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Please share your Batam experience with us =)

Batam, Indonesia
posts: 1,535
reviews: 17
Please share your Batam experience with us =)

So yeah, I think it would be great if we can consolidate a thread to share your Batam experience here. Food, massages, spas, hotels, anything you want. Good or bad... we all can learn something new.

But please don't mix this up with other topic okay so we do not get off-track! And for all of us reading this, please be a discerning reader =)

Cheerssss!

60 replies to this topic
posts: 4
1. Re: Please share your Batam experience with us =)

Just back from an awesome trip to Batam. 3D2N with 4 22 year old male Singaporeans.

We met Richardburnz for supper on one of the days. Thanks for hanging out with us and it was a pleasure to meet and befriend a new face Richard!

The trip was a rare experience for me because we did very little touristy things and we managed to find the local side of Batam. Totally impossible without Chandrana's help (no road signs, no informative guides or maps), he brought us to the inner streets and we saw and tasted a side of Batam that not many tourists would have had.

Food specifically was crazy good. Chandrana brought us to local roadside stalls with great food found only in Batam. We were the only tourists there understandably as it is probably impossible to ask a taxi driver to find these places from verbal description.

I dont even know the names of these stalls, but some highlights that stood out were salted egg prawn, chocolate and kaya toast, chicken rice. All were local roadside stalls that were more tasty, authentic and enjoyable than the tour-scheduled seafood at Golden Prawn 933.

We stayed at Mercure Hotel. The rooms were very clean and comfortable, staff were friendly, we had no complaints. Only thing was one of the rooms didn't have hot water but we were in such a rush to hunt out the next roadside stall that bathing was a secondary concern.

For four 22 year old males, paintball ($25 for 40 bullets) was a lot of fun (and pain). We went with the tour to Golden Beach and they dropped us off with three other interested passengers for half and hour of fun before picking us up.

All in all, as a tourist, seeing the local side of any country is close to impossible. The fact that Chandrana made this possible for us made this one of the most memorable trips I've been on. Add crazy boyish fun in paintball and hotel pool, great conversations with a fun, knowledgeable and curious new friend, and you have more than you can bargain for (didn't need to bargain for ANYTHING).

Batam, Indonesia
posts: 1,535
reviews: 17
2. Re: Please share your Batam experience with us =)

Thanks for sharing. Glad to meet you 4 fun dudes! I also had my share of fun listening to your stories and hanging out with you guys! Let me know when you guys come to Batam again, we go and try other road side food. Or, we can always go back to the salted egg prawn place. hahaha...

Cheerrssssss

Batam, Indonesia
posts: 473
3. Re: Please share your Batam experience with us =)

hahas , cheers . i was a bit quiet because that's how i am . peace

Batam, Indonesia
posts: 1,535
reviews: 17
4. Re: Please share your Batam experience with us =)

bump

Batam, Indonesia
posts: 1,535
reviews: 17
5. Re: Please share your Batam experience with us =)

Copied from another thread =)

=========

Thanks for all your Tips on Batam, it was very useful.

My husband and I have just returned from a very relaxing and enjoyable trip to Batam. Despite some warnings from friends and relatives about being extra careful for our safety, it really wasn't all that bad. (although my husband would not let me go to the shops on my own still).

We stayed at the Harris Hotel Batam Centre and it was quite an ideal spot for shopping and eating and so close to the ferry terminal. Definitely no complaints there!

Some tips for other readers, taxi fare from Batam Centre should only cost Rp50,000 (fixed price) to Nagoya Hill and vice versa. We bought our layer cakes from 'Layers', price was Rp 160,000 for a full buttered and Rp190,000 for a pandan layered one. They can also deliver direct to your hotel if requested. However, I cannot be sure if they are the best!

Coming from Australia, i think the most annoying thing we found was that smoking in restaurants and enclosed areas, like shopping centres, were allowed. I think Indonesia still has a long way to go in educating their people about the detriments of smoking.(My opinion anyway) Even though we stayed at a supposedly 'smoke-free' hotel, I am so sure people were still smoking in their rooms...I have a nose of a hounddog!

Anti Smoking Advocate!

Batam, Indonesia
posts: 1,535
reviews: 17
6. Re: Please share your Batam experience with us =)

Copied from another thread... Thanks for sharing

=====

My girl friends and I (4 pax) got a Deal.com package for 2D1N, and we paid for an extra night to make it 3D2N at Harmoni Hotel last year in August.

The one-day Batam tour which was included in the deal really took up the whole day till late at night (can't remember the name of the local agency but their uniform is white and blue). From my scant memory, we were brought to a kueh lapis shop, a shop selling local snacks, shop selling Polo and Burberry clothings etc. The seafood lunch was average but the portion is good for the table of 10.

The kueh lapis was delicious but after going to the shopping centres, we realised that the prices were similar if not more expensive than what was available in the shopping centres, although from different shops. On hindsight, I don't think there was any compelling reason for us to buy the kueh lapis on the first day of the tour since we were staying two nights. Also our pretty tour guide had mixed up our orders and she was not present when the kueh lapis was delivered to the hotel on the day of our departure, resulting in other people taking our kueh lapis, which made for an unpleasant end to the trip.

