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Batam

3.9 /5 37 votes

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Best Time: February - August Read More

Ideal duration: 3-5 days

Nearest Airport: Batam Check Flights

"An adventure-filled retreat."

Batam Tourism

Located just off the eastern coast of Sumatra, nuzzled up against the Singaporean coast, Batam is one of the most picturesque islands in the Riau Archipelago, and also one of the most modernised areas in Indonesia. Its proximity to Singapore also makes it one of the most visited weekend getaway destination for residents from the island nation that are looking for a retreat, and some fresh ocean air. Batam consists of three principal islands, Batam, Rempang, Galang, and a smattering of other smaller islands. 

Batam is one of Indonesia's most scenic regions, replete with beautiful vistas, lush forested coasts, sprawling resorts and golf courses, large malls, and some great opportunities for adventure. It is the perfect tourist destination, filled with places for recreation, beautiful scenery and great, cheap food and drink.

Batam is most famous for its beaches and water-themed adventure sports, and of course, its large immaculately maintained golf courses. It also is home to the largest Buddhist temple in South-East Asia and has perfect bike and hike trails along its northern coast. Thus, Batam is an all-rounded experience for any tourist.

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Currency in Batam

IDR is the official currency of Batam, but Singapore Dollars (SGD) are used and accepted almost everywhere. SGD and IDR are used interchangeably at various places in Batam.

Shopping in Batam

Nagoya is the nerve-centre of all shopping, with a large number of malls. Other souvenirs can be bought near the Barelang bridge and the Buddhist temple. Commodities may be priced higher because Batam is so tourist-oriented.

Nightlife in Batam

The nightlife in Batam is primarily centred around Nagoya, with bars, clubs, arcades, karaoke bars and the occasional strip club. The drinks are cheap, but hotel bars are slightly more expensive.

Language of Batam

Indonesian is the main language of the area, with Malay, Javanese and Hokkien Chinese also frequently used. English and German are also important languages, mainly used by European or American expats.

Exchanging Money in Batam

The best places to exchange money is at the airport, and at large hotels and commercial banks. ATMs accept cards from all around the world.

Daily Budget for Batam

Excluding accommodation, travellers on a shoestring budget should not need more than about IDR 15-20,000 per day, and travellers on moderate expenses can operate on IDR 30-35,000, while travellers with more relaxed budgets may spend any amount more than IDR 40,000.

Religion of Batam

Most of the island is Muslim, with other religions including Protestantism, Buddhism and Hinduism. It is also home to the largest Buddhist temple in South Asia.

Batam Customs

There are no strict dress codes, for the island is primarily a tourist destination, but certain Indonesian customs are respected, like not touching the heads of people or using your left hand for business.

History of Batam

The Chinese settled in Batam as early as 231 A.D, due to its location along the East-West shipping trade routes. Since then, till the 18th and 19th century, it was ruled by various different kingdoms and then colonised by the Dutch. During the Second World War, it was occupied by the Japanese. In the 1970s, it underwent a major transition, with industrial development and the start in tourism. Now, Batam is mainly known for its free trade zone area and various tourism option.

Restaurants and Local Food in Batam

Freshly caught seafood at affordable, even cheap prices is the highlight of all cuisine at Batam, with many varieties of it. Fine dining, cheaper restaurants and fast food outlets are also available. Many types of cuisines are also available primarily Japanese, Chinese and Korean food, with no dearth of vegetarian restaurants. At Nongsa, tourists can eat in a "kelong," a restaurant built over the sea on stilts, which serve varieties of spicy king crab and sambal fish (steamed fish dipped in sambal, a spicy local sauce).
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How To Reach Batam

Batam can be reached either by flight or by ferry, depending on the place.

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