Escape To Belitung: 8 Reasons Why You Need To Visit This Secret Island Paradise in Indonesia

Escape To Belitung: 8 Reasons Why You Need To Visit This Secret Island Paradise in Indonesia

Never heard of Belitung before? Well, you're about to find out what amazing gems you've been missing out on!

Having stressful days and sleepless nights? Maybe it’s time to make your great escape to one of these incredible Indonesian destinations: Bandung, Belitung, Medan, or Yogyakarta. With picturesque landscapes and boundless nature, there’s no better place to switch off, relax and recharge. Find out more about these destinations now!

Presented to you by Changi Airport Group x TripZilla

Feeling burnt out and in need of a short weekend getaway? Look no further than Belitung, an island off the coast of Eastern Sumatra, Indonesia. An unspoilt natural paradise with pristine white beaches and unbelievably clear waters, it’s the perfect place to disconnect from the concrete jungle!

Image credit: Jeffrey Manzini

But before you get started, we recommend you use Street Taxi Belitung to explore the island, as it is the only licensed taxi service on the island with a meter. Many hotels collaborate with local drivers for a hefty commission, so contact Street Taxi directly whenever you’re in need of transport. If you’re interested in island hopping, they also offer boat booking services starting from IDR450,000 (~SGD42.44), which is almost half of what hotels usually charge!

Itching for a short, tropical getaway? Then Belitung’s the ideal choice for some sun, sand and sea off the beaten path. Book your flights on Garuda Indonesia today, with all-in return fares starting from just SGD288!

Without further ado, here are 8 reasons why you need to make Belitung your next island getaway!

1. The white sandy beaches and untouched beauty welcome you to paradise

Image credit: Indonesia Tourism

Once you touch down in Belitung, don’t waste any time and head straight to the beaches! Despite being the most popular beach there, Tanjung Tinggi Beach is still relatively quiet compared to other famous tourist destinations, like Kuta Beach in Bali. With the soft sand, calm sea breeze and coconut trees swaying in the wind, you’ll feel all your worries melting away at this idyllic island.

Image credit: Rachmad Kurniadi

Tanjung Kelayang is another popular beach with impeccably clear waters. Lay out a beach mat to sun tan, read a good book, or climb one of the many granite rock formations around the beaches. When the sun sets, get your camera ready to take a good shot of the resplendent horizon!

Getting there: Both beaches are close to each other, and are a 30-minute drive away from Hanandjoeddin International Airport.

2. There’s a wealth of exciting water activities to do

Image credit: GoBelitung

With crystal clear waters and coral formations, going snorkelling or scuba diving in Belitung is a must. Local tour providers offer tours to the various islands where you’ll get the chance to swim with the fishes. You can also go kayaking, paddle boarding, jet skiing and more. Don’t miss the chance to enjoy this peaceful island

Excited to dive deep into the clear waters off the shores of Belitung? Book your flight to Belitung on Garuda Indonesia today! With all-in return fares starting from SGD288, there’s absolutely no reason to resist.

3. You can explore over 100 picturesque islands

Image credit: Wonderful Indonesia

Belitung is surrounded by more than 100 smaller and often uninhabited islands. These islands have as many beautiful beaches as the main island, so one thing you should definitely do is to go island-hopping! The most popular choice is Lengkuas Island, which features a Dutch colonial-era lighthouse that was built in 1882. You can climb up to level 3 and peer out of the windows for a panoramic view. You can also apply for permission with the lighthouse guards to camp overnight on the beach, for a stargazing session!

Image credit: Jeffrey Manzini

Just take a look at this remarkable view! The waters around Lengkuas Island are impeccably clear and a rich shade of turquoise.

Getting there: Pulau Lengkuas is a 20-minute boat ride away from Tanjung Kelayang or Tanjung Binga. It will take about 30 to 45 minutes from the seaside of Belitung. We recommend hiring a boat with your friends for the cheapest prices!

Image credits: (right) Visit Bangka Belitung

Other interesting islands to visit include Batu Berlayar (look out for its sail-shaped granite rock formation, as well as Batu Garuda, known for looking like the mythical Garuda bird from far. When the tide is low, you can visit Pasir Island, a small sand islet that is swallowed up during the high tide. You’ll get the chance to photograph starfishes, but remember not to pick them up as they are extremely delicate!

Getting there: These islands are a 10-minute boat ride away from Tanjung Kelayang. If you’ve booked a boat to Pulau Lengkuas, you can just include these neighbouring islands into your itinerary!

4. Visit Danau Kaolin and be awed by its otherworldly landscape

Image credit: (top) TravelingAsyik

Just a 10-minute drive away from the city centre is Kaolin Lake, an abandoned mine that is now filled with unbelievably blue water, making for an otherworldly sight. The clear waters provide a distinct contrast to its pure white surroundings, making you feel like you’re in a volcanic crater, but without the pungent smell of sulphur. You’ll be able to take some jaw-dropping photographs here, so don’t forget your camera!

