A paradise from bustling cities like Singapore and Jakarta, Belitung Island is a short flight away. Belitung is known as one of the most beautiful islands in Southeast Asia due to its pristine white sand beaches and turquoise sea. A quiet and peaceful island, it is a perfect getaway vacation.
- Getting to Belitung
- Getting around Belitung
- Food in Belitung
- Where to stay in Belitung
- 9 Places to Visit in Belitung
Getting to Belitung
It is easy to get to Belitung. You can choose between plane or even boat. The airport in Belitung is Tanjung Pandan (TJQ). It is a small airport, so be prepared to accept small aircrafts.
From Singapore, you have to do the following:
- Take a ferry to Batam, Indonesia via Batamfast
- From Batam, take a flight to Tanjung Pandan via Wings air, Garuda Indonesia or Sriwijaya Air. Wings air is the fastest, with a 20min stop in Pangkal Pinang.
Return Ticket Price: S$160
Fastest Duration: 2h15min via Wings air.
From Jakarta, you have 11 flights a day.
- Take a flight to Tanjung Pandan via Citilink Indonesia, Sriwijaya Air, Garuda Indonesia, Nam Air or Lion Air.
Return Ticket Price: S$95
Fastest Duration: 1h
From Kuala Lumpur, you have 4 flights daily.
- Take a flight from Kuala Lumpur to Tanjung Pandan via Garuda Indonesia, Silkair or Lion Air. (stopovers in Singapore and/or Jakarta)
Return Ticket Price: S$337
Fastest Duration: 7h50min (with stopover)
Alternatively, you can travel by ferry instead of a plane ride. Ferries leave from Jakarta, Cirebon, Pontianak and Bangka. However, if you are going to Belitung for a getaway, I suggest you take a flight instead. It saves time and you get to enjoy your vacation on the beautiful island.
Getting Around Belitung
There are 2 methods; car or motorbike. For car, you can choose to get a taxi or rent a car. You should only get street taxi in Belitung.
About Street Taxi
Fortunately or unfortunately, the island is rather touristic. Hence, taxis are only meant for tourists. This means that you have to be prepared to pay a higher prices for getting to places. With that being said, however, Street Taxi is the only licensed taxi operator in Belitung. At the airport, there will be many private cabs that seriously overcharge people. Hence, you should only get your cabs from Street Taxi. You can Whatsapp them at +62 822-8301-5555. Tell them your arrival and they will pick you up. You can also contact them anytime you need a taxi and the taxi will arrive promptly. They are the only cab operator that follows a meter payment and hence, not overcharging.
With that being said, the prices are still not “local prices”. It has a level of tourist prices. Also, these taxis are impossible to be found driving around town. Hence, the only way to get them is to call for one. However, when you call for one, there is a minimum charge of 75,000 rupiahs for driving around the city. Getting from destinations within the city costs like 30,000 rupiahs, but you are obliged to pay 75,000 rupiahs. There are also several surcharges when driving to different “zones” of the island. Just be wary of that. I feel like they have really limited cabs (like 3-5 cabs and drivers), so try to book your cabs the day before.
In all, Street Taxi is your safest bet when it comes to cabs in Beliting.
Getting A Car
I would recommend you to hire a car for an entire day if you are interested in doing a little road trip around the island. Check out Day 3 in Belitung for more information. It is cheaper than hiring a cab. I would say that you should use a cab for going to destinations for activities like island hopping and day tour in Leebong Island. Other than that, you should get a car. The car comes with a driver too.
Getting a car is also via Street Taxi.
Street taxi whatsapp: +62 822-8301-5555
Getting a Motorbike
This is a popular option if you are backpacking and would like to explore more. No doubt, a car hire is more comfortable, but a motorbike is more affordable. Hire one and drive to anywhere you want to go.
Getting from the west to east of the island takes about 2h, so it might be a long drive with a motorbike. But there are stops along the way like the azure blue lake and forests.
Boat Hire in Belitung
So we have the land part settled. Now, the sea part. In the past, I heard of travelers taking a cab to the beaches and asking the locals there for a boat hire and negotiating for the prices. Well, street taxi has gotten that covered now. The boat rental prices are from 450,000 rp in low season, which is the lowest you can get.
Again, whatsapp them at: +62 822-8301-5555
You can make your plans with them. Essentially what time you will be there and if you would like to add lunch meals into the package.
The boat hire is worth it, since we had the entire boat to ourselves. Comparing to other tour operators, their boats are filled with tons of people. We could also choose which islands we wanted to visit, and we had the luxury to decide how much time to spend on each island.
