Batam Island, the second most frequented vacation destination in Indonesia, is a small island city forming part of the Riau Archipelago in Sumatra. From a virtually unknown island, the Batam Island has developed into one of the most exciting places you can visit in Indonesia. In fact, it has seen such a lot of growing businesses over the last years that most travelers in Indonesia now prefer it to other parts of the country. It is possible to reach the island either by land or by air, and it being small, getting around Batam Island is easy.
While it is true that, except for taxi cabs and metro buses, there aren’t a lot of options as far as public transportation is concerned, you’ll find that getting around Batam Island costs very little even so. Below is a practical transportation guide you’ll find very useful when you’re ready to go sight-seeing in the island.
Getting around Batam Island on land is possible through public taxi cabs, private car rentals, private coaches and the public local buses.
Taxi cabs can be found everywhere. You’ll find taxi stands in major shopping centers, entertainment districts, tourist attractions, ferry terminals and the airport. Taxis in Batam, however, do not have meters and so you might have to haggle for the price of a trip. At the very least, you should make sure you and the driver agree on a price before you ride the cab. Alternately, you can hire a taxi for short trips and contract with a driver for half or full day tours.
Private car rentals are available in the island. There are many rental companies offering different kinds of vehicles that come with a driver. The advantage of getting your own driver is that they’ll also serve as your city guide. The drivers are usually locals who know the island and can advise you on the best routes to take and many others.
Of course, if you prefer to drive yourself, you can also rent a car without a driver. However, you will need a valid driver’s license in your country and one that is appropriate for the type of vehicle that you plan to drive.
Aside from the usual package tours you’ll find being offered in the city where you’ll be riding private coaches, minibuses and private buses, there are also public buses available for the commuting public. Take note of the local buses as well. Local buses run throughout the city via different routes. Like taxis, they can be stopped anywhere on the street. Inquire with your hotel about which bus to take for any particular tourist attraction you want to visit.
Getting around Batam Island by boat is possible through the many ferries traveling to and from the island.
- Bintan. If you want to go to Bintan, head on to Telaga Punggur about 30 kilometers South-East of Nagoya. There you’ll find is the main port for speedboats going to Bintan. You can also ride a speedboat to Tanjung Pinang, Bintan and to Lagoi Resort area in Bintan. Speedboats run daily three times a day, which makes getting around Batam Island really easy.