Address: Perawas, Tanjung Pandan, Belitung Regency, Bangka Belitung Islands, Indonesia
Getting there: The lake is a 10-minute drive away from the city centre of Tanjung Pandan.

5. There are many sedap (tasty) local delicacies!

Image credits: (left) Fransiska Elna, (right) Haryo Bintoro

Belitung may be a small island, but there are numerous warungs (small family-owned eating places) selling all kinds of seafood and local delicacies! One of the specialties is Mie Belitung, a noodle dish with sweet gravy made with spices and shrimp and topped with cucumbers, tofu, potatoes and dried shrimp. Mie Belitung Atep, a local family-run establishment, is very popular amongst the locals and has served famous dignitaries such as former Indonesian president, Megawati.

You should also try gangan, a fish curry with pineapple, that delivers a zesty kick. Wash it down with some coffee from Kong Djie, which still makes coffee the traditional way by roasting the beans over a charcoal fire.

Are you drooling over Belitung’s local delicacies yet? All-in return fares to Belitung start from just SGD288. Wait no longer and book your flights on Garuda Indonesia today!

6. Have fun while learning about sustainability and conservation efforts

At Kepayang Island Conservation Centre, you’ll get the chance to have fun in the waters and do your part to ensure the island remains sustainable for tourism. A conservation project implemented by a local NGO, the centre offers you the chance to participate in ecotourism activities, such as planting corals in the coral conservation garden, or donating a small amount to set a small turtle free in the sea. Proceeds go towards supporting the centre and the local fishermen involved in these efforts.

In addition to these eco-friendly activities, you can also stay in eco-lodges and embark on guided tours to the surrounding islands. Do your part for the environment and have fun along the way!

Getting there: You can contact the conservation centre at +62-81280180246 / +62-81949189456. The centre offers airport transfers and boat services to the island.

7. Get inspired at the Museum Kata Andrea Hirata

Author Andrea Hirata, who was born and raised on Belitung, wrote a book called Laskar Pelangi (The Rainbow Troops) based on his childhood experiences. The book was a success and was adapted into a movie of the same name, becoming one of the highest grossing films in Indonesian box office history and sparked a tourism boom to the island. Hirata himself used some of the profits from the novel to set up a literature museum, Museum Kata Andrea Hirata, on Belitung as a way of giving back to the community.

The museum is the first literature museum in Indonesia, and features many colourful and vibrant exhibits recreating the school that Hirata attended, which was the setting of his novel. There are translations of Hirata’s book as well as exhibitions on Belitung’s geology, history, and literary art in the museum. What’s more, admission is free, so pop by to be inspired by the local boy who made it big!

Address: 10 Jalan Laskar Pelangi,  Gantung, Belitung Island 33462, Indonesia
Opening hours: 10am – 6pm
Getting there: It is a 1-hour drive (68km) away from Tanjung Pandan. We recommend taking a Street Taxi.

8. Hike up Batu Baginde for panoramic views of Belitung

Image credit: ditadwi22

Batu Baginde consists of two giant granite rocks, which are as big as mountains! They represent each gender, and the location is seen as a sacred place to obtain blessings. Surrounded by dense vegetation, you’ll get to enjoy the cool atmosphere as you trek your way up to the summit. Suitable for adventurous hikers, the path to the top is rather steep as it requires you to first trek through a forest, then ascend the rock with pre-installed ropes and vertical stairs. For beginners, it is compulsory to have a local guide with you in order to ascend the rocks safely!

Nonetheless, the view at the summit will be worth the arduous journey up! Be blown away by sweeping views of the lush greenery all around you and revel in nature’s unspoilt beauty.

Address: Jl. Haryani (Padang Kandis), Belitung, Indonesia

Getting there: Batu Baginde is situated in Membalong, in the southern part of Tanjung Pandan City. It is a 2-3 hour drive from Tanjung Pandan. We recommend taking a Street Taxi or rented car. Once you reach Membalong District, head to Tanjung Kandi Village and walk to the location from there.

With its idyllic landscapes and laid-back atmosphere, there’s no better place to destress than on the secret island paradise of Belitung. Skip the usual crowded tourist destinations, and spend a weekend lounging on the sandy beaches and taking a dip in the clear waters. You’ll return to work refreshed, recharged, and feeling like a million dollars.

Take the path less travelled and escape to Belitung today! We recommend flying with Garuda Indonesia, with all-in return fares starting from just SGD288!

For more great deals on other Indonesian destinations, click HERE. And stay tuned for the rest of this 4-part series, featuring picturesque spots in Yogyakarta, Medan, and Bandung!  

Brought to you by Changi Airport Group

About Author

Isaac Neo
Isaac Neo

Isaac used to love airports, until he went on exchange and experienced one too many delays for his liking. He believes the best part of travelling is experiencing the local food, which explains his expanding waistline. When not at work, he can be found reading, watching football, or browsing the dankest memes.