The massage that was part of the package (I can't remember the hotel we were brought to for the massage) was in my opinion not worth and very far from the standards we had in Singapore. I was taken aback when I went into the massage room, which is like rows of dormitory with mattress on the floor. As we were the last batch, the wooden platform the mattresses were placed on felt oily, the mattress felt oily too. The masseurs were chatting with each other and the massage is perfunctory at best.

So, if you get a package, be prepared that Day 1 is a goner and you will be brought around by the tour agency and there's no chance for self-exploration, except at the shopping centre where they drop you for dinner while waiting for massage.

On Day 2, we embarked on our own shopping trip and visited some shopping centres nearby Harmoni Hotel. Funny to say, the highlight was finding an A&W and we went to satisfy our root beer and curly fries and ice cream waffle craving while reminiscing over old times. We did not manage to visit any recommended seafood places but the eating places we chose were all passable.

We managed to squeeze in a massage at Isabella Massage on Day 2 as they provided free transport. But again it was a hit-and-miss affair. Out of the four of us, only 2 enjoyed the massage so it's a 50% success rate. My masseur did not have the strength (maybe because it was fasting month) and I felt quite unbalanced by her inconsistent massage. Again the mattresses were on the floor and the set-up is different from those in Singapore. So those going for massage for the first time in Batam, do be mentally prepared.

It was meant to be a girls' outing for my friends and me and I must say we did have the chance to bond, despite spending 1 day on a tour that we did not expect (we had thought it would be a half-day tour). The hotel was pleasant enough though my friends had to change their room as they thought it smelt musty. And we had a swell of a time shopping for our kids and loved ones, as the clothings were especially value-for-money, especially for the young ones.

Batam, Indonesia
posts: 1,535
reviews: 17
7. Re: Please share your Batam experience with us =)

Another great write-up by a fellow traveler... (copied from the original thread)

=============

Just thought i do up a review on how my 3D2N trip went.

This was supposedly a short and cheap getaway trip with my girlfriend, so maybe y'all could use it as reference or whatsoever.

So.. we took the "Wavemaster" ferry (the counter is on the 3rd floor for those that don't know) ; 48SGD for the 2-way trip. I don't think anyone is interested in the ferry journey and review so skipping that. We got off at Harbor Bay Terminal, got a taxi pretty fast, paid 30K for a trip to Triniti Hotel.

There happened to be a 3D2N package when we booked the rooms - 69SGD. 2nd time here actually, was really impressed the first time i came here that's why i chose to stay there again. I'm not one that would want to pay a lot for accommodation, so i'm not really fussy or anything when it comes to smaller details. Check-in was real fast, 5minutes of verification and we got the room card and were off, i requested for a change of room and that was done in a jiffy too. (Point to make, The 1st room was fine but i wanted to stay on a higher floor, that explains the switch)

The room was clean, aircon was good, bathroom was clean too, no musky smell in the wardrobe, the mini fridge was working well. No stains on the sheets, and there wasn't any smell too. TV worked fine, wi-fi connection in the room was excellent. Honestly, Triniti is one of the better budget hotels I've stayed in, so for those wanting a cheap place, you guys could check it out. The staff mostly understand basic english, there's 1 or 2 who speak fluent english so those who don't speak Bahasa, no worries here. There's a massage next to Triniti, it's probably run by the hotel, i tried it the first time i was here, it's good actually, but the price was a little higher, there's a spa and jacuzzi too, but i'm not sure if you need to pay to use it.

After settling in, we walked over to Nagoya City Mall (NCM), it's a short walk from Triniti, say.... 5-10minutes? First timers will probably need help so just ask the reception, don't waste money on a taxi haha. When you exit Triniti, go straight, turn left, walk straight pass the car wash, take the first right, when you reach the 2way road, turn right and go straight all the way, turn at the second left and NCM is right in front. it's hard to even miss it, because once you reach the second left, NCM is located on a small hill, you'd be able to see it even when it's dark. Had Ayam Penyet for lunch (right beside pizza hut), meal was good and cheap for an eatery located in a mall, went to get some cupcorn, this snack is damn good and addictive, 5K for a cup of corn with sweetened and condensed milk, unless you have diabetes, you need to try it. Went to catch a movie next, the cinema's at the third floor. First time watching a movie here, and the theater is SO SO SO MUCH BETTER than the ones in Singapore. Seats are so comfy, the quality was great considering that a ticket only cost 30k, sound a little too loud (DOLBY 7.1 system). great movie experience. Oh for those wondering, we watched StepUp, english show with indo subs, so no language barrier. The shows are all screened in their original language, so definitely a must to catch up on ridiculous shows you don't wanna pay 10 bucks for back in SG. There's a KTV somewhere on the third floor near one of the arcades with cheap rates, quite a variety of songs when i went there last year, so those on group outings could check that out. The arcades dont really have much games but it's really cheap and fun, so it's a good place to spend some time too. Bought some groceries and walked back to the hotel, yes, at night. Oh, and we even had supper at one of those roadside stalls, never had such delicious indomie and milo ever.

