16 May 2009

Riau Archipelago: Penyengat Island

Pulau Penyengat (Wasp Island), a stretch of land of 2500 by 750 metres, is located in the bay just across Tanjung Pinang. In the 19th century this island was inhabited by about 9,000 people and it once was the cultural capital of the Malay world for a short time. About sixty books were written here, among them the famous Tuhfat al-Nafis, a Buginese-Malay historical story by Raja Ali Haji, and the rulers of the island were known as strong islamic and well-educated people.

At the end of the 18th century Penyengat was an outpost in the line of defence, created around Bintan, by the Buginese underking of haji. A that time, the Malay sultanate Johor was ruled by Buginese rulers, which demanded the throne by marriages and cultural influence in the Malay elite. In 1804 sultan Mahmud of Johor gave Penyengat to his Buginese wife, Raja Hamidah, as part of the bridal treasure. What he in fact did, is splitting up the small archipelago. Her son ruled over the Riau islands from Penyengat after that, and his half brother ruled over Lingga in the south.

This separation between two rivalising brothers was easily exploited by Stamford Raffles in 1819. In trade for protection by the British crown and a big bag of money he took him over to appoint the island of Singapore to him forever. Partially as a result of this, the next century that followed, became the Golden Century for Penyengat. It was governed by a developed Buginese elite and financially supported by the English. It used the rich, islamic Malay cultural heiritage and attracted wise guys from as far as Mecca.

Now, about 2,000 Malay live on Penyengat, many of them descend from the Buginese-Malay royal family of the 18th and 19th century. This is a fascinating location to visit, not only because of the nice mosque and the remains of the 19th century colonial houses, but also to relax and taste the live in Malay villages. A network of paved roads runs zig-zag over the island, and with a little fantasy, you will go back in time rapidly.

Penyengat is to be reached by motorized sampan from the main pier in Tanjung Pinang in 15 minutes. The late afternoon is the best time for a visit, because it can be very hot in the afternoon. The warm afternoon sun also creates a game of lights over the ruins and mosque, which makes them even better. Have a walk over the island after three o'clock and don't hurry to see everything.

A trip on foot

Penyengat has two main piers; ask to be dropped at the left one. At the end of the pier a path towards the right will bring you to an attractive kampung along the coast; too bad, many of the old wooden houses are being replaced by white concrete ones. A few hundred metres ahead a path to the left heads to the graver of Engku Puteri (Raja Hamidah), the original Buginese 'owner' of Penyengat. Her grave is seen as keramat (miracle-prone) and is visited by people who are asking for help or for doing a wish. They do this by tieing a yellow cloth to the gravestone (yellow is the color of the Malay royal family). Outside the mausoleum is the 19th century wise man and historicus of Raja Ali Haji, a grandson of Raja Haji and author of Tuhfat al-Nafis (The Precious Gift), an detailed history of the Malay world from the 17th to the 19th century, which was used for prooving his right to occupy the Malay throne. On Penyengat he is also known for his gurindam duabelas, twelve short poems with islamic character.

Turn back to the main path and walk ahead along the ruins of the house of the main doctor. Turn left onto a path that leads to the other side of the island, and go left again to climb Bukit Kursi (Chair Hill). On top of the hill is the grave of Raja haji, which ruled over this area in the 18th century. He was killed by the Dutch in Malakka in 1784. His remains were replaced to Penyengat in the 19th century, on the condition that his grave would not become a place of pilgrimage. That's why they placed the grave of an respected islamic wise man, Habhb Syaik, next to it, so it was not suspicious anymore. Close to the grave is an authentical, egg-shaped Buginese gravestone from the 18th century.

After that, walk towards the southern coast of the island to have a look near the remains of the palace of Raja Abdurrahman. Further to the east is the earlier house of Raja Ali Haji. More towards the west is the sad remainder of an 'English landhouser', complete with ironwork decorations above the main entrance, which belonged to Tungku Bilek (Miss Room), named this way because she always spend her time in her room. The trip will also take you along the new Balai Adat room, which is used during ceremonial events, and a small fishing village. In the 19th century, the inhabitants of the island lived here, with an open view on the south; in a later stadium the Dutch forced the rulers to move towards the side of Tanjung Pinang, where they could be controlled better.

