Bintan, Indonesia

July 9, 2001

 Our Travel Experience

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Tourist Info


Our Travel Experience

We decided early on that we'd spent a full three weeks in Singapore instead of jetting off to Bali or Dubai. Therefore, Tara really wanted, at the least, to take a quick ferry ride over to the Indonesian island of Bintan. She'd heard a lot about Bintan from friends who had lived in Singapore and wanted to visit herself. Plus we'd never been to Indonesia, so a new passport stamp is always fun to receive!

We delayed going to Bintan until the very last opportunity and thus decided to just go for the day instead of also spending the night. Tara had a great day but Seth was too hot to enjoy himself.

- No waiting at the ferry terminal when you arrive 31 minutes before departure!
- Changed S$50
- Ferry windows dirty and wet. TV to watch.
- Disembarked, got passport stamp, joked about just turning around and going home
- Hotel and resort representatives lined the small arrivals area
- Asked about spending the day at Mayang Sari resort (recommended by Kristen). Were directed to the bus.
- Friendly people.
- Everyone else on the bus got out at Nirwana Gardens big hotel. Us and another couple only for Mayang Sari
- After a quick beach exploration (jellyfish washed up) to find many small shells; settled into the restaurant
- Good view from restaurant over the beach
- Nice, WHITE sand, swaying palms, small one-story huts facing the beach, a bit of a breeze
- Ordered chicken satay + banana fritter with ice cream desert (+ needed more ice cream)
- Read our books. Tara = Second Summoning. Seth = another Tanya Huff book
- After lunch, found out time for the bus to shopping area. Had an hour + 15 mins to wait
- Saw sign for elephant rides, but only in the AM and evening
- Went to beach. Tara explored for shells while Seth sat under a canopy at the hotel bar listening to Air Supply (you're all out of love) + construction noise. The noise reminded us of Le Tousserok!
- Tara walked the whole length of the beach, plus climbed over some rocks to go to a less-used beach.
- Two little girls helped Tara pick up shells in the less-used beach area. They were very friendly. They spoke no English except "What is your name?"
- Seth was feeling REALLY HOT when Tara came back & Tara also after her walk in the sun for 45 minutes was also feeling hot.
- After just a bit more reading, we took the bus to the shopping area.
- It was deserted
- Cute, but deserted.
- We looked into every touristy/souvenier shop and only bought three Batik cards to send to friends.
- Guinea pig outside in the yard with the two chickens
- Display on Bintan in "air-conditioned comfort"
- Heard from the bus/taxi ticker seller how the guinea pig's "husband" had recently died due to rat poison. He was very friendly, but not the best conversationalist in English.
- A bit more shopping and then it was time to take a taxi to the ferry terminal
- The friendly bus/taxi ticket seller gave us a few Indonesian coins when we asked him if there were any local coins.
- At the ferry terminal Dismay over a full ferry. Tara asked if there was a waiting list and there was. Seth just said "I want out and I want out now". We had to wait 1/2 hour to see if we could board or not.
- Thankfully, we got seats and settled into air conditioned comfort for the ride home.

Category Rating Comments
Overall Experience 8.5 8.5 is according to Tara. Seth won't say just how low he rated the day. 
Ease of Journey 8 Tara was especially impressed with how efficiently the Resort was run on the Bintan side because free busses were lined up outside the ferry terminal when we arrived. We were disappointed that the 5:30pm ferry was full, but we asked to be put on the waiting list and in the end we received boarding passes 15 minutes before departure.
Accommodation  - 
Activities 6 We didn't do much. We had a long lunch at Mayang Sari resort. Then Seth sat under an umbrella at the beachside bar while Tara walked along the beach collecting shells.We then went to a very deserted, purpose built tourist area before catching the return ferry to Singaore.
Coolness 7 Glad we went and would gladly return if we ever wanted a cheap, nice beach escape from Singapore.  
Tourist Info

Singapore to Bintan Resorts on the 11:05am ferry
Bintan Resorts to Singapore on the 5:30pm ferry