Saturday, July 14, 2012

Island resort escape from Singapore: Nikoi Island

Nikoi Island is not your typical tropic resort island: this small island is a privately owned by a small group of expatriates who have worked in the region for years. They have heard about the island which was for sale back in 2003 and they have set out to explore in a fishing boat. They were stunned with the 15ha of white shell-strewn beaches, rock formations, virgin rain forest, as well as colossal banyan trees and mangroves. They have bought it and initially used it as a private retreat. By 2007, they have started to share this paradise.

The island is near Indonesia's Bintan Island which offers a great island resort escape from Singapore. The journey to Nikoi Island, which is only 85 kilometers away from Singapore, starts from Singapore’s Tanah Merah ferry terminal and a ferry trip from here to Bintan (one hour), a one hour taxi trip across Bintan to the jetty and half an hour more from jetty to Nikoi Island. This 2.5 hours journey will end with a total relaxation environment on an almost deserted tropical island with crystal waters and white sandy beaches. If you are from Jakarta, there are daily flights from Jakarta to Bintan operated by Sriwijaya Air. You will need a half an hour taxi journey from the airport on Bintan to jetty and another half hour boat trip to Nikoi Island.

Nikoi Island - Source : javabackpacker.blogspot
Although you do not need to rent this entire island like the nearby Pulau Pangkil Kecil, the island is greatly preserved and it is sparsely populated so at times, you feel like you have rented yourself an island resort with the entire island!  There are actually only 15 beach houses 10 of which are one bedroom, 4 of which are 2 bedroom and one with 3 bedroom and the owners currently have no plan to build any more. All of these beach houses are just next to the beach with awesome sea views. 

Other than swimming, snorkeling, fishing, kayaking, windsurfing and stand-up paddle boarding, the island offers sailing experience with either lasers or Nacras (5m catamaran). You can also play beach voleyball or rock climb or drive mountain bikes on the island.

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