Today, Bintan is best known for its luxurious resorts and exotic sparkling beaches. However, do you know much about the history of this beautiful island? Well, let’s take you down some memory lane.
Learning The History of Bintan Island
Centuries ago, Bintan was known as the center of trade in Asia. Bintan is a site where dealers worldwide, especially from China, the Middle East, and India, get together and create their own companies. Indonesian traders bought spices from different islands while foreign traders (such as the Chinese) arrived in Bintan to deliver tea, silk, and ceramics.
Due to its strategic position, Bintan has become one of the trade routes for local and foreign traders. It dates back to the 14th century when Bintan and Temasek, or what is now Singapore, as stated in Chinese maritime records, were among the islands in the Riau archipelago which Malay pirates occupied.
Soon the foreign traders were amazed by the charm of Bintan. Located near the Equator, Bintan enjoys a tropical climate all year round. An ideal mix of the warm turquoise waters of the South China Sea and stunning white beaches, Bintan is an extraordinary creation of God for locals and traders alike.
Many traders eventually choose to return to Bintan and marry residents. That’s how Riau and Bintan became the home of Malays and sea migrants in addition to immigrants to China, India, and the Middle East. Bintan background is a commodity of ethnic assimilation among these people. The importance of Bintan’s natural beauty and ethnic diversity is why millions of tourists are drawn to this paradise on Earth.
Several parties initially debated Bintan’s strategic place. Bintan used to be part of a “war triangle” by the Portuguese, the Sultanate of Johor, and the Acehnese in northern Sumatra. Bintan saw many rulers increase and decrease in electricity. The majority of them tried to control the area because Bintan was an important place for traders.
Before independence, Bintan was inhabited by three Indonesian colonizers: England, the Netherlands, and also Japan. Since the 18th century, Bintan has been occupied by the British East India Company as a suitable place for marine trade. In 1911, Bintan was turned into a colony. After the Japanese entered the area in 1942, Bintan was inhabited by them. It didn’t take long for Bintan to become part of the state of Riau after Indonesia’s independence in 1945.
Only a 1-hour ferry ride from Singapore, the government is quite enthusiastic about turning Bintan into an important tourist destination in the western part of Indonesia. Since the 1990s, money has flowed into Bintan, which is valuable because Bintan wants foreign exchange for its economic improvement.
Since then, numerous hotel and business developers have flooded the island, causing tens of thousands of luxury resorts and leisure spots. Although Bintan has had its ups and downs throughout its creation, its hard work paying off. Bintan can now exhibit high-end hotels and recreational areas of international standard, including the Crystal Lagoon, the largest man-made seawater in Asia.
Currently, Bintan’s economy is heavily dependent on tourism. Considering its proximity to regional hubs such as Singapore, Jakarta, and Johor Bahru, it should come as no surprise that Bintan is increasing its fame as a significant global tourist destination with just a glance. Tourists, both international and local, are attracted to the natural beauty of the island and its cultural heritage.
What Makes Bintan Island Special
- Beach Lust
One of the most attractive components of Bintan is its tropical beaches. Various community beach options in Bintan, such as Trikora Beach, White Sand Islands, Lagoi Beach, and Hamid Beach. Each of them gave them different attributes and hypnotic charms of their own. If your plan is to bask in the sun or snorkel, then Trikora is the ideal choice as it is more popular with the natives. If you want something a little more exclusive, enjoy the pristine sand trail on White Sands Island, located just a 15-minute boat ride from Trikora. Simply take a stroll along the beach or take a dip into the turquoise waters, soak up this soul-indulgent paradise.
- Essence of Taste
Apart from enjoying exotic beaches, Bintan also has a myriad of delicious foods to add to your culinary experience. In Bintan you can find almost any version of the food which is sure to suit your taste. The food that Bintan touches is otak-otak, grilled fish cakes wrapped in banana leaves. The flavor comes from the mixture of spices used to roast fish and the leaves of the wok. Another Bintan delicacy that you must try is Gonggong which is a roasted or boiled sea snail. The subtle flavor of the meat, dipped in a signature spice, will conquer you. Get ready for a true culinary adventure.
- Character Nurturer
Bintan provides more than just food and beaches. If you’re an adrenaline junkie, Bintan has plenty of outdoor activities that are both challenging and fun. Embark on an adventurous journey climbing Mount Bintan, where you will be greeted with varied wildlife and dense rainforest. You can even get a canoe with a trip to Bintan Mangrove, home to a wide variety of fauna, including snakes, crocodiles, monkeys, and beavers. Bintan Mangrove provides night tours where you can dance among tropical forests with fireflies under the shining stars.
Ready to start your getaway to Bintan? Visit Wonderful Indonesia, and don’t miss out on the magic!