and Setotok (considered parts of the Batam island group) connect Batam and Rempang. The entire Barelang region covers 715 km.

We only stayed in Barelang Bridge for 5 minutes. Drove 45 minutes to the nearest Nagoya Mall, where we spent most of our time shopping for pasalubong.

Do I recommend this place? I say no if you will be there for just a day or 5 hours just like we did. We find DIY-ing trip at Batam, Indonesia difficult because we actually didn't know what to do there. We also had difficulty talkin to the taxi drive/tour guide because he knows "small English only".

I've talked to some of the fellow Filipinos who joined the group tour, they did not enjoy the tour as they were mostly brought in shopping malls.

On the other hand, my friends Juliet, Vanj and Honey recommends staying in one of the hotels for a day or two.

I believe there's plenty of things to discover in Indonesia given ample time and a good tour guide. We missed eating theirlocal food instead opted for Wendy's, J.Co and Baskin Robbins.

There are numerous ferry crossings operating from Singapore to Batam via Harbourfront. It takes an hour ferry ride from SG to Batam, Indonesia.

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