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Located 20 km off Singapore’s south coast, Batam is the largest city in Riau Islands Province, Indonesia. It is the third most-populated city in Sumatera after Medan and Palembang.
Tourism has a strong impact towards Batam economic development. In 2010, for example, local government worked together with several hotels, resorts and tourism objects to initiate a program called “Visit Batam 2010-Experience it” as a way to promote local tourism. As a result, this city welcomed more than 1 million international tourists.
For those who love shopping, Batam is a perfect destination for you. This city is commonly known to own many imported goods such as low to premium fashion as well as technology products. If you are a tech enthusiast, you can easily find various smartphones, cameras and laptops sold in all price ranges.
The native inhabitants of Batam are the Malays (Malay People, Melayu), an ethnic group that is also known as “Orang Selat” (literally “Strait People”). It is predicted that these people have lived in Batam since 231 AC.
In the 14th century, Batam was ruled under the power of the Temasek Empire or what is now known as Singapore. Years after that, power to rule Batam shifted to the hands of Malay kingdom of Riau before it united with Indonesia.
As a city once ruled by Singapore, the local government planned to build Batam as an industrial city or the “Singapore of Indonesia” after the colonial era. Since then, this city has become the base for imported goods, logistics, natural resources such as crude oil and many more.
There are several ways to reach Batam:
By plane, you will land at Hang Nadim International Airport (BTH).
Taxi is one of the transportations that you can take from the airport. Several taxis at the airport are: Jala Taxi, Koptiba, Citra Wahara, Union Taxi, Barelang Express, Taxi, Pinky Taxi, Barelang Taxi, Sea Port Taxi.
Batam has six different ports that connect Singapore and Johor, Malaysia.
It is also possible to reach Batam from different cities in Riau Islands, Bintan Islands and Sumatera.
With four-wheel vehicles, Batam is only reachable if you drive across the Barelang Bridge from either Rempang or Galang (southeast of Batam Islands).
Whether it is a holiday or business trip, make sure you visit these tourist attractions:
Located in the city center, Nagoya is Batam’s most recommended tourist attraction when it comes to budget shopping.
At Nagoya, tourists come to buy fashion and technology products. Though many are sold cheaper than in other shopping areas in Batam, those of high quality are also available. Just make sure you know which one is original so you won’t get fooled.
Looking for a spot to witness the great city view of Batam? Visit Coastarina and hop into one of the gondolas of the giant wheel. Don’t miss out the other fun rides at the theme park, such as children waterbom and floating karaoke.
If you like water sport, go for a fun and wet ride on the banana boat.
Located nearby the beach, this area is also perfect to catch the beautiful sunrise and sunset. From the airport, you can reach Coastarina in 15 minutes by taxi.
As Batam’s landmark, the uniqueness of this bridge is that it consists of six bridges connecting various small islands in Batam. What also differs Barelang Bridge from other regular intercity bridges is that it has a parking lot and a restaurant underneath.
From these six bridges, the biggest one connects Batam and Tonton Island.
(Prices are subject to change).