Read about my overview on our 3D2N Bintan Trip here.
Mangrove Discovery Tour
This tour allows you to take either the day or night tours. Or both if you have the time. Day tour is a chance to get a taste of life in the mangroves, observe ‘orang laut’ (sea gypsies) in their ‘kelongs’ (fishing houses built on stilts over water). Night tour is the opportunity to experience the serenity of the mangrove forests and the Sebung River on a boat ride by moonlight, with the highlight of watching the fireflies.
The boats readied to pick up customers for the 90mins ride.
Safety first, my personal suggestion is to bring an extra top to change after the boat ride, because the life jackets can be a bit smelly from the long use and lack of wash.
Off we go! Just sit back and enjoy the breeze.
The mangrove is really a special thing, not always can we see such forests that grow on water with basically 90% of their roots outside of the ground.
The ‘orang laut’ or sea gypsies that are still active in this region. I can only imagine the lifestyle they have and wonder if I can ever stay in such an environment. We are indeed very blessed in Singapore. Lesson learnt, to be contented always.
Maybe the new generation will have better staying facilities.
Some sights on this tour.
Openings into the deep of the mangrove, probably accessible only by smaller sampans.
A damaged boat left behind by the sea gypsies during one of the bad weather. Another evidence of the harsh living standards here.
The first part of the tour will be in the open river linked to the South China Sea, thus we are expecting salt sea water. But as we entered into the second part of the tour, moving into the deeper mangrove, we are also moving more into the fresh water area. Thus the appearance of the wildlife is more prominent here.
First up, the monitor lizard.
Snakes hanging on trees just above our heads.
And monkeys! This is a really tiny baby monkey.
Also in the deeper parts of the mangrove, we can see more interesting things like the man-made traditional charcoal kiln.
Static fishing traps (bubus), the fishermen will spread their nets on top of the stilts and pull in the nets after a while when the catch is done. Very manual work.
We were introduced to different mangroves along the Sebung River, like the ribbon roots, pencil roots and knee roots. See the resemblance?
This is the oldest mangrove tree but it has started to wither.
The girls are getting a bit tired and hungry.
Thankfully, the tour will bring us for lunch. A restaurant on stilts situated just besides a village, a great chance to understand more about the locals’ lifestyle.
The girls are so happy to enjoy their occasional soft drink on a hot day.
They are even more excited cos we get to return to the jetty on this pink boat!
Happy faces once again!
There are 2 types of ride available, the trial ride which is about 30mins and the safari ride which will last about an hour. If you have no experience in elephant rides before, I would recommend the 30mins ride first. It can be quite tiring on the buttocks and thighs for first-timers.
Can you see the looks on the 2 ladies? Excited but also a bit fearful. You can understand if you see the height of the elephants.
Joey trying to imitate the elephant trunk. Hahaa..
Their expressions said it all.
Spend another S$1.00 and you can buy a pack of bananas to feed the elephants.