Food in Belitung
People will try to sell you dried seafood everywhere you go. You can buy them to try, but do check import requirements of your country when you leave the island.
Since the place is still quite local, there are not many “tourist” options available. Meaning, it is easier to find small shops with extremely local cuisines than the usual more international (and expensive) ones. As Belitung is known for their Mee Goreng, you can be sure to find them everywhere.
These little shops sell fried noodles and fried rice with an assortment of sides to add to your dish. I am not a huge fan of them, as they are cooked in the morning and left in the open till someone orders.
I visited a restaurant, Unique Bistro for the first dinner. They cooked the meals on the spot, but they forgot our orders. Everything took forever to arrive. In general, the food is a lot saltier, sweeter and very oily. I guess that is the preference of the locals, but I did not enjoy it a lot. In fact, I had to run to the toilet a few times that night.
For continental cuisines, you can find seafood restaurants and Chinese in some parts of the islands. For western cuisine, you have to get them in the hotels.
Top 3 Seafood restaurants in Belitung
Surprisingly, it was quite tough to find seafood restaurants, despite being an island. I guess the main population are still locals, and they don’t eat these cuisines.
- FEGA Seafood Restaurant: (East) this place is great. Although the service was slow, the food was worth it. However, the only people that dine there are tour buses. It made me wonder if the food is authentic or catered to tourists. Nonetheless, it is affordable and delicious.
- Lemadang Seafood and Grill: (North) it was so great that we went twice. This seafood and grill is on a slightly pricier menu, but the food is really delicious. Try their grilled squid and grilled prawns.
- Restoran Dynasty: (Downtown) this was one of the few better and more decent restaurants. It is also a Chinese seafood restaurant. The food is really sweet but their squid is great. DO not expect much from the service, especially at night.
Where to Stay in Belitung
Lastly, where to stay. As the island is still very local, not many accept credit cards. Hence, be prepared to bring cash with you when you pay for your stay there. Alternatively, you can book your places online and pay online before flying.
These accommodations are all in the city centre. You can find possible homestays near the beach, but the city centre has more activities and food options.
Biliton Hotel & Klub: This hotel has a beautiful design and friendly staff. The staff goes out of their way to help customers, exactly what customer service is all about. The interesting thing about the hotel is the treasure in it. They will tell you about their history and story of the humble beginnings.
Green Tropical Village: This hotel is near the city with a huge room, great for families. You can enjoy the city and you have tons of local restaurants nearby.
BW Suite Belitung: This is a popular hotel for local Indonesians traveling. You also get to enjoy the stunning view of the sea from the hotel.
MaxOneHotels: This hotel is a colorfully designed accommodation. It is great for families with kids. Breakfast serve local cuisines. There is also a nice pool and outdoor sitting, for people who are too tired and hope to rest.
Pelangi Lake Resort: This is new hotel that is near the city centre. A more local and unique accommodation, this resort is not like your usual hotels. It is great for a group of friends or family.
Golden Tulip Essential Belitung: This hotel has large rooms, so it is a good value for money destination. There are also many food options nearby.
Harlika Jaya: A simple place to rest, this place has a really good central location. The beach is also near. The place has a rustic vintage vibe, so nothing too modern.
Wisma Pagar Alam: A very simple accommodation, this place is near the beach. It is also a new establishment.
Meigah Hotel: A central location, it is easy to get around the city with this hotel.
Alternatively, if you are an adventurous backpacker, you can consider finding homestays on the island. It is cheaper, although you have to pay cash. But it gives you the local flavor. However, as there is no guarantee that the place is safe, you have to be extremely careful. These places are usually on the North West of the island, where the beaches are. Look out for signs along the road, telling you that they offer homestays. Homestay in Bahasa Indonesia is penginapan. These places are about Rp 150,000 a night. It is not significantly cheaper than the accommodations suggested above.
Places to Visit in Belitung
You definitely have to do island hopping trips. Belitung is a quiet island with nature to offer. Spend your time snorkeling or chilling on the beach. It is a simple island, so do not expect too much. Here are 9 places to visit in Belitung:
- Island hopping around Belitung
- Danau Kaolin
- Taman Wisata Batu Mentas
- Museum Kata Andrea Hirata
- Warung Kopi
- Kelapa Kampit Temple
- Pantai Burung Mandi
- Tanjung Tinggi
- Lighthouse in Lengkuas island
Learn how to add all of these places into your Belitung itinerary for your vacation fun!
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