Now go to the north, along the palace of Raja Ali, a orthodox islamic follower. Make a short detour towards his grave, and the one of his dad, Raja Jafaar. Raja Ali forbade gambling and chicken fights, meeting of unmarried men and women, carrying gold and silk. He paid wise men to teach in a mosque, and even appointed a morning guard to be sure that his people woke up on time for the morning prayer. His covered grave is painted in a bright yellow color, and has two basins with water.

The palace of Raja Ali a little ahead along this path has became a ruin which is covered with rainforest again, but it is being restored piece by piece. The south entrance has a nice porch with along it's both sides two curls with European, Arabian, Jawanese and Indonesian motives. There used to be a channel from here to the river, but this was later filled again because of the mosquito's. Have a walk on the terrain of the guardtower and climb it for a splendid view.

At the end of the path is the green with yellow royal mosque. The mosque, which was completed in 1884, is supported from the inside (on Jawanese way of construction) by four big pillars and has four Moghul minarets, reachable by steep stairs. The roof has thirteen domes which should perfectly match on an European-style castle. From a distance, this mosque can be places on one of Disney's stories.

The white of thousands of egg was mixed with chalk to create the fine concrete which is used for building the mosque. The beautifull woodcarved closets near the entrance contain islamic books from India, Ca├»ro, Mecca and Medina. A nice quran from the 17th century is behind glass for displa; watch the glass chandeliers and the fine woodcarved nimbar of speechchair in the main hall. This mosque was an important centre of islamic Malay science in the 19th century. When entering a mosque, dress properly, long sleeves on both trousers and blouses, no skirts for the women. Women in their period are not allowed to enter any mosque.

A track right of the mosque ends near the common well, with on the left side an attractive, chalked stone bathing pavilion. When it's not in use, you can have a look inside at the source and the stone seats. Go back to the mosque and turn right just after the shops, onto a wide and shadowy path. One hundred metres ahead is a gunpowder room dating from the 18th century. This was the place where the gunpowded of the three fortresses was kept.

Walk further onto the hill to a big graveyard and have a look at the grave of Abdurrahman, the 15th century Yamtuan Muda (Buginese underking) which ordered the construction of the mosque. Along the left side a stair leads to an astonishing ruin of a stone fortress. This was constructed at the end of the 18th century by Raja Haji to divert the attack of the Dutch on the River Riau in 1873. The visitor is welcomed by two cannons which have been found during the latest restaurations. The fortress offers a view over Bintan and the sealane towards the east. From here, a short trip to the pier near the mosque, for the boat to Tanjung Pinang.
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14 April 2009

Riau Archipelago: Some Hotel Address



Royal Palace Hotel
Adi Sucipto Street 10, Tanjung Pinang
Phone: (0771) 41234

Sampurna Jaya Hotel
Yusuf Kahar Street 15, Tanjung Pinang
Phone: (0771) 21555

Garden Hotel
Gatot Subroto Street 282, Tanjung Pinang
Telp. (0771) 22344

Holiday Karimun Hotel
Trikora Laut Street 1, Tanjung Balai
Phone: (0771) 21065

Pinang Marina Island Cottage
Gudang Minyak Street 133, Tanjung Pinang
Phone: (0771) 21307

Wisata Hotel
Merdeka Street 67, Tanjung Pinang
Phone: (0771) 21067

Sanno Bintan Permai Hotel
Pos Street 25-27, Tanjung Pinang
Phone: (0771) 22303

Sri Pinang Wisma
Plantar Street I/17-19, Tanjung Pinang
Phone: (0771) 21195

Surya Hotel
Bintan Street 14, Tanjung Pinang
Phone: (0771) 21293

Tanjung Pinang Jaya Hotel
Pos Street 692, Tanjung Pinang
Phone: (0771) 21236

Trikora Beach Hotel
Teluk Bakau Street km 37, Tanjung Pinang
Phone: (0771) 24454

New City Wisma
HM. Nawawi Street 88, Tanjung Batu
Phone: (0771) 21100

Paradise Hotel
Potong Lembu Street 58B, Tanjung Pinang
Phone: (0771) 24220

Wisma Riau Hotel
M. Yusuf Kahar Street 8, Tanjung Pinang 
Phone: (0771) 21133

Bintan Lagoon Resort
Jalan Indera Segara Site A12.
Bintan Utara, Lagoi, Kepri 29155
Tel: (62) 770 691 388
Fax: (62) 770 691 300

