Batam Tourism Information
Just a stone-throw and a ferry ride away from Singapore and Malaysia, Batam Island is the most favorite getaway trip for those who want to enjoy a true island life. Batam might be a small island but it offers some pristine beaches together with great food choices that’ll make you crave for more! As the largest city in the Province of Riau, Batam is an industrial boomtown, an emerging transport hub, which has become increasingly popular with local and international tourism.
The appeal of the city is growing, however, you might find there is limited tourism options in Batam, most of the highlights lay out of the city. So consider taking a tour or renting a car to be able to see more. Batam itself is quite a relaxing destination, with many shopping malls and massage centres. One if the best activities to do in the city!
The climate in Batam is a tropical monsoon climate, which is hot and humid with year-round rainfall. There is little fluctuation in temperature throughout the year: in summer (June to September) temperatures average around 29°C, while winter (December to February) has an average of 27°C.
The wet season officially runs from November to June, while July to September is the driest.
Because of the proximity of Singapore, it's a visited year round destination, but probably for a slight less crowded experience and less humidity, it is considered the best time to visit from December to February.
Because of its location, close to Singapore. Many visitors, choose to visit Batam by ferry. There are frequent daily fast and convenient ferries connecting Singapore's Harbourfront or Tanah Merah Port with Batam as well as between Johor Bahru, Malaysia, and Batam. The journey from Singapore takes about 55 minutes, while from Johor Bahru it is around 90 minutes. The island of Batam has six ferry terminals; they are at Sekupang, Waterfront City, Batam Center, Harbour Bay, Nongsapura, and Telaga Punggur. Once you arrive to the ferry ports, some are in good walking distance to the city centre.
The most popular ferry is Batamfast from Harbourfront to Batam city centre. The round trip costs $49 (SGD).
You can also reach Batam by air, there are direct domestic flights from Jakarta, Surabaya, Medan, Pekanbaru, Jambi, Palembang, and Pekanbaru to Batam Hang Nadim International Airport. Among the Airlines that serve flights, to-and-from Batam is Garuda Indonesia, Lion Air, Sriwijaya Air, Citilink, Wings Air and Malindo Air.
In Batam itself, there is not a big public transport infrastructure. There are public busses, which have limited stops and cost around 4.000 Rps per trip. Most of the locals travel by taxi or bikes. Bikes which act like taxis, are called Ojek, there are online ojek service (application based) available in Batam, they are Gojek and Wakjek from your mobile device. For normal taxis you can use Maxim APP (like Uber) for travelling around to your destinations.
❗Attention: In Batam, as well as all Indonesia there is a limitation on where you can use APP based taxis and normal ones. The normal taxis must be taken to/from Hotels, Airports, ports and Malls. Where as the APP based taxis can be taken from all other locations. This is imposed by law, which means drivers could get fined if found taking travellers from the wrong destinations. Unfortunately it means that tourists need to get the normal taxis on most trips.
You can always ask your hotel/accomodation for more info or for them to arrange a pick up for you.
✔️Tip: If you want to travel around the island and Batam, the best idea is to arrange tours, which are the best cost effective way to see more places and have a local guide to show you around. However, note the tours operate per number of tourists, so the bigger the groups, the more economical.
But if you go alone, they would ask you to pay a price of 4 other people! So try to get other travellers to join you in the booking! Alternatively, arranging a private taxi to take you around is also a good option.
Batam is a relaxing destination, which offers visitors pristine nature and beautiful beaches. Apart from the fine golf courses that attract golf enthusiast, Batam also attracts water sports enthusiast with the many sports club and resorts along the Nongsa Coast and Waterfront City.
Some of the Iconic Landmarks in Batam are its bridges, six sophisticated full swing bridges that connects three islands is an abbreviation of three islands: Batam, Rempang and Galang. The total stretch of all six bridges is around two kilometers, and traveling from the first bridge to the last one should take around 20 minutes.
Other things to see whilst in Batam, are some historical religious sites in the city center. (Nagoya). The Buddhist Temple near the Nagoya City Centre, is VIhara Buddhi Bakti Temple. The temple features astonishing modern Chinese architecture with its most attractive spot known as the sacred garden.
The city centre of Batam, is known as Nagoya, it is located at Sudirman and Yos Sudarso Streets. It is easy to find restaurants selling fast food, Chinese food, Peking duck, steak, and pizza. Visitors can buy various items including electronics, clothing and food in this area. You can enjoy walking in the streets with plenty of food and shopping without having to worry about the heat or rain because these streets have an integrated city walk similar to those in Singapore. The city walk area is located in the mall, but it is designed with wide spaces to look like a “mini city”. In this area, you can also enjoy live music.
Penyengat Island, is perfect for a day trip from Batam. It is not that big, which is easy for walking around in two hours. You can combine, spending the afternoon sunbathing, swimming and even see the spectacular sunset. One point of interest on the island is the local mosque called Masjid Kuning (Yellow Mosque) and legend has it that eggshells were used in its construction to make the walls stronger. The island is also a great place if you want to get a glimpse of how locals live in the less touristy parts of Batam.
Batam is well known for having cheap alcohol particularly compared to neighboring Singapore. It is also one of the liveliest parts of Indonesia if you are looking for an exciting nightlife scene. The main area for bars and clubs is known as the Nagoya Entertainment District or just ‘NED’ and you can easily spend a night on the town here enjoying the local Indonesian beer Bintang or having a cocktail. Venues range from low-key lounges where you can get a drink before dinner to larger nightclubs where you can dance the night away!
If you like shopping, you should visit the shopping complex at Nagoya Super Block in Batam. It offers all kind of products in several modern shopping malls. In this pedestrian area, there are 450 kiosks and 170 shops with a Hypermarket on Nagoya Hill.
When staying in Batam, it's important to select correctly the location you will stay, since the limited transport can make walking more a sacrifice with the high temperatures and humidity. There are two main areas where to stay, the real centre of Batam is named as Nagoya, this is more the commercial and active side of the city. There are more hotels here from basic to top range and hostels of all kinds, suited for all budgets. Transport in this area is good and its nearby to the Harbour Bay port terminal.It can be a little noisy at night however. Normal and budget Hotels can cost from €30 per room.
The other area, is called Batam Centre, which might sound confusing, but it's actually the older part of the city where most government buildings are located, the Welcome to batam sign, the Batam Centre port terminal and the Alun Alun Batam Centre mosque. The area is significantly cheaper and hotels can be more varied and not part of the chain brands. Transport is more limited here however and tours. Normal and budget Hotels can cost from €20 per room.
Batam is not the typical destination in Indonesia. Its appeal is growing however with more tourists coming here for a weekend from Singapore and take advantage of the cheaper massage services which are very popular. To see the city and some of the highlights in a day by tour is more than enough.
Therefore it's more of a relaxing destination and for shopping. A short weekend or 2 nights would be enough to see Batam.
Batam Photo Slide 📷