Singapore to Indonesia: Travelling by Sea to the Beautiful Islands of the Riau Archipelago

Singapore, certainly one of Asia’s busiest metropolises, is just a stone’s dispose of from the soothing islands of neighboring Indonesia, and greater than a few travellers combine their visit to the town with a brief holiday in one of these small paradises.

This information will teach you how traveling by sea from Singapore to Indonesia.

The tropical resort islands of the Riau Archipelago are well attached to Singapore by regular ferry services, which depart from both HarbourFront Passenger Terminal and Tanah Merah Ferry Terminal, on the way to the hawaiian islands of Bintan, Batam, Karimun (Tanjung Balai) and Tanjung Batu.

Bintan, the biggest of the 3,200 islands in the Riau Archipelago, lies less than 40 kilometers from Singapore and boasts some lush tropical forests and beautiful white beaches. Despite of its relatively large size, Bintan is not too populated, meaning the pristine coastline is good enough to support the island’s popular holiday resorts, leaving room enough for nature.

The amazing thing about Bintan is it is practically split into two sections which have almost nothing in common: The island’s northern part, called Bintan Resorts (Lagoi), was leased to Singapore by the Indonesian government and is nearly a de-facto colony of Singapore, packed with expensive resorts, with well-groomed lawns, golf courses and watersport facilities, while the southern 1 / 2 of the island is more of a “real” Indonesian border town, with fishing villages, authentic markets, prostitutes and some low-key beaches.

Several daily ferries run between Singapore’s Tanah Merah Ferry Terminal and Bintan island’s largest town, Tanjung Pinang (which can be the capital of the Indonesian province of Riau Islands). Ferries also happen to be the ferry terminal at Bandar Bentan Telani (Teluk Sebong), which serves the location of Bintan Resorts. Whatever the case, the journey from Singapore takes around one hour or less.

Bintan Resort Ferries operates several daily services to Bandar Bentan Telani, in addition to to the small island of Pulau Lobam (off the shore of Bintan).

Indo Falcon Shipping, Penguin Ferry Services and Berlian Ferries run regular services between Singapore and the town of Tanjung Pinang.

Batam, west of Bintan, is just a densely populated island, and a Free Trade Zone with electronics factories, a big and growing ship repair industry and a straight larger oil service sector.

As far as tourism is worried, Batam has much less to supply in the way of beautiful nature sceneries and unspoilt beaches than its larger neighbor, Bintan. Tourists flock within droves from nearby Singapore and are mostly enthusiastic about prostitution, massage centres, bustling nightlife and illegal casinos. If you have a particular curiosity about some of these (or unless you intend to use Batam as a gate way to visit the archipelago’s other islands), you’re better off going elsewhere.

Many ferries ply the water between Singapore and Things to do in Batam They depart from both HarbourFront Passenger Terminal (Singapore Cruise Centre, adjacent to MRT-Harbour Front) and Tanah Merah Ferry Terminal, and serve different terminals throughout the island:

Harbor Bay is the main international ferry port for anyone heading for the island’s biggest town, Nagoya (serviced by Penguin Ferry Services and Berlian Ferries).

Batam Center Ferry Terminal has probably the most frequent ferry connections to/from Singapore and Johor Bahru (BatamFast and Penguin Ferry Services).

Sekupang is the better area for people who wish to catch a domestic link with Sumatra and the Karimun Islands (BatamFast, Penguin Ferry Services and Pacific Ferry).

Waterfront City (Teluk Senimba) and Nongsapura mostly serve the adjacent resorts and are, therefore, ideal for holidaymakers (BatamFast and Indo Falcon Shipping).
Karimun, the westernmost of the Riau Archipelago, is just a small island just off the east coast of Sumatra, guarding the southern entrance to the Straits of Malacca. It lies west of Batam and to the southwest of Singapore and is surrounded by several small islands that carry exactly the same name (The Karimun Islands).

Its “capital” city, Tanjung Balai, is just a bustling port town around 125,000 people with plenty of commerce, boosted by tourists from Singapore and Malaysia.

Indo Falcon Shipping and Penguin Ferry Services both operate regular ferry services between Singapore’s HarbourFront Passenger Terminal and the town of Tanjung Balai.

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