Mayang Sari Beach Resort
Tanjung Tondang Lot Street 123, Sebong, Legio
Phone: (0771) 92580

Bintan Permai Beach Resort
Pantai Impian I Street, Tanjung Pinang
Phone: (0771) 23661

Baruna Wisma 
Bakar Batu Street 27, Tanjung Pinang
Phone: (0771) 21483

Bintan Island Indah
Bakar Batu Street 22, Tanjung Pinang
Phone: (0771) 21946

Kartika Hotel
MT. Haryono Street km 35, Tanjung Pinang
Phone: (0771) 22446

Mitra Pesona Wisata
Nusantara Puakang Street 15, Tanjung Balai
Phone: (0771) 31123


Batam View Beach Resort
Hang Lekir Nongsa Street, Batam
Phone: (0778) 76140

Harmoni Hotel 
Imam Bonjol Street, New Holiday Complex, Batam
Phone: (0778) 459306

Mandarin Regency Hotel
Imam Bonjol Street 1, Nagoya, Batam
Phone: (0778) 426700

Melia Panorama Hotel
Raja Ali Haji Street, Sei Jodoh, Batam
Phone: (0778) 452888

Nongsa Point Marina Hotel
Nongsa Batam
Phone: (0778) 761333

Novotel Batam Hotel
Duyung Sei Jodoh Street, Batam
Phone: (0778) 425555

Pura Jaya Beach Hotel Resort
Hang Lekir Street, Nongsa, Batam
Phone: (0778) 761430

Turi Beach Resort Hotel
Mata Ikan Bay, Nongsa, Batam
Phone: (0778) 761080

Quality Resort Waterfront City Choice Hotel
Sei Temiang, Waterfront City, Batam
Phone: (0778) 381130

Greenville Cottages
Kuda Laut Street, Batu Ampar, Batam
Phone: (0778) 458282

Halmaya Hotel
Sriwijaya Street 18, Lubuk Baja, Batam
Phone: (0778) 458138

Hill Top Hotel
Ir. Sutami Street 8, Sekupang, Batam
Phone: (0778) 322482

Nagoya Plaza Hotel
Imam Bonjol Street, Lubuk Baja, Batam
Phone: (0778) 459888

Ramayana Hotel
Pembangunan II Street, Komp. Batam Blok F
Phone: (0778) 456888

Royal Eastern Hotel
Raden Patah Street 12, Nagoya, Batam
Phone: (0778) 452777

Puri Garden Hotel 
Teuku Umar Street, Nagoya, Batam
Phone: (0778) 458888

Singa Hotel
Sriwijaya Street, Pelita, Batam
Phone: (0778) 451919

Sri Jaya Hotel
Bumi Indah Complex, Nagoya, Batam 
Phone: (0778) 451338

Bukit Mutiara Hotel
Gunung Bromo Street, Baloi, Batam
Phone: (0778) 458481

Bumi Nusantara Hotel
Gunung Bromo Street, Baloi, Batam
Phone: (0778) 424444

Gita Wisata Hotel
Gunung Bromo Street, Baloi, Batam
Phone: (0778) 458105

Holiday Hotel
Gunung Bromo Street, Baloi Indah Batam
Phone: (0778) 458616

Kolekta Hotel
Raden Patah Street, Nagoya, Batam
Phone: (0778) 451333

Nantongga View Hotel
Seri Ruci Complex, Sei Jodoh Batam
Phone: (0778) 459795

Sahid Rasinta Hotel
Bukit Housing Estate, Batam
Phone: (0778) 455888

Seruni International Hotel
Nagoya Garden Phase II, Nagoya, Batam
Phone: (0778) 458333

