My Weekend Escape: Singapore to Nongsa Batam, Indonesia

Updated on May 1, 2019
Happylovejoy profile image

Kawai loves to explore the world, learning about new cultures, and taking awesome pictures along the way.

If you live in Singapore and are thinking about having a quick weekend getaway without having to fly, Nongsa in Batam Island is usually not the first place that comes to mind. I was introduced to the place by a friend of mine who had been there a couple of times, and I was pleasantly surprised by its laid-back and rustic charms.

Even though I was at Nongsa during the December period (which is usually a busy travel period due to school holidays), there was not much of a crowd and I could truly relax and enjoy some quiet time.

The best thing about visiting Batam is that the weather closely mirrors that of Singapore, which pretty much has only one season—hot and humid. Therefore, there should not be major weather concerns when planning a trip to Nongsa. However, rainfall from October to April is usually heavier, so the best time to visit Batam is during the dry season between May and September.

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Tanah Merah Ferry Terminal SingaporeTanah Merah Ferry Terminal SingaporeInside the Tanah Merah Ferry TerminalWaiting area before ferry boardingBatam Fast FerryInside Batam Fast Ferry
Tanah Merah Ferry Terminal Singapore
Tanah Merah Ferry Terminal Singapore
Tanah Merah Ferry Terminal Singapore
Tanah Merah Ferry Terminal Singapore
Inside the Tanah Merah Ferry Terminal
Inside the Tanah Merah Ferry Terminal
Waiting area before ferry boarding
Waiting area before ferry boarding
Batam Fast Ferry
Batam Fast Ferry
Inside Batam Fast Ferry
Inside Batam Fast Ferry

How to Get to Nongsa Batam From Singapore

From Singapore, the only way I know how to get to Nongsa directly (Nongsapura Ferry Terminal) is by ferry. You can either book the ferry tickets online from the ferry provider Batam Fast or through online travel-agent websites such as KLOOK and Easybook. Ferries depart from the Tanah Merah Ferry Terminal in Singapore and take approximately 45 minutes.

It seems like Batam Fast is the main commercial ferry that goes to Nongsa, but the ferries are frequent enough. The journey is relatively comfortable, and it did not feel like there was a major competition to get good seats (Batam Fast is free seating on the ferry—no assigned seats), as fewer people travel to and from Nongsa compared to Batam Centre.

If for whatever reason you are unable to get a ferry ticket directly to Nongsa, you can try to get a ticket for the more popular Singapore–Batam Centre route. From Batam Centre, it is a 30 minutes ride to Nongsa resorts.

View from Nongsa Point Marina and Resort
View from Nongsa Point Marina and Resort

Additional Tips for Visiting Nongsa Batam

1) Better Discounts

For additional discounts on ferry tickets and hotels at Nongsa, you can consider using the website Shopback. Shopback is a very interesting concept where all you have to do as a consumer is to apply for an account and use the Shopback website to visit your usual holiday booking websites such as Agoda, Booking.com and Klook in order to earn additional rebates.

The best part is that you do not need to spend in order to use the rebates that you have previously earned. As long as you have earned the minimum amount required (currently it is 10 bucks), you can withdraw the rebates in the form of cash to your bank or PayPal. You can also use Shopback for other types of purchases (e.g. iHerb and Book Depository).

Shopback is currently only available in seven countries (Singapore, Australia, Taiwan, Malaysia, Indonesia, Philippines and Thailand).

2) Travel With Children and Elderly

If you are traveling with young kids or elderly, I would recommend that you take the Nongsa–Tanah Merah route when traveling back to Singapore, as it is less stressful going on board the ferry. When we took the ferry back from Batam Centre, the waiting area for the return ferries on Sunday afternoon was so crowded and there were barely any decent seats left on the ferry by the time we boarded. However, the downside is that Tanah Merah Ferry Terminal is not very accessible, so you most probably need to catch a private hire car or a cab back home.

Simple map of Nongsa and the resorts available
Simple map of Nongsa and the resorts available

Nongsa Resorts

The area covering the popular Nongsa Resorts is quite small. So if you are looking for big sandy beaches full of activities and nightlife, Nongsa is not the place for you (I would recommend Boracay instead).

By foot, you can easily cover all the major Nongsa resorts in less than an hour. The beach is also not huge, so most people I see would rather lounge by the pool or their room balcony. The beauty of Nongsa is its simplicity and unassuming charm. There is no pressure to cover any major tourist spots, so you are there to really just enjoy the peace and quiet.

If you are looking for higher-end accommodations, you can also try the Montigo Resorts Nongsa. I saw the hotel shuttle picking up their guests at the Nongsapura Ferry Terminal, and the reviews for this resort are pretty good.

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Nongsa Point Marina and ResortNongsa Point Marina and Resort rooms with a sea viewInformation on transports available at Nongsa Point Marina and ResortTuri Beach Resort Turi Beach Resort Water activities available at Turi BeachWalking path between the Nongsa ResortsWalking path between the Nongsa resorts
Nongsa Point Marina and Resort
Nongsa Point Marina and Resort
Nongsa Point Marina and Resort rooms with a sea view
Nongsa Point Marina and Resort rooms with a sea view
Information on transports available at Nongsa Point Marina and Resort
Information on transports available at Nongsa Point Marina and Resort
Turi Beach Resort
Turi Beach Resort
 Turi Beach Resort
Turi Beach Resort
Water activities available at Turi Beach
Water activities available at Turi Beach
Walking path between the Nongsa Resorts
Walking path between the Nongsa Resorts
Walking path between the Nongsa resorts
Walking path between the Nongsa resorts

Mega Mall Batam Centre

1. Cheap Massage

If you are heading to Mega Mall Batam Centre (which is 30 minutes away from Nongsa Resorts), you should try to go for a massage. The prices are super cheap for a relatively decent massage parlor and definitely better than the prices at the resorts.