I know, many people think Batam is dangerous, but trust me, every country is equally dangerous, of course, it's advisable not to walk around late at night. Anyway, just be aware of your surroundings and be careful. Ladies, just keep your handbag on the inside when you're walking to prevent snatch theft. If possible, don't even bring a handbag around. Guys, just protect the ladies.

Second day, went for a massage. Oh btw, en route from Triniti to NCM, you will pass by Spa Secret. It has good reviews and all but it's a budget trip, so..... i didn't try it. Went to "Everyday" instead. The place is located on the other side of NCM, When you exit NCM on the other side, A&W should be on your left, "Everyday" is located opposite, down the road. Prices are pretty reasonable here. we did a 1.5hour thai + traditional massage for like 90k each. The masseuse was great, we had our massages in a couple room so of course there was some chatting from the masseuse, but at least they were whispering and it was just short chats. Half the time we were asleep anyway, so looks like it didn't affect me.

Went for a quick lunch at A&W (ROOT BEER FLOAT AND WAFFLES YEAHHHHH) before heading back to the hotel for a nap.

Went for dinner at ADI-8. Most of the locals know where it is, if they don't just say Baloi Mas (Thanks Chandrana for this tip!!) 40K cab ride to the area, somehow my taxi rides seem to be really cheap, always try to bargain with the driver, anything at 30-40K is honestly a good price, especially if there's more than 2 people.

The food here, as always is AMAZING. it's much much better than alot of zi char places back in SG. i found this place because i was lost once on a trip with my friends, we just walked and walked and ended up here, and trust me, the area around here isn't a place you want to get lost in, so yes, take a taxi to avoid the hassle. Ordered black pepper crab, cereal prawns, kangkung AND THE SPECIALTY - THE FRIED GARLIC ONION CHICKEN. it's ayam bawang, but bawang is onion, but there was garlic inside, so whatever the translation is, it's just good. Anyway, the menu has bahasa and chinese, unless you can't understand chinese, shouldn't be a problem. Every of the dishes i give it a 9/10 ( no such thing as perfect hahaha). Total bill came up to only 25SGD. it's really really worth it, oh i had like 6bottles of TEHBOTOL and the girlfriend had a coconut juice. so to me, yeah it was damn cheap. The taxi driver that sent me there had earlier offered to pickup, i told him to come back in an hour and a half and he really appeared promptly. Total taxi ride to and fro was only 80K, i gave him 100K though. Don't scrimp on your tips in Batam, it's good to show people appreciation.

Last day of the trip, we had to check out at 12, walked to NCM again, went to ESKA spa for foot reflexology, the 2 guy masseuse were awesome, they complied to our requests and we had one of the best foot massages ever. Most masseuse do understand simple english, but if ever you feel it's too painful "sakit" is the word for you to use, it means pain. IMO, it's best to equip yourself with some commonly used words, for your own convenience. We had lunch at another of those roadside stalls, i just love this tasty yet cheap meals. If i could ever find the recipe for the "ABC" sauce, i'd put it into all my meals back here. The "ABC" sauce is similar to that in the Indomie packets, but very very very much tastier. Most of it is homemade, and you can't pass it thru Customs or even ship it back because they don't even sell it in the first place. I feel Bandung's (city in indo) ABC sauce is sweeter and adds more flavour but the ones in Batam aren't that far off.

Took a taxi back to Harbor Bay terminal, there's really nothing much to do at Harbor Bay Mall, it's still under construction, so better to settle your return trip when you reach Batam, get the return details sorted out so you don't have to loiter around in the mall waiting for too long. Even carrefour has nothing much to shop for. Ended up doing one of those 9K/15 minutes massages on the armchair while waiting to pass time, and it was quite good actually. There are some food stalls located right outside the check-in, so one could probably sit there for a drink while waiting. I only got the return tickets when i was leaving because it was a 3D2N trip, so took the ferry back, and that concludes the trip!

Quick shoutout again to Chandrana for answering my questions in another topic regarding the planning of the trip! Thanks man!

Batam, Indonesia
posts: 1,535
reviews: 17
8. Re: Please share your Batam experience with us =)

I just wanna remind all of us again, please kindly share your experiences with us so others may learn from them.

cheeersss

posts: 3
9. Re: Please share your Batam experience with us =)

Hello Chandrana

Can you advise which ferry terminal I should go in batam as I have booked to stay in iHotel? Is it batam centre? How much and how long is the journey ?

Is it safe to walk from iHotel to Nagoya Hill shopping or should I take a taxi? If the latter,how much should I pay?

Also how far and how much should I to go to ADI-8 from iHotel? What should I tell the taxi driver? What time does ADI-8 close at night?

Many thanks in advance for your advice & tips!

Edited: 11:07 pm, October 02, 2012
Batam, Indonesia
posts: 1,535
reviews: 17
10. Re: Please share your Batam experience with us =)

Your post is not appropriate for this thread. Please don't hijack unrelated thread. Also, your questions have been answered many times in other threads. Please browse around.

Thanks.

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