Anggrek Batam Hotel
Sriwijaya Street 18, Batam
Phone: (0778) 451919


Padi Mass Hotel
Pertambangan Street
Phone: (0777) 325555

Holiday Karimun Hotel
Trikora Laut Street 1 
Phone: (0777) 21065, 21666


Find Out or book a Hotel, please click here
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Riau Archipelago : Some Restaurant Address


Batu Merah Seafood
(Indonesian food)
Batu Merah, Batam Island
Phone: (0778) 468610


Indonesia Delight

Jl. R. E. Martadinata,
Phone: (0778) 321276

King Prawn Restaurant

Jl. Pembangunan II,
Komp. Batama
Phone: (0778) 467920

Shangri-La Food Restaurant
Jl. RE. Martadinata, Sekupang
Phone: (0778) 321276 

King's International
Jl. Lubuk Baja 1/10 Nagoya
Phone : (0778) 468706

Jl. Raja Ali Haji
Phone: (0778) 468707

Tunas Baru (Chinese food)
Lubuk Baja Blok E/42, Batam
Phone: 68498



Fast food Indonesia 
Teuku Umar Street 88
Phone: (0771) 318185

Gerai Selera Rasa Restaurant
Tugu Pahlawan Street 217
Phone: (0771) 22379

Kelong Sangrila Restaurant
Sei Jang Street
Phone: (0771) 312838

Adem Ayem Restaurant
Sukarno Hatta Street 3
Phone: (0771) 317559

Bali Restaurant
Jend Basuki Rahmat Street 2
Phone: (0771) 317295

CGA Restaurant
Pemuda Street 1
Phone: (0771) 316761



Tanjung Balai Karimun
Golden Lion Restaurant
Nusantara Street
Phone: (0777) 31331

Lai Xing Restaurant
Pegadaian Street
Phone: (0777) 22288

Cippes Restaurant
Pramuka Street
Phone: (0777) 328288

Do & Me Fried Chicken
Nusantara Street 48
Phone: (0777) 324045

Brother One Restaurant
Trikora Street 19
Phone: (0777) 324313

Empat Lima Restaurant
Baru Meral Market
Phone: (0777) 328165

Moro Jaya Restaurant
Kampung Tgh Street
Phone: (0777) 511254


Elok Saiyo Restaurant
Ksatria Street 2
Phone: (0777) 324132

178 Restaurant
Trikora Street 
Phone: (0777) 31478

Aur Duri Restaurant
Dr Setiabudi Street
Phone: (0777) 323825

Batang Imang Restaurant
Kom L Yos Sudarso Street
Phone: (0777) 326622

Bengawan Solo Restaurant
Dr Setiabudi Street
Phone: (0777) 31469

Moeslim Food
Nusantara Street 50
Phone: (0777) 21403


Bakso Bina Ria 
Permaisuri Street 
Phone: (0771) 81462

Ibu Padang 
Tamansari Street
Phone: (0771) 82353

Niki Mawon & KaraokeRestaurant
RE Martadinata Street
Phone: (0771) 482490

Minang Jaya 
Merdeka Street
Phone: (0771) 81203

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Riau Archipelago : Some Artshop -Souvenir


