Batam is typically known as an industrial boomtown, a transport hub, and part of a free trade zone in the Indonesia–Malaysia–Singapore Growth Triangle. For residents of Malaysia and Singapore, Batam is a short weekend getaway from hustle and bustle of city lives. From having yourself pampered at spas to exciting water sports experiences, you could explore and enjoy what Batam island has to offer. Here is the ultimate checklist of things to do in Batam and places to explore for your next halal trip to Batam Island:
Getting yourself away from your busy daily life activities or boredom of staying home for too long, staying at one of the finest Batam resorts and Batam hotels may just be the perfect plan for you. You can immerse yourself in the relaxing atmosphere of the resorts and do various activities offered by the management inside the resorts. You can choose to stay in luxurious one to five-bedroom villas (with private pools) at Montigo Resort Nongsa where you can enjoy a relaxing spa experience and various outdoor activities such as water sports, paintball, archery, bike rental, etc.; or you might want to opt for a more scenic Harris Resort Barelang Batam which is located by the sea and near to Batam Landmark - Barelang Bridge.
Image Credit: Ranoh Island
Yes, you read that right, there is a glamping site in Batam! Located near Abang Island – a famous snorkeling spot, Ranoh Island is just a 4-hour (including all ferry and boat transfers as well as customs in Batam) journey from Singapore. It provides you with not only luxurious tents with a bonfire, barbeque set, and minibar; but also hammocks and bean bags at the beach for you to enjoy the ultimate beach experience. There you can do some snorkeling, kayaking, banana boat riding, and more.
Batam is a great gateway for you to watersports. Other than the usual watersports activities at any other tourist destination, such as jet-skiing, banana boats, canoeing, and kayaking, you can have different unique experiences like going to sea forest adventures to kneeboarding, mangrove cruise, and giant water slide which is a playground floating in the middle of the sea. The watersports activities can not just be found at Ranoh Island but can also be found at multiple resorts around the island.
If you like to go snorkeling or want to try scuba diving, Batam is the perfect place for you (you can get the PADI scuba diving license here for cheap!). You can go to famous snorkeling and diving spots like Abang Island, Hantu Island, Petong Island, and Labun Island to explore the beauty of the underwater world.
Batam is also famous for its golf courses that Singaporeans like to take a day trip just to play golf. If you like golfing, you might want to go to golf courses like Palm Springs Golf & Beach Resort or Sukajadi Golf Course.
Image Credit: Lina Sasmita
Get some adrenaline-pumping action and have fun with your friends with some laps around the go-kart track. Batam Dirt Karting is the first dirt (off-road) rally stage go-kart which will give you an exciting unique experience drifting go-kart off-road. Channel your inner Petter Solberg as it’s almost like a mini version of rallycross!
Image Credit: AllAboutCity-Batam
If you are a person who likes to hunt for instagrammable spots, you can visit Taman Wisata Habibie 1000 Tangga. The recreational place was built to pay homage to the residence of the former Indonesian President BJ Habibie (the third president of Indonesia). There you must climb 1,000 steps in order to reach the different gorgeous spots in this spacious location dominated by lush greenery, including a cliffside beach and viewpoint overlooking the skyscrapers of Singapore and also a rustic and instagrammable treehouse.
Batam is famous among Singaporeans for its deliciously fresh seafood which are priced much lower than Singapore. A wide array of seafood cuisines like salted egg crabs, mussels, fried calamari, fresh oysters, barbecued fish, large tasty prawns, and so on are for you to be selected in the most famous seafood restaurants such as Golden Prawn Restaurant, Harbour Bay Seafood Restaurant, Sei Enam Seafood Restaurant, Rezeki Seafood Restaurant, and Kopak Jaya 007 Kelong Seafood Restaurant. They even sometimes have live music to accompany you enjoying the beautiful sea views while you are having your meal.
Some of the local delicacies that you must try in Batam are Sop Ikan Batam (Batam Fish Soup), and Mie Lendir Berkuah Kacang (boiled noodle with peanut sauce). Also in Belakang Padang Island (15 minutes by wooden boat from Batam – the island is so close to Singapore that when the weather is good, you can vaguely see Singapore's Marina Bay Sands from the distance), you can try a popular breakfast for the locals: Plain Prata (fried bread) with Gulai (thick curry) soup, accompanied with a cup of coffee or Tarik Tea (milk tea).
During your halal trip, it would become a very nice experience to visit and pray at some of the iconic mosques in Batam, such as Jabal Arafah mosque, Yellow Mosque (Masjid Kuning), Muhammad Cheng Hoo Mosque, and Batam Grand Mosque.
Jabal Arafah Mosque is a contemporary modern mosque located in Lubuk Baja Business Center. It is equipped with a café, library, garden, and more.
Yellow Mosque located in Penyengat Island is considered unique since legend tells that eggshells were used in its construction to make the walls stronger.
Meanwhile, Muhammad Cheng Hoo Mosque has an oriental Chinese-like architecture and was built to commemorate the famous Chinese-Muslim explorer of Ming Dynasty of China.
Batam Grand Mosque is the biggest grande mosque in Batam built upon 4 hectares of land and covering an area of 57,114 square meters which can accommodate up to 2,500 worshippers.
Nothing is more relaxing than getting yourself pampered to rejuvenate your whole body, mind, and soul at one of the finest spas in Batam. You may choose to visit the ones at Nagoya Hill shopping district (perfect post-shopping spree activity) or you can also visit Xoleil Spa Village for a calmer and more tranquil ambiance. This spa resort is facilitated with 12 spa rooms, boutique gym, salon, co-working space, hydroponic garden, organic farm, and treehouse. There you also can try their cooking school, eat at their farm-to-table café or pizza courtyard before taking a dip in their expansive swimming pool or salt-dipping pool, or just relax in their stone onsen.
Image Credit: MoonBay Kelong on Facebook
If you would like to have some tech detox or kick back and unwind to focus on life’s simple joys, you might want to go fishing and stay at Moon Bay Kelong. A kelong is a form of an offshore platform built predominantly with wood, which can be found in waters, especially for fishing purposes. There you can try fishing at the Kelong itself or if prior arrangements have been made, you can rent a boat to go further out for a better fishing experience. You just have to pass your catch of the day to the Padang chef on-site and they will whip up a delicious seafood feast for your next meal.
As you can see there are various places you could explore and exciting activities you can do on Batam Island for your perfect Batam getaway. We hope this checklist will give you more insights on Batam so that you can plan for your upcoming Batam trip.