For the past 6 months, we have been to Krabi, Phuket and now to Telunas @ Batam. And it is the second time we have travelled to a place with limited mobile connection, no internet, no wifi, no TV, all we have is the sun, sea and sand. And just maybe, we are slowly getting used to vacations that will help us to have a “social-detox” opportunity.
Telunas Resort is a private island and beach resort that is in the Riau Islands of Indonesia. It’s a timeless place, with only the nature as your companion. You can either choose between the Private Island and the classis Beach Resort. The private island is more for the honeymooners or couples who just want to have a more romantic stay. Whereas the beach resort is more catered for the families. If you book the private island stay, you can choose to visit the beach resort but not the other way round.
Take the Batam Ferry from Habourfront and 45mins later we reached Batam and change over to a smaller jetty (10mins walk away). From this smaller jetty, we will have to take the long wooden boat for around 1.5 hours before we finally reach the secluded beach resort. Our family took the motion-sickness medicine and everything was fine.
This is the long wooden boats we took to Telunas. You may get a bit wet from the splashing along the journey but just a little. Life jackets are provided too.
This is the Private Island, they have spa service too. Really catered for couples.
We have reached our destination.
The view from the main hut where we have our meals and indoor activities.
The chalet hut which is going to be our resting place for the next 2 nights.
The girls have a bunker bed and we have a queen-sized bed. Nothing too fancy but clean. Fans are available in the huts but with the constant sea breeze, we didn’t need to turn it on at all. And the most amazing thing, there are no annoying mosquitoes at all!
We even have a balcony that looks out to the sea, completed with a hammock. The girls will usually fight to see who gets to sit on the hammock. I can’t really blame them, right?
Another that surprised us was the safety and security here in Telunas. We do not have keys to the huts. You can lock from inside when you are resting, but when you leave the room, you cannot lock from outside. That is the trust of the “kampong” spirit. We had the first hut that has no obstruction to the sea view, and we even have a small corner to ourselves for R&R.
The dining area in the main hut.
Most of the activities can be found at the main hut. More than enough board games for us to try. I think this is one of the few occasions for a long time that the entire family gets to just do nothing but enjoying each other’s presence. So precious!
Since we are sort of ‘stuck’ on this island, we learnt to mingle with other guests and hear about their traveling tales. The elderly man was teaching the girls how to play solitaire. Funny thing is now Joey plays solitaire on her mobile phone.
If you are keen on the sea activities, you can always count on the staff to keep you updated on the tides. This is especially important for those who wants to try out the jetty jump, you don’t want to hit the seabed when it is low tide.
There are 2 levels for the jetty jump, from the low level (Dock) or the high level (Tower).
Low level is the same level of the main hut, just step out from the dining area jump out into the sea, any directions you want.
If you are bold enough, you can try the 10m high level jump. The 10m jump will only be open when there is high tide.
Me? I just climbed up for the photos =p
Fishing is one of the main recreation for the guests. And I am so happy to rekindle the interest which died when my dad passed on. And the double joy was to introduce the activity to my daughters too. I think my dad in heaven will be so happy to see that his grandchildren are picking up the one hobby he truly liked.
You can bring your own fishing rods, if not, the resort provides fishing lines with bait.
I spent an entire morning fishing while the girls went to the beach. I missed my dad!
At least I didn’t disappoint the girls. The fishes we caught was given to the kitchen and became the extra fried fish dish for the night. Joey said it was the tastiest fish she has ever eaten. Hahaha..
We heard that a guy is doing some pottery work and we volunteered ourselves to watch and learn. Paul is an American residing at the resort, he is there to teach the locals around the island about pottery and hope that one day the local Indonesians will be able to use the skills to make a living for themselves. A very practical way to give back to the society, more than just feed them but teach them the livelihood skills.
Jayne and me got our hands dirty, trying to be a potter. It was really fun.
Enough of indoor activities? Then head on out to the beach for a walk.
The staff living quarters.
You can choose one of the many sports available. Like hitting the ball on the rope, I don’t really know how this game is being played, but the girls enjoyed it nonetheless.
What about lazing in more hammock? Facing the sea, read a book, or just take a nap.
No signal, so she can only play some offline games.
A moment of “emo” for Jayne.
This has become one of our mandatory shot wherever we go. All thanks to Kless.
The view toward our huts from the beach.
Night falls around 7pm. We sat around the dining area waiting for dinner.
Play games with the staff. Each group of guests will have their own host from the resort. He or she will be in-charge to plan and organize the activities we would like to participate, like Jungle-Waterfall Trekking, Sea Kayaking, Mangrove River Tour, Low Ropes Course, etc..
Rest for the night.
More fun at the beach before we leave the resort. Stand-up Paddling.
This is seriously very difficult. We can’t even balance on the board for more than a minute.
Slowly but surely, I managed to stand still for a photo moment.
Kless did a much better job in standing up than me. Lower center of gravity maybe?
We saw thousands of such small colorful crabs on the beach.
Starfish jump on the beach.
All good things will come to an end. On the first day we were apprehensive of what to do on the island, but after 3D2N, we were hopefully to stay longer. I guess family bonding time will always be so memorable and beautiful.
A photo with our host from Telunas. As you can see, we are quite tanned by now.
As we packed our luggage, on board the long wooden boat, we stopped at one of the nearby villages for a short tour. This is more like an educational tour to witness how the locals live their life and we planned lunch in one of the local’s home. She happens to be the main chef for Telunas Resort too.
The village is not very big, but is self sufficient. They have continence shops, schools, a mosque, a chinese temple. They rear chickens and goats, for eggs and milk.
Kindergarten and Primary schools.
Life is simple, though the villagers may be poor in terms of money or possessions, but you can hardly see a sour face or disappointed look. The children grow up in contentment. Something we need to bring back home to Singapore.
There next social project Telunas is going to take on is to teach the locals about waste handling. As you can see from the photos, the people just throw all the rubbish into the sea, which is their main source of livelihood.
Last meal (lunch) for this trip. We were being host in this house, sitting on the floor and using our hands to eat. A rare experience for the young girls.
Our host and chef, showing us her kitchen and washing sink area.
Lunch! The local Indonesian style.
We were treated to a local special dessert, the Durian version of Mango Sticky Rice.
This has been a very fruitful trip, I hope we will be coming back soon again.