Batik Danar Hadi Solo
Shopping Centre No.7 E-8

Tourist Shop
Jl. Raja Ali Hap
Komp. Pertokoan Jodoh Square 

Bali Art Shop
Jl. Raja Ali Haji
Komp. Inti Sakti B/II

J & J Collection
Jl. Lubuk Baja I
Komp. Bumi Indah No.26

Jl. Lubuk Baja I
Komp. Bumi Indah Blok II No.7


Aloha Souvenir Shop
Jl. Imam Bonjol Blok B No.1
Nagoya, Batam

Batam Trade Centre
Tata Cipta Building

Golden Hill

Komp. Nagoya Business Centre
Blok II No.4


Komp. Tanjung Pantun No.9

Wisesa Supermarket
Shopping Centre No. C2-C3

Metro Master
Komp. Tanjung Pantun



Yayasan Sempena Riau
Jl. Sumatra No.7
Phone: (0761) 231570

Ramanda Toserba
Jl. Jend. Sudirman

Amie Souvenir & Art Shop

Jl. Sumatera No.178

Bima Sakti Plaza

Jl. Jend. Sudirman 

Kaca Mayang Souvenir Shop

Taman Putri Kaca Mayang
Jl. Jend. Sudirman


Toko Prima
Jl. Mawar
Phone: (0771) 21566

Toko Embong Fatimah
Jl. Samudra

Toko Gloria
Jl. Temiang
Phone: (0771) 22241 

Toko Souvenir
Komplek Olah Raga Kaca Puri

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Riau Archipelago: Bintan Island Tourism Object

Bintan is the largest island in the Riau province, with its area is 1.140 sq. km width, with a coastline of about 105 km. The island has a population of about 200.000, and like the rest of Riau this is a true mix of cultures like Malay, Bugis, Chinese and the Orang Laut. Bintan is very close to the equator and have a tropical climate throughout the year, with temperatures ranging from 21° to 32°, with an average of 26° Celsius. 

Bintan and Batam saw before the economic crisis huge investments and development, including industrial parks and large tourist resorts. Bintan has since become a popular tourist destination due to its close vicinity to Singapore. Here we can get accommodation of all standards, and it is still possible to find a peaceful spot on Bintan far from other tourists. Most of the tourism is concentrated on the north coast around Lagoi, while the east coast is still unspoiled and worth a visit. In a not so distant past Bintan was completely covered with tropical rain forest. This is now all gone, except a small forest that covers the highest mountain on the island, Bintan Besar. The mountain is the remains of an old volcano, and has an elevation of 376 m, the highest point on the Riau islands.

In Bintan, diving promises to be comfortably civilized, with all underwater needs catered to Mana Mana Beach Club - Bintan Resort's professional water sports center. Out of the water, Bintan will be the place with something for everyone. There's the golf course, horses for riding and jungles for trekking - alternatives aplenty to tempt hardened divers to stay topside.

Bintan Island has tourism object  as the following:

Tanjung Pinang

Tanjung Pinang, is the main port town on Bintan Island, where trade and passenger ships link to all parts of Indonesia and Singapore. Bintan is a good point of departure to other islands in the area and only a two-hour boat ride away from Singapore. A large section of the old part of the town was built in traditional local fashion, on stilts, over the water, although today, its face is changing rapidly, with several first-class hotels and yachting marinas being developed. Seafood at the night market is great. Trikora Beach is about 50 kilometers south of Tanjung Pinang on the eastern side of the island. Good beaches are also found on the islands of Terkulai and Soreh, about an hour away by boat.

Tanjung Pinang is a busy little town on Bintan Island, visited by traders from Jakarta, Medan, Palembang and other big cities in Indonesia, Tanjung Pinang is only a two-hour boat ride away from Singapore. The town has a Museum located on Katamso Street. A large section of the old part of the town was built in traditional local fashion, on stilts, over the water. Bintan is a good point of departure to other islands in the area.

The main town on Bintan is Tanjung Pinang, which can be easily reached from Singapore. It is located on the western part of Bintan Bay, and is also the largest town on Riau Archipelago. It has the usual Indonesian chaos, but also its share of charm, especially the stilted buildings that sits above the water in the northern part of town is worth a look. Tanjung Pinang has a busy harbor that is strategically located close to the Malacca strait, one of the world's busiest sea-lanes. Most of the ships arriving Tanjung Pinang are however smaller vessels coming from all over Indonesia and from Singapore.

The 28m tall Raja Haji Fisabillah Monument of Struggle sits in the western part of Tanjung Pinang and is raised in memory of the hero Raja Haji who died during the battle for Malacca against the Dutch in 1784. The Sungai Ular (Snake River) Buddhist Temple is another attraction opposite the harbor in Tanjung Pinang. The visitor can also visit some of many small islands with fishing villages just a few minutes by boats from the town, and of course Penyengat Island. Tanjung Pinang is well known for good and inexpensive seafood and has a large selection of mussels, prawns, fish, squid and gong, a local specialty (shellfish). Also other traditional Riau food is served here, one specialty is "otak otak", fish meat cooked in coconut milk mixed with Indonesian spices and wrapped in coconut leaf, we can also find traditional Nasi Padang rice dishes. There are a large number of shops here, with a variety of relatively cheap goods, including electronics, tools, jewels, toys, batik and gold.

