[travelog] Belitung (2014)

Belitung gained my attention becaused of two things : Laskar Pelangi movie that exposed the island’s beauty, and Ahok, the ex East Belitung Major who later became Jakarta Governor.

But when Belitung was shortlisted by my wife as our travel destination with kids, I was not very sure whether the place’s suitable for our 3-yr twins. But apparently, it’s a fun trip. The fact that we went on low season (late September) added the fun.

Here’s the highlight of 4D-3N adventure in Belitung.

Summary

The lack of tourism infrastructure is easily forgotten by the stunning beaches. Very promising for favorite tourism destination in the future. So visit Belitung, while it’s still not crowded by tourists.

Travel Accommodation

1. Transportation

As per this post is written, there are nine direct flights to Belitung every day. Belitung is only 1 hr flight from Jakarta. We chose Sriwijaya Air that departs 10.10 am. For return flight, Citilink was our choice.

For inland travel, it is recommended to rent car, since taxi and public transport are non existent. We rented car with driver/guide : Pak Nirwan – 0819-2958-3130. Highly recommended. Highly educated, good recommendation on places, restaurant, and very helpful.

2. Hotel

We stayed at Aston Belitung, a new hotel at that time. Quite far from famous beaches (20-30 minutes driving), and has limited beach in their own area. However, kids love the swimming pool. The room and breakfast are also great.

Aston's swimming pool area is very nice.

Aston’s swimming pool area is very nice.

SIGHT SEEING

1. Pantai Tanjung Tinggi

A beach with two different faces. You can walk to a smooth white sand section, and then to a section full of rock formation. The wave is not so strong. First we visit around noon, the temperature is very hot. The best time to visit is after lunch to sunset.

Two faces of Tanjung Tinggi Beach... the white sand and black granite.

Two faces of Tanjung Tinggi Beach… the white sand and black granite.

2. Pantai Tanjung Kelayang

You can hire boat for island-hopping from here. The wave (especially in the late afternoon) is quite strong. Many local people go fishing here. Twins had a very fun time helping a kind fisherman grabbing the caught fishes. Don’t forget to take picture with “Welcome to Belitong” sign here.

Fishing at Tanjung Kelayang beach

Fishing at Tanjung Kelayang beach

3. Bukit Berahu

We had lunch in Bukit Berahu Restaurant. From there, we can take a walk down to the beach. There is fruit with strange figure there (just like a pyramid wrapped in leaf).

What's the name of this 'fruit'?

What’s the name of this ‘fruit’?

4. Batu Berlayar

Must visit this location. This can be reached by boat. Morning is the best time, since during high tide, some stone formation will be under water.

The amazing Batu Berlayar.. (Google for more stunning images!)

The amazing Batu Berlayar.. (Google for more stunning images!)

Batu Berlayar basically is a rock formation (be careful, some of them has a sharp edge below the water). Very good for photo hunting. We found live starfishes there.

Many Batu Berlayar photos in the net... but you have to be lucky to experience this..

Met Star Patrick at Batu Berlayar

5. Pulau Lengkuas.

Island with a mercu suar in it (quite picturesque). But one good thing : they have beach that have trees, so we can play in the water during hot sunny mid-day.

6. Pulau Babi.

They have restaurant on the island. You can also play on the white sand beach.

7. You can do boat trip for half day with this route : Belitung – [stop in the middle of the ocean to feed the fishes with biscuits] – Pulau Lengkuas – Pulau Babi (lunch) – Batu Berlayar – Belitung.

8. Batu Mentas.

It’s Tarsius sanctuary with a river in the middle of it. They have tree-houses for accommodation.

9. Musium Belitung.

The highlight is the Ming Dynasty treasure from wrecked ship. They also have animals (crocodile, bird, including adorable owls).

10. Danau Kaolin

This can be visited when you want to go back to the airport. Only for photo. Nothing to do here.

EATING

1. Mie Belitung Atep

Located at city market (Jl. Sriwijaya), this restaurant is very famous for its Mie Belitung. But for us, it’s quite overrated. Special but not that special.

2. RM Cen Cen (Pondok Surya)

We knew the owner that introduced us to Gangan (sweet sour fish soup). Very good, tasty, and Belitung specialty.

The awesome 'Gangan' (above) and the unique 'Berego' (below)

The awesome ‘Gangan’ (above) and the unique ‘Berego’ (below)

3. Yam Mien Chong Kian (Gang Bebek)

This is recommenden by our guide. Very famous to local people. The noodle is good (not halal though!).

4. RM Dynasty (Jl. Susilo)

A big Chinese restaurant. We try another famous local dishes : Kepiting Isi.

5. RM Belitong (Timpo Duluk)

A very authentic place. The restaurant is preserved by government as traditional house. Try unique menu such as berego, nasi gemok, and tahu bungkus simpor (simpor is unique leaf used to wrap food in Belitung, just like banana leaf in Java).

 

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