A popular one that I visited is called the Eska Massage, located on the second floor of the mall. The lady who served us said that they are usually quite booked out during weekends, so it is best to call or Whatsapp them to make reservations. However, we did arrive there at 12 pm on a Sunday and managed to book a 1-hour slot for 5 people at 3 pm. So if you did not make any reservations, I think you can still head there once you arrive to try your luck. For onsite reservation, you have to pay a deposit before you can confirm your booking.

Overall, I found the massage OK (I have had much better), but for about 17 Singapore dollars for a 1-hour massage, I am not complaining.

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Eska Massage at Batam CentreDifferent massages available and the priceEska  MassageEska Massage locations
Eska Massage at Batam Centre
Eska Massage at Batam Centre
Different massages available and the price
Different massages available and the price
Eska  Massage
Eska Massage
Eska Massage locations
Eska Massage locations
Click thumbnail to view full-size
Mega Mall Batam Centre hypermarket Mega Mall Batam Centre hypermarket
Mega Mall Batam Centre hypermarket
Mega Mall Batam Centre hypermarket
Mega Mall Batam Centre hypermarket
Mega Mall Batam Centre hypermarket

2. Stock up at the Hypermarket

Besides the massage, the highlight of being at Batam Centre is the hypermarket, located at the basement. Things are generally cheaper in this supermarket compared to Singapore. Most people I know love to buy a carton of the instant noodle brand Indomie (the latest craze is salted-egg-flavored noodles) because it's simply delicious and much cheaper in Batam.

Another awesome buy I discovered during my recent trip is personal care products like lotions, facial wash, toothpaste, etc. A similar product sold in Singapore is almost double the price of what I saw at this hypermarket. So if you are in for some serious savings and don't mind some heavy lifting, you should really stock up on such products here.

If you don't mind crowds and a bit of hassle, you can plan a shopping trip here on your last day in Batam and just cross a bridge from the mall to get to the Batam Centre Point International Ferry Terminal.

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Bridge to Batam Centre Point International Ferry TerminalWalk to the Batam Centre Point International Ferry Terminal Inside Batam Center Point International Ferry Terminal Ferry leaving the Batam Center Point International Ferry Terminal
Bridge to Batam Centre Point International Ferry Terminal
Bridge to Batam Centre Point International Ferry Terminal
Walk to the Batam Centre Point International Ferry Terminal
Walk to the Batam Centre Point International Ferry Terminal
Inside Batam Center Point International Ferry Terminal
Inside Batam Center Point International Ferry Terminal
Ferry leaving the Batam Center Point International Ferry Terminal
Ferry leaving the Batam Center Point International Ferry Terminal

Weekend Getaway Itinerary

Here is a quick overview of my 2-day quick weekend getaway itinerary to help you plan your trip to Nongsa:

Day 1 (Saturday)

  • 10:25 am (Singapore time) ferry from Tanah Merah Ferry Terminal to Nongsapura Ferry Terminal.
  • The ferry takes 45 mins, so we reached Nongsa at ~10:30 am (Indonesia time). Because of the 1-hour time difference between Batam and Singapore, it felt like we have gained an hour!
  • We took a hotel shuttle to Nongsa Marina Point and Resort (journey ~20 minutes). Checked in and walked from the hotel to the Turi Beach Resort. Had early lunch there and lounged by the Turi Beach Resort pool (we hopped to different resort swimming pools because the service staff either didn't really mind or didn't care to check). The whole afternoon was spent lounging and swimming in the pool. However, you can opt to spend this time doing the sea sports available on Turi Beach.
  • Dinner at the Turi Beach Resort Cafe before heading back to the hotel. There is not much to do around the resort at night so we just hung around the hotel room chilling and watching TV.

Day 2 (Sunday)

  • Had an early breakfast before hiking from the hotel (using the one and only path) to Turi Beach Resort for some last minute photo taking (the view is beautiful in the morning).
  • Checked out of the hotel at 12 pm and took a 12:30 pm bus to Mega Mall Batam Centre.
  • We shopped at the Hypermarket before we had a 1-hour massage at 3 pm. As our ferry was at 5:25 pm, we had to reach the ferry terminal at 4:25 pm (1 hour prior to departure), so the timing was perfect.

On hindsight, we should have taken a later ferry because the ~5 pm timing is really popular, which can make the journey a little unpleasant. We also did not have enough time to really explore the mall.

Have you been to Nongsa, Batam?

See results

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

Questions & Answers

    © 2019 Kawai

    Comments

      0 of 8192 characters used
      Post Comment
      • alocsin profile image

        Aurelio Locsin 

        5 months ago from Orange County, CA

        Have been to Singapore many times but have not heard of Nongsa Baram until this article. Thanks -- we'll pay it a visit next time we're in the city.

      • Eurofile profile image

        Liz Westwood 

        9 months ago from UK

        This is a very useful and well-illustrated article. I especially appreciate the detail and the number of photos.

      working

      This website uses cookies

      As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, wanderwisdom.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

      For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://wanderwisdom.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

      Show Details
      Necessary
      HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
      LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
      Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
      AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
      HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
      HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
      Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
      CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
      Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
      Features
      Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
      Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
      Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
      Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
      Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
      VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
      PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
      Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
      MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
      Marketing
      Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
      Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
      Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
      Statistics
      Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
      ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
      Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
      ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)