Tanjung Uban

The largest town besides Tanjung Pinang is Tanjung Uban on the north west coast. From here, it is a short distance if we reach it by boat to nearby Batam the ticket is cheap. Tanjung Uban has oil storage and is a district center. Along the sea there is a charming boardwalk called "pelantar" with houses, accommodation and restaurants built over the sea, behind this is the main street with shops.

Trikora Beach

The most popular beach on the east coast is Trikora, where also the locals use to go for relaxation on the holidays. It can be difficult to get there, go by taxi or the occasional bus from Tanjung Pinang. Even if the beach is isolated we can find simple accommodation here, even a more luxurious alternative. The sand is white and the water clean, a great place for relaxation after the hot and busy streets of Tanjung Pinang. We can also visit a fishing village nearby and a small ship building facility to have a look at traditional boat building.

Penyengat Island

Penyengat Island, 6 kilometers away from Tanjung Pinang, can be reached in 15 minutes by sampan boat. The seat of the powerful Bugis descended viceroys of Riau during the 18th century; Penyengat still bears the traces of its illustrious past. Ruins, abandoned for almost 70 years, were recently resorted. The oldest ruler's palace and royal tombs, among them the grave of the book respected Sultan Haji, author of the first Malay language grammar book among the legacies left by the Riau sultanate. A newly built cultural center for stage performances of Malay music and dances can be found.

In the 18th century Raja Haji built an outpost here as part of the defense around Bintan. He controlled the area until the Dutch at Malacca eventually killed him in 1784. His remains are now buried here. The ruler of Johor, Sultan Mahmud, gave the island to his Bugis wife Raja Hamidah in 1804. Raja Hamidah's son then ruled the Riau islands from Penyengat, while his half-brother ruled in the Lingga Island to the south. Raffles turned this division to his advantage in 1819, when the prince of Penyengat gave him the island of Singapore in return for a large sum of money and the protection of the British crown.

Under the protection and support of the British the area saw an "golden age", and the remains of this prosperous time can still be seen on the island. Some of the ruins have recently been restored, like the old ruler's palace and royal tombs. The old mosque, Mesjid Raya, is still in use. A cultural center is also newly built for performances of Malay music and dance. At the west end of the island there is an impressive stone fort, built by Raja Haji to fend off Dutch attacks.

The restored palace of Raja Ali is located in the center of the island. Raja Ali was a strict follower of Islam, things like gambling and cockfighting, the wearing of gold and silk for men and mixing of unmarried men and women were strictly forbidden. His yellow and green Royal Mosque can be seen from far away, completed in 1844 it became an important center for Muslim Malay learning in the 19th century. Penyengat Island actually became the cultural capital of the Malay world, and some 9.000 people inhabited the island, among them religious scholars from as far away as Mecca.

The importance of Penyengat ended when the last Sultan of the Riau-Lingga, Abdul Rahman Muazzan Shah, refused to sign a contract with the Dutch that terminated the rights and authority of the traditional king and officers of Riau. The Dutch then informed him that his palaces, buildings, land, etc, would be confiscated. To prevent this, he ordered Penyengat people to destroy the Dutch possessions on the island, this is the reason why there is not much left on Penyengat that shows its former glory. Today there are about 2.500 people living on the island, about one third of them are descendants of the former royalty, most of the residents make their living of fishing, while some work on the main island.

Because the participation of Penyengat Island was very important in historical of Riau Kingdom, so the island what relatively is very small it is to be well known and attention peoples to visit it. More over at there is still has much kind of historical last sites. At this island beside has much some kind of historical sites; it founded another interest objects like wonderful views, tradition couch, arts attraction, and traditional villages.


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